Experience the essence of Italian-speaking Switzerland - Easy 1 hour walk on the Olive Trail with the best views of Lake Lugano- Hear about Lugano's amazing history while browsing in high-end fashion outlets with a backdrop of gorgeous scenery- Taste local food and wine - Refresh yourself at a quaint village where the buildings hang off the side of the mountain- Take a boat cruise to your “grotto” lunch spot and make your own “classic risotto” under instruction from a master chef - Taste local Ticino wine produced by local winemakers from the vineyards around Lugano. and the region
Meet your guide in your hotel lobby and take guided walk through the historic center of Lugano. Visit the the church of Santa Maria degli Angeli Church with magnificent frescoes, Nassa Street and its exclusive fashion stores, the Piazza della Riforma and its geranium cascaded buildings, and see how modern architecture can fit in to a historic context in Lugano's new conference center, and many more interesting sights. Continue your walk through the superbly landscaped park with magnificent trees from around the world before boarding a local bus to the starting point of the 1 hour walk on the paved historic “Olive Trail” along the lakeside. At the end of the trail you reach the picturesque village of Gandria perched on the cliff-side next to Lake Lugano.From Gandria board a public boat and cruise to your lunch stop at a typical Ticino "grotto", a simple outdoor tavern in a quiet place shaded by trees, where everyone enjoys eating products of the local cuisine and drinking the local Merlot wine that is served in a special glass called a "boccalino". Your grotto host will set you up with all the ingredients and tools for you to start stirring your own classic "Grotto Risotto" lunch with plenty of instructions and encouragement from the chef. Enjoy local Ticino red or white wine while you focus on making your risotto but don't forget to look up and admire the breathtaking views over Lake Lugano with its surrounding mountains and villages. In the mid-afternoon the public boat returns to collect you to take you back to Lugano.