Set on the shores of Lago Maggiore, Locarno is a wonderful getaway. The city has well-conserved old town, with modern shops lining the narrow (and colorful!) cobblestone streets beyond the Piazza Grande. The ruins of the medieval Castello Visconteo, built for Milanese nobles, feature structural and design elements by Leonardo da Vinci, and the Santuario Madonna del Sasso monastery perched above the town provides breathtaking views of the lake and surrounding mountains. All this, plus wonderful Italian-esque pastries!