Genoa and environs
Parks and mountains are mirrored in the sea A stone’s throw from the sea, green hills, flavours, itineraries: country hospitality a short way from the beach
The scent of wild narcissuses and that of the roses of Valle Scrivia, the strong flavours of the Valleys of Milk along the banks of the Stura, the breathtaking view from the peak of Antola with its hut and astronomic observatories. Chestnuts, edible boletus mushrooms, fruits of the forests. And then timeless villages, Roman bridges, abbeys and castles. Behind the great Genoa, the capital of the sea and culture, there is a world to explore. A world that can be glimpsed from the city, because it is only a few kilometres away from Genoa, to be catapulted into the green old heart of Genovesato.Add to My Liguria
Craftsmanship and joys for the palate: a Ligurian “village” in the green oasis of Valle Stura
In 1884, a craftsman, Antonio Oliveri, opened a workshop for processing filigree in his native Campo Ligure. His example was followed by other artisans and very soon the workshops numbered no fewer than thirty-three. To relive the history and the secrets of this art of Arabic origin, you have to visit the Pietro Carlo Bosio Filigree Museum, where around two hundred pieces are displayed. The objects in the museum are set out and grouped according to their geographical provenance: Europe, Asia, Africa and Latin America. The collection thus makes it possible to identify the differences between the various craft schools with particular attention to those of Italian filigree artists (whose protagonists are cities like Genoa, Venice and Florence), and Russian, Nepalese, Indian and Chinese ones.
If the shops and the museum are worth a visit, also have a look around. Campo Ligure is a well-kept rural village, surmounted by a big Castle in whose park in summer concerts are held. It is at the centre of Valle Stura, which not by chance is called the Valley of Milk: cows and horses grazing, and clean and efficient farms, welcome holidaymakers and gourmets. For those who want to make controlled-origin-denomination purchases we recommend the Consortium of the Valley Cooperative, a true showcase of natural products. In this way you can organize a sumptuous picnic. Starting from Campo Ligure and precisely from the cooperative Paviglione pasture: a velvety green mantle that looks out on Valle Stura from a height of 800 metres. From Rossiglione there is a double-ring itinerary that goes through the Berlino and Gargassa valleys.
Two rock spurs, a fort that seems to come out of a story by Tolkien, in the heart of the Antola Park
“Comme un enurme mostro, fulminòo ne l’impeto de un urlo contra-o çe” (like an enormous monster struck by lightning in the impetus of a shout against the sky). The evocative image is by Edoardo Firpo, the greatest Genoese dialect poet. Still today this picturesque description is perfectly suited to the Stone Castle, for a thousand years an unbelievable monument built between two rock spurs dominating the Valle di Vobbia. Today the Stone Castle is above all one of the most important attractions of the Genoese hinterland. Scarce documents throw light on the origins of the military building, at any rate built at the behest of the bishops of Tortona, in about the year one thousand. After different changes of ownership among the potentates of the area over the centuries, the Castle became public property in 1910.
A visit begins from the square from which there starts the access path, which passes among chestnut trees. After about twenty minutes, you come to the castle, which is in two parts at different heights. A peculiar feature is the cistern dug out in the rock at the foot of the west tower. A visit to the Castle is a prelude to discovering the Vobbia valley, where there is the luxuriant Reopasso faunistic oasis, hamlets immersed in greenery like Noceto, and unforgettable spots like the San Fermo chapel. The Antola Park has also set up a true path of castellans, divided into ten stages.
A paradise amid nature and history, twenty minutes from the city
A paradise amid nature and history, twenty minutes from the city of Genoa. Lakes with crystalline water, wild rivers, ghost villages that have remained the same as three hundred years ago, and then castles unique in the world like the Pietra di Vobbia one, Liberty villas, and archaeological sites like Libarna. All immersed in nature with a thousand colours, which at the end of the summer become dazzling and unique, when the first woods light up red and yellow. A must is a visit to Casella, a terminal of a narrow gauge railway and a well equipped swimming pool for the summer. There are so many villages famous for their restaurants, always with natural foods, while at Busalla there is the famous Beer House, open to the public as a beer house and a restaurant, which has preserved its history and its furnishing in the places of the original building.
The other wildest valley is the Trebbia one. Unspoilt nature, around the Brugneto lake, under the peaks of Antola. The lake lends itself to splendid autumn excursions, with multicoloured trees that give rise to a natural palette. At Torriglia you can purchase the famous canestrelli, a sort of dry dessert that drives gluttons crazy. Montebruno, the heart of Val Trebbia, is to be visited for its Sanctuary and its Country Life Museum. A must is the rural jewel of Pentema, where at Christmas the famous living Manger is set up. A lot of excursions can be made, like one to the hostel on the peak of Antola, the Romano House with its meadow-balcony towards the sea, and Pian della Cavalla, the kingdom of narcissi and wild flowers.
Genoa, a superb holiday
Amusing, elegant, multicultural, maritime, theatrical, musical, savoury, historical, artistic…. How many Genoas are there? A thousand, perhaps more. For the city of Christopher Columbus, of the powerful and rich Maritime Republic, loved by Flemish painters in the Renaissance and the home of singer-songwriters and contemporary poets, is a magic place.
Certainly one to visit. Starting from the palaces of the Rolli, Unesco World Heritage, reaching the Aquarium and the Old Harbour, obviously going along the alleys (the caruggi) and the Museums in Strada Nuova. And then there is Palazzo Ducale, the parks, the village of Boccadasse, great events like the Nautical Show, recherché shopping and historic shops.
The sincere and strong tastes of pesto and of the restaurants that provide fresh fish. Genoa, a superb holiday, precisely.