The largest city in Canton Ticino, Lugano is home to 68,000 people in little more than 43 km2, and offers many activities and events: whether you like nature’s peace and tranquility and a typically Swiss sense of order, or whether you are looking for active sports, you will take Lugano and its surrounding countryside to heart. Maybe the charming lake shore will invite you to walk from the Parco Ciani to the Belvedere garden in Paradiso. Or perhaps you will be attracted by the vivacity of the cultural life that, particularly in summer, is enlivened by international music events. Or maybe you will enjoy the simplicity of its traditional gastronomy, a blend of the past and a continuous process of evolution.
Lugano is the ideal starting point to visit the entire region. You can go south, towards Italy: the province of Como, which is now back in the limelight thanks to the presence of internationally famous VIPs like George Clooney, and offers scenery of exceptional beauty. The provinces of Varese and Verbania are perfect places to discover local markets, where you can renew your wardrobe without spending a fortune, or buy local produce such as meat and cheese. On the other hand, in the north many extraordinary vistas await you: for example, the celebrated cities of Ascona and Locarno on Lake Maggiore, the castles of Bellinzona (UNESCO inheritance), and the caves and incredible gorges of Vallemaggia and Val Verzasca. If you like skiing or going on excursions, don’t miss the opportunity to visit Valle Leventina in the far north of Ticino.