Genoa is an Italian town of 571 261 inhabitants, the center of an urban agglomeration of 835 829 inhabitants, and the heart of a vast metropolitan area of ​​over 1 500 000 inhabitants, as well as the capital of the metropolitan city of the same name and of the Liguria region. It is the largest and most populous municipality in the region.

Overlooking the Ligurian Sea, for over eight centuries the capital of the republic of the same name, its history is linked to the navy, trade, industry and banking. Its port, the largest in Italy, is one of the most important in Europe. The city was part of the Milan-Turin-Genoa industrial triangle and is still one of the most important economic centers in Italy.

In 2004 it was the European capital of culture, while since 2006 part of its historic center, the Strade Nuove and the Palazzi dei Rolli system, is included among the UNESCO World Heritage Sites. The "physical" symbol of the city is its lighthouse, known as the Lantern, while it is traditionally represented by the Cross of St. George, supported by two griffins in the coats of arms.



How to orient yourself
Old Town

In all probability your point of arrival in the city will be the Piazza Principe station, whether you arrive by train or by plane. The shuttle bus from the airport (the Volabus, which also continues to Brignole station; fare: 6 euros) ends at this station. Also available from the airport is a circular shuttle bus (i24 of the municipal company AMT) which at a cost of 1.5 euros connects the terminal with the Sestri Ponente-Airport railway station and the Marina Genova Aeroporto area.

Via Balbi

Piazza de Ferrari is the central square of Genoa. It is connected via the Via XX Settembre, about 1.3 km long, to Piazza della Vittoria, located near the Genova Brignole railway station.

External municipalities
Genoa is polycentric as the union of various municipalities took place in two stages, the first (which concerned only the municipalities immediately adjacent to the historic center) at the end of the nineteenth century, and the second (which led to the current extension) in the twenty of the twentieth century. Each of these former municipalities, now city districts, therefore has its own historical nucleus, while the conformation of squares and streets, when it has not been distorted by the post-war building boom, is typical of independent towns and villages.

The physical structure of the municipal territory is that of an inverted Greek piggy, a coastal axis on which two main valleys descend
East — Sturla, Quarto dei Mille, Quinto al Mare, Nervi, Bavari, San Desiderio, Borgoratti
Ponente - Voltri, Prà, Pegli, Sestri Ponente, Cornigliano, Sampierdarena
Val Bisagno — San Fruttuoso, Marassi, Staglieno, Molassana, Struppa
Val Polcevera — Rivarolo, Bolzaneto, Pontedecimo

The two valleys continue inland beyond the municipal area, crossing some neighboring municipalities.


Religious architecture

In Genoa there are several dozen churches, the main and oldest of which are located in the historic center. In several cases they arose as noble chapels of the main city families and were therefore a way to show one's prestige. Among the most significant buildings are:

