Ever wish you knew the inside scoop before visiting a new destination? Now you can! We’ve reached out to our favorite locals and tour guides from all over the world for their insider tips. In the City Insider Q&A, they’ll let you in on the spots that should be on your must-see and -do list!
Name: Patricia Carminati
Occupation: Tour Guide
How the locals pronounce the name of the city: Lügan in the local dialect.
Online: guidesi.ch (and ticino.ch, Food and Wine Tour Lugano and excursions and tours, @ticinoturismo (Twitter), Ticino Turismo (Facebook), ticinoturismo (Instagram), Ticino Turismo (YouTube), Ticino Turismo (Google Plus)
Short bio: Hi! My name is Patricia, I live in Lugano and I love my city and my country! I am also a traveler and I like to enjoy places as locals do. In Ticino we have food, special weather, special places that you do not find in the north of Switzerland. To know how multicultural Switzerland is, you should cross the Alps and visit also the south! I started working as a guide in Patagonia. I love my job more than when I started! Helping visitors to enjoy my place like I do! There is always a new corner to discover and a new experience to live!
Best way to get to/from airport: Taxi or shuttle bus.
Best way to get to/from train station: Funicular from city center, by foot or taxi.
Favorite 5-star hotel: Villa Castagnola.
Favorite budget hotel: Elvezia Lago.
5 places visitors must see:
- Valley Bre
- San Salvatore Bellinzona
Best local newspaper/recommended reading (for finding out what’s going on about town): Get the latest brochures at Lugano Tourism Office.
Favorite fine dining restaurant: Il Bottegone del Vino and Antica Osteria del Porto.
Favorite casual restaurant: La Tinera and Tango.
Best place to get a coffee: Grand Café al Porto and La Dispensa.
Favorite bar/lounge: Ciani and Seven Lounge Bar.
Best music venue/place to see live music: LAC.
Favorite museum: LAC and Pinacoteca Zust.
Best sports venue(s): Lido di Lugano.
Most popular local food: Polenta e brasato (polenta is made of corn and brasato is beef cooked in local red wine.
Best “locals-only” spot: Aperitivo at Gabbani gourmet shop every Wednesday evening.
To live like a local, you must have this experience: Lunch or dinner in a grotto (typical Ticinese restaurant).
Local/native fruit or dish to try: Local special white merlot wine.
Most popular local drink: Wine or Mandarine Gazzosa soft drink.
Movies/TV shows filmed in your city: 007 Golden Eye. Opening scene with bungee-jumping. Verzasca is very close to Lugano.
Best souvenirs to buy/goods to bring home: Ceramic cup where locals drink wine called tazzin.
Best place to volunteer: Not really the destination to do volunteering.
Biggest tourist trap/places to avoid and when: Ticino is a FIT destination, so we don’t have tourist traps.
Best smartphone app(s) for your city: hikeTicino.
Best travel tip: Come during the working weekdays or in the shoulder seasons.
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