The City of Genoa (Italian) boasts the charm of an old seaport and centuries of history. Its Old Town is filled with narrow alleys, ancient churches, and Renaissance palaces. The Piazza de Ferrari is a large public square at the center of many of the city's most popular sights. Travelers can visit the breathtaking Cathedral of San Lorenzo, the home of Christopher Columbus (Casa della Famiglia Colombo), the Biosfera greenhouse, and the beautiful and historic Palazzo Ducale (Palace of the Doges). There are far too many things to see and do in the Port of Genoa than can be described in this article. For more information, visit the city's tourism website.
Photo by Andrzej_O
The Port of Genoahas a wonderful Mediterranean climatewith comfortable temperatures ranging from an average high of 27 °C (81 °F) in August to an average low of 5 °C (41 °F) in January. July is the driest month of the y ear, and October and November are the rainiest. The Port of Genoa gets about one snowfall each year. The Port of Genoa is windy, especially during the winter, but those winds bring cool temperatures during the hot season.
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The Acquario di Genova is Europe's biggest aquarium, offering the continent's largest exhibition of aquatic biodiversity. The exhibits include sea and water habitats, tanks with a wide variety of aquatic species, and a petting pool for children. With 71 tanks containing more than four million liters of water and 600 species of plants and animals, some of the most popular attractions include the penguins, seals, and sharks. At one end of the Aquarium of Genoa is a ship where the walls are virtual tanks in which visitors can hear the waves and watch the currents of the sea.
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The Palazzo Reale (or Royal Palace) is the Port of Genoa's best example of a princely home. The 17th Century building was enlarged by the Durazzo family in the 19th Century. Its 18th Century hanging gardens line the passage to the stairway leading to the "aristocratic" floor where visitors find luxurious rooms decorated with fine frescoes and paintings and furnished with some of the original furniture. The Mirror room to the Throne room contains a Van Dyck portrait of Caterina Durazzo. The bedchambers for the King and Queen, the Tapestry room, and the glorious Ballroom contain awesome treasures. From the terrace, visitors take in wonderful views of the old city and the port.
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Home to the Port Authority of Genoa, the Palazzo San Giorgio (Italian) was built in 1260 by Guglielmo Boccanegra. The building has a rich history, having been at one time the home of world explorer Marco Polo and, for a while, a prison. The palace was built to create a political center that would rival the clerical power of the Cathedral of San Lorenzo. In the 15th Century, it became home to the Bank of Saint George.
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The 1543 Lanterna is a well-loved landmark for the residents of the Port of Genoa. Legend says that the architect was forced to leap from the top of it so that he could never build another lighthouse like it. The 77-meter-tall Lanterna tower is the Port of Genoa's symbol. Built on a 40-meter-tall rock, the top of the tower is 117 meters above sea level, and it is visible for over 50 kilometers. Restored in at the turn of this century, the Lanterna includes a promenade and a museum. The 800-meter promenade begins at the Ferry Terminal and guides visitors to the fortifications, the museum, and the Lanterna. The Museum, housed in the Savoy fortifications, contains displays of lamps, lenses, and many lighthouse-related objects as well as films telling the story of the Port of Genoa's development.
Travelers who would like to visit the Port of Genoa by sea can find a list of scheduled cruises on the Cruise Compete website.