Cathedral of San Lorenzo: built between the 9th and the end of the 14th century in Gothic style, it was consecrated by Pope Gelasius II in 1118 when it was not yet completed. The thirteenth-century facade, with the characteristic black and white striped decoration, shows two bell towers - the left one unfinished and completed in 1445 with a loggia - and three richly decorated portals. The interior is divided into three naves, the division of which is surmounted by a fake women's gallery. On the left aisle opens the fifteenth-century Chapel of San Giovanni Battista, a substantial gallery of Renaissance sculpture. Among the most notable works of art are the 13th-century Last Judgment above the main portal, frescoes by Bernardo Castello, Luca Cambiaso and Lazzaro Tavarone on the vaults, and the high altar with the statue of the Madonna Queen of Genoa.
Basilica of the Santissima Annunziata del Vastato: of medieval origin, it was renovated in the 16th century by Andrea Ceresola known as il Vannone on behalf of the Lomellini family, who made it their own chapel. The vast Baroque interior, frescoed by Giovanni Carlone and Giovanni Andrea Ansaldo, contains works by the main authors of the Genoese Baroque (Bernardo Strozzi, Domenico Piola, Giulio Cesare Procaccini, Gregorio De Ferrari, Gioacchino Assereto).
Basilica of San Siro: one of the oldest churches in the city, it was the first cathedral of Genoa before the construction of San Lorenzo. Following a fire it was completely rebuilt between the end of the 16th and the beginning of the 17th century. It preserves the famous Annunciation by Orazio Gentileschi, and works by Carlone, Domenico Fiasella, Domenico Piola, Pierre Puget and various other artists of the time.
Basilica of Santa Maria Assunta in Carignano: commissioned by the Sauli family in 1552, it was designed in the Renaissance style by the Perugian architect Galeazzo Alessi. It has a central plan structure surmounted by a large dome, in the style of St. Peter's Basilica in Rome, and famous statues by Pierre Puget and Filippo Parodi.
Basilica of Santa Maria delle Vigne: one of the oldest religious buildings in Genoa, it was built in Romanesque style on a pre-existing temple. In 1640 it underwent a transformation in Baroque style based on a project by the architect Daniele Casella, retaining the 12th century bell tower and cloister. It houses various works of art by Ligurian artists from the 16th-17th centuries and frescoes from the 18th and 19th centuries.
Church of Santi Cosma e Damiano: located in the alleys at the foot of the Castello hill, it is attested starting from 1049. The current Romanesque structure dates back to the 12th century, while the roof was rebuilt in the 17th century following the naval bombardments of 1684.
Church of San Donato: built in Romanesque style starting from the XII century, it has a characteristic octagonal tower. It was restored in 1888 by Alfredo d'Andrade, who integrated the facade and added a third blind level to the tower. It houses a famous Flemish polyptych by Joos van Cleve.
Church and oratory of San Filippo Neri: the complex was built, probably based on a project by Pietro Antonio Corradi, starting in 1674 thanks to a testamentary bequest from Camillo Pallavicino. The interior of the church, in Baroque style, is composed of a single nave surmounted by a barrel vault that reaches almost 20 meters in height decorated by the Bolognese Marcantonio Franceschini, while the oratory houses the famous Immaculate Conception by Puget.
Church of San Luca: founded in 1188, in 1589 it became the noble chapel of the Grimaldi and Spinola families and in the following century it was rebuilt and enlarged by the architect Carlo Muttone. Entirely covered by late Baroque frescoes by Domenico and Paolo Gerolamo Piola, it houses the Nativity, a masterpiece by Grechetto.
Church and cloister of San Matteo: located in the homonymous square, it was founded in 1125 as a noble chapel of the Doria family. It was enlarged in 1278 and decorated in the sixteenth century by the Tuscan sculptor Giovanni Angelo Montorsoli, while retaining the medieval structure. It preserves frescoes by Luca Cambiaso and Giovan Battista Castello and the tomb of Andrea Doria del Montorsoli.
Church of San Pietro in Banchi: it was commissioned in 1580 by the Republic of Genoa as a vow for the end of an epidemic and the project was entrusted to the Mannerist architect Bernardino Cantone. It was built on the remains of a Lomellini palace, which in turn had been built on the remains of the ancient church of San Pietro della Porta, owned by the abbey of San Colombano di Bobbio, built in the 9th century and destroyed by a fire in 1398. The curious elevated position is due to the fact that the construction was financed through the rent of the shops that were located underneath it.
Church of Santa Croce and San Camillo de Lellis: located in the Portoria district, it was built starting from 1667 at the behest of the Camillian Fathers and dedicated to the Holy Cross and to the founder of the religious order Camillo de Lellis. It contains a cycle of frescoes by the Baroque painter Gregorio De Ferrari, his son Lorenzo De Ferrari and his pupil Francesco Maria Costa.
Church and convent of Santa Maria di Castello: one of the oldest religious buildings in the city, it was built starting from 658 AD. on the Castle Hill. The current layout, with three naves, dates back to the 12th century and the complex underwent further modifications in the 15th and 17th centuries. The adjacent convent houses a museum with works by several important Ligurian artists in the seventeenth century.
Church of Santo Stefano: with a rectangular plan and single nave, it was built in Romanesque style on the site of a pre-existing 10th century church of which traces remain in the crypt. In 1896 the south side was reduced to allow the construction of Via XX Settembre.
Commandery of San Giovanni di Pré: the complex, consisting of a church and a hospital, was built in 1180 by the Knights of Jerusalem as a shelter for passing pilgrims heading to the Holy Land. The Romanesque church is developed on two levels, which could be accessed from the first two floors of the hospital. In 1751 a new entrance was opened, to allow access to the church from the outside as well.
Church of San Siro di Struppa: located in the Struppa district and dating back to the early 11th century, it is one of the main historical monuments of the Valbisagno. In the 20th century it underwent major renovations. It preserves a polyptych depicting San Siro attributed to Pier Francesco Sacchi.
Other relevant religious buildings outside the historic center are the Certosa di Rivarolo, the church of San Martino d'Albaro, the church of Santa Maria della Cella in Sampierdarena, the church of Santi Nicolò ed Erasmo in Voltri, the synagogue of Genoa which it was the largest synagogue built in Italy during the Fascist period.


