Italy · Portofino
Portofino is a popular yachting destination. It is a small fishing village in the Liguria region of Italy, situated on the Ligurian Sea.
This splendid sea resort with its lux, Mediterranean personality, also boasts an ancient marine culture, and of course is another one of those spots beloved by artists, famous personages and writers that have long sung its praises.
The “Piazzetta”, meeting-up point for the international jet-set, is the symbol of Portofino, while the port, with its characteristic, brightly-colored houses, is the icon of this borgo’s maritime traditions, whose inhabitants were called delfini (“dolphins”) by the Greeks and Romans, so apt were they at sea navigation.
The charm of these places, the fine cuisine of the Ligurian Region, and the innumerable cultural and nature itineraries make this corner of the Gulf of Tigullio an ideal destination any time of year. Nonetheless, tourists most appreciate Portofino during the summer months, when the flora is at its most lush, and the warm seawater transports visitors beyond paradise.
Travelers will not be able to see everything here, so many are the historic, cultural and natural attractions. Still, make a little room in your schedule to see the Church of Portofino’s Patron Saint, San Giorgio, a construction from the 12th Century; inside are relics brought back by sailors after the Crusades, as well as a breathtaking panorama from the parvis (churchyard).
Nearby, the Brown Castle (Castello Brown) is a fortress smack-dab in the middle of a hanging-garden, and characterized by partitions with lovely bas-reliefs, and architectonic embellishments in marble and slate.
The lighthouse is accessible from here, and is situated on Punta del Capo (aka Punta Portofino), imposing itself over the entire bay.
Equally-interesting is the Gothic Oratory of the Brotherhood of Mary Assumed (Oratorio della Confraternita dell’Assunta), preserving various artworks inside, including a 12th-Century wooden statue of the Assumption of the Virgin.
Once in Portofino walking might be your best option. The town is not large and most hotels and beaches are a short walk from the harbor. Alternatively, mopeds seem to be a popular choice for getting about, especially for those people visiting several of the small regional towns like Paraggi or San Fruttuoso on their own schedule. Once again, should you be fortunate enough to have a boat at your disposal, that would be another convenient way to move around the area.