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Chiesa di Sant’Antonio, Locarno

Chiesa di Sant’Antonio was originally built in the 14th century, but the current structure dates back only to the 19th century, when it was rebuilt after a fatal roof collapse that killed 47 congregants. Inside, there’s a single nave with several side chapels featuring works by local painters. Corinthian pillars support the ceiling. This church […]

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Chiesa di San Francesco d’Assisi, Locarno

In the 14th century, Chiesa di San Francesco was consecrated as part of a monastery. The entire compound was built over a 13th-century church that had been founded by wandering Franciscans. The building we see today was renovated in the 16th century with stones from nearby Castello Visconteo. The interior is decorated with symbols representing […]

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Chiesa Nuova di Locarno

17th-century Chiesa Nuova fronts right onto the street, startling passersby with its enormous statue of Saint Christopher. Though he is represented with a larger-than-life physique, unfortunately he has disproportionally small feet. The baroque church has a stuccoed ceiling with meticulous details including gilded scallops, elaborate scrollwork and cherubs. The side door opens into a serene […]

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Castello Visconteo, Locarno

You can’t miss this as you wander through tiny Locarno. This fortified castle was originally built in the 10th century. The castle changed hands many times and was occupied by the Milanese Visconti clan in the 14th century. It was taken by French forces in the 15th century and the castle and town fell to […]

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Santuario della Madonna del Sasso

Locarno’s main sight, Santuario della Madonna del Sasso, sits partway up a steep hill and therefore requires a bit of effort to reach. Monk Bartolomeo d’Ivrea built this sanctuary in 1480 after the Virgin Mary allegedly appeared to him in a vision. Though there is a funicular that runs to the sanctuary, you still have […]

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Locarno

Swiss resort town Locarno crowns the northern tip of Lake Maggiore and nestles up against the balmy southern foothills of the Alps. Though it is in Switzerland, Locarno is in the Italian-speaking canton of Ticino. Its proximity to Italy makes it feel very un-Swiss-like. Locarno is full of Italianate piazzas and arcades and colorful Renaissance […]

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