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Why you should go there: It’s the great combination of lakes, mountains, mediterranean climate, amazing natural trails and it’s close proximity to central Europe. 

Is this really Switzerland? Yes, and it is home of some great biking trails that can be accessed almost all year round. Even though, the whole Ticino has a huge variety of trails, it will be covered here in one post as the characteristic is very similar throughout most of the area.

Depending on weather conditions, this is a location where you can ride almost all year round. The lower, south facing trails in the Lugano/Locarno area can be ridden most times of the year, whereas the high alpine trails of the northern part can only be ridden in summer and fall. 

Due to its close proximity to the german speaking part of Switzerland, you will mostly find lots of Swiss tourists in this region. 

Who is it for: There is something for all bikers but if you are a beginner, your options are very limited, as this terrain is usually rocky and on the techy side.

Who should avoid it: Nobody – However, if you are a beginner there are not many options as most trails downhill are rather challenging


There are many trail areas in Ticino, so picking your favourite spot might not be easy. There are two rider purpose built areas with rather short descents: Arbostora Trail Area and Black Deer Project in Arosio. Black Deer has more jumps and Arbostora has longer, more natural descents.

If you are looking for easier trails, you might want to try some options on Monte Bar. For experienced riders, there are many additional options on Monte Tamaro, Monte Lema, above Locarno and in the mountains around Bellinzona. In Summer, you can also find great high altitude trails in Val Bedretto.

Generally, trails in Ticino require advanced to expert skill on the bike since they are very rocky and often technical. There are only a few flow trails for beginners.

Top Trails & Tours

Local services

Check out the “Ticino Ticket” for discounts on cable cars, public transport and more.

Food & Drinks

Find tasty traditional food in the “Grotti” in the valleys and villages. The cities in addition offer international food, fancy restaurants and take away options.

Local favourites include polenta, risotto, alp cheese, rabbit & goat, grilled meat and sausage as well as pasta and pizza.

Check out the bars at the lakeside for a gelato or after ride beer.

Top Restaurants


Taverna dei Pescatori: Remote at the lakeside. Risotto, pasta and grilled fish & meat. $$


L’Osteria in Cà de Betty e Lüis: Small osteria in a small mountain village. Delicious traditional food. $$$


Grotto Sgambada: Small grotto with great food and friendly staff. Btw.: There´s a small trail-center just around the corner. $$


Grotto Baldoria:  Garden Grotto close to Ascona’s lake-promenade. Offers one daily set menu at a great price. Often crowded – book a table, be early or a little patient. $


Ristorante Pedemonte: Fantastic little restaurant close to the train station in Bellinzona. Super-nice staff and amazing food. Our insiders’ tip. $$


There are lots of options on where to stay. There are many bike specific hotels as well as great Airbnb appartments. Staying in the Lugano area offers quick access to most of the riding areas.

  • Casa San Matteo:  Newly built B&B with a great breakfast, located in Tesserette.
  • At 1899: Small charming guest house in Tesserette.
  • Hotel Bigatt:  Newly renovated historic house located above Lugano with great views over the lake. Ideal location for the Monte Arbostora trail area.
  • Casa Santo Stefano:  Nice, rustique B&B hotel in a 18th century house. Located in the “Malcantone” area at the bottom of Monte Lema.
  • Villa del Sole: Bike-Hotel pioneers at the swiss-italian border between Lago Lugano and mountains.
  • Hotel Internazionale: Modern hotel in an historic building opposite of the Bellinzona train station.
  • Airbnb: Many options – choose your favourite


There are lots of options on where to stay. There are many bike specific hotels as well as great Airbnb appartments. Staying in the Lugano area offers quick access to most of the riding areas.

  • TCS Camping: Located on Lake Lugano with pool, Pizzeria and lots of services.
  • Piccolo Paradiso: In the beautiful Maggia Valley, directly at the river. Not too far by bike from Locarno and Ascona.
  • Parco d’oro: Tranquil campsite close to the Monte Lema and Malcantone trail area.
  • Moretto: Located well for biking in the Lugano and Val Colla area.

More than Biking


Go shopping in one of the biggest shopping-/outlet malls in CH. Open seven days a week.

Splash & Spa Tamaro

Have fun in modern indoor pools and water slides or relax with multiple Spa and wellness treatments.

Monte Tamaro

Explore the spectacular church Santa Maria Degli Angeli, an adventure park, a zip line & coaster bob with your family.


The content of this website is just an opinion of a few individuals. It is not based on scientific research and some facts may have changed since the last visit. Feel free to leave a comment with suggestions for anything we have covered on this website.

You might be riding on shared trails! Yield to other trail users and animals! Control your speed, leave no traces and don’t shortcut corners! Thank you!

Last on-site research: 2022

entries with this icon have been recently tested by the authors