What to see in Portofino


would you like to discover what to see in Portofino? Perhaps you have heard of the wonders of this corner of the coast of Liguria en Italy and you are thinking of going to meet him. It is a magnificent idea that we strongly recommend.

Portofino is a small town of colored houses that are grouped around its port. It barely has six hundred inhabitants, but in summer its population multiplies exponentially. In addition, Genoa, the capital of the region is only forty kilometers away and the famous area of ​​the Cinque Terre to about seventy. So that you get to know this beautiful town better, we are going to show you what to see in Portofino.

Portofino Old Town

portofino harbor

portofino harbor

This is the name given to the streets that surround the town's fishing port and which are the first thing you will find if you travel to it by ferry. Specifically, when you get off the boat, you have the call Piazzetta, made up of the aforementioned low houses painted in bright colors.

You can take the alley that borders the entire port, which is called Calata Marconi and that it is full of bars and restaurants. For his part, following Via Roma, you will find shops and other businesses and you will walk to one of the first monuments that you can see in Portofino: the divo martino church.

Church of San Martín and other religious buildings

Church of San Martín

The church of San Martín

The church of San Martín or Divo Martino is a beautiful temple from the XNUMXth century. respond to style Lombard Romanesque, although it has undergone various subsequent modifications. You will be surprised by its façade and its slender bell tower, which are decorated with horizontal stripes.

However, more value still has its interior. In this, you can see different magnificent sculptures and paintings. Among the first, an altarpiece that represents the descent of Christ and that is a baroque marvel of the artist Anton Maria Maragliano. And, as for the second, two canvases of the Virgin of the Rosary and the Annunciation that are attributed to the Genoese school from the XNUMXth century, as well as an older one that represents Saints Pantaleon, Rocco and Sebastian.

For its part, the church of San Giorgio It is another of the temples that you can see in Portofino. It belongs to the same century as the previous one. According to a tombstone that you can see on it, it was built in 1154. However, recent excavations have found an even older quadrangular chapel. Also, enroll in the Lombard Romanesque and it has also been reformed several times. Keep the relics of St. George, patron saint of Portofino, which were brought to the town by soldiers returning from the Crusades.

Regarding religious architecture, we advise you to also visit the Oratory of Our Lady Assumed. It was built in the XNUMXth century, although, once again, it also underwent reforms in the XNUMXth century. Externally, its renaissance doorway of slate with a bas-relief of the Virgin Mary and the Child Jesus. As for the interior, they adorn it two large crucifixions destined to go out in procession when the festivities of San Giorgio.

The Castello Brown, essential among what to see in Portofino

the brown castle

Castello Brown, one of the most important monuments to see in Portofino

Despite the beauty of the previous temples, the best monument to see in Portofino is the Brown Castle. It is a fortress for coastal defense that was built in the XNUMXth century, although it was improved in the XNUMXth century, and which dominates the bay from a rocky spur. Already in the XNUMXth century he acquired it as a home by the British consul, Sir Montague Yeats Brown, who entrusted its reform to the architect alfredo deandrade and gave it its current name (before it was called San Giorgio castle).

He raised the towers and transformed the parade ground into a garden. As early as 1961, ownership passed to the Portofino City Council. Currently, it is a museum What can you visit. But above all, look out on the roof terrace. You will get wonderful views of the Gulf of Tigullio in which the villa is located.

On the other hand, in terms of coastal defensive bastions, you also have in the surroundings of Portofino the Punta Chiappa Battery, built at the end of the thirties and which was used during the Segunda Guerra Mundial for the defense of Genoa. It had several buildings. But the best thing about it is a kind of terrace that also offers you wonderful views of the Ligurian Sea.

Villa Beatrice

Villa Beatrice

The spectacular Villa Beatrice

Also called odero castle by the surname of one of its former owners, is located on the promontory of Punta Cajega. It was designed by the prestigious architect Gino Coppedè in 1913. Likewise, it serves as a huge garden for her, the Portofino Regional Natural Park, created in 1935, which we will talk about later.

