When I got an invitation to travel to the Ticino Region, I said quickly – yes. I am a traveler who loves to find her special places, and for a long time, the Ticino region was, for me, associated with “The Talented Mr. Ripley” movie scene set. I am a fan of this movie as well as a fan of blues, good food, wine, and just perfectly last weekend Ticino was full of my favorite things! So, jump in into my weekend getaway!
The destination was clear: Bellinzona – Lugano – Locarno. All three cities are unique, and for me looked and felt differently.
Bellinzona was my kind of town. Full off people, songs, food, music, wine, and unique historic places. I am going back to Bellinzona as soon as possible, especially to the Saturday market. What a place for all five senses: looking, tasting, smelling, touching and listening.
I came to Bellinzona with the 8:18 a.mm the train from Luzern. Easily, cozy and quickly. Already at 10:00 a.m. I was buzzing at the Market. Bellinzona was transformed into the colorful hustle and bustle when the market booths spread out their treasures beneath the blue and red striped rovers! And oh, you can find everything from sun-ripened fruits, vegetables of the season from the plain of Magadino, cheese specialties from Leventina and the Muggio valley sausages manufactured using traditional recipes, to even more: bread, honey, flowers, arts, crafts, antiques! And hey, I should say that the restaurants in the old town offer market visitors lunch at an affordable price with their “Piatto del mercato” offer.
I was lucky enough to have time and the opportunity to participate in the “PerBacco”! The whole city was full of good music and special booths to taste local wine!
After I checked in at Hotel & SPA Internazionale, I quickly jumped on the train and in just 40 min already was bumbling in Lugano city. Lugano and I met not for the first time, but now I had enough time to explore not only the streets but also cafeterias, wineries, and restaurants! Quick tip: if you stay for dinner time in Lugano, make the reservation, as to find a place to eat is quite hard – the whole city was packed with people.
Lugano lies in a bay on the northern side of Lake Lugano, surrounded by the, as I say, fluffy mounts San Salvadore and Bré offering splendid viewpoints. I would suggest several places to check out if you love good food, cozy, and friendly prices.
– In Piazza Cioccaro the historic shop Gabbani presents a new way to enjoy food and wine! Fresh, tasty local cheeses, exclusive charcuterie, traditional bread (you can see a massive line of people queuing for it).
– Grand Cafe al Porto! It is Lugano’s favorite venue for get-togethers or for tasting some of Al Port’s culinary creations in a unique atmosphere.
– Il Fermento bar – literally by the side of the lake and close to the center. Simple, friendly bar/cafeteria! Was surprised by the prices and loved the Interior. Pretty sure in the evening locals pack this bar!
Moreover, Lugano was celebrating the end of summer definitely with a bang – Blues to Bop! The event was free, with original musical proposals half away between traditional and innovative – so everyone was happy.
The next day, after a well-prepared breakfast at the hotel, I packed my stuff, and I went ahead with my adventures in the Ticino region. Third and the last stop was Lucarno. Absolutely a perfect getaway for families and couples! One second I felt like in Miami, another like somewhere deep in Italy.
In Lucarno I had a goal – to travel to Orselina and reach Cardana (1340m) spot with 360 degrees view! The view was definitely unique, as you see Switzerland’s lowest spot, the delta of the Maggia river between Ascona and Locarno, and the highest spot, Dufourspitze, situated on the Monte Rosa massif and which carves its way through the imposing Alpine chain to the west of the horizon.
As easily to Ticino region, I got back to Luzern. Same cozy train, same tasty coffee. Will I come back? Yes. It was perfect two days getaway and an excellent way to spend some quality time in literally different Switzerland region.