15 Best Things to do in Lugano, Switzerland

Lugano is the leading city in the Italian-speaking Swiss canton of Ticino. The city lies at the intersection of the William Tell Express and the Bernina Express — two of country's most spectacular train rides. While many tourists visit this place for the fancy boutiques, others are here for hiking, cruising the lake, and spending lazy afternoons in its many beautiful gardens. The lanes of the Old Town are too alluring. People here head out onto the lake, to soak up the sun. Visitors here will encounter an adventure full of adrenaline that they will cherish forever!

Let's explore the best things to do in Lugano:

1. Lake Lugano

what to do in Lugano - Lake Lugano - ImageImage Source: aviano

The lake has plenty of distinct branches and is surrounded by numerous hills: Monte Generoso is the highest mountain by Lake Lugano, at about 1700 m. Tourists can travel by a rack railway from the lakeside resort of Capolago to the peak of the hill and enjoy the picturesque views. The thickly wooded mountain with its several rare florae is one of the essential locations where fossils are found originating from an ancient subtropical lake. Around the lake, there are several parks one can prefer for a stroll. Thanks to the warm Mediterranean climate, citrus fruit trees are available, and travellers can sunbathe under palm trees. A boat ride can help to explore the diversity of the region.

2. Parco Civico

popular place in LuganoImage Source: wikimedia.org

If one is contemplating to take a break from the hustle and bustle of the city life, Parco Civico is the place for them. A leisure walk along streets, covered by beautiful centuries-old trees can be a mood booster. The Parco Ciani also has some famous buildings: The Villa Ciani, the Convention Centre, a jetty, the Natural History Museum and the Cantonal Library.

3. Monte San Salvatore

Monte San Salvatore - Image - best place to visit in luganoImage Source: wikimedia.org

Known as 'the home of mountains', a precise view across southern Ticino can be experienced from the roof of the church on the peak of San Salvatore. The stunning mountains offer a 360° view of the lake and suburbs.

An immensely challenging route of ferrata from the mid station, fossil and cave research museum, azalea gardens, Parco San Grato in Corona, as well as a popular three-hour ridge hike to Morcote is one whole pack of adventure on the San Salvatore. The village located at its peaks, Carona, is known for its view over Lake Lugano and leisure walks through extrinsic plants and flowers of Parco San Grato.

4. Monte Bre

things to do in lugano - monte bre imageImage Source: pixabay.com

This place deserves a visit just for the views of the town and Lake Lugano. Visitors can also halt for some time on the "summit" – and visit the restaurant with a sun terrace and enjoy the nature's work of art. Funicular railways run from the Lugano to Monte Bre. The train runs through Ruvigliana which is the sunniest mountain in the country and home to the unique and preserved Christmas rose.

5. Chiesa di Santa Maria Degli Angeli

famous place in lugaon - image - Chiesa di Santa Maria Degli AngeliImage Source: wikimedia.org

The Santa Maria Degli Angeli chapel, is designed by the world-famous architect Mario Botta, is an epitome of contemporary architecture, along with beautiful paintings by Enzo Cucchi. The chapel is devoted to Santa Maria degli Angeli, boasts innovative traits of religious building design.

6. Casino Lugano

It is known for providing entertainment. The Casino offers gaming options like last generation slot machines, daily prize jackpots and numerous tables assigned for classic casino games. Cafes and Restaurants are designed in the casino for the public conveniences.

7. Lido di Lugano

The place offers the traveller several opportunities: an excellent sandy beach of Lake Ceresio, warm Olympic swimming pool, a medium size swimming pool, a diving pool with trampolines, a repository for children including water games, a beach volley court and a five-a-side football pitch. It is one of the favourite summer spots and hosts the open-air Cinema al Lago on summer nights.

