You can start the virtual stroll at the place of your choice by selecting a key location from the list below.
Giardini Pioda
To get from the lakefront to Piazza Grande, go through the gardens along Largo Franco Zorzi, the walk will be much more pleasant!
Giardini Rusca
To get from the lakefront to Piazza Grande, go through the gardens along Largo Franco Zorzi, the walk will be much more pleasant!
Lake Promenade (1)
Our virtual stroll will now follow the promenade along the shores of Lake Maggiore in an easterly direction, towards Muralto, one of the municipalities in the Locarno agglomeration.
Lake Promenade (2)
Right next to the pier, you can see the Milano, one of the 36 boats that serve the Lake Maggiore lines. There are only 4 piers on Swiss territory, but no less than 25 on the Italian shores. The region is an ideal destination for beautiful cruises!
Lake Promenade (3)
The agglomeration of Locarno is actually made up of several municipalities. To the east of the pier, you are in Muralto, although you can't see any difference. The long promenade along Lake Maggiore is beautiful from one end to the other!
Lake Promenade (4)
The entire promenade along the shores of Lake Maggiore offers many shady places to sit and watch the ever-changing spectacle of the lake and the passers-by.
Lake Promenade (5)
In Locarno you will no longer feel like you are in Switzerland. The south of Ticino is like a piece of Italy at the foot of the Alps, with a climate, a way of life and landscapes that will make your stay unforgettable.
Lake Promenade (6)
Apart from the Piazza Grande, the big star of Locarno is Lake Maggiore, although only a very small part of the lake is in Switzerland. The rest is in Italy, and this proximity gives Locarno a Riviera feel and a seaside holiday atmosphere.
Lake Promenade (7)
Our virtual stroll ends here, at the municipal port of Muralto, but the lakeside promenade continues much further, to Minusio, where it begins to be interrupted by private properties that stand between the path and the shore.
Largo Franco Zorzi (1)
This avenue is named after a Ticino politician who actively campaigned for the construction of the Gotthard road tunnel around 1960. He died in an accident in 1964 and unfortunately did not live to see the end of his activism, which opened up Ticino from 1980 onwards.
Largo Franco Zorzi (2)
We arrive at Piazza Grande, part of which is unfortunately lined with totally incongruous modern buildings. Don't panic: further on, the plaza becomes simply grandiose!
Locarno boat pier
The Locarno pier is one of 29 piers along the shores of Lake Maggiore in Switzerland and Italy. Our virtual stroll from here offers you the opportunity to either take a walk along the lake shore towards Muralto or to head towards the Piazza Grande and the old town.
Piazza Grande (1)
We are now at the impressive Piazza Grande, the most beautiful and famous square in Switzerland. It is surrounded by palaces and houses that were transformed or rebuilt from the 16th to the 20th century. The alleyway that opens up here on the right is Via Torretta, where one of the most beautiful palaces in the city stands.
Piazza Grande (2)
Locarno is known worldwide for its International Film Festival, which every year transforms the Piazza Grande into one of the most beautiful open-air cinemas in the world. In July, the square also hosts concerts by world-famous stars: Peter Gabriel, Roger Waters, Muse, Eric Clapton, Neil Young, Deep Purple, Stevie Wonder, Santana, ZZ Top, Elton John and many others have played here.
Piazza Grande (3)
This virtual tour was shot in August 2021, a few days after the closing of the 74th Locarno Film Festival. Together with the Cannes Film Festival, founded in the same year (1946), the festival is one of the three oldest film festivals in the world, just behind the Venice Film Festival, which was founded in 1932.
Piazza Grande (4)
At the very end of Piazza Grande, take Via Bossi, a small alleyway that leads up to the old town. This little detour will allow you to see some beautiful buildings before coming back down to the square.
Piazzetta dei Riformati
This "Little Square of the Reformed" was probably named after the followers of the Reformed Church who were forced into exile in 1555. Locarno had previously welcomed Protestants who had fled persecution in Milan and Piedmont, and this new religious community had obviously not been accepted by the Catholics...
Santa Maria Assunta
The church of Santa Maria Assunta is also called Chiesa Nuova (New Church), even though it dates from 1636. The overwhelming statues on its fa├žade face the somewhat decrepit houses of Via Cittadella, a rather narrow cobbled street that we will follow to get a taste of old town atmosphere.
Via Borghese
After a few steps on Via Borghese we turn right into Via Marcacci which goes down to Piazza Grande. But we'll make another small detour a little further down...
Via Bossi
Narrow and dark, the alleyway is not very engaging and not very photogenic, except for its perspective on the bell tower of the church of Santa Maria Assunta.
Via Carlo Bacilieri
At the end of Carlo Bacilieri Street, look to your right: on either side of Via Torretta there are two truly magnificent houses, restored to perfection. It's time to take out your camera and capture some dolce vita dreams!
Via Cittadella
Via della Citadella leads to Via Borghese, from where we will walk down towards Piazza Grande. The old town of Locarno is not lacking in charm, but our little detour so far has shown us some rather austere aspects!
Via Marcacci
Marcacci Street leads directly to Piazza Grande. If you take Carlo Bacilieri Street on your left, you will reach the main square too, but passing two of the most beautiful houses in Locarno.
Via Torretta
Palazzo Torretta, with its Lombard style tower, dates from the 17th century. For part of the 20th century, this beautiful building was an inn and then a commercial warehouse. Restored by a Zurich architect in 2017-2018, the building is now partly converted into flats and can therefore only be admired from the outside.
The Pictorial Guides

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