Subdivisions of the canton of Ticino, Switzerland, are the 115 municipalities[1] (and the 25 quarters of the municipality of Lugano) grouped into 38 circles, which in turn form a part or the whole of one of the eight districts.

Districts and circles

Districts of Ticino
Districts of Ticino
Circles of Ticino
Circles of Ticino
Municipalities of Ticino
Municipalities of Ticino

The eight districts (distretti) are historic and are maintained by the constitution of the Republic and Canton of Ticino.[2]

Leventina was a subject of the canton of Uri until 1798, the year the Helvetic Republic was founded, when it became part of the new canton of Bellinzona along with the Swiss condominiums of Bellinzona, Riviera and Blenio. The condominiums of Locarno, Lugano, Mendrisio and Vallemaggia became part of the new canton of Lugano in 1798. These two cantons formed into one canton — Ticino — in 1803 when it joined the (restored) Swiss Confederation as a member canton. The former condominiums and Leventina became the eight districts of the canton of Ticino.

The circles (circoli) in the present era, similar to the districts, serve only as an administrative territorial entity with limited public functions, most notably the local judiciary. Those shown below in italics are former or proposed circles. They are effectively sub-districts, though the smallest district (Riviera) has only one circle.

The following is the current establishment of municipalities, circles and districts.

Mendrisio District
Circle Municipality
Circle of Mendrisio: Mendrisio, Coldrerio.
Circle of Balerna: Balerna, Castel San Pietro, Chiasso, Morbio Inferiore.
Circle of Caneggio: Breggia, Vacallo.
Circle of Stabio: Stabio, Novazzano.
Circle of Riva San Vitale: Riva San Vitale.

Lugano District
Circle Municipality
Circle of Lugano West: Lugano (quarters to the right of the Cassarate riverbank).
Circle of Lugano East: Lugano (quarters to the left of the Cassarate riverbank).
Circle of Lugano North: Lugano (quarters of Sonvico, Villa Luganese, Davesco-Soragno, Val Colla, Cadro).
Circle of Ceresio: Maroggia, Rovio, Brusino Arsizio, Arogno, Melano, Bissone.
Circle of Carona: (became the Circle of Paradiso in 2012 with the merger of Carona into the municipality of Lugano)
Circle of Paradiso: Paradiso, Melide, Morcote, Vico Morcote, Grancia, Collina d’Oro.
Circle of Magliasina: Caslano, Pura, Ponte Tresa, Curio, Neggio, Magliaso.
Circle of Agno: Agno, Bioggio, Muzzano, Cademario, Vernate.
Circle of Sessa: Sessa, Astano, Bedigliora, Croglio, Monteggio.
Circle of Sonvico: (abolished in 2013 with the creation of the Circle of Lugano North)
Circle of Vezia: Vezia, Cureglia, Cadempino, Lamone, Comano, Sorengo, Massagno, Savosa, Porza, Canobbio.
Circle of Breno: Alto Malcantone, Novaggio, Miglieglia, Aranno.
Circle of Pregassona: (abolished in 2004)
Circle of Capriasca: Capriasca, Origlio, Ponte Capriasca.
Circle of Taverne: Taverne-Torricella, Bedano, Gravesano, Manno, Monteceneri, Mezzovico-Vira.

Locarno District
Circle Municipality
Circle of Locarno: Locarno, Muralto, Orselina.
Circle of Isole: Ascona, Brissago, Ronco sopra Ascona, Losone.
Circle of Onsernone: Onsernone.
Circle of Gambarogno: Gambarogno.
Circle of Melezza: Centovalli, Terre di Pedemonte.
Circle of Verzasca: Lavertezzo, Vogorno, Corippo, Brione (Verzasca), Frasco, Sonogno, Cugnasco-Gerra.
Circle of Navegna: Tenero-Contra, Minusio, Mergoscia, Brione sopra Minusio, Gordola.

Vallemaggia District
Circle Municipality
Circle of Rovana: Cevio, Linescio, Cerentino, Campo (Vallemaggia), Bosco/Gurin.
Circle of Maggia: Maggia, Avegno Gordevio.
Circle of Lavizzara: Lavizzara.

