Liechtenstein travel guide
A pocket-sized principality in the heart of Europe, Liechtenstein rarely tops anybody’s bucket list of continental must-sees. Yet this tiny, landlocked nation offers more than you’d imagine: from long-standing history to sky-high mountains; cliff-hanging castles to odd cultural quirks.
Many of Liechtenstein’s historical highlights are located in the capital, Vaduz. While this tiny town may only have around 5,000 inhabitants, it also boasts an array of fascinating museums and galleries – including the Liechtenstein National Museum, the Museum of Fine Arts and the FIS Ski and Winter Sports Museum – as well as the atmospheric Prince’s Wine Cellars and the neo-Gothic Vaduz Cathedral. All these attractions are watched over by the pretty Vaduz Castle, which remains the official residence of the Prince of Liechtenstein.
Vaduz isn’t Liechtenstein’s only town of historical note. The second town, Schaan, is actually larger than Vaduz, and comes with its very own impressive church and Roman remains, while Balzers in the south west boasts what is perhaps Liechtenstein’s most arresting fortification. There are also beautiful chapels to be found in lesser-visited villages like Triesen and Planken.
And yet the true star of Liechtenstein is the remarkable nature. This country has arguably the most impressive landscape in Europe. Most of the peaks in Liechtenstein soar more than 2,000m (6,562ft) into the sky, making Liechtenstein a premier destination for skiing, hiking and mountain biking. Its shimmering lakes are also a big draw for swimmers.
As well as its permanent attractions, Liechtenstein also excels when it comes to unusual events. Some of the fun annual highlights include the Monster Concert (where troupes of musicians and dancers dress in outlandish costumes and bang drums), the Cattle Drive (where cows and sheep are festooned in colourful garments and adorned with bells) and the LGT Alpine Marathon (where competitors from around the globe run for 26 miles through the mountains).
Factor in Liechtenstein’s dynamic dining, drinking and live music offerings, and you have a pocket sized nation that punches well above its weight.
160 sq km (62 sq miles).
37,776 (UN estimate 2016).
235.2 per sq km.
Imperial principality with a hereditary constitutional monarchy.
Prince Hans Adam II since 1989.
Prime Minister Adrian Hasler since 2013.
230 volts AC, 50Hz. European-style plugs with two round pins are used.
Last updated: 10 October 2017
The travel advice summary below is provided by the Foreign and Commonwealth Office in the UK. ‘We’ refers to the Foreign and Commonwealth Office. For their full travel advice, visit www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice.
There is no resident British diplomatic mission in the Principality of Liechtenstein. If you need consular assistance, you should contact the British Embassy in Berne.
British nationals make 2,200 visits to Liechtenstein every year (source: Liechtenstein Office for Statistics). Most visits are trouble-free.
There is one ski resort in Liechtenstein, Malbun. There is a moderate danger of avalanches at some times of the year. Follow local advice on weather and avalanche conditions. See Sports Activities and Winter Sports
If you need to contact the emergency services, call 112 (general emergency calls), 118 (fire), 117 (police) or 144 (ambulance).
If you’re abroad and you need emergency help from the UK government, contact the nearest British embassy, consulate or high commission.
Although there is no recent history of terrorism in Liechtenstein, attacks can’t be ruled out.
Safety and security
Crime levels are low, but petty crime can occur. Take sensible precautions to protect your passport and money, and be alert to pickpockets in public places. Do not become involved with drugs of any kind. The emergency number for the police is 117.
Foreign visitors and residents can be targeted by scam artists. Scams can cause great financial loss. If you receive an e-mail claiming to be from Her Majesty’s Revenue and Customs (HMRC) offering a tax refund on provision of your bank details you should make absolutely sure that it is not part of a scam.
If you plan to travel to Liechtenstein via the motorways in Switzerland or Austria you must purchase and display a motorway vignette or face large on-the-spot fines in these countries.
All road users should follow instructions given by local police and officials on the main alpine transit routes, at bottlenecks and areas of heavy traffic congestion. A warning triangle is compulsory and must be kept within easy reach (not in the boot). Radar detectors are prohibited in Liechtenstein whether in use or not. The limit for alcohol in the bloodstream is 0.8% and police may request any driver to undergo a breath test or drugs test. Traffic regulations are strenuously enforced. Any serious breach of the regulations can result in heavy fines and/or imprisonment.
Alpine winters often make driving more difficult. You should equip your car with winter tyres and snow-chains, and check road conditions prior to departure.
A full (i.e. not provisional) valid UK, or other EU/EEA, driving licence is sufficient for driving in Liechtenstein. There is no need for an International Driving Permit.
Sports activities and winter sports
The following alpine hazards exist throughout the year:
– avalanches and snow drifts
– landslides and flooding
– glacial crevasses and hollows
– falling rocks
– altitude sickness
– sun exposure
– sudden weather changes
Many accidents happen due to insufficient information, inappropriate equipment or overestimating your own capability. Follow advice given by local authorities and guides, take note of weather forecasts and conditions, make sure you are physically fit and have the necessary experience, be in a team of at least two, inform someone of your plans, take warm clothes and wet weather gear, and use sun block and sun glasses.
Read more about how to stay safe on the slopes.
Although there is no recent history of terrorism in Liechtenstein, attacks can’t be ruled out. You should be aware of the global risk of indiscriminate terrorist attacks which could be in public areas, including those frequented by expatriates and foreign travellers.
