Autumn is harvest festival season all over Switzerland. One with a unique, Italian-Swiss flair is the Sagre delle Castagne in Ascona, Switzerland, held on two weekends each year. On the northern shore of Lago Maggiore, the Swiss turn up the heat under chestnut roasting pans and bring out cookies, desserts, honey, pastas and liquors, all made from chestnuts.
A stroll along the lakeshore, and lunch on a restaurant terrace overlooking the lake is a great way to spend an autumn Saturday in this pretty town. The lowly chestnut fortified earlier generations of Ticinese through times of economic hardship. Today, locals and visitors enjoy them in tasty treats. Artisans and street musicians provide added flair for the occasion.
Even the wines are sunny here: be sure to taste a unique white Merlot from Ticino!