Waiting To Be Discovered: Genoa

A QUINTESSENTIAL ITALIAN CITY, GENOA BECKONS WITH ITS HISTORY, ITS LUSCIOUS CUISINE AND ITS WARM, FRIENDLY PEOPLE.

One of those Italian cities we remember only when we compare its name with that of Geneva, or when we look into the history of Istanbul’s Galata Bridge, Genoa lies waiting to be explored. For this city, birth place of Christopher Columbus and home of Italy’s finest cuisine, is a Mediterranean town famous for its warm Italian hospitality.
Capital of the Genoese Republic in the Middle Ages, Genoa was one of the Mediterranean’s major ports. The Genoese, who also made their way to Istanbul, continue to enchant people from all over the world with the Galata Tower they built in the city in the 14th century. Don’t be surprised either if you hear Galata mentioned in Genoa, for the Galata Maritime Museum, founded in 2004, is named for for the city’s ancient, now defunct, harbor.

City of Mouthwatering Cuisine
But Genoa is not made up only of the Genoese. One of the Mediterranean’s leading cruise ports, Genoa attracts more than a million tourists a year, welcoming them to explore the Mediterranean and the world from its harbor.
A favorite spot with tourists is the center of the city’s old town. One of the largest squares in Europe, the old city center is steeped in history with churches and other historic buildings, and chock-a-block with restaurants serving scrumptious food. At the restaurants around this square you can try the famous foccaia breads and pesto sauce that were first made here in Genoa.
History is always in evidence in Genoa, where the prominent families of the day built New Genoa at the Centro Storico between 1528 and 1630 to give the city a facelift. See buildings in a style far beyond time in this district, known as Le Strade Nuove, which has been declared a UNESCO World Heritage.

The Portofino of Songs
A Genoese fishing town, Portofino is celebrated in song. This city, where Frank Sinatra was born, is a stop not to be missed on your Genoa trip. One of the loveliest spots on the Italian riviera, Portofino promises an unforgettable Mediterranean experience with its luxury shoreline hotels, restaurants, cafes and boutiques.
So, if everybody is coming to Genoa, where are the Italians going? One thing is certain: Christopher Columbus, one of the greatest explorers of all time, set out to see the world from Italy. And the house at Porta Soprana where he grew up, the Casa di Cristoforo Colombo, is a museum today. One of the city’s most prominent historic structures is a medieval lighthouse, La Lanterna. Perched atop a 40-meter cliff in the port district, La Lanterna’s beam is said to be visible from 50 kilometers away. Climb up to the lighthouse’s observation deck to view Genoa and the magnificent Mediterranean landscape, and enjoy surveying this small city that has managed to remain quintessentially Italian down to the last detail.