Monumental cemetery

In the Staglieno district is the monumental cemetery of the same name, built starting in 1835 to a design by the architect Carlo Barabino, which houses the burials of many illustrious Genoese of the 19th and 20th centuries and which preserves notable examples of cemetery art from the 19th century.


Civil architectures

The historic center of Genoa is one of the most densely populated in Europe[80], with an urban structure, in the oldest part, articulated as it is in a maze of small squares and narrow caruggi. It combines a medieval dimension with successive sixteenth-century and Baroque interventions (Piazza San Matteo and the old Via Aurea, which later became Via Garibaldi).

Remains of the ancient walls are visible near the cathedral of San Lorenzo, the place of worship par excellence of the Genoese.

Symbols of the city are the Lanterna (117 m high), an ancient and soaring lighthouse visible from a distance from the sea (over 30 km), and the monumental fountain in Piazza De Ferrari, restored, the beating heart and real city agora.

A tourist destination par excellence is also the ancient seaside village of Boccadasse, with its picturesque multicolored boats, placed as a seal of the elegant promenade that runs along the Lido d'Albaro, and renowned for its famous ice creams.

Outside the centre, but still part of the thirty-three kilometers of coast included in the municipal territory, are Nervi, the natural gateway to the Riviera di Levante and Vesima, the natural gateway to the Riviera di Ponente.

The new Genoa has based its rebirth above all on the recovery of the green areas of the immediate hinterland (including that of the Beigua Regional Natural Park) and on the construction of infrastructural works such as the Aquarium at the ancient port - the largest in Italy and one of the largest in Europe - and its Marina (the marina capable of accommodating hundreds of pleasure boats). All this within the refurbished Expo Area set up for the 1992 Colombian Celebrations.

The rediscovered pride has given the city back the awareness of being a city capable of looking to the future without forgetting its past: the resumption of numerous and luxuriant craft activities, which have long been absent from the alleyways of the historic centre, is direct evidence of this.

The restoration works carried out between the eighties and nineties on numerous churches and buildings in the city also contributed to all this, including, on the hill of Carignano, visible from almost every part of the city, the Renaissance Basilica of Santa Maria Assunta.

The total recovery of the Doge's Palace - once the seat of doges and senators and now a place for cultural events - and of the ancient port and the rebuilding of the Carlo Felice Theater, destroyed by the bombings of the Second World War which spared only the neoclassical pronaos by the architect Carlo Barabino, were two other strengths for the construction of a new Genoa.

Another monument of significant importance brought back to new splendor is the monumental cemetery of Staglieno, where the remains of many well-known personalities rest, including Giuseppe Mazzini, Fabrizio De André and the wife of Oscar Wilde.

With its characteristic skyline which, for those coming from the sea, makes it appear like an insurmountable fortress, distinguished as it is by its dense network of hillside fortifications on large walls which in ancient warfare made it impregnable both to attacks from the sea and from those overland - Genoa could not give up, especially starting from the sixties, its own renewal and modernization, which necessarily had to pass, like what happened in many other metropolises, through the construction of large housing complexes of the popular type, whose quality, usefulness and functionality has been and is still the subject of discussion (and sometimes disputed) by resident citizens.

In this regard, we cite for example the cases represented by the so-called "biscione", a building complex in the shape of a long snake, located on the heights of the populous district of Marassi, by the group of houses called "Le lavatrici", in the district of Pra', and by the so-called 'Dams' of Begato designed by Piero Gambacciani.

For other architectural solutions that have distinguished it, Genoa has also become for some decades a sort of capital of modern Italian, if not European, architecture. This is mainly due to the work of the architect Renzo Piano who since the end of the eighties has been involved in the restructuring of some of the most famous cities in the world.

Piano's name gained notoriety starting above all from 1992, when Genoa welcomed visitors to the ancient port for the 1992 Colombian Celebrations (Colombiadi), the waterfront of the angiporto completely restored for the occasion and symbolized by the stylized Big Bigo (sort of trademark of the Genoese port activity).

In addition to a complete restyling of the area, the old port area located near the Mandraccio gate, at Porta Siberia, was scenically enriched by Piano himself with a large metal and glass sphere installed in the waters of the port, not far from the 'Aquarium and inaugurated in 2001 on the occasion of the G8 held in the city, historically remembered also for a series of crime events that occurred at the same time. The sphere (also called by the Genoese Bolla di Piano or "Biosphere"), after being used for an exhibition of ferns by the Botanical Garden of Genoa, now houses the reconstruction of a tropical environment, with numerous plants , small animals and butterflies.

