A trail runner’s world

Ticino is a true paradise for trail runners. The varied landscape, the excellent trails and the consistently mild climate make Lake Maggiore a unique playground for adventurous runners who love being in nature. Those who like to compare themselves with others have plenty of opportunities to do so here. Because, in Ticino, numerous international races take place every year. 


The Ascona-Locarno region delights with its wild intact nature. Crystal-clear mountain lakes, turquoise rivers, thundering waterfalls, green meadows, colourful flowers, ancient trees, rough rocks, fantastic views and lush forests. The perfect ambience to switch off from everyday life, recharge your batteries for body and soul and discover new places. Nature magically attracts people and becomes a motivator.

Trail running is booming. Discover new places, draw strength from nature and get to know your limits. This combination captures the pulse of the time. Lake Maggiore has the right characteristics to offer trail runners what they are looking for. The official trails of the Ascona-Locarno region vary greatly in difficulty - ideal for both beginners and experienced trail runners. Most of the starting points are located low down, which results in a steep climb if you want to reach a peak at altitude. The wild nature and steepness make many trails technically challenging. But less experienced runners also feel at home on Lake Maggiore. Above the lake and in the valleys, there are enough possibilities to have fun even without technical knowledge. Exactly, trail running is fun! Actually, it's a mixture of fun and suffering. Because when you run in the mountains, your head is running along with you. But the many experiences and beautiful impressions that remain after a tour are priceless and outweigh the effort and sweat.

Val Bavona

Everyone has their own motive that drives them to run, but the pleasure begins for everyone with the preparation: choosing a suitable route, organising material and food and preparing for what is to come. Especially for long runs, as is common in mountain running, good preparation is essential. In the Ascona-Locarno region there are 1400 km of hiking trails where emotions can be collected and stories can be written. With every tour, a new little story is written, like a personal best time, a newly discovered favourite place, or a moment to capture forever.

This is exactly what makes Ticino not only a destination for trail runners, but also popular for races. The distances and steep climbs on which precisely such stories can be written. So, it's no wonder that these competitions are becoming increasingly popular internationally and even attract the world's elite to the southern canton. The Lake Maggiore region also hosts some of these races. The Vallemaggia Trail, which consists of two runs. 26 km - over the panoramic ridges of the Maggia Valley to Locarno directly to the Piazza Grande. The Vertical, from Gordevio straight up to Alpe Nimi. 6.4 km and 1500m ascent pure running pleasure in the Ticino Alps. Even the name promises spectacular moments: The Great Waterfall Skyrace Bavona. With the imposing waterfall of Foroglio in the background and the steep rocky Bocchetta della Crosa, the 24 km and 1785m altitude difference guarantee a lot of fun and a unique nature experience. The Basòdino Glacier is the largest glacier in Ticino. The run of the same name, Basòdino corsa in montagna, doesn't go all the way up to the glacier, but in 6.1 km and 1000m ascent, it takes you through breathtaking scenery high up to Robiei. The most famous race in Ticino, however, is the Scenic Trail, which attracts more than 3000 runners from over 70 countries to Tesserete in six spectacular races.

Do you also want to feel step by step nature under your feet, your breath quickening and your heart beating faster as you climb? Discover the Lake Maggiore region and its trails and who knows, maybe we can welcome you at a starting line, soon.

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