The water foaming over pebbles, riverside boulders warmed by the rays of the sun, walls of gneiss and granite that sparkle like jewels, trees that shade the banks and the pleasure of immersing your feet in the cool water after a long walk in the sun. During both the warmer season and sunny winter days, the beauty of the river remains intact.
Ticino, Verzasca, Maggia, Giona, Melezza, Isorno and Ribo, not to mention the many streams and their tributaries:
the Ascona-Locarno region abounds with valleys and rivers, ideal for savouring the thrill of splashing in the cool water when heat reigns supreme outside, but not only for this reason... The region’s rivers play a leading role in sporting activities that, thanks to our mild climate, can be enjoyed all year round, or almost. Here are three ideas to help you make the most of a great day by the river.
1. Rafting along the Maggia river: the Maggia is not to be messed with: it’s a challenging river for kayaking and rafting, but it gives incredible satisfaction in return.
The 18 km navigable stretch between Bignasco and Gordevio skims forests that come right down to the water’s edge, rocky islands and large boulders, passing through tranquil turquoise pools crowded with swimmers, small waterfalls and thrilling stretches of fast water. Between one adrenaline hit and the next, what really catches the eye is the beauty of the nature along the river, with its vivid colours and air that retains a hint of wildness.
2. Take home a tropical photo of the Val Verzasca: the emerald waters of the Verzasca river are a spectacle to be seen at least once in your lifetime summer or winter.
It doesn’t matter which season it is, what matters is that you take home a photo of one of the world’s most beautiful landscapes, made up of tongues of rock and wonderfully crystal clear waters surrounded by nothing but green. It may look like the tropics but it’s actually Switzerland! Furthermore, the gorges of the Verzasca are considered one of the most beautiful spots in the world for kayaking. The large boulders in the middle of the river, steep descents, particularly challenging stretches and crystal clear emerald waters all make Verzasca one of the most popular descents with the most expert (and daring) enthusiasts.
3. Jumping down the gorges: Ticino, with its many valleys, is considered a slice of paradise by canyoning experts, one of the most beautiful places in the world to walk through rivers and jump down gorges and waterfalls.
With a good dose of courage and the right company, fun is guaranteed. If excitement is what you’re looking for, just look around: this landscape has plenty more to offer than may appear at first glance. Centovalli, Valle Verzasca and Vallemaggia are among the most popular routes in Ticino for this discipline. Are you ready to throw yourself into an adventure?
Bonus! Walk around the Alpine lakes
When the mercury reaches unimaginable heights and the rivers fill up with bathers looking to cool off, shrewd hikers aim high. Alpine lakes are small oases of cool right in the middle of beautiful hiking trails through the Alps. Mirrors of crystalline water to be walked along or admired from above: Alpine lakes reflect the peace of the mountains that surround them and convey a sense of infinite serenity. Stop. Close your eyes. Breathe. Just listen to all that space.
Rivers can be beautiful and placid or roaring and impetuous, hiding their dangers well. Not everywhere is suitable for bathing: the depth of the water, the currents and most importantly whirlpools can take you by surprise and should not be underestimated. Enjoy a carefree day by the river by following water safety recommendations.