Bellinzona District
Circle Municipality
Circle of Bellinzona: Bellinzona, Arbedo-Castione, Lumino.
Circle of Ticino: Monte Carasso, Gudo, Sementina, Gorduno, Gnosca, Preonzo, Moleno.
Circle of Giubiasco: Giubiasco, Pianezzo, Sant'Antonio, Camorino, Sant’Antonino, Cadenazzo, Isone.
Circle of Arbedo-Castione: (planned upon the merger of the municipality of Bellinzona with municipalities from other circles; new Circle consisting of Arbedo-Castione and Lumino)
Circle of Bellinzona: (planned upon the merger of several of the municipalities of the Circle of Giubiasco and all the municipalities of the Circle of Ticino into the municipality and Circle of Bellinzona; new Circle consisting of Bellinzona)
Circle of Sant’Antonino: (planned upon the merger of several municipalities of the Circle of Giubiasco into the municipality and Circle of Belinzona; new Circle consisting of Sant’Antonino, Cadenazzo and Isone)

Riviera District
Circle Municipality
Circle of Riviera: Osogna, Biasca, Cresciano, Claro, Iragna, Lodrino.

Blenio District
Circle Municipality
Circle of Malvaglia: Serravalle.
Circle of Acquarossa: Acquarossa.
Circle of Olivone: Blenio.

Leventina District
Circle Municipality
Circle of Giornico: Giornico, Bodio, Personico, Pollegio.
Circle of Faido: Faido.
Circle of Quinto: Quinto, Prato Leventina, Dalpe.
Circle of Airolo: Airolo, Bedretto.


Main article: Municipalities of the canton of Ticino

The municipalities, or communes/communities (comuni) have since the late 1990s seen a steady series of mergers, bringing the total number down from 245 in 1995 to 115 in 2018, with further mergers planned. The constitution of the canton allows for the Grand Council of Ticino to promote and lead in deciding on mergers,[2] and where it does so only advisory referendums are held in the municipalities affected.


The municipality and city of Lugano is subdivided into 25 quartieri (quarters)[3] which are grouped into three (cantonal) circles.

Quarters 1–9 are the city's older quarters, which have been recently added to by successive enlargements of the municipality in 2004, 2008 and 2013; these enlargements involved previously independent municipalities becoming quarters of Lugano.

Quartier No.  BFS-Code Date joined Lugano Former municipality Circle
Aldesago 1 5192001 1972 Brè-Aldesago East
Besso 2 5192002 West
Brè 3 5192003 1972 Brè-Aldesago East
Caprino 4 5192004 1972 Castagnola-Cassarate East
Cassarate 5 5192005 1972 Castagnola-Cassarate East
Castagnola 6 5192006 1972 Castagnola-Cassarate East
Centro 7 5192007 West
Loreto 8 5192008 West
Molino Nuovo 9 5192009 West
Breganzona 11 5192011 2004 Breganzona West
Cureggia 12 5192012 2004 Cureggia East
Davesco-Soragno 13 5192013 2004 Davesco-Soragno North
Gandria 14 5192014 2004 Gandria East
Pambio-Noranco 15 5192015 2004 Pambio-Noranco East
Pazzallo 16 5192016 2004 Pazzallo West
Pregassona 17 5192017 2004 Pregassona East
Viganello 18 5192018 2004 Viganello East
Barbengo 19 5192021 2008 Barbengo West
Carabbia 20 5192022 2008 Carabbia West
Villa Luganese 21 5192023 2008 Villa Luganese North
Cadro 22 5192024 2013 Cadro North
Carona 23 5192025 2013 Carona West
Sonvico 24 5192026 2013 Sonvico North
Val Colla 25 5192027 2013 Cimadera, Certara, Bogno, Valcolla North


  1. ^ Swiss Federal Statistical Office accessed 30 October 2017
  2. ^ a b Constitution of the Republic and Canton of Ticino, Articles 20 and 21
  3. ^ "Quartieri" [districts] (in Italian). City of Lugano. Retrieved 23 July 2012.