4-Day Itinerary Across the Ligurian Sea, Italy

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Advisor - Angie Barron
Curated By

Angie Barron

  • Italy

  • Portofino

  • Luxury Travel

  • Boutique Travel

  • Adventure Travel

  • Beaches

  • Coastal

  • Multi-City

  • Sightseeing

view into the vast ocean from a hilltop hotel reception balcony on a sunnday
Curator’s statement

The Ligurian Sea coastline offers amazing and picturesque sights perfect to connect with locals and enjoy their wonderful food and culture at a leisure pace. Between the mysteries of mountains and the deep blue waters, the colorful and ancient architecture connects them both simply like a beautiful symphony. Town hopping by short comfy train rides is one way to take on this marvelous adventure. Boat rides are another magical way to get to experience some of the nearby towns between March and October.

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Where to stay

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Day 1: Rapallo

view of a colorful coastal town with green mountain in the distance and palm trees lining the shore

Arrive to Rapallo and check-in at the hotel. Take a walk around and take in the beautiful views this property has to offer. Stop at the Yachting Bar for an aperitif on the terrace and relax. Time to get ready for dinner and head to Restaurant Lord Byron for a delicious meal in this refined and elegant setting overlooking the Ligurian Sea.

Day 2: Boat ride on the Ligurian Sea to a nearby town

the harbor of a colorful coastal town on a sunny day

Enjoy breakfast at the hotel and head to the Port. The great advantage of staying in Rapallo is the convenience of getting a boat tour to different destinations such as La Spezia, Cinque Terre, Portofino, and Santa Marguerita Ligure.

I will guide you on a day through Portofino. When arriving at this magnificent small and elegant town, you can walk around the boardwalk to let yourself immerse in its beauty.

Time to lunch? Pick any of the terraces that overlook the fishing and sailboats, and order your favorite meal.

For shopping, head onto Via Roma, and make that purchase that will always remind you where you got that piece.

Another place to visit is Chiesa de San Giorgio, it is located at the top of the hill where it will offer you an incredible view of the whole town.

Before heading back to the pier to catch your return boat, savor a gelato to finish your day.

Day 3: The hidden gem of San Fruttuoso

an old building on a calm rocky beach

Have breakfast at the hotel and head to the train station to take a northbound to Camogli-San Fruttuoso, just 2 stops away. Take a short walk to the Porticciolo di Camogli to take a boat that will take you to the hidden gem cove San Fruttuoso. Bring your towel and bathing suit to enjoy the sun and the turquoise waters after you visit the Torre Doria, church, and Abbazia di San Fruttuoso museum. Time to return to the boat and head back for a nice dinner at the hotel.

Day 4: Genova - the capital of the region

historic building in city center with fountain

Have an early breakfast at the hotel and head on to the train station. Take the regional train northbound to Genova Brignole.

As you arrive, head on to Via XX Settembre for shopping and admire the architecture.
Visit the Cattedrale di San Lorenzo from the Middle Ages and its Museo del Tesoro.
Continue on Via S. Lorenzo towards the Porto Antico where you can sit on a terrace and enjoy a Genovese meal while overlooking the waterfront and the diversity of boats.

The Port of Genova is the second-largest seaport in the Mediterranean Sea with a traffic of almost 300 cruise ships yearly. Actually, my great-grandparents left from that same port to Argentina in the late 1800s.

Time to head back to the train station but if you enjoy art galleries, Palazzo Rosso, Palazzo Bianco, and Palazzo Spinola offer Italian, Flemish, Dutch, and Spanish masterpieces.

Head back to Rapallo and get ready for your last evening at the Excelsior Palace Hotel.

Need to Know

With just a few changes, this itinerary can be accommodated based in Portofino or Santa Marguerita di Ligure.

Advisor - Angie Barron

Travel Advisor

Angie Barron

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This guide is part of our ongoing series on travel to Italy.