Gay Guide • GENOA | What to See, Where to Stay, Best Gay Bars and Restaurants | LGBT Guide
Discover this City with our Quick and Practical Guide to Visit the Best Attractions, Savor Typical Dishes and Have Fun in the Best Gay Bars. All this through the Rainbow Eyes of the World Mappers
What to See, Best Places to Sleep, Where to Eat and to Have Fun in GENOA?
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WHAT TO SEE in GENOA?
10 THINGS TO SEE in GENOA
The lighthouse of the Lanterna di Genova, its famous Lanterna, is the perfect place to start a visit to Genoa. This lighthouse, the third oldest in the world (dating back to 1543) is the symbol and reminder of Genoa's dominion in the Mediterranean. If you have time visit the interesting museum attached to find out more about the history of the city.
The whole history of Genoa is linked to the sea and is represented by its Porto Antico. Restored and remodeled in 1992 by the famous Italian architect Renzo Piano, today it is one of the main tourist spots in Genoa, thanks to its many attractions: the Biosphere, a huge steel and glass sphere suspended over the water with a tropical greenhouse inside . The Bigo, a metal structure (it reminds us of the tentacles of an octopus) with a panoramic lift to see the port and Genoa from above. The City of Children, a space dedicated to science and play for the little ones and, of course, the famous Aquarium of Genoa. Do like us, get yourself a delicious Genoese focaccia or a cone of fried food in one of the many chip shops in the area and enjoy it on a bench while watching the comings and goings of the port.
The Aquarium of Genoa
The Aquarium of Genoa, the second largest in Europe (after that of Valencia) is another of the unmissable places in the city. Dolphins, seals, whales and turtles attract over 1 million visitors each year. If you have children and you are in Genoa on the right day, don't miss the "Night with sharks", a monthly event that allows 35 children to spend the night in front of the shark aquarium, to discover the nocturnal behavior of these fascinating animals ( for info and costs click here).
Piazza De Ferrari & Doge's Palace
The main square of Genoa in the center of which there is a magnificent and huge fountain. The Carlo Felice Theater and the Palace of the Ligustica Academy of Fine Arts overlook the square. As well as the side facade of Palazzo Ducale (whose main entrance is in Piazza Matteotti), the Palazzo della Regione Liguria and the Palazzo della Nuova Borsa, a beautiful example of Liberty style. The Palazzo Ducale, the former residence of the Dukes of Genoa, is now a museum and exhibition and art centre.
Via Giuseppe Garibaldi & Palazzi dei Rolli
In Genoa, you cannot miss a stroll in via Garibaldi, a street declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Also called "the Via Aurea", it is one of the most interesting streets in the world from an architectural point of view. The splendid palaces that overlook this road, and on Via Balbi, Via Lomellini and Via San Luca, are known as the Palazzi dei Rolli, a noble residential system of particular value which today houses the Town Hall, some banks, public and private offices and three main museums of Genoa: Palazzo Rosso, with the treasures and works of art of the Brignole family. Palazzo Bianco, with its important collection from the 16th to the 17th century which includes artists such as Caravaggio, Rubens and Van Dyck. Palazzo Doria Tursi, known above all for the exhibition of the Cannone, the famous violin by Paganini.
Historic Center & Caruggi
Restored after years of neglect, the historic center of Genoa is undoubtedly one of the most beautiful in all of Italy (much of the old city has been declared a World Heritage Site). Our advice is to get lost in the multitude of narrow alleys (Caruggi) that characterize this part of the city. If you take Vico Falamonica you will feel like you have been catapulted into another world; here ethnic shops abound and the flavors and smells of distant lands mix with those of the place.
In Piazza della Vittoria stands the large arch erected in 1931 to commemorate the Genoese who died during the First World War. Through a game of perspective it is possible to glimpse inside the arch, the stairway of the Unknown Soldier, better known as the Scalinata delle Caravelle for the three ships reproduced with beautiful flower beds.
Cathedral of San Lorenzo
In close contact with the buildings that surround it, the gray and green striped facade (typical of Liguria) reminded us for a moment of the cathedral of Florence. It is also possible to climb the towers on special occasions, thanks to the collaboration with the Diocesan Museum.
The ancient gateway to the city is one of the most important medieval buildings in Genoa. Near the tower is the Christopher Columbus House Museum, a reconstruction of what was probably the home of Columbus in his youth.
