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How to Hike the Tamaro to Lema Trail in Ticino

Monte Tamaro Hike in Ticino

Autumn in Ticino is the ideal season for hiking enthusiasts, offering warm, sunlit days and clear skies to savor the mountain vistas.

The Tamaro to Lema trail in Ticino is perfect if you consider yourself a true mountain lover seeking a challenging yet rewarding adventure.

Here's the perfect day hike for true mountain lovers

Section 1: Rivera to Monte Tamaro

This year, we took one of Ticino's most scenic and challenging hikes: the Monte Tamaro to Monte Lema trail hike. This mountain ridge hike will take you through the heart of Ticino with the nicest scenery the south offers.

Monte Tamaro Hike in Ticino

Begin your journey at Alpe Foppa, where you can explore the awe-inspiring Santa Maria degli Angeli church. a creation of renowned architect Mario Botta, perched on a panoramic spot.

Mario Botta, the acclaimed architect, crafted the Church of Santa Maria degli Angeli, enriched with enchanting artworks by Enzo Cucchi. Have a look inside: the church serves as a sanctuary for contemplation and a lens through which to perceive the surrounding landscape.

Santa Maria degli Angeli Alpe Foppa - Copyright Mike Lehmann/Wikimedia Commons
Copyright Mike Lehmann/Wikimedia Commons

Next, you want to climb up to the summit of Monte Tamaro at 1961 meters above the sea. This is the true test of your mettle as the steep path challenges your legs and sense of adventure. Give yourself a moment and sip a cup of coffee at Capanna Tamaro.

Section 2: Monte Tamaro to Monte Lema

Now that you've recharged, you will embark on the main hike. You're in for a 12-kilometer trek to Monte Lema, which spans challenging terrains and breathtaking landscapes. Traverse summits, slopes, and typical alpine pastures, all while enjoying sweeping vistas.

Then, as you progress, glance north to witness Locarno, Lake Maggiore, Centovalli, and Valle Maggia. Gaze southward to admire Lugano, Lake Ceresio, and beyond, all framed by distant snow-capped peaks, including the iconic Matterhorn and Monte Rosa massif.

👉 Fun fact: You'll casually cross the Swiss-Italian border at various points during the hike. (Though you might not notice unless you check the map). Ticino's geographical intertwining with Italy adds a unique touch to the experience.

After approximately 4.5 hours of trekking, you'll reach the pinnacle of Monte Lema. Take a well-deserved rest, savor a refreshing drink, and unwind. You've earned it!

Section 3: The Descent to Miglieglia

Finally, conclude your adventure by descending via cable car to Miglieglia, just minutes away from the vibrant city of Lugano.

Recent insights reveal that the Tamaro-Lema hike is a celebrated alpine crossing in the Swiss Pre-Alps, offering breathtaking vistas over both Switzerland and Italy. With moderate elevation changes, this ridge-line hike provides an amazing vantage point. We love the fact that you can see Ticino, Valais, Lombardy, Piemonte, and beyond.

Advice for the Monte Tamaro to Monte Lema Hike

🥾 Monte Tamaro offers many opportunities for non-hiking family fun: an adventure park, coaster bob sleds, a beautiful playground, and an easy walk around the top that is suitable for everyone.

🥾 The Tamaro to Lema hike is suitable for adults with a good fitness level - not because of the difficulty of climbing, but because of its length.

🥾 Plan ahead according to the weather forecast and your own physical conditions. You can find extensive information and a detailed map on the Tamaro Park website.

🥾 We recommend comfortable, breathable clothing that can be worn in layers, along with a rainproof vest.

🥾 Carry plenty of water as there is hardly a water source along the path. You can have lunch or a snack at the beginning or the end of the hike, but bring some healthy foods to keep you going along the way.

🥾 After you descend to Migliegli, ask for a combined ticket that includes the return bus to Rivera. And once you’re back in Rivera, you can spoil yourself with a visit to the luxurious Splash & Spa complex.
Monte Tamaro Hike in Ticino

FAQs about How to Hike the Tamaro to Lema Trail


Alessandra is a "kinda creative gal" who came from Milano to live in Lugano. She loves vintage stuff, photography, street art, and typography. She eats a lot of spaghetti, drinks coffee all day long, and shares her unique insights with you!

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