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Porta Soprana, Genoa, Italy


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Genoa Featured Hotels
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I Love Touring Italy - Genoa
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Castello Devachan - San Remo, Italy (Ref: 1914) self-catering apartment in San Remo, Italy 
Luxurious apartment - in magical Castello - Sleeps 6. Vacation rental, seaside, beach, golf, fishing, Holiday Apartment in San Remo.  Proximity Nearest city is Monte Carlo & Nice and Nearest airport is Nice (35 miles) Genoa (50 miles).  Sleeps 6.
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I Love Touring Italy - Genoa   by Levi Reiss

Genoa Featured Hotels  / Featured Self-Catering in Liguria

If you are hankering for a European vacation, why not consider the Liguria region of northern Italy, commonly known as the Italian Riviera? This narrow strip of land lies on the Ligurian Sea, close to Monaco and the French Riviera. While Liguria is hardly an undiscovered tourist site, its crowds are much smaller than those next door. This beautiful region boasts many little towns or villages, and the international port city of Genoa almost smack dab in the center of the coast. 

This sometimes beautiful, sometimes ugly city of about six hundred thousand calls itself La Superba (the Proud). Be sure to read the other articles in this series: eastern Liguria, western Liguria, and Cinque Terre, five little seaside villages that just might steal your heart.

Given its excellent location and great harbor, the city of Genoa has been around for thousands of years. Over its long history Genoa was destroyed on several occasions. Early in the Eleventh Century the city Genoa became the Republic of Genoa, an independent city-state. At its high point this republic controlled Liguria, Piedmont, Sardinia, and Corsica. Genoa was a major player in the Crusades, and established colonies in the Middle East, in the Aegean, in Sicily, and Northern Africa. Genoese Crusaders brought home a green glass goblet from the Levant, which many Genoese consider to be the Holy Grail.
Times changed and by the Seventeenth Century Genoa was no longer a major power. In 1797 Napoleon conquered Genoa and it was annexed to France a few years later. Genoa is proud to have liberated itself from French rule, but before long it was incorporated into the Kingdom of Sardinia. Another proud moment in Genovese and Italian history occurred in 1860 when Giuseppe Garibaldi set out from Genoa with over a thousand volunteers to launch his successful campaign for a united Italy.

Genoa has so many attractions that we present a list, grouped by general area. Check off what you want to see and then with a map plan your own itinerary. We are regrouping the sites into three locations, south, north, and the port area plus our starting point. When we say south we mean south of Caruggi, 

Seafront of the Old Town, Bogliasco, Genoa, Liguria, Italy, Europe
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Genoa's medieval center, the largest such district in all Europe. Its tiny cobblestoned streets are a-maze-ing. Walk around for a few hours; you won't be disappointed.

The Twelfth Century San Matteo Church just south of Caruggi contains the tomb of Andrea Doria, Genoa's second most famous sailor whose family ruled the area for several centuries way back when. The Piazza San Matteo was their stomping ground. The main palace was given as a gift to Andrea Doria for being such a good sailor, defeating many enemies. You should consider visiting several other churches south of Caruggi including the Twelfth Century Duomo (Cathedral) San Lorenzo (St. Lawrence) with its San Lorenzo Treasury Museum home to a medieval silver and gold collection.
Via San Luca, in Old City of Genoa (Genova), Liguria, Italy
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The Twelfth Century twin towers known as Porta Soprana mark the spot where an ancient Roman road entered the city. According to legend Christopher Columbus's father was a gatekeeper there. His alleged boyhood home is nearby. Some claim that it's a reconstruction and only worth a few minutes of your time, if at all. But you should see the towers.

The Teatro Carlo Felice, Genoa's opera house, was originally built in the Nineteenth Century. Even though the famous opera composer Verdi spent some forty winters in Genoa, he had little connection with this building. He declined to compose an opera for the 1892 commemoration of Columbus's first voyage to America, saying that at the age of nearly 80 he was too old. This reason sounds good to me except that during the following year his very successful comic opera Falstaff first opened. Every year the Niccolo Paganini Violin Contest is held in this opera house.

Now we move north of Caruggi, Genoa's medieval center. We'll start in the same way as our southern tour ended, by looking at palaces. Via Garibaldi is a street just loaded with palaces; I counted fourteen but I may have missed some little ones. Let's look at three of them. 