There is a heightened threat of terrorist attack globally against UK interests and British nationals, from groups or individuals motivated by the conflict in Iraq and Syria. You should be vigilant at this time.
Find out more about the global threat from terrorism, how to minimise your risk and what to do in the event of a terrorist attack.
The information on this page covers the most common types of travel and reflects the UK government’s understanding of the rules currently in place. Unless otherwise stated, this information is for travellers using a full ‘British Citizen’ passport.
The authorities in the country or territory you’re travelling to are responsible for setting and enforcing the rules for entry. If you’re unclear about any aspect of the entry requirements, or you need further reassurance, you’ll need to contact the embassy, high commission or consulate of the country or territory you’re travelling to.
You should also consider checking with your transport provider or travel company to make sure your passport and other travel documents meet their requirements.
Immigration and customs
Switzerland handles immigration and customs matters for Liechtenstein. Entry requirements are the same as for Switzerland. There is no customs border between Switzerland and Liechtenstein.
British nationals do not need a visa to enter Liechtenstein for a maximum stay of 90 days. For all other types of travel, you should refer to the Swiss Embassy in London.
Your passport should be valid for the proposed duration of your stay. No additional period of validity beyond this is required.
UK Emergency Travel Documents
UK ETDs are accepted for entry, airside transit and exit from Liechtenstein.
Visit your health professional at least 4 to 6 weeks before your trip to check whether you need any vaccinations or other preventive measures. Country specific information and advice is published by the National Travel Health Network and Centre on the TravelHealthPro website and by NHS (Scotland) on the fitfortravel website. Useful information and advice about healthcare abroad is also available on the NHS Choices website.
If you’re visiting Liechtenstein you should get a free European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) before leaving the UK. The EHIC isn’t a substitute for medical and travel insurance, but it entitles you to state provided medical treatment that may become necessary during your trip. Any treatment provided is on the same terms as Liechtenstein nationals. If you don’t have your EHIC with you or you’ve lost it, you can call the Department of Health Overseas Healthcare Team (+44 191 218 1999) to get a Provisional Replacement Certificate. The EHIC won’t cover medical repatriation, ongoing medical treatment or non-urgent treatment, so you should make sure you have adequate travel insurance and accessible funds to cover the cost of any medical treatment and repatriation.
An agreement between the EU and Liechtenstein came into force on 1 June 2002. If you are a national of the UK or any other EU country, a Liechtenstein national, a stateless person or refugee and you live in the UK, you can use the EHIC to get reduced cost immediately necessary healthcare when visiting Liechtenstein. Your dependent family members and survivors are also covered, regardless of their nationality.
If you claim treatment under the EHIC scheme in Liechtenstein you should only be charged the proportion of your healthcare costs for which you remain responsible. Liechtenstein has one hospital, the Liechtensteinisches Landesspital, in Vaduz. The Amt fur Gesundheit (National Office of Health) generally needs to approve your admission, except for emergency treatment. For more serious conditions, patients may need to be referred to a nearby hospital in Switzerland.
There is an increased risk of tick bites from April to October. For more information read insect and tick bite avoidance
If you need emergency medical assistance during your trip, dial 144 or 112 and ask for an ambulance. If you are referred to a medical facility for treatment you should contact your insurance/medical assistance company immediately.
Travel advice help and support
If you’re abroad and you need emergency help from the UK government, contact the nearest British embassy, consulate or high commission. If you need urgent help because something has happened to a friend or relative abroad, contact the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) in London on 020 7008 1500 (24 hours).
Foreign travel checklist
Read our foreign travel checklist to help you plan for your trip abroad and stay safe while you’re there.
The FCO travel advice helps you make your own decisions about foreign travel. Your safety is our main concern, but we can’t provide tailored advice for individual trips. If you’re concerned about whether or not it’s safe for you to travel, you should read the travel advice for the country or territory you’re travelling to, together with information from other sources you’ve identified, before making your own decision on whether to travel. Only you can decide whether it’s safe for you to travel.
When we judge the level of risk to British nationals in a particular place has become unacceptably high, we’ll state on the travel advice page for that country or territory that we advise against all or all but essential travel. Read more about how the FCO assesses and categorises risk in foreign travel advice.
Our crisis overseas page suggests additional things you can do before and during foreign travel to help you stay safe.
Refunds and cancellations
If you wish to cancel or change a holiday that you’ve booked, you should contact your travel company. The question of refunds and cancellations is a matter for you and your travel company. Travel companies make their own decisions about whether or not to offer customers a refund. Many of them use our travel advice to help them reach these decisions, but we do not instruct travel companies on when they can or can’t offer a refund to their customers.
For more information about your rights if you wish to cancel a holiday, visit the Citizen’s Advice Bureau website. For help resolving problems with a flight booking, visit the website of the Civil Aviation Authority. For questions about travel insurance, contact your insurance provider and if you’re not happy with their response, you can complain to the Financial Ombudsman Service.
Registering your travel details with us
We’re no longer asking people to register with us before travel. Our foreign travel checklist and crisis overseas page suggest things you can do before and during foreign travel to plan your trip and stay safe.
Previous versions of FCO travel advice
If you’re a British national and you have a question about travelling abroad that isn’t covered in our foreign travel advice or elsewhere on GOV.UK, you can submit an enquiry. We’re not able to provide tailored advice for specific trips.