Made a UNESCO world heritage site in 2006, Via Garibaldi is lined with Renaissance palaces, built by Genova’s wealthiest families in the 16th and 17th centuries. Palazzo Bianco houses a huge collection of Italian and Flemish art including works by Rubens, Van Dyck and Caravaggio. Palazzo Rosso houses an incredible collection put together over two centuries by the Brignole-Sale family.
This National Gallery is housed in a 16th-century palace and was donated to the state by the Spinola family. Here you will find many famous works done by the greatest Genoese, Flemish and European artists including important collection of ceramics. Works by Rubens, Van Dyck, il Grechetto, Valerio Castello and others are on display here.
Galata Maritime Museum is the biggest museum of its kind in the Mediterranean and a must for anyone wanting to understand more of Genoa’s sea-faring past. With high-tech displays, real-life replica galley ships and over 6000 original artefacts, you will find yourself busy here. The museum is located right in the heart of the city, near the famous "acquario".
Bigo lift, designed by the Genoese architect Renzo Piano is a huge spider-like contraption, with a viewing cabin that shoots you up 40 metres for a fabulous view. Do you dare? If this is the case, you will enjoy a panoramic breath-taking view of the beautiful city of Genoa, hills and sea included!
San Lorenzo, in the heart of the old part of the city, is Genoa’s main cathedral, famous for its fabulous black and white stripy marble facade dating back to the 12th century. Be amazed over the beautiful interior inside the cathedral with high ceilings, tall columns and with gorgeous stain glass. It is also here, in the basement, you will find the Treasure museum. In front of the building, there are two photogenic stone lions guarding, so don´t forget the camera.
The Medieval Quarter is one of Europe’s largest, the tiny caruggi (alleys) thread their way up, down and across the centre of the city. The buildings can reach six storeys, the alleys – in places no wider than a couple of metres – hiding great restaurants, bars and shops. Getting lost is inevitable and always fascinating.
Palazzo Reale (Royal Palace) is a 17th-century palace built by the Balbi family. It was once a large aristocratic residence for the three most powerful families in the city (Balbis, Durazzo and Savoy) and today it is a museum, housing historical furniture, hundreds of paintings and sculptures. There is also an impressive garden to visit that brims with vegetation and exotic plants.
Some might say that this is one of the most romantic walks in the world. The path used to be used by fishermen, but it's now full of couples or families that, whenever the sun shines, takes a walk here. The mesmerising view, the beautiful colours of the Riviera makes it really worth seeing.
Palazzi dei Rolli, a group of palaces are on the World Heritage List since 2006 and are historic places of where eminent Genoese families used to live. Along the oldest streets across the city, you will find some prestigious places with fascinating architecture, so be ready with your camera.
Basilica of Santa Maria di Castello is a beautiful Romanesque style church, located on the Castello hill in Genoa. Come here for some serenity and peacefulness on your vacation and, if you feel like it, light a candle according to the tradition of the most religious locals!
Palazzo Ducale is located in the heart of the city and has two different entrances, one from Piazza Matteotti and the other from Piazza De Ferrari, two of the most important gathering places of the city. The renaissance building is worth a visit for its own beauty, but it also houses an art museum.
The Monumental Cemetery of Staglieno is a historic testimony where remains of distinguished citizens like De Andre' and Govi are housed. With its hundreds of statues lined up in elegant galleries and chapels it provides a fascinating open-air museum. The styles used by sculptors go from realism, neo-Gothic and neo-Renaissance to Art Nouveau and Symbolism. Here you will also find the tomb of Lady Constance Wilde, the unhappy bride of Oscar Wilde.
Victory Square (Piazza della Vittoria) is not only one of the largest in Genoa but also considered as one of the most important squares in the city centre. In the middle of the square, you will find the Arch of Victory also known as the War Memorial of the Fallen, dedicated to the Genoese fallen during the First World War and inaugurated on 31st May 1931.
The gallery is housed in a beautiful setting, in the sixteenth century Villa Saluzzo in Nervi and preserves more than 2,500 works, including paintings, sculptures, drawings and engravings dating from the early nineteenth century to the present. Here you can admire works done by artist like Rayper, Luxoro, Cabianca, Varni, Barabino, Baroni and many more.
