Why Should You Visit Portofino on the Italian Riviera?

For years, two Italian regions have been on our bucket list. Finally, we decided to stop just admiring beautiful pictures on the screen. We wanted to see them with our own eyes to experience what so many people love about Italians. After getting married, my fiancé and I chose Liguria and Tuscany as the final destination for our honeymoon. We aimed to make the most of our one-week trip, exploring various places, like Portofino and creating cherished memories.

Updated January 2024

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We spent three days in Liguria( Portofino and Cinque Terre) and four days in Tuscany, although we knew that such a short visit wouldn’t allow us to fully explore the areas in depth. Nevertheless, we would like to share some pictures, thoughts, and memories because the experience was simply wonderful, and we can’t wait to go back again. We set up our base in Sestri Levante and started our journey by heading to our first destination, Portofino.

Where to stay? We chose Sestri Levante as our base in Liguria because it is halfway between Portofino and the Cinque Terre. It is a larger town with a train station, so we could take the train to the Cinque Terre and drive to Santa Margherita. The drive was memorable as we passed through beautiful coastal towns and villages. If you are looking for a place to stay in this region, make sure you find the best deals. Hotellook helps you compare hotel prices. The platform offers detailed information on hotels, including ratings, reviews, and amenities, helping you make an informed decision about where to stay.

Portofino

The pictures of Portofino were incredible, but I must say, the real-life experience was even better. We parked our car in Santa Margherita and took a boat to Portofino, which turned out to be a convenient and enjoyable way to reach the village. Tickets can be purchased at the port. The sea view was breathtaking, showcasing the beautiful panorama, cliffs, and the incredible blue sea.

Portofino’s harbor is undoubtedly its jewel. As you step off the boat or cruise ship, you’ll be greeted by a postcard-perfect scene: rows of colorful buildings lining the waterfront, fishing boats bobbing gently in the harbor, and the lush hills of the Italian Riviera in the background.

Hiking to the Castello Brown

For panoramic views of Portofino and the surrounding coastline, embark on a hike to Castello Brown. This 16th-century fortress-turned-museum offers not only historical insights but also breathtaking vistas. The hike itself is a charming journey through lush gardens and winding pathways, making it a must-do activity for outdoor enthusiasts. The peace at the top were surreal, and the well-kept garden and amazing panorama made the entrance fee well worth it. We felt lucky to be there and share a private moment, away from the rush of tourists.

We had a few slices of pizza at the castle as the restaurants around the piazza seemed a bit overpriced. You get a good view of the buildings and the billionaires on their yachts, but if you want a good meal, go to Santa Margherita where the prices are much more reasonable.

While exploring, we stumbled upon a wedding ceremony in one of the churches, San Giorgo.

To find some peace, we visited the lighthouse, il Faro di Portofino, at the tip of the peninsula, which provided a breathtaking view of the Ligurian coast all the way to Tuscany.

Castello Brown

As we wandered around the harbor and smaller streets, we realized that half a day was not enough to fully explore Portofino. We wished we had a couple more days to see and experience everything it has to offer.

Portofino may be small in size, but it’s grand in beauty and charm. From its picturesque harbor to its luxury boutiques and outdoor adventures, this Italian gem has something to offer every traveler. Whether you’re seeking relaxation or exploration, Portofino’s timeless allure promises an unforgettable experience on the Italian Riviera.

Summary

I recommend taking a boat from Santa Margherita and visiting Castello Brown for panoramic views and a hike to the 16th-century fortress-turned-museum for historical insights and breathtaking vistas. Worth visiting the lighthouse at the tip of the peninsula for a breathtaking view of the Ligurian coast all the way to Tuscany. The harbor is a postcard-perfect scene with colorful buildings, fishing boats, and the lush hills of the Italian Riviera in the background. Despite its small size, the Italian gem promises an unforgettable experience with its picturesque harbor, luxury boutiques, outdoor adventures, and timeless allure.

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