Artistically, it responds to a eclectic style with neo-Gothic resonances that resemble a castle. It was built on four levels with a juxtaposed tower. The mullioned windows and the balconies are part of the decoration, which is completed with colored tiles, ornamental plaster and stone on the facades. In 2021, Villa Beatrice was acquired by a hotel chain.

Other monuments to see in Portofino and its surroundings

Hermitage of San Antonio de Niascara

The hermitage of San Antonio de Niascara

To tell you about the monumental heritage of this Italian town, we must also mention two jewels that are found in its surroundings. The first is the hermitage of San Antonio de Niasca, which is located in the town of the same name, between those of Portofino and Come by. Its construction dates from the XNUMXth century, although it was reformed in the XNUMXth century and already in the XNUMXst.

For its part, the second wonder you will find in the area is the Abbey of San Fruttuoso. Specifically, it is in the commune of Camogli on the other side of the peninsula where Portofino is and you can reach it by boat or through a hiking trail of approximately two hours.

Its origin has been dated to the XNUMXth century, although the current abbey dates from the XNUMXth century. However, you can still see the remains of the primitive church. Likewise, already in the XNUMXth and XNUMXth centuries, the Genoese family of the Doria added new buildings. The complex has great architectural value. They emphasize in him the great octagonal tower, the apse of the church and the byzantine dome decorated with seventeen arches. Also relevant is cloister from the XNUMXth century, on whose lower level is the Pantheon of the aforementioned Doria (although the famous admiral is not buried there), next to which an ancient Roman sarcophagus is kept.

Likewise, after a restoration carried out at the end of the XNUMXth century, the old Romanesque structures of the abbey were exposed. Therefore, it was created a museum dedicated to the history of the monastery. in it you can see ceramics found then that have been dated between the XNUMXth and XNUMXth centuries.

Portofino environment: a privileged nature

San Fruttuoso

San Fruttuoso and its beautiful abbey

Once we have shown you all the outstanding monuments to see in this beautiful town on the Liguria, it only remains for us to tell you about its no less spectacular environment. It is made up of the aforementioned Portofino Regional Natural Park, which, together with this, includes the municipalities of Camogli y Santa Margherita Ligure.

In total, they are about eighty kilometers from hiking trails that take you to places as beautiful as the town of San Fruttuoso, where is the abbey of which we have spoken. As a curiosity, if you practice scuba diving, in the southeastern part of its bay there is a submerged bronze Christ about fifteen meters deep.

You will also find some spectacular seabed with abundance of Posidonia oceanica and several caves. There are even coral formations and there is also a rich fish fauna. However, if you are not a scuba diver, you can also enjoy the marine wealth of the area. In the portofino tip, plus a lighthouse built in 1910, you have amazing views of the coast. From it, you can watch dolphins and even, occasionally, whales and other cetaceans.

On the other hand, as you will have deduced from everything we are telling you, the coast of Portofino has nice beaches. That of Come by It stands out for its emerald waters and its combination of sun and shade. The of the niasca bay It is perfect for diving, since navigation is prohibited. And the one of the canyon bay is included within the Special Protection Area of ​​Mediterranean Interest.

How to Get to Portofino


Portofino's Piazzetta

Finally, we will discuss the best ways you have to approach the Ligurian town. By car, the road that reaches it is the provincial 227, which unites it with Santa Margherita Ligure. However, we advise against this option. Portofino has few parking spaces and you will find it difficult to park. It is better that you travel from Santa Margherita itself in bus or, if it is summer, by boat. There are ferries that link the entire coastal stripat La Spezia but also Genoa.

As for how to get to Santa Margherita and then transfer to Portofino. Both from Genoa and from the south, you can do it by car along the road SS1. But you also have the option of ferrocarril. There is a line that, equally, connects La Spezia with Genoa.

In conclusion, we have shown you what to see in Portofino. Precious monuments and, above all, dream landscapes, make up the offer of this beautiful town in the Liguria italian. We have also explained how to get to it. It only remains for us to encourage you to travel to the area. You will not regret.

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