Piano also designed the subway stations for the Superba and, in the hilly area of the city, designed and began construction - in collaboration with UNESCO - of Punta Nave, headquarters of the "Renzo Piano Building Workshop". The Genova San Giorgio Viaduct, designed by Piano and inaugurated in 2020, which replaces the first Polcevera viaduct which suddenly collapsed in 2018 causing 43 victims, is accompanied by the Polcevera Park and the Red Circle designed by Stefano Boeri in 2019 still under construction.

Especially for those passing through the center of Genoa along the elevated road, perhaps to embark at the nearby ferry terminal, the so-called Matitone is visible near the ancient port, a controversial and singular skyscraper in the shape of a pencil, which flanks the group of towers of the WTC , the heart of the San Benigno building complex, also home to part of the municipal administration and numerous companies.


Military architectures

Ancient fortified garrisons, old and new, are located in the hillside parks, immediately behind the city. In addition to giving an important testimony to the history of the "Dominant of the Seas", some of them are occasionally used for concerts, parties and various events. Conversely, many others are not valued at all, in particular numerous bunkers and batteries dating back to the Second World War are left unattended and in decay, instead of being restored and brought back to a decent state for historical-tourist purposes.


Natural areas and public parks

Genoa is rich in parks and gardens accessible to the public, overlooking the sea or on the heights on which the city climbs, the largest natural complex in Genoa, with 876 hectares is the Urbano delle Mura park, which incorporates the Peralto park where we find Forte Sperone, the summit of the seventeenth-century wall to defend the city.

The major parks, in addition to the Parco delle Mura, are the Parchi di Nervi, where three historic villas form with their three parks connected to each other (9 hectares in size), a green complex of rare beauty in a natural environment of excellence, reachable from the beautiful Anita Garibaldi Walk obtained from the rocks on the sea.

In the center and in the north of the city we find numerous small parks and historic gardens, such as the park of Villa Croce, which hosts numerous contemporary art exhibitions throughout the year, Villetta Di Negro, the Acquasola park, designed by the architect Nicolò Barabino, the gardens of Palazzo Bianco and Palazzo Doria-Tursi, the park of Castello d'Albertis, which was the residence of Captain Alberto d'Albertis (1846-1932), navigator, explorer and scholar, seat of the museum of cultures of the world.

In the west of the city we find the park of Villa Duchessa di Galliera, extending over 25 hectares, connected to the Brignole-Sale palace, in Pegli the park of Villa Durazzo-Pallavicini, which houses the Ligurian archeology museum and the botanical garden created in 1794 by Clelia Durazzo Grimaldi. The heights of the urban Ponente are partly included in the regional natural park of Beigua, the largest regional park in Liguria overlooking the sea, and partly in the urban park of Monte Penello and Punta Martin.

To the east, beyond the aforementioned parks of Nervi, we find other villas, such as villa Gambaro, villa Carrara, which offers a particular view of the sea, and villa Quartara.

On the heights of Quinto al Mare we find the urban park of Monte Fasce and Monte Moro, where are the remains of a coastal battery set up to defend the city during the Second World War.


Higher education and academies

University of Genoa (with branches in Imperia, Pietra Ligure, Savona, Chiavari and La Spezia)
Niccolo Paganini Conservatory
Italian Merchant Marine Academy
Ligurian Academy of Sciences and Letters
Ligurian Academy of Fine Arts

Libraries and archives
University Library of Genoa
Berio Civic Library
Franzoni library
Gian Luigi Lercari Civic Library
Music Library of the Conservatory
Edmondo de Amicis International Children's Library
Library of the Ligurian Society of Homeland History
State Archive of Genoa (which houses, among other things, the official documents of the Republic of Genoa and of the Banco di San Giorgio; it also houses the archive of the city's notaries since 1154)

There are also numerous neighborhood libraries.
Scientific research
Italian Institute of Technology (IIT)



New Street Museums
Ducal Palace
Royal Palace
Galata − Museum of the sea
Treasury Museum of the Cathedral of San Lorenzo
Diocesan Museum
Museum of World Cultures
Edoardo Chiossone Oriental Art Museum
Giacomo Doria Natural History Museum
Museum of Sant'Agostino
Museum of the history of Genoa



Carlo Felice Theatre
National Theatre, seat of the Court Theater, Duse Theater, Gustavo Modena Theater, Sala Mercato (Archivolto Theater)
Genoese Politeama
Teatro di Sant'Agostino, seat of the Teatro della Tosse
Cargo Theatre
Youth Theater
Rina Theater and Gilberto Govi
Garage Theater
Verdi Theater
Von Pauer Theater
Teatro dell'Arca (located inside the Marassi prison)



Genoa Fair
Cotton Warehouses



There is little information on musical activity in the early years of the city's history. And even later, the powerful Republic of Genoa, for many years, has always paid greater attention to trade and the maintenance of its colonies.