The Sixteenth Century Palazzo Doria Tursi is the largest palace on the street. Constructed for a Genovese banker it later belonged to the Doria family before becoming the town hall. The Sixteenth Century Palazzo Bianco (White Palace) was donated to Genoa in 1894 on condition that it become an art gallery. The neighboring Seventeenth Century Palazzo Rosso (Red Palace) has also become an art museum hosting works by Titian, Van Dyck, and many others.
San Siro, Genoa's oldest church, was its cathedral from the Fourth to the Ninth Centuries. As befits its age it's dark inside. The Sixteenth Century Baroque Bascilica of the Most Holy Saint Annunziata was built beyond the city walls. It has a beautiful dome and lots and lots of great frescoes.

Genoa provides several distinctive transportation methods that are worth taking for their unique views. The Genova-Casella Railway goes from the northeastern Piazza Manin city center through the hilly, rugged and scenic countryside surrounding the city to the little town of Casella, population about three thousand, some nine miles (fourteen kilometers) to the northeast. 

Genoa's three different funicular (cable car) systems each offer great views of the hills that surround the city.

Boccadasse Quarter, Genes, Genova (Genoa), Liguria, Italy
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And now for the port. Even if you are not into visiting ports, you really should see Genoa's harbor. It's the largest port in all Italy, handling a full 10% of all port traffic within the country. It's fairly safe, especially if you don't wander around deserted areas at night. Since the 1992 celebration of Christopher Columbus's initial trip to America (he certainly didn't discover this hardly uninhabited part of the world) it has become a major cultural center. In October the Salone Nautico Internationale (International Boat Show) Europe's biggest takes place. We'll make a few stops to see some of the highlights starting with Il Bigo west of Caruggi and work our way north.

Il Bigo is a distinctive monument that was built for the 1992 Columbus commemoration. Take the Bigo Panoramic Elevator for an exceptional view of Genoa and its surroundings. If you so desire, you can ice skate in winter at the rink next door.

The Acquario de Genova (Genoa Aquarium) is the largest one in Europe and number two in the world, after Osaka, Japan. This is one of the most visited museums in all Italy. Its huge tanks reproduce the environment of the Mediterranean Sea and the oceans and contain over six hundred species. There's even a hummingbird room. The Galata Sea Museum shows the evolution of the port and the city starting from the late Medieval period to the present. In its Sala della Tempesta (Tempest Room) a ship simulator lets visitors experience the thrill of navigating a small boat through a heavy storm.

What about food? Liguria is most famous for its pesto, claimed to be the best in the world. It's simple to make: grab the nearest mortar and pestle and grind together basil, olive oil, pine nuts, garlic, and Parmesan cheese. Don't break a Ligurian's heart, don't make it in a blender. Serve with fresh pasta. And don't forget the wine.

Let's suggest a sample menu, one of many. Start with Zuppa di Acciughe (Anchovy Soup). Then try Cima alla genovese (Cold Stuffed Breast of Veal.) For dessert indulge yourself with Amaretti (Almond Cookies.) Be sure to increase your dining pleasure by including local wines with your meal.
Via XX Setembre, Genoa (Genova), Liguria, Italy
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We'll conclude with a quick look at Liguria wine. Liguria doesn't have a lot of room for wine grapes. It ranks number 19 among the 20 Italian regions for both the acreage devoted to wine grapes and the total annual wine production. About 34% of its wine is red or rosé, leaving 66% white. The region produces eight DOC wines. DOC stands for Denominazione di Origine Controllata, which may be translated as Denomination of Controlled Origin, presumably a high-quality wine. About 14% of Ligurian wine carries the DOC designation.

Val Polcevera DOC is the only DOC wine in the Genoa area. It seems to be a grab bag classification; there are eight different styles many of which have subdivisions. Red, white, rosé; dry, sweet; still, fizzy, sparkling, you name it they have it. 

But you will probably have to visit Liguria or some neighboring regions of Italy to taste any of them. To tell the truth, there are many better reasons for visiting this lovely area.

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About the Author - Levi Reiss has authored alone or with a co-author ten books on computers and the Internet but he would rather just drink fine Italian or other wine, accompanied by the right foods. He knows about dieting but now eats and drinks what he wants, in moderation. He teaches various computer classes in an Ontario French-language community college. His new wine, diet, health, and nutrition website links to his other sites.


