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Trail running above the Ritom Lakes
A trail runner on Monte Boglia, Ticino
Locarno Lido
A trail runner on the Monte Lema - Monte Tamaro Traverse in Ticino
A Roman bridge in Val Verzasca, Ticino
Trail running above the Ritom Lakes
A trail runner on Monte Boglia, Ticino
Locarno Lido
A trail runner on the Monte Lema - Monte Tamaro Traverse in Ticino
A Roman bridge in Val Verzasca, Ticino
Trail running above the Ritom Lakes
A trail runner on Monte Boglia, Ticino
Locarno Lido
A trail runner on the Monte Lema - Monte Tamaro Traverse in Ticino
A Roman bridge in Val Verzasca, Ticino

Trail Run Lugano: Swiss Lakes and Mountains

4 - 7
In the foothills of the Alps in Italian-speaking Switzerland, run alongside waterfall-filled valleys and atop dramatic ridgelines, with lakeside accommodation each night.

Ticino, the Italian-speaking region in the east of Switzerland, offers dramatic yet accessible mountains, verdant valleys, and beautiful lakeside towns. Here, we get to enjoy Italian culture and cuisine, mixed with Swiss efficiency!  On this tour we’ll spend time in the stylish towns of Lugano and Locarno, with one night in a high mountain hotel. We’ll take in the full range of the Ticino landscape, trail running through deep green valleys with tumbling streams, along ridgeline trails, and past high mountain lakes. We’ll make the most of Switzerland’s excellent transport system, using gondolas and funiculars to easily access Ticino’s high alpine regions. 

Book this tour

$5,795/person assuming double occupancy
$850 single supplement
Sep 29, 2024 - Oct 6, 2024
Guides for selected date:
Make it private guided
Your companions, your dates, your tour– we do the rest. Inquire here.


Lugano seen from Monte Boglia

Lugano seen from Monte Boglia. (Photo: Milo Zanecchia)

Day 1

Arrive in Lugano and check in to our lakeside hotel. Guide orientation and dinner concludes your travel day.

Accommodations: Hotel International au Lac
The Monte Bré Funicular in Lugano.

Lugano’s Monte Bré Funicular. (Photo: Milo Zanecchia)

Day 2

We’ll ride a Swiss funicular, then run and fast hike up Monte Boglia, with incredible views awaiting us. Next, we’ll descend a ridgeline trail, stopping at a mountain hut before a return ride on the funicular.

Accommodations: Hotel International au Lac
A trail runner running down towards Lago Maggiore

Running down to Lago Maggiore. (Photo: Milo Zanecchia)

Day 3

Today we run along a high crest between two mountains – Monte Lema and Monte Tamaro.  Cable cars take us uphill at the start, and down to the valley at the end, saving us 1000m of vert. 

Accommodations: Hotel International au Lac
A female trail runner running towards a mountain lake

Trail running in the Ritom Lakes region (Photo: Patitucci).

Day 4

We start with a train ride into the Leventina valley to the north of Lugano. We’ll take a funicular up to stunning Lake Ritom, then run through the mountains, taking in several lakes, waterfalls, and beautiful single track. We’ll spend the night at the side of Lake Ritom in a comfortable mountain hut.

Accommodations: Rifugio Lago Ritom
Locarno Lido

Locarno Lido – a great spot to chill for an afternoon. (Photo: Milo Zanecchia)

Day 5

We’ll have a rest day today, and move to Locarno, our second lakeside location. After heading down from the lake on the funicular, we’ll travel by train and then can spend the afternoon sunbathing and swimming at the Lido, or taking in a local run.

Accommodations: Hotel Arcadia
Verzasca Valley, Ticino

The beautiful Val Verzasca. (Photo: Milo Zanecchia)

Day 6

Today’s trail running route takes in the waterfalls and ancient Roman bridges of the dramatic Val Verzasca. We’ll visit Corippo – Switzerland’s smallest village, and stop for a snack there. 

Accommodations: Hotel Acadia
A Trail Runner in the region's summer Scenic Tour trail race

The region hosts the Scenic Tour trail race in summer. (Photo: Ticino Tourism)

Day 7

It’s back up to the mountains today, with another dramatic ridgeline route taking in the Cimetta, Trossa and Madone peaks. Then, the route traverses the side of the mountain, through beech forest –  with a stop at a mountain capanna, or hut- before we get back on the gondola to descend to Locarno.

In the evening, we’ll reminiscence about the week’s adventure over our farewell dinner.

Accommodations: Hotel Acadia
Locarno's Piazza Grande

Locarno’s Piazza Grande. (Photo: Milo Zanecchia)

Day 8

Today we leave Ticino, taking a train from Locarno to reach the airport or our next destination.

Meals: Breakfast

Regional map

What's included

Guided daily runs with an International Mountain Leader. Accommodations for 6 nights at 3- and 4-star hotels in Lugano and Locarno, and one night in a mountain hut. Baggage transfers, except for the night at Lake Ritom. All breakfasts and dinners. Trail nutrition and light lunches. Run the Alps Guide to Trail Running in the Alps.

Plan to arrive in Lugano by mid-afternoon 29 September 2024. Flights from the US usually depart the day before. The closest airports are Zurich and Milan, which are about two to three hours away by train. Run the Alps will provide complete travel information from Zurich or Milan, including booking an optional shuttle for you from Milan airport. 

Plan your departure for the day the tour ends at the earliest. Since the airports are two-three hours away by train, it is possible to leave the day the tour ends for an afternoon or evening flight. Otherwise, we can provide overnight recommendations and help organize an extra night in Locarno, Milan or Zurich, or your preferred departure destination.

Not included: Flights; Drinks with dinner; 1 dinner in Locarno (recommendations provided); Extra charges made at accommodations such as room service or laundry; Tips for guides.

Contact us if you have any questions. 

Please read our terms and conditions before signing up.

All Run the Alps guests receive a copy of our Guide to Trail Running in the Alps to assist in preparing for their trip.

Concerned about being ready? We can help! We’ve teamed up with the wonderfully supportive team at to offer customized training plans tailored to each Run the Alps trip. Once you’ve signed up for a trip, we’ll email you all the details and your unique code for your FREE first month of training! In the meantime, you can start exploring the plans here.

Tour Balance: Your tour balance is due 90 days before your tour starts. We will send you an invoice about a month before that due date. However, you can pay your balance at any time. If you’d like the simplicity of paying in full sooner, or would like to pay in installments, please contact us.

Guides for this Tour

Tour dates: Sep 29 - Oct 6, 2024
Run the Alps guide Emily Geldard
Lead guide: Emily Geldard


Need a hand preparing?

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We offer pre-trip coaching as a benefit to our guests for a reasonable fee. Spaces are limited.