From the east, take highway A2 Basel to Chiasso, exit at Bellinzona South, direction Locarno. After the Magadino airport, take the A13 highway, direction Locarno. After the tunnel, the first exit will take you to the center of Locarno. Parking available in the new Piazza Castello parking.
From the west, take the road along the coast of Lake Maggiore from Verbania through Cannobio and the Brissago customs. Then take the A13 highway, direction Locarno. An alternative, from Simplon and Domodossola, is the Valle Vigezzo and Centovalli road, direction Locarno.
Locarno railway stationRegular trains link Locarno directly with Bellinzona from where you can transfer onto trains to Zurich, Basel, Lucerne, Milan. The Centovallina train line connects Locarno and the Simplon line (from Geneva or Bern).
Lugano airport. Then take the bus to Lugano and the train to Locarno.
Bike rental can be found at the train station (Piazza Stazione, Tel. +41 91 7436564). Rental fee: Fr. 30/day (08:00–19:00).
Most of the city can be explored on foot. The Main Square Piazza Grande is walking distance from Main Railway station. Old Town of Locarno is behind Piazza Grande.
Ticino Discovery Card
With this card you get access to all major tourist attractions in Ticino canton including unlimited travel on public transport, cable cars, furniculars and museums. Price of the card is Fr. 87. People holding Swiss GA Travel card or Half fare card get Fr. 10 discount. Card is valid for 3 days. A real good deal to discover Ticino and is available at major hotels, hostels, train station and Tourist Offices.
Piazza GrandeA heart of the city centre and the major shopping area.
phone: +41 848 091 091address: Largo Zorzi 1
phone: +41 91 756 31 70address: Piazza Castello 2A castle which today serves as Municipal and Archaeological Museum.
phone: +41 91 756 31 85address: Piazza S. Antonio
- Walk the Lake Maggiore promenade
phone: +41 91 751 11 23address: Viale Balli 2Take a historical funicular up to the old monastery of the Santuario della Madonna del Sasso and cable car station, from where you can take the cable car above the town to approx 1,600 m, or walk back down into the town via the monastery and a stone pathway, approx 30 minute walk down.
Moon and Stars Music FestivalIn July attracts international acts.
Locarno FestivalIn the first two weeks of August on Piazza Grande, biggest open air screen in Europe. August.
Falconeria LocarnoAn interesting show of birds like Peregrine Falcon, American Eagle, White Owls and Vultures. Check the show timing before reaching the place.
Most of shopping areas are in the arcades of Piazza Grande or in the Old Town.
You can find out very interesting boutiques, sport shop, handmade jewels and many kinds of particular store offering specialities in old town of Locarno.
Albergo Ristorante CittadellaFish specialties and pizza.
Pizzeria PrimaveraPizza, icecream.
Ristorante UniversoPizza, pasta, and more.
Ristorante VallemaggiaOriginal, good quality/price ratio, operated by a foundation.
MarninBreakfast / tea time.
Bar SportFree entry, house music.
Bar CastelloFree entry.
Bar PardoFree entry.
Cantina CanettiFree entry.
Max's wayAperitifs lounge music.
Vanilla ClubDisco in Riazzino, expensive, good house music.
phone: +41 91 745 18 48address: Via Lido 4Family-friendly campsite at the shore of Lake Maggiore. Reservation possible.
YHA Locarnophone: +41 91 756 15 00address: Palagiovani, Via Varenna 18Budget travellers hostel, single and multi person rooms, clean and modern.
address: Via ai Monti 139aBed-and-breakfast-style pensione; beautiful breakfast terrace with views of the lake; wonderful innkeeper Irmgard Balbina, very helpful.
phone: +41 79 325 55 46address: Via Fiorina 1
phone: +41 91 751 30 64address: Via Bartolomeo Rusca 6Beautiful historical building. From double rooms to 6 bed flats, well suited for families. Lift, free WLAN, bike rental outlet are all there.
phone: +41 91 756 18 18address: Lungolago G. MottaThis hotel offers children programs.
address: Via Ramogna 3
Hotel Dell'angeloaddress: Piazza GrandeGreat location, although some travellers complain of the noise at night.
address: Via San Gottardo 18
address: Via B. Rusca 9 / S. Francesco 7a
phone: +41 91 751 03 63address: Via ai Monti 44
phone: +41 917 432 523address: Via San Gottardo 43, 6602 Muralto
address: Via al Parco 25Three star hotel. Small, on the south hill of Locarno, 2km from the city center and from the railway station. Double room from Fr. 240 (season of April 2009).