Built in 1853 and located near the Carlo Felice Theater and the famous Piazza De Ferrari, today they have not lost the splendor of the past.
Visiting this city at its best depends essentially on how long you have to fully enjoy it. Here is a solution based on the number of days available to you:
Day 1 - Complete Genoa - Google Maps
(Aprendo le Mappe con Google, potrete facilmente seguire il nostro percorso)
10 BEST EXCURSIONS from GENOA
Golfo del Tigullio (Rapallo, Portofino, San Fruttuoso & Camogli)
Golfo dei Poeti
Noli, Varigotti, Finale Ligure, Finalborgo & Verezzi
Albenga, Cervo, Imperia & Sanremo
Ventimiglia, Dolceacqua, Seborga & Bordighera
Laghe & Roero (Asti, Barbaresco & Alba)
Cherasco, Bra, Castello di Brolio & La Morra
Cote d'Azur (Monaco, Nice & Cannes)
Click'n'Go - Click on Hotels, Restaurants, Bars & Clubs
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WHERE TO SLEEP in GENOA?
5 BEST GAY FRIENDLY HOTELS in GENOA
Mercure Genova San Biagio **** ® Tested by World Mappers
WHERE TO EAT in GENOA?
10 BEST RESTAURANTS in GENOA Quality / Price
€€€ - Ombre Rosse
€€ - Sà Pesta
€€ - Osteria Marinara A Lanterna da Don Gallo (Seafood Restaurant)
€€ - I Tre Merli ® Tested by World Mappers
€€ - Trattoria Ugo ® Tested by World Mappers
€€ - Ostaia da U Santu (outside the city center)
€ - La Cabotina
€ - Friggitoria Carega ® Tested by World Mappers (Street Food & Delicious Fish Fries!)
The BEST FOCACCIA in GENOA
And do you want to know where to find the best focaccia in Genoa?
GAY NIGHTLIFE in GENOA
3 BEST GAY PLACES, BARS & CLUBS in GENOA
Virgo Disco Club (Gay Club) ® Tested by World Mappers
LUX CLUB (Gay Bar) ® Tested by World Mappers
Disegual La Notte (Gay Night)
TRAVEL TIPS about GENOA by World Mappers
The Most BEAUTIFUL PANORAMIC POINTS of GENOA
Enjoy the city from above from the best viewpoints of Genoa that we recommend:
You cannot visit Genoa and not go up to the belvedere of Spianata Castelletto, a place from which you can admire Genoa from above in all its beauty. You can walk up a not too demanding staircase or more comfortably by funicular (the tunnel to get to the lifts is very impressive, decorated with ceramic tiles).
Terrace of Palazzo Rosso
One of the many noble palaces of Genoa, as well as being home to a beautiful museum, it houses a terrace on the top floor to admire the city and its caruggi from above. Once you reach the third floor, take the elevator that will take you to the roof.
Climbing the Bigo is a nice experience to do even if we much preferred other panoramic points of the city. Located in the middle of the ancient port of Genoa, Renzo Piano's work takes you to a height of 40 meters to observe the port and the skyline of the historic center of Genoa. A 360° view from one of the "modern" symbols of the city. Entrance is paid.
The symbol of Genoa and the tallest lighthouse in the Mediterranean. As famous as little frequented. In fact, there are not many people who go to this part of the city. As soon as we arrived we realized that the position certainly does not play a favorable role: in fact, you have to take a busy road with no tourist interest until you reach the beginning of the walkway that leads to the Lanterna, crossing from above all the most commercial area of the port full of trucks and containers waiting to be loaded onto some ship. Once at the Lanterna you can visit the small museum or climb the 172 steps that will take you to the terrace from where you can admire the port and the whole city.
Unusual and Particular Places to See in Genoa
Outside the classic places to visit of the city, there is a "Secret Genoa" that has simply bewitched us. Here are the 10 Things and Places to See in Secret Genoa:
Boccadasse - Also known as the "village of lovers". As soon as we saw it we were speechless; a small and colorful fishing village in the municipality of Genoa where it is nice to get lost along the narrow streets until you reach a small pebble beach overlooked by some nice restaurants and bars. An advice? go to Boccadasse for cocktail hour. Have a focaccia in the restaurant that you find right above the beach, a beer and wait for the sunset sitting by the sea... fantastic!
