Cardada-Cimetta

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Impressive view from Cimetta, overlooking Italy, Switzerland and the northern part of the Lago Maggiore. The island is Isola di Brissago.

Cardada-Cimetta

This is a pleasant day trip from Locarno along the famous Madonna del Sasso church, up to Cardada and finally Cimetta. A wide view of Locarno, Ascona and Lake Maggiore awaits you there.

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  • Attraction type: natural site, mountain top, by cable car;
    natural site, mountain top, by funicular
  • Escort: independent (no guide)
  • Region: Locarno (Ticino)
  • Duration: 1 day or less

What is Cardada-Cimetta?

Cimetta is a mountain top at 1,616 m, high above Locarno at 200 m. Cardada is an area half way up the mountain.

The trip via Orselina, Cardada and Cimetta involves 3 modes of transport; that alone is worth the effort. You'll find route details here. Once up, there is a wonderful view of the mountains, the Maggia valley, the Centovalli, Locarno, Ascona and Lake Maggiore. You can also see Italy from here.

Below are the main activities, but there is more to do: mostly outdoor sports like hiking, mountain biking and more.

Activities at Orselina

A visit to Cardada-Cimetta can easily be combined with a visit to the historical church Madonna del Sasso in Orselina, as you pass by it anyway.

Activities at Cardada

  • A hanging observation platform offering a 180° view of the area. To get there, turn left after arriving by cable car from Orselina.
  • Hotel and restaurant with a terrace.
  • Playground.

Activities at Cimetta

  • Observation platform offering a 360° view. There are information boards about the geology of the Alps, and particularly about the collision of the African and European tectonic plates.
  • Restaurant with a terrace.
  • If there is sufficient snow one can ski here in winter. Note that the slopes may not be open every day.

Preparation

Check the weather forecast so you can estimate if it is worth it go up. If the Cimetta is covered in clouds you will not be able to see the views. Dress in multiple thinner layers so that you can adapt to the different temperatures throughout the day. Note that it can be windy at the top. Take along sun glasses, and in winter also gloves and a hat. Solid shoes are helpful if you plan to walk any farther than the easy short walk at Cardada to reach the chair lift.

Allow at least half an hour at Cardada and half an hour at Cimetta. This does not include the time to get there. We classify this activity as half a day trip.

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