Liguria has so many places to visit and so many things to try and often it is very difficult to choose between them. Liguria has also its mini-rules that it is better to follow if you want to pass tranquil holidays. That’s why I prepared this little guide below. Thanks to it you should pass a pleasant stay without any unpleasant surprises 🙂
What to DO in Liguria?
- Eat pesto con le trofie. A local kind of pasta with the most famous Ligurian sauce. It is a symbol of Liguria. You can find it in every restaurant in Liguria.
- Take a bath in the Ligurian Sea, especially if you are in one of the most beautiful beaches in Liguria.
- Take apart in Rolli Days – open days of palaces Rolli that are inscribed on the UNESCO heritage list. If you cannot arrive in Genoa on that dates, no worries, some of Rolli palaces are opened all year long.
- Drink SCIACCHETRÀ, fortified wine from Cinque Terre. It is intensely coloured, golden-yellow and offers aromas of honey and white blossoms, with hints of citrus. A real delicacy…
- See Festival Andersen in Sestri Levante. It is a meeting of the best street artist from all over the world. Every year street theatres come to Sestri Levante and show their performances on the streets of the town. It is a great attraction, especially for children.
- See the biggest Christmas crib in the world in Manarola. Wintertime, when Cinque Terre are very calm and the Christmas crib is illuminated during the evenings is very awesome.
- Find a small sculpture of a dog sculpted in the facade of San Lawrence Cathedral of Genoa. There is a legend that narrates that this dog saved the life of its master during the cathedral construction.
- Visit Aquarium of Genoa. It is the largest aquarium in Italy and also it is the second largest in Europe.
- Take apart in a whale watching. Of course, it is not guaranteed that you will see whales or dolphins … but if you see them it will be the most important memory of your holidays in Liguria.
- Eat focaccia di Recco. This kind of semi-liquid cake was recognised as IGP (Indicazione Geografica Prottetta) indication that is reserved for very particular food produced only in very limited zones. Its taste is absolutely out off the roof!
What NOT to do in Liguria?
- Park a car where you can’t park (yellow parking places or blue parking places without paying for a ticket). A fine will arrive at you surely.
- Go to the darkest and most narrow vicoli of the old town of Genoa. Especially if you don’t see there many persons and tourists or you see only prostitutes (some vicoli are full of them). But I think it is a question of a good sense. I wouldn’t go there even if nobody had warned me before 🙂
- Visit Cinque Terre in July and September … a hell 😉 You will find especially crowds and crowds of tourists. In other months (even in August) is much better.
- Not validate your train ticket. It is better not to forget it because train controllers have heard so many times before “I didn’t know I had to validate it, etc” that it won’t save you from paying a fine (from 55€ – 200€ per person).
- Ask for ketchup in a restaurant !!! In Liguria (as in whole Italy) it is a kind of insult. Probably (if they have it) they give it to you … but they won’t esteem you for it.
- Swim in the sea in Genoa. Some quarters of Genoa have access to the Ligurian Sea. They have also beaches … but the sea is not very clean there (because of the Genoa’s harbour). So if you don’t want to get a skin fungus it is better to take a bath in other places.
- Park a car in Portofino … as long as you don’t want to spend a fortune for a parking place (5,50€/h).
- Go to Chinese, Japanese or Indian restaurants … the majority of them are very good and serves nice food … but you are in Liguria and the local cuisine is delicious and it is worth to be tasted. You will try Chinese, Japanese and Indian food when you visit that countries 😉
- Haggle in shops or open-air markets. The prices there are final. You can haggle only when you spend a lot and on flea markets where a price is only a suggestion.
- Be in hurry and try to see as many places as possible in less time possible. Liguria has so many things that deserve to be seen and visited carefully. Don’t follow rigid programs and be prepared that you will back here next year! 😉