8. Parco San Grato

Lugano Points of interest Image - Parco San GratoImage Source: wikimedia.org

The San Grato botanical gardens are located above Lake Lugano on the mountains of Corona and can be visited by car or bus from Lugano. Five themed trails through the park: the “Fairy-tale Trail” provides children with an opportunity to play in an incredible park. Another obvious option is the “Relaxation Trail”. The “Botanical Trail” highlights a wide range of information boards about the ornamental plants and wild vegetation. Travellers can follow the “Art Trail” and look for the works of artists, while the “Panorama Trail” will make them explore the park's several lookout locations.

9. Cattedrale di San Lorenzo

must visit place in lugano - Image - cattedrale di san lorenzoImage Source: wikimedia.org

The Cattedrale di San Lorenzo is an essential building with a Renaissance facade and a must-visit. The magnificent rose window is a symbolic representation of the eye of God. Interior structure is full of numerous frescoes and significant Baroque decorations. An overwhelming view of the city can be observed from here.

10. Hesse Museum

museum in lugano Image - Hesse MuseumImage Source: wikimedia.org

A must visit place for artists, featuring personal things, pictures, books and watercolour paintings depicting the life of the German writer Hermann Hesse. In the video room, a documentary is presented in Italian, German and French; books in several languages are displayed at the entrance. Garden is planned for those who want to sit and enjoy reading. On the route called “On Hermann Hesse’s Footsteps”, travellers can enjoy the scenery of the Golden Hill.

11. Olive Trail

The place will provide visitors bright ideas of the history and scientific nature of the olive tree, their growth and the oil from olives. Beautiful seascape across Lake Lugano and a mesmerising landscape of the Mediterranean can be enjoyed on the trail. The trail winds between Castagnola and Gandria passes across the remnants of old olive woods and fields on which this most-liked tree is being planted again.

The best thing about the Olive trail is that it is secluded, and one can wander all by themselves, enjoying spectacular views.

12. FlyTicino - Paragliding Tandem Flights

adventure in lugano - image - flyticinoImage Source: wikimedia.org

It is considered to be one of the most attractive locations for paragliding in the city. Paragliding is the simplest way to safely embrace the magic of flying. There is no age limit for the visitors, and a family can enjoy the flight along with children. Once they take off, they will be immersed in pure nature and will find flying in a dense landscape set in green vegetation. From the height of 1701 meters, one can enjoy breathtaking stretches and views of lakes and nearby valleys.

13. Lido San Domenico

The place can be reached by boat. The lido is located in a region of the intriguing beauty of lake featuring laurel trees and agave bushes. Some facilities available here include pool, playgrounds and restaurants. From great food to summer concerts, this Lido provides an elegant and warm environment for an incredible trip experience.

14. Museo Del Cioccolato Alprose

lugano things to do images - museo del cioccolato alproseImage Source: wikimedia.org

The trip is not complete without a visit to this place. Every information about the chocolate can be found within these walls. Details about origins to the history of chocolates, along with the different trial and error methods of processing and developing it, the Cioccolato Alprose are choco heaven!

15. Piazza Della Riforma

places to eat in lugano image - Piazza Della RiformaImage Source: wikimedia.org

The seat of the city hall is a place for vacationists and locals to loosen up as they adore the many bistros and restaurants. Visitors can spend their time relaxing in afternoons, highly preferred by locals, dedicated to “dolce far niente”, the sweet art of doing nothing.

Ever since my first trip at the age of 4, I’ve been fascinated to explore places around the world. Lover of world cultures, food, souls and all things blue; I spend most part of my day writing about travel. I also travel with my buddies when my bos...

Top-Rated Tourist Attractions in Lugano

Check out the list of top tourist attractions in Lugano! These are some inspiring things to do in Lugano to create a wish list of your dream destinations.

