Cliff diving in the Maggia valley
I love riding my bicycle on the cycle route from Locarno railway station along the lakeside promenade to the Parco della Pace where the path branches off and leads past the Falconeria (make sure to pay it a visit!) towards Losone. On the other side of Losone, the Melezza flows into the Maggia and you soon reach Tegna and Ponte Brolla. This is where the Maggia, Ticino's most powerful river, shows off its might: it has eaten into the light-grey gneiss, splitting, hollowing out, and polishing the rock. After Ponte Brolla, the bicycle path follows the main road for a short while and then, before Avegno, branches off onto the old road that winds through beautiful small villages that are typical of the area. A stop in Maggia is highly recommended.
Once I get to Ponte Brolla, I go cliff diving from a height of up to 20 metres. Make sure you don't miss the annual European Cliff Diving Championship! Close to the diving site, visitors can enjoy a dammed-up pool for swimming and beaches for sunbathing. In Ponte Brolla, you can jump into the water from various heights, as there are rock overhangs at 3, 6, 9, 15, and 20 metres in this natural adventure swimming pool. On 4 August 2015, extreme athlete Lazaro Schaller broke the world record for cliff diving by leaping from a height of 58.8 metres by the Cascada del Salto waterfall to the north of the village of Maggia. That's a bit too high for me! Please start slowly, as this sport is not without risks.
Where: Ponte Brolla
Getting there: On two wheels (e-bike or otherwise)
Time needed: 2 to 3 hours
Please note: There are strong currents in places, which means you should only jump in if you are a confident swimmer.
Christian Harstick, Spa Manager