Why Switzerland’s ‘little Italy’ is a must-see town for your travel bucket list

Why Switzerland’s ‘little Italy’ is a must-see town for your travel bucket list

Cuckoo clocks, precision watches and fondue are just some of the points you might associate with Switzerland. Lizards, pizza and neoclassical buildings not so significantly.

Yet Ticino, an Italian-speaking canton in the south of the region, known for its balmy climate and subtropical gardens, as effectively as – by natural means – amazing Alpine scenery, has them all.

Just over an hour’s generate from Milan or a panoramic practice and ferry journey south from Lucerne, Ticino is Switzerland’s pretty possess minor Italy.

Right here are some of the ideal spots to pay a visit to when you are there.

An unashamedly Italian location

Situated on the northern shores of the glacial Lake Lugano, Lugano is unashamedly Italian, with a lifestyle carefully related to Italy’s Lombardy area.

The historic town of 70,000, an critical banking centre, is packed complete of Italianate buildings, Mediterranean-type squares and attractive parks, like Parco Ciani, which sits suitable by the lake and includes a jetty and a library, as well as vegetation and trees from all above the globe.

It’s all forgotten by the soaring Monte Brè and San Salvatore mountains. Sit and view the world go by over a cappuccino at Vanini Dolce e Caffè in Piazza Riforma. Or try out a slice of ‘bread cake’, a neighborhood speciality produced from amaretto, grappa and stale bread (it’s much tastier than it seems) from Gabbani salumeria on By way of Pessina.

Morcote is Ticino’s most gorgeous village

An hour’s ferry journey from Lugano and just a 20-moment travel to the Italian border, Morcote is a single of Ticino’s loveliest villages, a lakeside idyll flanked by multi-million dollar villas that cling to the decrease slopes of Monte Arbostora.

Ristorante della Torre has produced the great lunch location with an open-air protected terrace overhanging the lake and serves gourmand pizza and other Italian delicacies.

Function off the energy with a climb up 402 measures to the Chiesa Santa Maria del Sasso, a 15th-century church with frescoes and a perspective to die for. 

In Parco Scherrer, a stepped Italianate yard named following its late founder and passionate gardener Arthur Scherrer, small lizards dart between the cypresses and eucalyptus trees. 

When mini versions of the Trevi Fountain in Rome and an Arabian palace insert a take note of playfulness.

If you are hunting for a intimate wedding day site – and you couldn’t do significantly greater than this – you can lease the gardens for your massive day.

Make a splash in Locarno

Quite Locarno, a vacation resort city positioned on the northern shore of Lake Maggiore at the foundation of the Alps, is famed for obtaining the sunniest weather in Switzerland.

It also hosts an once-a-year movie pageant (this calendar year is its 75th anniversary) in Piazza Grande which appeals to Hollywood A-listers and there are a variety of wonderful artwork collections in the splendid palazzi hidden in the hillsides.

To chill out right after a day’s sightseeing, acquire a dip in the Termali Salini & Spa, a public saltwater pool and spa overlooking the lake and mountains. When the mercury rises in summer season, great off in Lido Locarno – it has an Olympic-dimension outside swimming pool, as very well as thermal swimming pools, drinking water chutes, slides and wave consequences and is a enjoyable day out for adults and kids.

For a position to continue to be, Resort Belvedere has 90 refurbished rooms, tropical landscaped gardens and a funicular end just exterior the grounds. Opened in the late 19th century, it is established on a hillside with panoramic views around the lake and Locarno by itself. A double space with balcony, lake see and buffet breakfast begins from €282.

Bellinzona is Ticino’s picturesque cash

Dominated by the “tre castelli”, three 15th-century castles designed by the dukes of Milan and now a UNESCO Planet Heritage site, Bellinzona is the cash of the Ticino, one particular of Switzerland’s 26 cantons, or areas.

Take a look at for the lively weekly sector (held on Saturday mornings), picturesque piazzas and large preference of impartial boutiques and cafes. The city is also a person of the key stops on the Gotthard Panorama Categorical, a thrilling 4-hour coach and boat ride through fairytale Alpine scenery to Lucerne in the German-talking element of Switzerland, 140km to the north.

On the way, you are going to pass Swiss people hero William Tell’s chapel and the Rütli meadow, wherever Switzerland was started in 1291. A 2nd-class ticket expenditures €51.50.

Ascona is made for the passeggiata

With its moderate local weather and site visitors-free lakeside promenade dotted with cafes and places to eat, Ascona, on the northern shore of Lake Maggiore was made for the passeggiata, the leisurely evening stroll beloved of so a lot of Italians.

The Latin ambience continues in Borgo, the aged town, wherever slim, winding streets have much more fascinating sites to take in and the 16th-century bell tower of San Pietro e Paolo church serves as a landmark.

In the Maggiatal and Centovalli valleys nearby, there are tons of mountaineering and biking trails and, on the edge of city, an 18-hole golf program.