  1. # 1 of 188 Things To Do in Lugano | Added 1754 times in trip plans
    Lake Lugano

    Tags: Mountain, View Point, Lake

    Address: Lugano, Switzerland

    Timings: 24-hrs Details

    Switzerland is known for its picturesque lakes with mountains in their backdrop. Lake Lugano is just another lake justifying the mesmerizing beauty of Switzerland, especially the city of Lugano. Howev...Read more

  2. # 2 of 188 Things To Do in Lugano | Added 1118 times in trip plans
    Monte Bre

    Tags: Outdoors, Mountain, View Point, Cable Car

    Address: Via Ceresio di Suvigliana 36, CH-6977 Ruvigliana

    Timings: 09:00 am - 07:30 pm Details

    For the best view of Lugano, hop on to the funicular which will take you to the top of Mount Bre and provide you with some picture-perfect sights of the city, Lake Lugano and beyond. Once you get to t...Read more

  3. # 3 of 188 Things To Do in Lugano | Added 236 times in trip plans
    Monte Tamaro

    Tags: Mountain, Food And Drinks, Adventure

    Address: 6806 Gambarogno, Switzerland

    Timings: 24-hrs Details

    Located in the Lugano-Bellinzona-Locarno, Monte Tamaro is a lovely mountain with mesmerizing views used as a starting point for panoramic views in Switzerland. The mountain is replete with adventures ...Read more

  4. # 4 of 188 Things To Do in Lugano | Added 782 times in trip plans
    Chiesa Di Santa Maria Degli Angeli

    Tags: Church, Religious Site, Cathedral

    Address: Piazza Luini, Old Town, Lugano, Ticino, 6900

    Timings: 07:00 am - 06:00 pm Details

    Don’t be fooled by the façade of the Chiesa di Santa Maria degli Angeli; the interiors of the church will invoke emotions you didn’t know you were capable of feeling. Frequented by ...Read more

  5. # 5 of 188 Things To Do in Lugano | Added 761 times in trip plans
    Piazza Della Riforma

    Tags: Walking Area, Leisure, Square, Architecture

    Address: North of the Imbarcadero Centrale, Old Town, Lugano, Ticino, 6900

    Timings: 24-hrs Details

    It’s hard to miss the magnificent square that is the Piazza della Riforma. It’s said that several buildings around the original square were torn down to expand the square. This space today...Read more

  6. # 6 of 188 Things To Do in Lugano | Added 464 times in trip plans
    Casino Lugano

    Tags: Casino, Adults

    Address: Via Stauffacher 1 | Casella postale 6482,Lugano 6901, Switzerland

    Casino Lugano is a well organized casino with an elegant ambiance where you can gamble and get lucky. The casino is beautifully designed with a lavish white facade and futurist inside. If you want a t...Read more

  7. # 7 of 188 Things To Do in Lugano | Added 564 times in trip plans
    Museo Del Cioccolato Alprose

    Tags: Specialty Museum

    Address: Via Rompada 36, 6987 Caslano, Switzerland

    Timings: 09:00 am - 05:30 pm Details

    What’s Switzerland without some chocolate? Your trip is not complete with a visit to the Museo del Cioccolato Alprose! Everything you need to know about chocolate can be found within these walls...Read more

  8. # 8 of 188 Things To Do in Lugano | Added 270 times in trip plans
    Lido Comunale Di Lugano

    Tags: Entertainment, Picnic Spot, Games

    Address: Viale Castagnola 1, 6900 Lugano, Switzerland

    Timings: 09:00 am - 07:00 pm Details

    If you’re looking for some fun outdoor activities in Lugano, you are sure to love the Lido comunale di Lugano. This entertaining spot is replete with activities that include four pools, Beach, p...Read more

  9. # 9 of 188 Things To Do in Lugano | Added 213 times in trip plans
    Olive Trail

    Tags: Trail

    Address: Via Cortivo, Lugano, Switzerland

    Timings: 24-hrs Details

    The Olive tail is a narrow hiking trail that exhibits picturesque views of Lake Lugano and its surroundings. The trail can easily be accessed from the small village of Castagnola. The trail was once c...Read more

  10. # 10 of 188 Things To Do in Lugano | Added 582 times in trip plans
    Cattedrale Di San Lorenzo