A discrete presence, worthy of being highlighted, is however recorded at the time of the troubadors and one of the most representative characters responds to the name of Lanfranco Cigala (died in about 1258), a man of the law, a good connoisseur of the Occitan language familiar to him for the frequent trips to Provence as diplomatic representative of the Republic of Genoa.

It is around him that a group of bourgeois gathers, also mostly jurists (Bonifacio Calvo, Lucchetto Gattilusio, Percivalle and Simone Doria), who give life to one of the most important troubadour circles in Italy. They met in the house of Lanfranco, their undisputed poet, to discuss, read and be inspired by the rhymes of the most famous exponents of Provençal opera.

In the following years, references on musical life in Genoa can only be found by consulting ecclesiastical archives as this activity is supported and favored by the Church and the local nobility. However, the musicians mentioned above all come from neighboring regions: Franchino Gaffurio (Lodi, 1451-1522), priest and music theorist in the service of the Adorno family; Vincenzo Ruffo (Verona, 1510-1587), composer, chapel master in the Cathedrals of Verona and Milan, in Genoa at the service of Andrea Doria.
Towards the end of the sixteenth century the musical life of the city recorded a great impulse thanks to the initiatives of the Cathedral of San Lorenzo which was organized by hiring singers and instrumentalists to form an imposing musical ensemble composed of a choir of 65 elements and 34 orchestral players.
In this period the two chapel masters stood out, both Genoese, Giovanni Battista Dalla (Della) Gostena (about 1558-1593), author also of madrigals and works for lute, and his nephew Simone Molinaro (1565-1615), whose themes musical instruments were used by Ottorino Respighi for a part of the Ancient Arias and Dances, Suite number 1. Another important organist of the Cathedral was Michelangiolo Rossi (1601/2-1656) one of Frescobaldi's best pupils.

It is no coincidence that Niccolò Paganini (1782-1840), the most illustrious Genoese musician, held his first concerts in various churches of the city. An acclaimed violinist of exceptional virtuosity, Paganini was also an innovative composer who wrote very important works for his instrument (including 24 Capricci, Variations, Concerts, 'Moto Perpetuò Sonate à mouvement perpetual 1831-1835). His teachers were Giacomo Costa and Francesco Gnecco.

His prodigious technique has reached the present day through the musicians who have handed it down: the chain begins with Camillo Sivori (1815-1894), his only pupil, who in turn taught Francesco Sfilio and the latter Giuseppe Cat.

In 2000, a foundation named after Francesco Sfilio was set up by Gccetto's will. The memory of Paganini is kept alive by the Istituto di Studi Paganiniani, of which Alma Brughera Capaldo, editor of the Quaderni, was a great animator. The Municipality of Genoa, for its part, organizes the Paganini Prize every two years, an international violin competition with the aim of rewarding new young talents. Since its foundation, important artists have graduated, including György Pauk, Gérard Poulet, Salvatore Accardo, Gidon Kremer, Il'ja Grubert and, more recently, Massimo Quarta, Giovanni Angeleri, Leōnidas Kavakos, Ilja Gringol'c and Shoji Sayaka . On the final evening, the winner of the Prize has the honor of playing the violin Paganini used to play: a Guarneri del Gesu from 1743 known as "Paganini's Cannon".

Among the many Genoese violinists worthy of mention are Giovanni Antonio Guido who in France, where he had emigrated, achieved considerable success with the work Scherzi armonici sopra le quattro stelle dell'anno, op. 3 (in imitation of those of Vivaldi); Cesare Pugni, as well as virtuoso violinist also composer of operas, instrumental music and ballets. There was no great dancer of the Romantic period who did not perform choreographies to the music of Pugni.

Genoa has also always been a landing place for many important musicians. The meeting point is the Teatro del Falcone (owned by the Adorno family) inaugurated in 1652. From this theater have passed: Cavalli, Lotti, Monteverdi, Galuppi, Cimarosa, etc. In the second half of the seventeenth century, Alessandro Stradella settled in Genoa, an important figure of the Italian middle Baroque, composer of melodramas, an extroverted personality swinging between a life dedicated to composition and a life on strike.

