Lugano is a lakeside city in Cantone Ticino, the only majority Italian-speaking Canton of Switzerland. Located at the extreme south of the country, Lugano is part of a temperate micro-climate, offering palm trees, picturesque boulevards, stunning views of the lake and the Alps, and plenty of opportunity for outdoor and indoor activities. Lugano also makes a good base for visiting other cities and sites in the area. The city is a pleasant place to relax in the summertime and is only half an hour away from the italian cities of Como and Varese.
The 9th largest Swiss city, it is the largest in Ticino and largest with an Italian speaking majority outside of Italy. The city lies on Lake Lugano, surrounded by the mountains of the Lugano Prealps. The eastern part of the city shares a border with Italy. The toponym is first recorded in 804, in the form Luanasco, in 874 as Luano, and from 1189 as Lugano. German-language variants of the name (now no longer in use) were Lowens, Lauis, Lauwis, Louwerz. The local Lombard form of the name is rendered Lugan. The etymology of the name is uncertain, suggestions include derivation from Latin lucus ("grove"), from a vulgar Latin lakvannus ("lake-dweller") and from the god Lugus. The blazon of the municipal coat of arms is Gules, a cross throughout argent, between the upper case serif letters L, V, G and A (respectively in the I, II, III and IV quarters).