Genoa, former European Capital of Culture in 2004, is a splendid city just waiting to be discovered.
Its museums, villas, churches and ancient palaces are a true treasure trove.
Once a powerful Maritime Republic, for many centuries Genoa was the pulsating heart of commerce in the Mediterranean Sea.
While the city still plays an important role in the international shipping industry, it has used its newfound surge of energy to breathe new life into its artistic and cultural heritage.
Visiting Genoa is like embarking on a fantastic journey into the past.
From Porto Antico, the old port area, a walk through the narrow alleys, or caruggi, leads through Europe’s largest historical centre, dating back to the Middle Ages.
The adventure continues along the splendid streets of Renaissance Genoa, with its magnificent churches, museums and wealthy palaces, the Palazzi dei Rolli, now part of Unesco World Heritage sites, to 19th century Genoa with its elegant, wide-open spaces, now a shopping district.
The winding ways of the city always lead back to the sea, with its beautiful promenade, or climb up the hillsides, where a series of old fortresses dots the landscape overlooking the city.
Genoa's Aquarium offers a wonderful way to experience the underwater world and become acquainted with the extraordinary array of species creatively displayed in giant tanks.