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AC Genova Hotel Genoa
Offering comfortable accommodation and well-connected to Genoa, the AC Genova Hotel is an ideal alternative for business trips.  The AC Genova Hotel is strategically located just 2 minutes away from the Nervi exit of the A-12 motorway and has easy access to the historic centre of the city.  This hotel offers 139 rooms that are equipped with modern amenities to ensure you a comfortable stay.  Guests can dine at the exquisite and stylishly decorated Gli Ulivi Restaurant that serves a wide range of traditional Italian and international cuisine accompanied by a selection of wine.
Bellevue Hotel Genoa
If you are planning for an ideal holiday destination in Genova, the Bellevue Hotel is a perfect place for you to reside and explore the surrounding areas.  Situated in a central position, Bellevue Hotel Genoa is 50 metres from Principe Railway Station and 200 metres from the harbour.  The hotel offers comfortable guest rooms that are equipped with standard amenities to make your stay comfortable.  The hotel does not have a restaurant.  The central position of the hotel allows guests to reach the Magazzini del Cotone Congress Centre and the Aquarium with a short pleasant walk.
Bristol Palace Hotel Genoa
Situated in Genoa, this family-friendly hotel is near Piazza de Ferrari, Medieval Gates, and Genoa Ducal Palace. Additional attractions include St. Lawrence Cathedral. Dining options at Bristol Palace Hotel include a restaurant and a bar/lounge. Room service is available during limited hours. A complimentary breakfast is served daily. This 4.0-star property offers small meeting rooms and business services. Wireless Internet access is available in public areas. The property offers an airport shuttle (surcharge). Guest parking is available for a surcharge. Additional property amenities include multilingual staff and laundry facilities. 
Columbus Sea Hotel Genoa
Situated in Genoa, this business-friendly hotel is near La Lanterna. Additional attractions include Bigo. This 4.0-star property offers small meeting rooms, a technology helpdesk, and audio-visual equipment. High-speed (wired) Internet access (surcharge) is available in public areas. This Genoa property has event space consisting of banquet facilities, conference/meeting rooms, and exhibit space. A complimentary buffet breakfast is served daily. Room service is available during limited hours. Wedding services, concierge services, and tour assistance are available. Guest parking is complimentary. Additional property amenities include a bar/lounge, multilingual staff, and laundry facilities. 
Grand Hotel Savoia Genoa
This hotel is located close to the airport. Attractions in the neighborhood include Christopher Columbus Monument, Bigo, and Aquarium of Genoa. Additional attractions include National Ligurian Gallery at the Spinola Palace. Dining options at Grand Hotel Savoia include a restaurant and a bar/lounge. Room service is available during limited hours. A complimentary buffet breakfast is served daily. Recreational amenities include 3 spa tubs. Also located on site are a health club, a fitness facility, and a sauna. The property's full-service health spa has massage/treatment rooms. Guest parking is available for a surcharge. Additional property amenities include a coffee shop/café, valet parking, and multilingual staff.
Locanda di Palazzo Cicala Hotel Genoa
Locanda di Palazzo Cicala Hotel is situated in Genoa's pulsating, hip central district, amidst chic fashion shops, art galleries and a myriad of culinary locations. The first boutique hotel in Genoa, it presents an elegant and inspired fusion of Italian fashion, original minimalist design and noble Italian architecture in a XVII-century building facing the Cathedral. Important monuments and art museums as well as the Aquarium and the Old Port are only a few steps away.  The hotel features 10 marvellous guestrooms that are quiet and evoke all the charming magic of the past while offering every modern comfort.  The restaurant Le Cantine Squarciafico offers a unique setting among arched ceilings and marble floors, where local dishes are revisited according to dictates of Italian high cuisine.
Novotel Genova Ovest Genoa
Situated in Genoa, this family-friendly hotel is near La Lanterna. Additional attractions include Bigo. Dining options at Novotel Genova Ovest include a restaurant and a bar/lounge. Room service is available during limited hours. Recreational amenities include a children's pool. This 4.0-star property has a business center and offers small meeting rooms and business services. Wireless Internet access is available in public areas. This Genoa property has event space consisting of banquet facilities, conference/meeting rooms, a ballroom, and exhibit space. Additional property amenities include a concierge desk, multilingual staff, and laundry facilities. 
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