On the approach to Portofino is San Martino Church which has a beautiful, decorative interior, while the Castello Brown sits on a hill above the village and is reached by a path near the Botanic Garden. Castello Brown became the residence of Yeats Brown, British Consul to Genoa, in 1870 and inside are furnishings and pictures belonging to the Browns, as well as photos of its many famous visitors. Whilst en route to this medieval castle, visit San Giorgio Church, which was rebuilt after the last war. It has a pretty courtyard where there are views down over Portofino Bay. Another scenic pathway takes you out to the lighthouse, Faro, on Punta del Capo.
The Portofino area is a favourite with divers as the surrounding sea is a marine reserve. The crystalline green water reveals a myriad display of aquatic life – most of the water along the coast, from Santa Margherita around to Camogli, is a protected area. The headland itself is surprisingly quiet – boasting a protected park with pine and chestnut woods, olive groves and flowers – it is perfect for a nature walk. To the east of Portofino is the clutch of five picturesque villages – Monterosso, Vernazza, Corniglia, Manarola and Riomaggiore – known as the Cinque Terre. These are linked by a coastal path that passes vineyards, sandy beaches and rocky coves. It’s a stunning route and a high point on any itinerary.
Portofino's restaurants specialise in seafood, especially around the chic waterfront and harbour, a favourite haunt of the ‘beautiful people’. You'll also find Genovese specialities, including Green Minestrone, on the menus of the local restaurants. During the day soak up the atmosphere whilst enjoying a delicious ice-cream from Le Galeteri San Giorgio later, as dusk falls, opt for a Bellini or one of the red wines from the neighbouring Cinque Terre region. For some of the finest views secure a table at Belmond Hotel Splendido's La Terrazza restaurant on the hillside outside the centre of the village.
Walk along Via Roma, passing a variety of designer shops, small boutiques, souvenir shops and restaurants, until you reach the Piazza Martiri del’Olivetta – the perfect place to sit and watch the yachts moored in the marina. There are a number of relaxing boat trips along the stunning Ligurian coastline available, including sunset cruises and trips along the coast to the secluded bay of San Fruttuoso that is dominated by a medieval Abbey which is open to visitors. Genoa, about a thirty-minute drive west from Portofino, is a lively city with plenty of attractions for all the family including the aquarium in the regenerated port.
Portofino does not have a beach, however just a few minutes’ drive away is Paraggi – a secluded sandy cove and a real gem.
Our Travel Consultants can advise on, arrange and pre-book many things to enhance your holiday. This includes everything from spa reservations and dinner reservations, to a range of special experiences available in our featured resorts that you may not know about.
The Belmond Hotel Splendido offers a range of very special experiences including the opportunity to drive a Lamborghini along the Italian Riviera.
Portofino has a mostly moderate climate; July and August are the warmest months when higher temperatures are exacerbated by the humidity. In the late spring and early autumn, visitors will find that they get the best of both worlds, with the temperatures being cooler and slightly less humid during the day but not especially colder at night.
These figures show monthly average maximum temperatures and monthly average rainfall for Portofino.
British Airways from London Gatwick to Genoa.
From London Gatwick to Genoa: 2 hours, 10 minutes.
Travelling With Children or Without an Adult
Children travelling without both parents should be aware that some countries require documentary evidence of parental responsibility before allowing lone parents to enter the country or, in some cases, before permitting the children to leave the country. Please contact the relevant Embassy for the county you are travelling to for further information.
Visa and Advance Passenger Information
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Passengers not travelling on a British Passport are advised to contact their relevant Foreign & Commonwealth office for individual Visa requirements.
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