The Italian Riviera is the same as the French Riviera it’s just not too expensive & touristy. France is only 50 miles to the west, but it seems a million miles away in this very Italian part of the Mediterranean Coast.
We are planning on hitting Genoa (Italy’s fourth-largest city) for some quality dining & waterfront partying. Genoa if you have never been there is off the Beaten Tourist Track, but still steeped in enough history to keep you involved for at least 3-4 days, if not more.
Genoa is the Birthplace of Christopher Columbus. Wait, hold on a minute, Columbus was Spanish, ahh to the contrary, he set sail from Barcelona with a large trove of Spanish gold, but he indeed was a true Ligurian. Liguria is the Region in Italy in which Genoa lies. You can in fact visit his house where he was born and lived most of his childhood, till he decided to sail the sea for adventure.
Genoa was the 2004 European Cultural Capital sharing its honor with Lyon, France. What this award means is that the International Art community along with the Italian & Genovese Govt. has dumped huge amounts of money into the Revitalization of the City. The boy has it paid off. The New waterfront is amazing, with its Bigo the Giant White Spider/ Crane Sculpture in the Old Port. The museums are Top Notch filled with many Italian Masterpieces & European Works of Art. Plenty of Multicultural Events going on throughout the end of this year (2005)
But what really sets Genoa apart from the rest of Italy & the rest of the world is it’s Cooking. Home to many Italian Favorites that we know and love, the most famous of all is Pesto. Pesto was invented right here in Genoa, hence the Name: Pesto Genovese. This Green somewhat awkward-looking sauce is the epitome of what is the area’s culinary delights. If pesto is not your cup of tea, try the Fresh seafood this side of Barcelona.
All in All a Trip to Genoa should be about the History, Culture & Most importantly the Beach. Actually Genoa proper doesn’t have it’s own Beach, but you catch the local train to any number of amazing Riviera towns virtually only minutes away.