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At the heart of Western Europe is the city of Luxembourg, capital of the country with which it shares its name – the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg. Positioned at the confluence of the rivers Alzette and Petrusse, in the south of the country, the city has always been a place of military strategic significance. In 2011 Luxembourg had the second biggest GDP in the world and was voted number one for personal safety.
Given its military significance it’s no surprise that Luxembourg began as a fortified castle around which as settlement grew. In 1443 it was conquered by the Burgundians and then later by the Austrian and Spanish empires. Under the Habsburg Empire the castle was repeatedly fortified and by the 16th century it was one of the strongest fortifications in Europe, leading to it being called the ‘Gibraltar of the North’. It was occupied by the Germans during both world wars.