By Molly Kalafut
Seen from Mount Pilatus
Pilatus mountain is 6,800 feet high in the Alps of the Four Forest Cantons. According to legend, Pontius Pilate's body was thrown into a lake on the mountain.
Mount Pilatus has the world's steepest cog-way, panoramic gondolas and aerial cablecars. It has a view at 7,000 feet above sea level.
The area was originally known as "Lucaria" in 840AD. It developed into an intersection for trade after the St. Gotthard Pass opened. Wagner composed "Siegfrid Idyll" while living in a lakeside mansion in Lucerne. Lucerne is also where the William Tell story took place.
The Lake of Lucerne is a 44 square mile lake in central Switzerland with a maximum depth of 700 feet.
Dying Lion Monument
This monument was sculpted into the sandstone cliff above Lucerne in 1821. It is a monument to the Swiss Guards who died defending Marie Antoinette. In 1792, after trying to escape the French Revolution, King Louis XVI, Marie-Antoinette, and their children were brought back to the Tuileries Palace in Paris. Working-class Parisians stormed the palace and more than 700 Swiss officers and soldiers died while defending the palace.
The Glacier Garden is right next to the Dying Lion Monument. It contains gigantic glacial potholes and erratic blocks from the Ice Age 15,000 to 20,000 years ago, and with fossilized shells and palm leaves from 20 million years ago.
Copyright 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008 and beyond! By Molly Kalafut