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Bolshoi summer intensive Lugano


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Hi my DD has been offered a place on the Bolshoi Summer intensive programmes (we have selected Lugano) 

Does anyone have any information regarding this summer intensive, location and getting there. 

All information is greatly appreciated. 

She would ideally like to travel with family ( she's 18 yrs.) Is it accessible for her to travel on her own also. 

Is there any other ballet students traveling to lugano this summer that she could maybe get in contact with. 


Edited by PurpleM
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Hi there, 


No idea about the programme, but I am a former Swissie who has spent many a summer weekend in Lugano so perhaps I can help with transport 🙂


There are three options I can think of to get to the main station at Lugano, after which it's a short tram or bus ride. Here would be in my order of preference. I would say all are safe and accessible for an older teen to travel alone. 

1. Fly into Zurich. Trains run several times an hour to the main station (10 mins) and then the Intercity to Lugano. Tram to the school. 

       Pros: the most scenic option by far, running through the alps and by lakes. Zurich airport and main station are very easy to navigate.

       Cons: An hour longer than flying from Milan. Can be expensive if not booked in advance (though you can book the train directly added onto the flight via Swiss airlines). Try to avoid Saturday mornings going to Lugano and Sunday PM coming back, as the trains get PACKED.

2. Fly into Milan Linate. Similar to Zurich, it's a quick train ride to Milan Central, an intercity to Lugano, then a tram ride. 

3. Fly into Milan Malpensa. It's either a bus to Milan Central before the train, or a regional train to cross into Switzerland before picking up the tram from Lugano. 

      Pros: Faster and likely cheaper if not booked in advance, as you're mostly on Italian train stock. 

      Cons: Not as pretty 🙂 it's the other way round to avoid the Zurich-Milan weekend crowds on the Intercity: don't arrive Sunday afternoons and evenings or leave Friday night or Saturday morning to noon.


The Zurich to Lugano flight no longer exists. 


Lugano is gorgeous in summer and there are some wonderful hiking routes around the lake or up the mountains (or take the cable car). It's very safe and I think English is quite widely understood. It is, however, quite expensive. Accommodation is often less pricey than its Italian lake counterparts just because it has less of an international draw, but eating out can be jaw-dropping when you first get there!


I'm happy to dig up some options on the Swiss train if you go down that route. It can be quite difficult to find the best prices if you don't (or haven't) lived there before!

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Hello Purple M, I know of another who has been offered the same or Italy, also 18 years old, so I will ask about their intention.

My DD is thinking of Moscow and has an old friend going so they may tie up  the same weeks together but leave from the EU. The other friend did St. Petersburg last year and DD did Italy.


Mind you, Meetmeatthebarre's description makes Lugano sound appealing! 


It does seem sensible to join forces so let´s see who else out there is going where. 


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Reading of scenic Swiss train jouniea throughthd Alps & alongside Lakes is making me very wistful.....

maybe I should’ve applied for this for DD not insisted on chaperoning!! Sounds lovely (but pricey....ah, there’s the rub 🙁)

Lucky DC’s who get to travel - am sure all will make the most of the opportunities & hope they remember yo get their long suffering DP’s nice thank you gifts 😉

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