Local History

Glacier Garden (Gletschergarten) Lucerne. Photo: TES.

The old glacier in Lucerne

The old glacier in Lucerne was discovered in 1872 and is one of the city’s major attractions. The history of this glacier began 20 million years ago when Lucerne was situated on a beach covered with palm trees. There was also the climate change and the glacier is the result of the last ice age from 20 000-10 000 years ago. After global warming, with its relatively short fluctuations, the glacier has dried up and now offers a unique geological insight into the influences of weather, wind, rocks and climate (changes). Work is underway to make the rock layers under the surface accessible to the public, so that a geological journey through millions of years can be made. The present glaciers may slowly melt and disappear (which they have always done in warmer periods), but Lucerne (and Switzerland) are digging their way to old glaciers deep under the earth. (Further information: www.gletschergarten.ch).