Monte Generoso

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Monte Generoso is overlooking a huge area, including both Milan and a large part of the southern Swiss Alps.

Monte Generoso

Take a scenic ride with a cogwheel train to the highest peak in the Lake Lugano region. Enjoy spectacular 360° views all the way from Milan to the Gotthard massif.

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  • Attraction type: natural site, mountain top, by train
  • Escort: independent (no guide)
  • Region: Lake Lugano (Ticino)
  • Duration: 1 day or less

What is Monte Generoso?

Monte (Mount) Generoso is the highest peak in the Lake Lugano region in the Swiss canton of Ticino. It's situated at of ridge of 1,700 m. A cogwheel train will take you to Generoso Vetta at an altitude of 1,600 m. It's a short walk to reach the actual peak. You can look extremely far and all the way around as there are no higher peaks obstructing the view.

The ride up is scenic too, especially the second half. The railway was opened in 1890. It is primarily serviced by electric cogwheel trains, but historical (steam) trains are still operational as well.

Activities at Monte Generoso

  • A panoramic view of Lake Lugano, many peaks and the city of Lugano across the lake;
  • "Fiore di pietra" is an impressive building designed by Mario Botta, just like the church at Monte Tamaro and many other buildings in Switzerland and around the world. It houses a restaurant with a terrace and exhibition and conference rooms;
  • Observatory with a telescope (limited opening hours);
  • Various walks and longer hikes. The 15 minute walk to the actual peak is worth it to get the full 360° view. Hiking back down to the valley takes about 3 hours;
  • Other sports like mountain biking and paragliding.

Preparation

Check the weather forecast so you can estimate if it is worth it go up. If the mountain 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 in the valley and up the mountain. It can be windy at the top. Take along sun glasses. Hiking shoes are recommended if you plan to do more than a short walk.

Allow at least an hour at the top. This does not include the time to get there.

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