There were some good US to Europe flight deals in April earlier this year, so we had several friends spending time across the pond. We met up with Lauren and Steve in Lugano for a couple days while they were doing the Switzerland leg of their trip. Although Nico had lived in Switzerland for a year, we had never made it down to the Italian area of the country.
How to Get There
Although there is a small airport, it’s much simpler to get to Lugano from another major city. We came from Zurich, which took 2 hours by train, because we were there for a day seeing some of Nico’s former classmates. I went back the same way, but Nico took the train 60-90 minutes out to Milan for a work trip.
The moment the train passed into Ticino, the Italian-speaking canton of Switzerland, the vibe changed. Switzerland has four official languages: German is the majority and spoken in the central part of the country, French is spoken in the west, Italian is spoken in the south, and Romansh is spoken in a small pocket in the southeast. Although the Swiss are very proud of being Swiss and have their own distinct culture, the different linguistic regions maintain some strong cultural ties to the countries bordering it that share the same language. Put in simpler terms and from an outsider’s point of view, the train car’s ambient volume increased and overall atmosphere became more chaotic the further south we traveled 😁