Santa Margherita and Portofino are the perfect day trip from Genoa or Milan. They are both on the Ligurian Coast in the north-west of Italy.
They are very close to Genoa by car it takes 30 – 45 minutes depending on traffic and 45 minutes by train, From Milan, it takes just over 2 hours.
Portofino is Santa Margherita’s neighbour and takes another 15 minutes by car to get to. If you take the train you will have to take a bus from Santa Margherita to Portofino that takes around 30 minutes.
The region of Liguria has lots of beautiful seaside towns to explore and in my last post I wrote about Camogli and why is it is a hidden gem.
Santa Margherita and Portofino are both well known so are full of tourists. Not so much in the winter as most of the restaurants and shops are closed up for winter. In the summer both are packed.
We went for a day trip from Genoa to explore and it was a beautiful day for January, cold, but sunny. From the photos, you would think it was a summers day.
Portofino is a beautiful tiny town. It is basically a small harbour and the shops and restaurants line the harbour waters.
You can walk to the church and Brown’s Castle and walk around the harbour and that is it. This why I recommend Camogli as it is bigger.
If you like taking photos it is a great place for that as the colourful building contrast nicely against the water.
Coffee, lunch or an aperitive are lovely to have sitting by the water, but you will pay a high price for the privilege.
I spent season sailing around the Mediterranean when I was still working on the cruise ships and we came to Portofino every ten days. I spent a lot of money posing, but I had a good time!
Santa Margherita is a bigger than Portofino and is a lovely seaside town. The promenade is lined with shops, restaurants and bars.
In the summer it is a lively place as all the restaurants have outside seating. The town centre is just a short walk from the seaside and has churches, restaurants, bars and shops.
The prices are high to medium if you would like to eat on the seafront, but not as high as Portofino. In the town centre, the prices are more reasonable.
While we were there our friend wanted to find a restaurant and led up the garden path with his map on his phone.
But we did stumble across a gorgeous little cream church and a park, so it was worth it for the photos! We didn’t find the restaurant, but we found another that was very good. I had a local dish of stuffed vegetables with cheese and ham and some local red wine, delicious!
Santa Margherita and Portofino are both beautiful places to visit for the day, have a walk around and have lunch. If you are into hiking to can hike from Santa Margherita to Portofino.
- Weather: Winter 5*C – 13*C/ Summer 20*C – 30*C
- Language: Italian and English is spoken
- Currency: Euro
- Bring your camera!
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Have you been? What did you do?
Love Lucy x