SwissTraveling.com

A weblog about travel guides – tips, maps, photos and experience – in Switzerland.

Ascona

The former fishing village of Ascona is situated beside a charming, sunny bay on Lake Maggiore, and, with its Old Town and lakeside promenade, is a popular yet exclusive holiday destination, with some of the most famous hotels in Switzerland. While Lake Maggiore offers a wide range of water sports, the unspoilt valleys in the hinterland are ideal for excursions and walks.

Ascona is on the north-west shore of Lake Maggiore, on the large delta created by the River Maggia. At an altitude of just 196 m, Ascona is the lowest town in Switzerland.

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Bellinzona

Bellinzona, capital of Ticino canton, southern Switzerland, on the Ticino River, at the junction of roads to the St. Gotthard, Lukmanier, and San Bernardino passes, east of Locarno. Possibly of Roman origin, it was first mentioned in AD 590 and played a considerable part in the early history of Lombardy because of its strategic location. A possession of the bishops of Como in the 8th century, it was the object of continuous conflict between the Lombardian cities of Como and Milan in the 14th and 15th centuries. Occupied by the French (with the other Milanese lands) in 1499, it was taken by Uri canton in 1500, and the French king ceded it to Uri, Schwyz, and Unterwalden cantons in 1503. It became the capital of the Bellinzona canton of the Helvetic Republic in 1798 and in 1803 became the joint capital, with Locarno and Lugano, of the newly formed Ticino canton. It has been the permanent political capital of the canton since 1878.

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Locarno

Locarno, German  Luggarus town, Ticino canton, southern Switzerland. It is situated at the northern end of Lago Maggiore, near the mouth of the Maggia River, west of Bellinzona. The site was settled in prehistoric times, and the town was first mentioned in 789. A possession of the dukes of Milan from 1342, it was taken by the Swiss in 1513. It became part of the newly formed Ticino canton in 1803 and, with Lugano and Bellinzona, was one of the three capitals of that canton until 1878. An Italianate town, it counts among its landmarks the 14th-century castle of the dukes of Milan, now a museum; the Pretorio, or law court, in which the Pact of Locarno, an attempt to guarantee the peace in western Europe, was initiated in 1925; and several old churches, including the pilgrimage church of Madonna del Sasso (founded 1480, extended 1616). It is a noted health and tourist resort with a warm Mediterranean climate and numerous hotels and other tourist facilities. There are machinery and electrochemical factories. The population is Italian-speaking and Roman Catholic.

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Lugano – Sightseeing

Lugano, the largest town in the holiday region of Ticino, is not only Switzerland’s third most important financial centre and a conference, banking and business centre, but also 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.

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Lugano

Lugano (Italian), German  Lauis,  largest town in Ticino canton, southern Switzerland. It lies along Lake Lugano, northwest of Como, Italy; to the south is Mount San Salvatore (2,992 feet [912 m]), and to the east is Mount Brè (3,035 feet [925 m]). First mentioned in the 6th century, it was occupied in 1499 by the French and was taken in 1512 by the Swiss. The centre of Lugano canton of the Helvetic Republic from 1798 to 1803, it was then included in the newly formed Ticino canton and, with Locarno and Bellinzona, was one of the three cantonal capitals until 1878. In 1888 it became the seat of a bishop with jurisdiction over Italian-speaking Switzerland. During the struggle of 1848–66 to expel the Austrians from Lombardy, Lugano served as the headquarters for the Italian nationalist leader Giuseppe Mazzini.

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FengShui is Online

Feng Shui, Chinese art of arranging an environment. Feng shui (pronounced fung shway) works on the principle that people should be in harmony with nature and their surroundings. The words feng shui mean “wind and water” in Mandarin Chinese. Wind, or cosmic energy, and water are considered two essential aspects of nature.

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Montreux

Montreux, town, comprising three resort communities (Le Châtelard-Montreux, Les Planches-Montreux, and Veytaux-Montreux; merged 1962) in Vaud canton, western Switzerland, extending 4 miles (6 km) along the eastern shore of Lake Geneva (Lac Léman). Its natural setting below mountains protecting it from northerly and easterly winds has made Montreux the lake’s most fashionable health resort. The nearby 13th-century Château de Chillon, made famous by Lord Byron’s poem “Prisoner of Chillon,” is one of Switzerland’s best-known pieces of architecture. Montreux is on railway lines from Geneva and France to Italy via the Simplon Tunnel and is also a terminus of mountain railways. The tourist trade is important, while the villages of Caux, Chernex, Glion, Chamby, and Les Avants on terraces above Montreux depend mainly on agriculture and viticulture.

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Solothurn

Solothurn, French Soleure,  canton, northwestern Switzerland. It is bounded by the cantons of Bern to the west and south, Jura to the west, Aargau to the east, and Basel-Landschaft (demicanton) to the north. It is drained by the Aare River and its tributaries. Consisting of territories acquired by Solothurn (q.v.), its capital city, from which it took its name, it has an irregular shape, including two completely detached districts bordering on France in the north. It also includes the foothills of the Jura Mountains and a plain along the Aare River valley, part of which extends into Bern canton.

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Olten

The small town of Olten lies between Solothurn and Aarua at the southern foot of the Jura on the river Aare. Thanks to its central location in the Swiss Mittelland, the town is a popular venue for conventions and meetings. The unspoiled nature of the nearby Jura heights however also makes the area an attractive leisure region.

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Biel

Biel (German), French Bienne,  town, Bern canton, northwestern Switzerland. It lies at the northeastern end of Lake Biel (Bieler See), northwest of Bern city. Of Celtic origin (Belenus) and inhabited in Roman times, the town dates from the 11th century and was chartered in 1275. It was for centuries under the jurisdiction of the prince-bishops of Basel. In 1279 (permanently in 1352) it made alliance with Bern. Seized by the French in 1798, it became part of Bern canton in 1815. Situated on the language boundary, Biel’s population is two-thirds German-speaking and one-third French-speaking. It is the only officially bilingual town in Switzerland.

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