Vaduz is the capital of the principality of Liechtenstein and the seat of the national parliament. The town, located along the Rhine, has about 5,100 inhabitants (as of 2009),most of whom are Roman Catholic. Its cathedral is the seat of the Roman Catholic Archbishop of Vaduz.
Although Vaduz is the best-known town internationally in the principality, it is not the largest: neighbouring Schaan has a larger population.
In the 17th century the Liechtenstein family was seeking a seat in the Imperial diet, the Reichstag. However, since they did not hold any territory that was directly under the Imperial throne, they were unable to meet the primary requirement to qualify.
The family yearned for the added power a seat in the Imperial government would bring, and therefore sought to acquire lands that would be Reichsunmittelbar, or held without any feudal personage other than the Holy Roman Emperor himself having rights on the land. After some time, the family was able to arrange the purchase of the minusculeHerrschaft ("Lordship") of Schellenberg and countship of Vaduz (in 1699 and 1712 respectively) from the Hohenems. Tiny Schellenberg and Vaduz possessed exactly the political status required: no feudal lord other than their comital sovereign and the suzerain Emperor.
There is also a small retail village between Vaduz and Balzers. This is home to a McDonalds, and a sports clothes shop among other things.
Liechtenstein isn't a cheap place to eat. If you want something budget and have a car, drive to Feldkirch just across the Austrian border.
- Vaduz Cathedral, or Cathedral of St. Florin, is a neo-Gothic church and the centre of the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Vaduz. Originally a parish church, it has held the status of cathedral since 1997. It was built in 1874 by Friedrich von Schmidt on the site of earlier medieval foundations. Its patron saint is Florinus of Remüs (Florin), a 9th century saint of the Vinschgau Valley. The Archdiocese of Vaduz was erected by Pope John Paul II in the apostolic constitution Ad satius consulendum 2 December 2002. Before then it had been the Liechtenstein Deanery, a part of the Swiss Diocese of Chur. The solemn public ceremony took place on 12 December 1997, in the parish church of Vaduz, which was then raised to the dignity of a cathedral.
- The Kunstmuseum Liechtenstein (Liechtenstein Museum of Fine Arts) is the state museum of modern and contemporary art in Vaduz. The building by the Swiss architects Meinrad Morger, Heinrich Degelo and Christian Kerez was completed in November 2000. The museum collection of international modern and contemporary art is also the national art collection of the Principality of Liechtenstein.
- The Prince's Wine Collection Wine enthusiasts should definitely pay a visit to the Prince of Liechtenstein Winery, where visitors can walk through the vineyards and sample the excellent wines. The Winery is home to the Herawingert vineyards. With its four hectares of south-west-facing slopes and mild climate influenced by the warm 'Föhn' wind, Herawingert is among the best wine-growing regions in the Rhine Valley. Its excellent quality of soil offers ideal conditions for growing Pinot Noir and Chardonnay. .
- The Red House, a gabled stairs structure with a large tower containing living quarters, is located in the Mitteldorf area of Vaduz. The house gets its name from the dark-red colour the building has had since the middle of the 19th century. Documents show that work began on another construction on the same site several centuries earlier, before being abandoned in the 15th century. The Red House's many owners over the years include the St. Johann Monastery. Since 1807 the building has been in the possession of the Rheinberger family. Egon Rheinberger - a famous painter, sculptor and architect from Liechtenstein - extended the Red House between 1902 and 1905.
- Vaduz Castle (Schloß Vaduz) is the palace and official residence of the Prince of Liechtenstein. The castle gave its name to the town of Vaduz, which it overlooks from an adjacent hilltop. The earliest mention of the castle can be found in the deed of Count Rudolf von Werdenberg-Sargans for a sale to Ulrich von Matsch. The erstwhile owners - presumably also the builders - were the Counts of Werdenberg-Sargans. The Bergfried (12th century) and parts of the eastern side are the oldest. The tower stands on a piece of ground some 12 x 13 metres and has a wall thickness on the ground floor of up to 4 m. The original entrance lay at the Hofzijde at an 11 metre height. The chapel of St. Anna was presumably built in the Middle Ages as well. The main altar is late-gothic. In the Swabian War of 1499, the castle was burned by the Swiss Confederacy. The western side was expanded by Count Kaspar van Hohenems (1613–1640). The Princely Family of Liechtenstein acquired Vaduz Castle in 1712 when it purchased the countship of Vaduz. .