The Ligurian coast is home to Italy’s largest seaport as well as some of the country’s tiniest fishing villages. Take in both these extremes by spending a day in bustling Genoa, then heading out along the coastline to explore picturesque Portofino and the Cinque Terre. Here's how.
Belvedere Montaldo Luigi, Genoa, Italy
Named for a small castle that once stood on this hilltop, Castelletto is known for its excellent views from the Spianata, also known as the Belvedere Montaldo. The panorama over the old port, iconic Lanterna, and historic center of the city is well worth the trip up the hill, either via the historic Art Nouveau-style elevator or the winding Circonvallazione a Monte road. Enjoy the view with the naked eye or public binoculars, relax on benches in the shade of towering pines, or watch as local couples pose for wedding photos against the scenic backdrop. Small-group and private Genoa tours often include a side trip up the hill to take in the bird’s-eye views over the city and coastline from the scenic overlook.
Genoa Walking Tour: Discover Hidden Treasures and Street Food
$166.70 per adult
A Genoa must see and do.
Our tour guide Karl was excellent. We saw places in Genova that only a local could show us-the narrow streets, the places for pesto, an elevator to an overlook-all hidden gems. This is a must when visiting Genoa. It is recommended at the start of your trip so you will know the places you want to go back to.
Peter_E, Jul 2022
Things to know before you go
- If you’re visiting as part of a walking tour, wear comfortable shoes and dress for the weather.
- Wheelchair users can easily access the scenic overlook via the historic elevator.
- Kids especially enjoy the scenic elevator ride, outdoor overlook, and adjacent park.
How to get there
The Spianata di Castelletto is located in the Castelletto quarter above the historic center of Genoa and can be reached by elevator in Piazza Portello or via the Circonvallazione a Monte road. Genoa is an important rail hub with direct trains from a number of Italy’s main cities, and also a bustling cruise ship port.
When to get there
The view over Genoa from the scenic overlook is particularly beautiful in the late afternoon, as the sun begins to set over the Mediterranean. Try to visit at sunset to snap some of your most memorable shots of the city.
Genoa’s Many Neighborhoods
In addition to scenic Castelletto and the architecture-rich historic center, Genoa’s most notable neighborhoods are the picturesque former fishing village of Boccadasse; Albaro, known for its beautiful historic villas; the old port, redesigned by the contemporary architect Renzo Piano; and the Val Bisagno, home to the monumental Staglieno Cemetery.
Frequently Asked Questions
The answers provided below are based on answers previously given by the tour provider to customers’ questions.
What are the nearest attractions to Spianata Castelletto?
What else should I know about attractions in Genoa?
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- Palazzo Bianco
- Palazzi dei Rolli
- Palazzo Rosso
- Chiossone Museum of Oriental Art (Museo d'Arte Orientale Edoardo Chiossone)
- Genoa Via Garibaldi (Via Giuseppe Garibaldi)
- Basilica della Santissima Annunziata del Vastato
- Piazza Caricamento
- Aquarium of Genoa
- Via San Lorenzo
- Doge's Palace (Palazzo Ducale)
- Genoa Cathedral (Cattedrale di San Lorenzo)
- Royal Palace Museum (Museo di Palazzo Reale)
- Piazza de Ferrari
- Galata Maritime Museum (Galata Museo del Mare)