    Tags: Church, Religious Site, Historical Site, Architecture

    Address: Via Borghetto 2, 6900 Lugano, Switzerland

    Timings: 06:30 am - 06:00 pm Details

    A 16th century early Renaissance cathedral, the Cathedral of St. Lawrence is as stunning from the outside as it is from the inside. While the exterior boasts of some fine Renaissance architecture, the...Read more

  11. # 11 of 188 Things To Do in Lugano | Added 142 times in trip plans
    San Grato Botanical Park

    Tags: Botanical Garden

    Address: Parco San Grato, Carona, 6914 Lugano, Switzerland

    Timings: 24-hrs Details

    Stretched between Monte San Salvatore and Monte Arbostora, the outrageous Parco San Grato (San Grato Botanical Park) lies at a distance of 10 kilometers from Lugano. The garden has a wide collection o...Read more

  12. # 12 of 188 Things To Do in Lugano | Added 36 times in trip plans
    Herman Hesse Museum

    Tags: Museum, Architecture

    Address: Torre Camuzzi, Ra Curta, Montagnola, Ticino, 6926

    Timings: 10:30 am - 05:30 pm Details

    Home of the Nobel Prize winning author, Herman Hesse is said to have spent the last 4 decades of his life here. The house was been well preserved and the approach to the museum involves crossing a ser...Read more

  13. # 13 of 188 Things To Do in Lugano | Added 459 times in trip plans
    Museum Of Cultures

    Tags: Art And Culture, Art Museum, Art Gallery, Sculpture

    Address: 6976 Castagnola, Switzerland

    Timings: 10:00 am - 06:00 pm Details

    A museum you do not want to miss out on, the Museum of Cultures’ prime exhibits are from the collection of a Swiss Italian artist, Serge Brignoni. The ethnic artworks contains some stunning mask...Read more

  14. # 14 of 188 Things To Do in Lugano | Added 176 times in trip plans
    Pista La Resega

    Tags: Sport, Arena

    Address: Via Chiosso, 6948 Porza, Switzerland

    Pista La Resega is an ice stadium in Lugano where ice hockey is played. The stadium has the capacity to accommodate an audience of 8,000 at a time. The arena is home to a restaurant, conference room a...Read more

  15. # 15 of 188 Things To Do in Lugano | Added 55 times in trip plans
    Swiss Customs Museum

    Tags: Museum

    Address: Cantine di Gandria, 6978 Paradiso, Switzerland

    Timings: 01:30 pm - 05:30 pm Details

    Take a peek into the routine work of Switzerland’s customs officers and border control guards on a visit to the Swiss Customs Museum and learn how they've gently progressed over the years. The m...Read more

Activities And Tours

Explore these activities and tours for awesome experiences in Lugano:

  • Save 4% Taste my Swiss City Lugano - Selfguided Food Tour
    Taste my Swiss City Lugano - Selfguided Food TourNew on TripHobo

    Duration: 3 Hrs

    Snacks typical of the region in their original setting, recommended by locals: the Taste My Swiss City tours address peoples ...

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  • Save 4% 3-Day Ticino Gastronomy Explorer
    3-Day Ticino Gastronomy ExplorerNew on TripHobo

    Duration: 3 Days

    Ticino is the Italian-speaking part of Switzerland and famous for its mild and Mediterranean climate, perfect for relaxing su...

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  • Falconeria Locarno Ticket
    Falconeria Locarno TicketNew on TripHobo

    Duration: 1 Hrs

    Live an exciting experience in the world of birds of prey, observe from near the flight of eagles, hawks, owls, vultures, mar...

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  • Entrance Ticket to Swissminiatur in Melide
    Entrance Ticket to Swissminiatur in Melide2 Reviews

    Duration: 1 Hrs

    Spend a day at Swissminiatur in Melide and enjoy this open-air miniature park located, on the shore of Lake Lugano, in the It...

    Book Now