ICER 2022
Sun 7 - Wed 10 August 2022 Lugano, Switzerland

Switzerland may not be the closest location for many in the ICER community. Thus, it may make sense to combine a trip to ICER with some vacation before or after the conference. Lugano is a great starting point for trips through Switzerland or Northern Italy.

Mountain Tops: Lugano, Ticino, and Switzerland

While not all Swiss mountain peaks are reachable by cable car or cog railroad, quite a few of them are. Hikers and mountain bikers thus have a choice of starting their hike or ride at the top of a mountain, or hiking up a mountain that otherwise is not accessible.

Get a ride up:

  • Monte Bre - funicolare or bus from Lugano, views over Lake Lugano, historic village
  • Monte San Salvatore - funicolare from Lugano, 360-degree views – Due to a technical problem, the funicular won’t be operational during ICER (this also is the reason why we had to find a new venue for our banquet–planned on top of San Salvatore–on very short notice). You could still hike to the top, though, and you would have the spectacular views all to yourself!
  • Monte Tamaro - small gondolas, great views, art, and architecture on top
  • Monte Generoso - cogwheel train
  • Cardada - gondola from Locarno, views over Lago Maggiore

Fantastic hikes:

  • Monte Boglia (best views from the top; long hike, but you get close to heaven; a small part of the Scenic Trail Ultra Marathon)
  • Tamaro-Lema (long hike on ridge between two mountains with wonderful views of Lake Lugano on one side and Lago Maggiore on the other)

Beyond Ticino:

  • Jungfraujoch: The Top of Europe - incredible train ride from the Grindelwald or Wengen area up, much of it inside the Eiger mountain, with stops and peeks through windows in the Eiger North Face and above the rough Eiger glacier, and the terminal stop inside the top of the mountain, with an elevator to the Top of Europe; spectacular views onto a large glacier and over the lakes and valleys below; an expensive activity, but in good weather, a once-in-a-lifetime experience. A trip for your bucket list
  • Gornergrat - cogwheel train from Zermatt up to the Gornergrat, with spectacular views of the Matterhorn and several glaciers

Train Trips through Switzerland

Switzerland has an extensive train system, with train lines to many key tourist destinations. Besides the normal trains you would use to travel between two cities, there also are several trains where the goal is the actual ride.

Trips connected to Lugano:

And if a place is not reachable by train, chances are high it is reachable by Postbus, an unparalleled bus network operated by the Swiss mail company. The Postbus is also attractive for hikers who want to travel between the end and start of a one-way hike.

Lakes & Rivers


  • Lake Lugano and Lago Maggiore (the two big lakes in Ticino)
  • Verzasca and Maggia rivers (mountain rivers with a feeling of being in the Maledives)
  • Lago Ritom and Lago di Tom (stairways to heaven, and mountain lake with sand beach)


  • Lake Luzern
  • Lake Brienz and Lake Thun (with the tourist destination Interlaken in-between)
  • Lake Zurich
  • Rhine Falls


  • Lake Como (45 minutes from Lugano)
  • Lago di Garda



  • Locarno & Ascona (on Lago Maggiore)
  • Bellinzona (the city of 3 Castles)


  • Luzern and Interlaken (the main tourist destinations)
  • Zürich (biggest city)
  • Bern (capital)
  • Geneva (international hub)
  • Basel (culture and life science)


  • Milano (less than an hour away)
  • Genova (closest city at the mediterranean)
  • Verona (Romeo & Juliet)
  • Bologna (oldest university)
  • Venice (hopefully not flooded)
  • Florence
  • Pisa (tilted tower)
  • Rome (3 hours by high speed train from Milan)

Alpine Destinations


  • Zermatt (base of Matterhorn)
  • Saas Fee (glacier skiing in summer)
  • St. Moritz (destination for the rich and famous who want to be seen)
  • Davos (beautiful mountain area, when there’s not the World Economic Forum)
  • Grindelwald and Wengen (base for spectacular Top of Europe trip)
  • Gstaad (destination for the rich and famous who want to stay anonymous)




More Ideas and Detailed Information

Find these and many more destinations and activities on the official Lugano, Ticino, and Swiss tourism websites:

Great Photos of Swiss Destinations