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undedd Lugano - A travel report by Dave
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Lugano,  Switzerland - flag Switzerland
4891 readers

undedd's travel reports

Lingering in Lugano

  23 votes

Lugano travelogue picture
The atlas says Lugano is in Switzerland but, as the name suggests, this picture-postcard paradise clings to its Italian roots.

Situated in the south-central district of Ticino, Lugano is separated from Italy by palm-tree studded lakes and the Alp’s lush foothills.

Favourite spots:
Lugano travelogue picture
Just being there is the best thing, but let's look at a Top 7 (in no particular order):

1. A walk along the southern peninsula through old villages and forests to the riviera-esque village of Morcote.
2. Exploring Gandria village, clinging to one of the lake's vertical shores.
3. Catching the sun in one of the town's beautiful public parks.
4. Exploring the cobblestone streets of the old town.
5. A cruise anywhere on the lake - a panorama of mountains, water, villages and forests as far as you can see.
6. Villa Favorita - one of the finest private art collections in the world, in one of the world's finest settings!
7. Alfresco indulgence on a warm day watching the world go by.

What's really great:
Lugano travelogue picture
I reckon there's four main reasons to visit Lugano:

1. A TOWN WITH A VIEW; Lugano’s 30,000 residents have it all – water, mountains and weather. Historic stone houses mingle with resorts and colourful parks around a waterfront that mirrors the alpine peaks and lush hills surrounding it.
2. ALFRESCO APPETITE; The Ticinese people were mountain-peasants who ate simple and hearty food. Thankfully, traditions are fiercely protected and northern Italian cuisine dominates today’s Lugano in the glorious, sunny cafes and eateries.
3. WALKING ON SUNSHINE; Hillsides and valleys of colour sprinkled with cool forests, an occasional village of old stone houses and picturesque waterfront frescoed resort-towns. All this, backed by distant snow-capped peaks under a Mediterranean sun that won’t quit. That’s what you can expect if you’re out for a walk around Lugano.
4. CULTURAL CRAVINGS; Nicknamed the Rio of the Old World, Lugano's reputation for art and culture is well deserved.

Lugano travelogue picture
Two in particular stand out to me:
1. La Tinera, on Via dei Gorini in the old town, is downstairs and from the moment you walk in you're comforted by the casual and warm atmosphere.
It feels a bit like an Italian trattoria, the prices are similar (a bonus for Switzerland), and the delicious local merlot comes in carafes where you pay for what you drink. There's a comprehensive range of Italian and Swiss dishes, including local peasant-style specialties.

2. Pestalozzi, on Corso Pestalozzi. If it's a budget (for Switzerland) meal you want with decent food and eclectic surroundings, head for this restaurant in the Hotel of the same name. The serves are massive and the service vague, but there's plenty on the menu to tempt you, with a focus on Italian cuisine.

Other recommendations:
Lugano travelogue picture
Here's some useful tips if you're planning to visit:

WHEN TO GO: Any time between March and November is good. Spring (March to May) is best, and it’s more expensive and crowded in the peak summer season (June to August).

TRANSPORT: Lugano is the Ticino’s main town and a transport hub. Regular buses and trains service Italy and the rest of Switzerland.

WHERE TO STAY: Accommodation ranges from luxury hotels to small family-run properties and pensiones. Prices range from around US$40 to over US$1000 per night for a double room. The Tourist Office at the train station is particularly helpful - they have a big wall-map coded to accommodation price ranges and will help you find something.

WHAT IT COSTS: A meal in a good, budget trattoria will cost around US$30 for two with wine. Supermarkets are good for picnic supplies and small cafes offer cheaper alfresco dining during the day. Two people should be able to holiday well for around US$100 a day.

Published on Tuesday August 27th, 2002

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Fri, Dec 12 2003 - 08:34 PM rating by whereisliz

When I passed through Lugano, it was grey and rainy and I didn't stay -- thanks for giving me a peek at what I missed!

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