Lying low upon the northern shores of the luscious Lago Maggiore, the unbearably beautiful town of Ascona exudes style and charm due to its lush location, peaceful promenade and alluring Old Town. Monte Verita (the Mountain of Truth) rises dramatically behind the town, providing a blissful natural backdrop to the austere architecture, while also revealing an intriguing colonial history that now attracts scholars and celebrities alike. The Mediterranean climate, touristic traditional and kaleidoscopically colourful buildings of the city are guaranteed to surmount the expectations of every traveller.
The town’s cultural and historical heritage pulsates from the austere and attractive Old Town, known as borgo; here, the stunning structure of San Pietro e Paolo dominates the horizon with its Baroque columns and imposing bell towers. Inside, prismatic windows and alluring altars give a sense of ethereal tranquillity. Cosy coffee shops and bespoke boutiques line the Lakeside Promenade, while 800 small steps gently lead to the Ronco Sopra Ascona, a spot which affords hikers picturesque panoramas of the tranquil and turquoise Lake Maggiore.
Satisfy cultural cravings with a visit to Museo d’Arte, an immensely sophisticated collection of art from French masters exhibited in a lakeside villa. Additionally, the nearby Monte Verita houses museums and cultural centres that elaborate on the intriguing history of the philosophical and revolutionary community that was established there during the 20th century, a community set on reaching a spiritual and intellectual ideal.
Hailed as one of Ascona’s most coveted gastronomical gems, the Grotto Baldoria offers a traditional, simple and sumptuous taste of classic Swiss-Italian cuisine. Sample the rich flavours of creamy Swiss cheese and sizzling Italian sausage from the rustic surface of a wooden board before tucking to regional specialities prepared using fabulously fresh produce. (Via Sant'Omobono 9, 6612 Ascona, Switzerland)