Creattivando is a laboratory where customers can learn preparing local products such as Genoese pesto, by attending cooking shows and getting some knowledge about the Ligurian crafts. It is a casual and fun way to learn Italian cooking. They also organise food and wine tours, for more information see the website below.
Located in a picturesque square called Piazza San Matteo, this small and elegant restaurant offers delicious specialties from Liguria served by professional staff. La Buca di San Matteo is the place to head for when wanting to try the local cuisine in a cosy and warm environment.
Ristorante Zeffirino has been family-run for four generations since 1939, with the likes of Frank Sinatra, Roger Moore and Pavarotti among its fans. This restaurant does not disappoint regarding service nor food and if you like, seafood and classical Italian food, you have come to the right place.
Al Veliero is a small family-run restaurant that serves fresh, local fish dishes, but, of course, they also have amazing pasta dishes too. Plus, the location is just amazing: Al Veliero is just few steps away from the famous Aquarium! Very popular among the locals so it can get quite busy.
Le Cantine Squarciafico is an atmospheric place in a 16th century building characterised by vaulted ceilings, stone pillars and chequered floors. Ligurian specialities and twists on old favourites are served by the friendly staff. The price is a bit higher than average but the quality of the food makes it worth it.
At first sight, it might look like just a whole in the wall, but actually, Gran Ristoro serves some of the best sandwiches in town. Everything is made with fresh raw materials. Choose your filling, your favourite type of bread and enjoy a tasty lunch! This is more of a take-away service; there are however, a few seats, but it is usually crowded.
This family-run restaurant serves amazing seafood in a cosy atmosphere emphasized by the extremely friendly and welcoming owners that will make you feel like home. Choose among pasta dishes, ravioli or seafood like lobster and afterwards pick a tasty dessert to end a perfect evening.
In a warm and romantic atmosphere, Retro Restaurant serves delightful and well-presented seafood dishes including meat and pasta dishes. The staff is attentive and friendly and they will make you feel very welcome. On Fridays, they have live jazz, so make sure not to miss it.
La Cava serves delicious fresh shellfish, plenty of pasta dishes and good pizza, all for reasonable prices and prepared with top quality ingredients. The chef, who is also the owner, and the staff are very friendly and committed to offering the best dining experience to their customers.
This lounge bar/café has a clear concept: Sicily. Here, in fact, the staff will welcome you dressed in a unique Sicilian style, serving the best things that the region has to offer! Don Cola Café has also an excellent wine selection and delicious cocktails, so it is the perfect place to take an appetizer before heading out for a lovely meal.
This cosy and elegant cafeteria ensure prime quality service and products such as cappuccino, coffee and freshly served pastries. Caffetteria Enoteca Chicchi d'Autore is mainly popular among locals rather than tourists and this is an obvious synonym of quality.
This is one of the most popular and appreciated café and bakery in town, even if it is not particularly spacious and it is located in the suburbs of Genoa. This means that everything else here is top-notch: the interior design, for example, is vintage and the pastel colours creates a lovely atmosphere. Come here for an afternoon break or for the famous "Sunday brunch" with French toasts, cupcakes, muffins, cakes and millions of hot and cold drinks!
Piazza delle Erbe is just below Piazza de Ferrari and is a small square with tables around where several bars serves locals and travellers food, beer and wine. At night, especially on Fridays, the atmosphere gets very lively when many young locals are gathering here with friends.
Mako Discotheque, three-in-one venue with an elegant cocktail bar, restaurant and nightclub, is located east of the city centre, in the famous Corso Italia where locals usually take a walk on evenings or on Sundays. Mako entertains its young locals including numerous guests with "easy house", R&B and revival music! Relax and sip a cocktail or simply show some moves to the tunes on the dance-floor.
Britannia Pub is a British-styled spot with dark, wooden furniture and a cosy interior design. Here you will find an excellent selection of beer (particularly recommended are the Irish ones, such as the Kilkenny), but also burgers, fries and different kinds of herbal teas and coffees!
Enjoy one of their sophisticated cocktails prepared with best quality, fresh ingredients or simply a glass of fine wine. Les Rouges is housed in an old building and it truly has a beautiful surrounding with high painted ceiling and an elegant and exclusive atmosphere. Their cocktails are just perfect, so make sure to try at least one!