Elevator & Terrace di Eataly - Take the Montegalletto lift and reach the wonderful Castello D'Albertis: a neo-Gothic building from the late 19th century which was the residence of the Genoese captain Enrico D'Albertis. The castle is surrounded by a beautiful park, houses the Museum of World Cultures and offers a breathtaking view of the city and the port of Genoa.
Castello D'Albertis - Take the Montegalletto lift and reach the wonderful Castello D'Albertis: a neo-Gothic building from the late 19th century which was the residence of the Genoese captain Enrico D'Albertis. The castle is surrounded by a beautiful park, houses the Museum of World Cultures and offers a breathtaking view of the city and the port of Genoa.
Campopisano - In the heart of the historic center is this small shell-shaped square with a black and white cobblestone floor that creates the design of a boat. The charming little square takes its name from the 9,000 Pisan prisoners who were buried here after the battle of Meloria in 1284. It seems that so many Pisans were buried that a saying goes "those who want to see Pisa go to Genoa".
Via del Campo 29 rosso - It is at number 29 of this street, "the house of Genoese songwriters", that you can admire the guitar of Fabrizio De Andrè, songwriter and poet who often sang about Genoa and its places.
Truogoli di Santa Brigida - In the small square of Santa Brigida, in a side street of via Balbi, you can admire the so-called truogoli, the public washhouses where once the women washed their clothes. The square, built in 1956 with funding from the Balbi family, holds a legend; in fact, it is said that the nuns of Santa Brigida wanted to build a monastery dedicated to the Saint here. The monastery envisaged a "cohabitation" between friars and nuns but this "forced" closeness would have been a source of temptation and malicious suspicions which Pope Clement VIII remedied, by sending the friars away. The result? There was so much empty space left that the nuns decided to put the land up for sale. A few centuries later the construction of via Balbi began on these.
Colombus' House - What is believed to be the house where Christopher Columbus lived between 1455 and 1470 during his childhood is still standing (this is a more recent reconstruction) a few steps from Porta Soprana. Today it is used as a museum centre.
Palazzo della Meridiana - A few steps from via Balbi and the 29 red museum is Piazza della Meridiana, between Via Garibaldi and Via Cairoli. Stop in front of Palazzo Gerolamo Grimaldi Oliva and look up; here is the sundial. The story behind this work really amused us. Opposite Palazzo Oliva stands the palace of Gio Carlo Brignole; history has it that the owners of this building opened a new entrance on the square which made the Grimaldis, owners of Palazzo Oliva, lose their view of the sea. These, to express their discontent, had a putto painted on the sundial with the "back" on display.
Antica Farmacia San'Anna - Do you want to take a dive into the past? The Sant'Anna Pharmacy is the right place for you. The place has been open for more than three hundred years and specializes in the preparation of herbal teas, cosmetics and perfumes made with natural elements. You can find it inside the convent of the Carmelite Friars, an enchanting place a few steps from the centre, in the Castelletto district.
Monumental Cemetery of Staglieno - It didn't seem like a simple cemetery, but a real open-air museum, which houses various legends and many artistic works, so much so that for art lovers, visiting it could represent a truly unique opportunity. Many famous people are buried here. Among others, the Genoese singer-songwriter Fabrizio De Andrè, Giuseppe Mazzini and Mary Costance Wilde (Oscar Wilde's wife).
STREET ART of GENOA
Genoa pleasantly surprised us with the presence of Street Art works used to redevelop and give new life to some areas of the city. Here are the 2 best Street Art Projects in Genoa that we recommend you see:
Walk The Line in Genoa
A path of contemporary art near the tourist port of Genoa. Thanks to this project, the pylons of the flyover were covered with beautiful murals and thus the area was redeveloped into real works of art!
On The Wall in Genoa
12 works that together form the project of the municipality of Genoa "On the Wall" conceived following the tragedy of the collapse of the Morandi bridge on 14 August 2018. To re-evaluate the Certosa district and help it recover emerging artists and famous names of street art have been invited to embellish the facades of some buildings in the neighborhood.
GAY FRIENDLY TOURS
Do you want to discover the city more deeply through Genoa's Best Gay Tours? We recommend the following local operators:
Gaily Tour - Tour Operator offering tours and excursions dedicated to the LGBT + community throughout Europe. Special Tours and Gay & Lesbian Friendly Guides ready to make you discover the beauties of this destination. Info & Booking: info@GailyTour.com
What to See near Genoa ?