© iStock / J.P. Gomez
While many humans have been deterred from visiting Luxembourg this summer due to the incessant rain, the number of visits by gastropod tourists has skyrocketed, say delighted officials.
In total, more than 54 million snails and slugs have visited Luxembourg in just the last two weeks alone, which represents an increase of nearly 3000 percent over the same period the previous year.
While not all of these gastropods have survived – many have been eaten by birds, small mammals, or opportunistic French residents – officials say the increase is significant.
“Look, summers here are often wet and cool, and that’s exactly what today’s gastropod is looking for when the travel season rolls around,” said Arnaud Schmidt, a representative of the tourism sector. “They know that in Luxembourg, they’re going to find weeks of rain – right in the middle of what in other countries is the hot and dry season.”
While those in the sector already know that Luxembourg has a competitive advantage in attracting slugs and snails, Schmidt says the sector needs to do much more to cater to those slow-moving visitors.
“These creatures do more than bring their creepy retractable tentacles and a trail of ooze when they visit the country,” he said. “They bring their money, and they want to spend it on designer shells and salt-free VIP spa treatments, which we just don’t have.”
“If we don’t have such amenities to offer them, they’ll just head to Brittany or the western coast of Ireland,” he added.
Luca, a two-year-old garden snail originally from northern Italy, says he is highly satisfied with his summer experience in Luxembourg.
“Drizzle,” he said. “High temperatures in the teens. Love it.”
Esmeralda, a 76-day-old slug originally from Valencia in Spain, echoes Luca’s comments.
“Wet,” she said. “Easy to slide around. Not a ray of sun. Moist leaves. Yum.”
Read more at wurst.lu