Information and Tourism
Considering that Liguria is such a narrow strip of land, there is a lot going on here. From sea level, the Ligurian landscape rises dramatically upwards into the Alps and the Apennine Mountains. Along the way, it takes in beautiful beaches and some rather charming towns.
At first glance, Liguria's crescent of a coastline looks like just one long chain of towns and suburbs, with the city of Genoa at its centre, and Ventimiglia and La Spezia at either end. Look more closely, though, and it is possible to pick out places such as the Gulf of Poets, so called because the likes of Byron and Shelley were inspired to write by its beauty and tranquillity. Then there is the Riviera delle Palme and its neighbour, the Riviera dei Fiori.
In the medieval world, Genoa was one of the most important ports to be found in Europe. Columbus set sail from here on many an occasion. Today, Genoa's vast harbour still has an important role to play in the city, although the port itself is not an obvious tourist destination. More popular landmarks include the city's elegant palaces and historic churches, and a veritable maze of narrow streets and alleys. One of Genoa's palaces was the headquarters of its first bank, the Bank of St. George. Set up in the 15th century, it is believed that this bank was one of the oldest in Europe. Together, such historic landmarks have led to Genoa being nicknamed 'La Superba'.
If you had to choose one seaside resort above all others in Liguria, it would have to be Sanremo, which is often described as a jewel on the Mediterranean Sea. This Italian Riviera town is also the host of a famous annual music festival and the finishing line of an internationally famous one-day cycle race.
Of interest to foodies, Liguria counts pesto among its regional culinary inventions. It is also said that a special sort of chestnut flour-based lasagna pasta originated in the region.
Liguria Information and Fast Facts
- Country: Italy
- Main administrative centre: Genoa
- Population: approximately 1.75 million
- Language: Italian
- Area: 2,090 square miles / 5,415 square kilometres
WORLD GUIDES TO LIGURIA
World Guide to Genoa, Italy
It is true to say that Genoa does not immediately sell itself as a top tourist destination, but when properly explored, its appeal and character soon become apparent. The Old Town area of Genoa is the perfect place for an afternoon stroll.
Map of Italy