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Pass By: Piazza della Riforma, Lugano Switzerland
With its many bistros and restaurants, Piazza della Riforma is the city’s main place of encounter.
Throughout the year several different events, including Easter in the City, Estival Jazz, Blues to Bop, Autumn Festival and Christmas in the Square, take place here. But in the past, when the square was called Piazza Grande, it was the scene of several political events. In fact, the 15th February 1798 was a chaotic day of fighting, at the end of which, despite initial success, the enemy was pushed back by the Lugano partisans. The most enlightened members of the bourgeois took advantage of events to finally achieve long-sought independence for the town, buoyed by the slogan “Free and Swiss”. At Zurich the twelve cantons proclaimed Canton Ticino’s independence and on 16 February the citizens erected the tree of liberty in Piazza Grande. In 1830, the square took on its current name thanks to the constitutional reform.
Stop At: Parco Civico, Viale Carlo Cattaneo, Lugano 6900 Switzerland
A short walk from the lively center of Lugano lies the Parco Ciani, a destination for many tourists who come there to admire what is considered one of the most beautiful Swiss parks.
Duration: 30 minutes
Stop At: Olive Trail, Via Cortivo, Lugano Switzerland
The Path winds along the countryside between Castagnola and Gandria and crosses hillsides of ancient olive trees where just recently fruiting olive trees have been reintroduced. You can reach the path either from Castagnola (close to the old Municipal, or from Gandria (start from the parking area at the canton’s street above the village). The path is described beginning in Gandria and is identified by the olive logo. There are 18 panels offering descriptions of the olive tree’s history, its botany, its cultivation and its products as well (the olive fruit ant olive oil).
The idea of the Olive Tree Path was conceived of by the “Friends of the Olive Tree” association in collaboration with the Fund of Naturalistic and Archeological Sites in Gandria belonging to the Foundation of the Italian speaking Switzerland for Scientific Research and University Studies.
Duration: 1 hour
Stop At: Lake Lugano, Lugano Switzerland
For centuries, Lake Lugano has been a magnet for tourists, attracting visitors from all over the world. The lake is criss-crossed by boats and ferries throughout the year but in summer the lake becomes a stunning arena for a whole host of leisure activities. Don’t forget to discover the stunning local countryside.
Duration: 45 minutes
Stop At: Centro storico Gandria, Piazza A. Giambonini, Gandria, Lugano 6978 Switzerland
This fishermen village is quite unique, perched at the bottom of Mount Brè, and it’s rightly famous for its wonderful and romantic atmosphere.
Gandria is a romantic locality nestled on the shores of Lake Ceresio that may be reached either by land or by lake. Many tourists and locals enjoy the boat trip from Lugano and the walk back to Castagnola along the lake shore.
The town’s centre that is closed to traffic is an oasis of peace with its picturesque tiny streets and stairs that offer glimpses of great views and gorgeous landscapes. At the centre of the town there is the 16th century church of San Vigilio with its outstanding baroque interior and the high late-medieval belfry.
On the lake opposite Gandria, one finds the Museum of Swiss Customs that is located in a locality known as “Cantine di Gandria” that may be reached by boat. Along the trail from Cantine di Gandria to Caprino there are several grotti, an ideal place to take shelter from the heat and to have the opportunity of getting a taste of the typical Ticinese cuisine.
Duration: 2 hours