There are many artists who, born in Genoa, have found important recognition in the various sectors of the musical world, working above all abroad: Carlo Emanuele Barbieri, composer of numerous theatrical works and ballets, highly regarded director in the operatic field and since 1862 director of the National Budapest; Michele Novaro, second tenor and chorus master of the Teatro Regio in Turin, composer of numerous hymns including the Italian national anthem on a text by Goffredo Mameli; Margherita Carosio, one of the greatest sopranos of her time with a career of almost fifty years in all the most important theaters in the world; Piero Guelfi, baritone active around the middle of the 20th century; Giuseppe Barzizza, known as Pippo Barzizza, conductor and composer, also author of a treatise on modern orchestration in pop music; Angelo Francesco Lavagnino, excellent violinist and composer of chamber music, sacred and theatrical symphony and of numerous film soundtracks; Natalino Otto, initiator of the swing genre in Italy, an innovator in the field of pop music; Giancarlo Acquisti scholar of the Baroque period (director of the Monographic Anthology from Baroque to Our Times) and composer.

In the sixties in Genoa a movement was born which, albeit in other terms, forms and musical consistency, seems to follow the philosophy of the troubadour cenacle of Lanfranco Cigala: a group of young people, of different origins and experiences in the poetic and musical field, found in Genoa an ideal meeting point. The influence of the transalpine chansonniers is evident in some of them. In the collective imagination they are defined as songwriters. There are two Genoese by birth: Umberto Bindi and Fabrizio De André.
Bindi, musically the best prepared, offers a refined and articulated melody. Il Arrivederci di lui (1959) has a notable connotation of renewal of the Italian song. De Andrè stands out for his poetic vein and the great attention he pays to the choice of stories and topics that he deals with. His simple and effective melody makes him easily understandable to the people. After a difficult start, so much so that he contemplated abandoning it, he obtained a sudden, unexpected success with La canzone di Marinella which marked the turning point in his career.

Ivano Fossati, one of the most cultured artists on the Italian music scene, more musician than songwriter, author of memorable songs also written for others, was born and lives in the Ligurian city. The other songwriters have different origins as their initial activities are different. Gino Paoli was born in Monfalcone: originally a graphic painter, without specific musical knowledge, he dedicated himself to song in a casual way, but this did not prevent him from putting together a long series of successes from Il cielo in una stanza to Sapore di sale, Senza fine, etc.

Luigi Tenco was born in Cassine but the family moved to Genoa when he was about ten years old. In him, more than in others, the influence of the chansonniers is felt: Prévert, Kosma (their Feuilles mortes hovers in I'm in love with you), Brassens, Brel. Finally Bruno Lauzi, born in Asmara but raised in Genoa, author, among many songs, of that Il Poeta which could be considered the "manifesto" of this group of creatives. Ironic, melancholy, realistic, despite the numerous successful songs, suffers a certain indifference from critics and record companies.

Popular polyvocal song typical of Genoa is the trallalero.



It was in Genoa in 1574 that the first Guild of Pastai was formed with its own statute (Capitoli dell'arte dei Fidelari). In addition to the claimed paternity of pesto, Genoese focaccia, jeans and the lottery game, Genoa also links its name to the birth, together with other cities, of the custom of the aperitif.


Events and parties

International Poetry Festival. In June.
International Boat Show. In October. The International Boat Show is an event at its 60th edition in 2020. The exhibition of sailing and motor boats and an exhibition of products for pleasure and professional boating make it one of the major events in Genoa.
Science Festival. Between October and November.
Euroflora. Between the end of April and the beginning of May. The most spectacular of the European floralies awaits you at the parks of Genova Nervi.
Marc. In December and May.
Lantern Rally. In spring. Rally event that takes place in the hinterland of the province of Genoa.
Rolli Days. Generally two weekends a year, in late spring and late summer.


What to do

Facility listings can be found in individual urban district articles.

There are many things to do in Genoa. Many kids spend their time playing with friends in the Parks which are located inside some ancient villas, some of which are also museums (eg Villa di Negro - Edoardo Chiossone museum of oriental arts). Go for ice cream along the beaches and take walks on the beach. There are many paintings in the city and on the brick floors that many people admire. Fishing for catfish is also a hobby he might enjoy.

Whale Watching (See Molo (Genoa)). With departures from the port of Genoa.



Genoa is fantastic for shopping. There are designer boutiques, department stores, grocery stores and antique dealers. In the centre, for those who want to browse the trendy luxury boutiques along Via XX Settembre, Via Roma and in the elegant Galleria Mazzini starting from Piazza Ferrari.

