Switzerland
Bellinzona

Encircled by the Alps, this charming city is most renowned for its trio of UNESCO World Heritage-listed castles, offering an unforgettable experience in the heart of Swiss-Italian culture. Read more

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Visit Bellinzona in 2024

Bellinzona's most prominent feature is undoubtedly its three castles—Castelgrande, Montebello, and Sasso Corbaro—all of which have been designated UNESCO World Heritage Sites. These fortifications paint a vivid picture of medieval military architecture and have extensive histories that span multiple centuries. Each castle provides a unique perspective, from the panoramic views of the valley from Castelgrande to the captivating art exhibits in Montebello.
Beyond its castles, Bellinzona also offers a plethora of other attractions. The city's Old Town is a labyrinth of winding streets, lined with boutiques, cafes, and traditional Ticinese eateries. The weekly market, one of the most important in Switzerland, is a treat for the senses, offering everything from local cheeses and wines to handcrafted goods.
Natural beauty is another key attribute of Bellinzona. Located at the junction of several Alpine valleys, the city offers easy access to numerous hiking, biking, and climbing opportunities. The nearby Ticino River provides avenues for aquatic adventures, including kayaking and paddleboarding.

46.193163, 9.0193378 Open in Google Maps

The most famous sights
What to do in Bellinzona

Castelgrande

The largest of the three castles, offering spectacular views from its towers and a museum showcasing the history of the region.

Montebello Castle

Famous for its art exhibitions and historical displays, this castle provides a different but equally engaging experience.

Sasso Corbaro Castle

The smallest but most distinct of the three, located at a higher altitude and providing unparalleled vistas of the surrounding landscape.

Old Town Bellinzona

Wander through the cobbled streets, taking in the atmosphere and perhaps enjoying a meal at one of the many traditional Ticinese restaurants.

Saturday Market

Experience the vibrant local culture at this weekly market, where you can sample regional foods and purchase artisanal crafts.

Parco Gerretta

A serene park ideal for picnics, casual strolls, or a restful day in nature.

Teatro Sociale

A cultural venue offering a variety of performances, from opera to contemporary theater.

Collegiate Church of SS. Pietro e Stefano

A significant religious building with a rich history, featuring stunning frescoes and a peaceful ambiance.

Artù Café Literario

A unique café that combines literature and gastronomy, perfect for book lovers and foodies alike.

Murata

A well-preserved section of the medieval city walls, offering another glimpse into Bellinzona’s rich history.

What else to visit
In and around Bellinzona

Lugano (22.23 km)

Lugano, located on the southern border of Switzerland, is a city that perfectly combines Swiss precision with Italian charm. This pleasant lakeside town offers not only stunning natural scenery but also a rich culture and gastronomy.

Lake Como (28.46 km)

Cradled by majestic mountains and dotted with elegant villas, Lake Como is Italy's crown jewel of serene beauty. This glacial lake, with its deep-blue waters and shores lined with charming towns, epitomizes Italian luxury and romance.

Varenna (28.8 km)

With the shimmering waters of Lake Como at its feet and a tapestry of quaint alleyways and historic buildings, Varenna stands as a testament to Italy's timeless allure. Romantic and serene, it's a lakeside gem waiting to be explored.

Bellagio (30.49 km)

Where the blue depths of Lake Como kiss the foothills of the Alps, Bellagio emerges as the 'Pearl of the Lake.' With its elegant villas, cobblestone lanes, and panoramic views, Bellagio epitomizes the romantic allure of Italian lakeside towns.

Como city (42.82 km)

Located on the Italian-Swiss border, Como is a city known for its picturesque lakeside setting and enchanting views. With its blend of cultural heritage and natural beauty, Como offers an unforgettable destination full of Italian charm and sophistication.

Stresa (50.9 km)

Perched gracefully on the shores of Lake Maggiore, Stresa is a sparkling jewel of Italy, offering a fusion of natural beauty, historic charm, and a dash of opulence. The town beckons with its lakeside allure and Alpine backdrop.

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