For this ramble, we’ve decided to stick to the city limits and discover Bonnevoie (lux. Bouneweg) which is the largest and most populated of the 24 quarters of Luxembourg’s capital. Lying in its southeast, it was integrated to the municipality of Luxembourg City in 1920. The construction of the central railway station (XIXth century) in its immediate neighbourhood contributed to its urban development.
The eastern edge of Bonnevoie is delimited by the Alzette (lux. Uelzecht) river, piercing its way through the sandstone rocks. The walk follows the river. It has two parts, so it’s up to you to choose whether you make the whole ramble or just part of it.
Start near the bridge over the Alzette and turn left (Rue de Pulvermühl). Then, take the path on your right and enter the forest. On your way, enjoy some sights of the Upper Old Town of Luxembourg City in the distance and the tiny “Polvermillen“-quarter at your feet. The name comes from an ancient mill (lux. Millen), where gunpowder (lux. Polver) was produced during the fortress times. Later on, it served more peaceful purposes as an oil, corn or a cloth mill. Past the filling station, cross the bridge and get back to the woods. Head to the starting point to begin the second part of the walk.
Behind the bridge, turn right (Rue de Hamm, Rue Godchaux) and walk along the Alzette towards “Schläifmillen“. This whole area is characterized by the remains of the cloth business of the Godchaux family. The buildings at the weir were part of the textile production and together with the cloth mill in “Polvermillen“, they belonged to the textile lords Paul and Jules Godchaux. Cross the footbridge at the weir and continue towards the remains of the “Gantebeensmillen“, slightly off the track, initially a grinding-mill (lux. Schläifmillen), then a grain mill, sold to the Godchaux family in 1872 in order to extend their textile business. On your way back to the starting point, pass by the “Fohlmillen” with its clinker chimney, also part of the erstwhile textile industry, now an artist studio.
Geological fact: The field names “Ierzkaulen” and “op de Minnen” reveal that there has been some mining activity in ancient times. Indeed, you can find beautifully rolled samples of limonite (a kind of Tertiary iron ore) all over the place. This ore, among others, provided Luxembourg’s forges during the Ancien Régime before the French Revolution in 1789.
AP Bonnevoie (7,85 km – Auto Pedestre)
Date of the walk: August 8, 2016 (but seeing as it’s a city walk we thought this one is great for the winter too as you can always nip into a café afterwards to warm up with a chocolat chaud!)
Duration: 1 h 35 min
Elevation: 250-289 m
Level: easy (3/10)
Walking ground quality: good