How to make the best of a beautiful day on Italy’s seaside when staying in Genoa? A radiant sunshine called us for a long walk on the seafront to the former fishermen district of Boccadasse.
We went through the streets of Carignano and Foce, which display some very interesting modern and art nouveau architecture. We joined the crowd on Corso Italia, the long promenade that links the centre of Genova to Boccadasse. After the massive storm that hit the coast a couple of nights ago, everybody was happy to get out and enjoy the warm weather.
The 2.5km long Corso Italia offers many perfect selfie spots with benches to sit and look at the waves. It was built after the First World War to create an easy and bigger path to the Eastern neighbourhoods of Genova. If you are into jogging, it is definitely the place to go! There are plenty of cafés and restaurants along the way to relax.
If you thought you had seen all of Genoa’s beauty by visiting the palaces, you are in for a delightful surprise. Do not miss the beautiful Villa Chiossone, the Abbey of San Giuliano and the Villa Canali Gaslini!
At the end of the promenade, The church of St. Anthony of Boccadasse marks the entry into the eponym district. From there, the buildings become more colourful, a sign that it used to be a fishermen place. It looks like a warm-up before going to Cinque-Terre and taking in more colourful villages.
The pedestrian streets then go down to a small cobblestone beach surrounded by cafés and street food. Do not miss another amazing spot for pictures, the Belvedere Edoardo Firpo.
Climb up to see another beautiful building located on the Via Al Capo di Santa Chiara, the Rocca Tirrena. The view is simply stunning.
You can wander around the whole neighbourhood simply looking at the houses, sitting down for ice cream and enjoying the sun. There are many beaches around. The one near the church of St. Anthony is not the most beautiful but people do buy drinks and takeaway food and sit there to watch the waves.
What better place than the fishermen’s neighbourhood to enjoy proper Ligurian seafood? In the Via Aurora near the church of St. Anthony, people are queuing in front of Ge8317 – Ittiturismo Boccadasse, a small but very popular seafood restaurant where you can also order on the go. We sat for a delicious lunch, shared a bowl of mussels as antipasti then ordered fish soup, ravioli stuffed with calamari and fried fish along with local sparkling white wine. Anchovies are also a Ligurian speciality to look for.
Quarto dei Mille and Nervi
If you are not too tired, you can keep following the road up and down near the sea and get to the Quarto dei Mille, the next neighbourhood. Take a break at the monument commemorating Garibaldi’s departure and the Expedition of the Thousand. In 1860, Giuseppe Garibaldi sailed from Quarto, now Quarto dei Mille, with his volunteers to conquer Sicily. It was one of the major events of the Risorgimento, the movement that united the states of the peninsula into the Kingdom of Italy. The sculpture was designed by Eugenio Baroni and unveiled in 1915.
On the way there you will pass many villas, belvederes (viewpoints), cafés and beaches where locals hang out during the warm days. The beach of Priaruggia a Quarto is among the most popular.
Much further away is the neighbourhood of Nervi where you will find the Gallery of modern art and the promenade Anita Garibaldi. It is quite a distance from Genova’s city centre but buses and trains can take you there and back. Download the free app Moovit for the bus schedule!