Right in the heart of Genova you will find "Chupiteria alla Goccia", the centre of this city's movida. Stop by at this famous spot and mingle with the locals while trying cheap, colourful chupitos (shot) which are served by the friendly bartenders in a warm and welcoming venue!
With its perfect location on the Ligurian beach, Estoril Club is a great place to have a fun evening out with friends. Besides offering an amazing sea view, the venue offers fresh seafood and typical cuisine-based aperitif; on the menu you will also find a large variety of cocktails and wine labels.
This club has one of the best locations you could ever dream about: Banano Tsunami is, in fact, located right on the waters of Genoa's Port, offering the guests a great view. Give it a try during the weekend and dance the night away with a crowd of happy locals or on Wednesday when Erasmus parties are organised!
Il Cantinone is a historic pub in the neighbourhood of Sampierdarena, located just 10 minutes away from the centre of the city. This is the place to enjoy a cold one with a group of friends in a nice, Irish pub atmosphere where the food is always hot and tasty, the staff friendly and the beer refreshing.
Mercato Orientale is an indoor market offering fresh fruit, vegetables, meat, cheese, fresh fish, spices, pasta and other products. This market has two entrances and the main one is in via XX Settembre. Just to stroll around and enjoy all the attractive stalls selling Italian specialties is a true pleasure - definitely a place to visit for all foodies.
DEV Boutique, has different locations throughout Italy and in Genoa and one of them is located close to the prestigious Galleria Mazzini, in the heart of the city centre. Here you will find brands such as Tod’s, Fay, Hogan and Hogan Rebel, which are synonyms of style and quality.
Founded in 1866, Romeo Viganotti, is a little gem, hidden in a small dead-end alley in Vico dei Castagna. This ancient chocolate factory, is still using the same recipe, ingredients, machinery and processes as back in the days, it is as time has stopped at this charming chocolate factory. Sweets, candies, confetti, pralines, are all on display - definitely a must-see if you have a sweet tooth.
The Antica Confetteria handicraft offers high quality specialities of confectionery, created in the ancient way with local ingredients. There is an endless selection of flavours which go from candied fruit, almond paste and chocolate to sweet chestnuts and preserves!
Zuccotti is a renowned family company, a chocolate laboratory, founded in 1933 by Alessandro Zuccotti. The sweet creations are still made according to the old, good recipes of the Ligurian tradition, using pure and natural ingredients. Bring some delicious handmade chocolate back home as a reminder of your time in Genoa.
Fiumara Shopping and Fun is a huge commercial mall where a selection of more than 40 shops and a supermarket can be found. Some of the stores located here as such as Sephora, Bershka, Footlocker, Pandora, Desigual,, Guess, Chicco and Timberland. Here you will also notice lots of coffee shops and many different kinds of restaurants such as a classic Italian pizzeria or sushi restaurant. There is also a cinema and kids play area here.
Tezenis is very well-known in Italy, indeed you can find their shops in every city and mall. It is an Italian style underwear shop and apparel store for men, women and children. In addition, Tezenis also offers pyjamas, swimsuits and sportswear, and everything at affordable prices!
International airport of Genova Sestri, Cristoforo Colombo, is located about 7 km from the centre of Genoa. The airport shuttle bus runs every day from 5:20 am to 11.30 pm, to and from the railway station and the journey takes around 30-40 minutes. Buy a ticket on-board, which is valid for the day on all city buses, but also on subway, elevators and on the metropolitan trains. Taxi are available just outside the arrival terminal. To take a taxi is not very expensive since the airport is located close to the city centre (only 7 km). There is a tourist information stand in the arrival hall if you have any questions about the taxi price. Radio Taxi, Tel +39 010 5966, www.5966.it There are nine car hire companies on-site such as Avis, Hertz, Europcar, Budget, Sixt and enterprise. It is only a 15-minute drive from the airport to the city centre.
Walking is the only form of transport possible in the historic centre of Genoa – the streets are too narrow for cars. Having said that, the bus system is extensive and the ticket is valid for 90 minutes (you can buy it at newsstands). The public transport service in Genoa is run by a company called AMT. Genoa has a subway system, indicated by a red M that currently has 8 stops. You will find automatic ticket machines in all the stations, valid for 90 minutes or the whole day. In addition to the funicular, Genoa also has elevators for locals who live uphill. There are a number of these around the city and the standard AMT tickets are valid!