There are many small, quaint and tourist-related shops in the centre. These are mainly in the central squares and small alleys. You can find souvenir stalls, kiosks selling books and snacks, seafaring themed stalls, traditional flea markets, modern and antique furniture dealers, small bookstores and small art galleries.

There is a large shopping mall called Fiumara located near the Genova Sampierdarena train station. To reach Fiumara, take a local train to Genova Sampierdarena station and exit the station. Turn left and go under a bridge, near which there is a sign on the left. The mall can be seen from across the bridge and is about a 10-minute walk away. The mall can also be reached by car or by bus 1, 2, 4 and 22. The mall is open every day from 09:00 to 21:00. There is a theater and activity center nearby which includes a billiard room, bowling alley and restaurants.

The road system offers a wide choice of starting points for all types of shopping: the arcades of Sottoripa, in Porto Vecchio, have maintained the atmosphere of an old bazaar from the times when ships loaded with goods of all kinds docked: spices , dried fruits and fried fish. In Via San Luca and in Via Orefice there are clothing and shoe shops available at attractive prices. Not to be missed is the ancient pastry shop Pietro Romanengo fu Stefano.

For foodies, we recommend a stroll between Via San Vincenzo and Via Colombo, near the Brignole train station, where you can explore a variety of bakeries, pastry shops and grocery stores. Not far from here is the Mercato Orientale - enter via Galata or via XX Settembre. This market is covered and there is a noisy explosion of people, colours, smells and a fabulous place to buy olives, herbs, fruit and other Ligurian produce.


How to have fun

Night clubs
The port area is particularly rich in night clubs and a lively nightlife.


How to get here

By plane
Genoa-Sestri Airport is located 9 km from the city centre. It is connected to the city center by the Volabus bus which ends at the Genova Brignole station and also stops at the Genova Principe station. It runs from early morning until around 11pm and runs every hour. The ride costs 6 euros (April 2014).

Domestic flights are operated by Ita Airways, Ryanair, Volotea, Vueling.
By car
Coming from Milan it is possible to reach Genoa via the A7 (about 145 km). But remember that the last part, from Serravalle to Genoa, is incredibly winding. It is therefore advisable to take an alternative route, leaving the A7 at the detour near Tortona and heading onto the A26/A7, following Genoa, Ventimiglia, Savona, Voltri; making it a longer journey (+20km), but definitely safer and more comfortable. The same highway is less tortuous in a northerly direction (departing from Genoa).

Coming from Turin, you can take the A6 to Savona (137 km) and then go to Genoa following the beautiful but winding A10 coastal highway (another 45 km), or follow the signs for Genova-Piacenza which you will find on the ring road heading south. The latter is the shorter alternative (170 km total), but offers fewer tourist opportunities.

Coming from the Côte d'Azur, follow the A10 motorway and enjoy the panorama (about 160km from the French border). If you're tempted to avoid the toll roads, bear in mind that it will take at least three to four times as long, although you might get better views. The Morandi bridge on the A10, which collapsed dramatically in 2018, has been replaced with a new bridge.

Coming from Tuscany, you can take the A12 from Rosignano to Genoa. From November 1st to March 31st it is mandatory to have snow chains on board between the exits of Carrodano and Sestri Levante, even if snow is rarely a problem here.

On boat
1 Port of Genoa. Ships depart from the port of Genoa for Palermo (20 hours), Olbia, Porto Torres, Palau, Arbatrax, Bastia (Corsica), Tunis, Malta and Tangiers (Grandi Navi Veloci, 46 hours), Barcelona (Grandi Navi Veloci, 18 hours) .
2 Ancient port of Genoa. Ships depart from the old port for Nervi, Camogli, Portofino, Monterosso al Mare and Vernazza.

On the train
Genoa has 25 railway stations and is connected with Turin, Milan, Pisa, Rome, Nice and Marseilles (France).

The main stations are:
3 Genova Brignole (Railway and underground station), Piazza Giuseppe Verdi 2. where trains from Rome, Turin and Milan stop. From here the single-section subway of Genoa departs, towards Rivarolo.

4 Genova Piazza Principe (Railway and underground station), Piazza Giuseppe Verdi 2. where trains arrive from Milan and France and where there is also an underground stop that goes from Rivarolo to Genova Brignole.

The train also operates an underground service along the coast and in Val Polcevera.

