Epic Europe


The Italian-Speaking Canton of Switzerland with Mediterranean Style

Canton Ticino, the exotic getaway for Swiss in the know, lies on the southern flank of the Alps, amongst steep mountains and palm tree-lined glacier-carved lakes.


The language, cuisine, architecture and style of Ticino are markedly Italian, but the people are proudly Swiss. Which means you can expect ancient monuments, medieval castles, Romanesque churches, modern architecture, world-class art museums, award winning wineries, and fabulous Italian dining, and yet everything runs properly, and is timely and tidy!


The lakes and cities occupy the southern edge of Ticino, close to the Italian border, and surrounding the Italian lake district of Lago Maggiore, Lugano (Ceresio) and Como. From the palms to the glaciers; to the North Ticino rises steadily to the border with Canton Uri, Graubunden and Valais, and their alpine peaks & glaciers. The granite finger valleys descending from the Alps have been carved by melting ice for millennia, creating steep gorges and natural bathing pools. The small villages built of stone blend seamlessly with the landscape.


LUGANO: Lugano, the largest city of Ticino is a town of parks and flowers, villas and sacred buildings. With Mediterranean flair, Lugano offers all the advantages of a world-class city, combined with the cachet of a small town. Located on a bay on the northern side of Lake Lugano, the city is surrounded by numerous mountains offering incredible panoramas. The pedestrian historic town center is laid out Mediterranean-style with piazzas, arcades, and countless parks with sub-tropical plants. Art connoisseurs will love Lugano for the numerous museums, both contemporary and classic, and the extensive calendar of annual exhibitions and events.


LOCARNO – ASCONA: On the northern shore of Lake Maggiore are the sister cities of Locarno & Ascona, gateways to the Maggia & Verzasca Valleys. Locarno’s Città Vecchia (old town) is home to elegant palaces and neighborhoods, and the renowned Festival del Film held every year in August in the Piazza Grande. Ascona, located west of the Maggia on the river delta, enjoys a privileged south-facing position and mild climate, and has been an exclusive destination since the Renaissance. Today, many 5* resorts and wellness spas line the lakefront adjacent to the historic village.


BELLINZONA: The capital of Ticino and city famous for its three castles (Castelgrande, Montebello, Sasso Corbaro) that have been UNESCO World Heritage Sites since 2000. Located east of the Ticino River, at the foot of the Alps, Bellinzona has been a strategic site since pre-historic times, as one of the most important gateways to Northern Europe through the Alps. The medieval village is a bustling community filled with shops, trattorias, and a weekly market and is largely devoid of the tourists you would expect at such an incredible site.  Across the river, neighboring Sementina is home to one of the finest wine growing regions in Switzerland.

  • A taste of Italy in Switzerland
  • The climate of Ticino, while remaining alpine, is noticeably milder than the rest of Switzerland
  • Lugano: City of art and architecture
  • Lakeside Grottos - explore the small family-run restaurants along the lake shore
  • Cross Lake Maggiore or Lake Lugano for an afternoon in Italy
  • Monte San Salvatore and Monte Brè funiculars offer an outstanding panorama of Lake Lugano and the alpine scenery
  • Val Verzasca & Val Maggia, the magical glacially-carved valleys
  • Bellinzona and its 3 medieval castles - UNESCO world heritage sites
  • Festival del Film Locarno - renowned international film festival held every August in the Piazza Grande
  • Easy day trip to Lake Como


Accommodation options:

Experience options: Lugano-Ticino


Epic Europe is a luxury experiential adventure travel operator based in the Swiss Alps.

Epic Europe specializes in private bespoke itineraries for small groups. Experiencing the best of each region, from interacting with the local people and enjoying authentic regional food and wine, as well as time-honored traditions and festivals, to recreating in the alpine landscape, and truly understanding why the Alps are the birthplace of adventure travel. From custom ski, hiking, or cycling trips to building in city tours, cultural itineraries, or gastronomic discovery, these award-winning, multi-dimensional trips are tailored to our clients' wishes every time, and are not packaged tours. From Switzerland, Italy, and France's Alps, to world-class cultural cities and larger towns, Epic Europe can design a tailored adventure that fulfills your every need. 

  • "A day of heliskiing in Italy culminated with a sunset run off the Breuil saddle of the Matterhorn - one of the most thrilling runs of my life - and we left our tracks in a place where they remained for a week afterward, reminding us of the best day of skiing in our life!" - WG, CT USA
  • "I would have to say that Verbier and Zermatt might be the best places I have ever ridden a mountain bike, and I couldn't imagine going without the help of Epic Europe's guides. It was a dream trip for sure." - B.S., PA USA
  • "Epic Europe's custom road biking trip that they put together for my buddy's bachelor party was great - the right combination of killer rides, great hotels, and outstanding restaurants. Great guides, and overall a perfect trip." - A.S., London UK
  • "Hiking in the Alps has always been on my bucket list, but I wasn't sure that a typical trip was my style. Epic Europe designed a custom route for our group, staying in the best little inns and hotels, and we felt like we had the trails to ourselves. I will come back again and again to explore new trails with their guides every year that I can!" - R.B., NY USA
  • "Epic Europe has coordinated several corporate events for us over the past 5 years, and I cannot imagine a more professional operation to handle all of the details. From a team-building event for 50 people in a 17th-century castle atop a mountain pass, to marketing conferences and catalog shoots, their knowledge of the best locations in the Alps is second-to-none, and they are as good as it gets at being creative." - E.P., Lugano CH
  • "Our family spent last Christmas in Zermatt on a bespoke Epic Europe ski trip. The special thought and care that they put into our holiday made it our best yet." - L.M.; CA USA
  • "I have done trips in the Alps and surrounding regions with Epic Europe for the past 4 years, and every one has been unique and surpassed the last. The experiences that they deliver due to their personal relationships are a window into the real life in these incredible locations, and they share these friendships with us." - K.B., CT USA
  • “The team at Epic Europe created the most incredible trip for us, where everything came together seamlessly, and we never had to think about what came next - it just magically happened as if it was meant to be. That takes real talent, and they make it look easy." - B.N., WY USA


Would you like more information, or to have us create a tailored trip for you? We would be glad to begin the design process for your ultimate experience in the Alps. 

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