By bus
A motorway link connects Genoa with Bologna (intermediate stops in Parma, Reggio Emilia and Modena). With Eurolines coaches there are connections from many European countries. Other long-distance buses leave from Nice.


Getting around

Among the most beautiful areas in which to get around on foot there are certainly the alleys of the historic center or the Porto Antico area. The Anita Garibaldi promenade in Nervi or Corso Italia, which starts from the Foce area and goes east to Boccadasse, once a fishing village and today of great tourist interest due to its bay, the houses colored and the typical "crêuze".

By public transport
Public transport will probably be your best bet within the city. The bus network is operated by AMT throughout the city until 01:00. Be sure to check the routes and times you need because the system can get confusing, for example some routes only run at certain times and are replaced by similar ones with different numbers.

Single tickets cost €1.60 and are valid for 100 minutes after validation for an unlimited number of journeys in any direction (excluding: Navebus, Volabus). A day pass costs €4.50, while a group day pass valid for 4 people costs €9.00. These passes must be validated at the start of the first ride. If you have to take a bus early or late in the morning when tobacco shops are not open, you should have a mobile phone for SMS tickets. In this case you must send a text message with "AMT" to 48 50 209 and €1.50 will be charged. The response message is the ticket, which is valid for 110 minutes.

The integrated AMT - Trenitalia ticket valid for 24 hours at a cost of €4.50 called Genovapass is designed for tourists

On the train
Trenitalia and suburban and regional trains travel east-west along the coast connecting all coastal districts/suburbs with the city centre. This is the most convenient form of transportation if you plan to see a few outlying neighborhoods or towns along the coast. Tickets and AMT passes are valid on Trenitalia trains within the city limits (Voltri and Nervi); single tickets allow only one journey on the train and must be validated again at the yellow punching machines in the stations - check, the correct validation space with the name "Trenitalia" on the back of the ticket. If you travel outside the city limits to visit some suburbs, you will have to buy a ticket at a Trenitalia counter or machine.

Rack railway "Principe-Granarolo" (managed by AMT) with 9 city stations
On the subway
The Genoa underground has a single line that develops for eight stations: Brin, Dinegro, Principe, Darsena, San Giorgio, Sarzano/Sant'Agostino, De Ferrari and Brignole.

By bus
As is common in Italy, tickets are not sold on board (except at night or on Sundays, therefore at a higher price); you must purchase your ticket before boarding the bus at a newsagents, tobacconist's or subway station, and validate it at a punching machine once you board the bus.

The historic center of Genoa is served by buses only around some important squares and streets (Piazza Acquaverde for the Piazza Principe station, Piazza della Nunziata, Largo Zecca, Piazza Corvetto, Piazza Caricamento). Its caruggi alleys are so narrow that no vehicular traffic is physically possible, and they have to be explored on foot - the distances aren't huge anyway.

Elevators and cable cars
There are also a number of public elevators and cable cars that connect downtown with the surrounding hillside neighborhoods. The upper stations of the Ascensore di Castelletto lift and the Righi funicular offer a surprising view of the city.

Zecca-Righi funicular (managed by AMT) with 7 city stations
Sant'Anna funicular (managed by AMT) with 2 city stations

On boat
AMT also manages a public boat service called Navebus which connects the Porto Antico to Pegli. It's a great and cheap way to see the city from the sea; once in Pegli you can visit the public park of Villa Pallavicini.

Private boat services depart from the Porto Antico and travel along the coast to Camogli, San Fruttuoso, Portofino, Chiavari and the Cinqueterre.

By car
Locals will say that driving around the city is a little quicker than public transport (rush hour traffic jams notwithstanding), but once you reach your destination you are faced with the nightmare and frustration of looking for a non-existent parking space . It's not just a coincidence that most locals have switched from cars to scooters, to the point that even finding a place for a scooter has become difficult. All attractions within the center are within walking distance or well served by public transport, so a car is not needed at all. If you decide to drive into the city anyway, don't gamble on available street parking (there are fees for street parking anyway), go straight to a garage and hope they aren't all full. If you plan on going to the beach on a sunny weekend day in Genoa or any other town along the coast, forget it. Finding a parking space a few steps from the beach is an unrepeatable event. Use public transport instead.


Where to eat

Genoese cuisine is based on traditional Mediterranean cuisine. It is very rich in ingredients and flavours. The Ligurians use very simple ingredients, which by themselves seem insignificant, but when combined together they bring out the qualities of each ingredient to produce a harmony of beautiful flavours: mushrooms, pine nuts, walnuts and a variety of aromatic herbs.

Pesto is originally from the city of Genoa. It is used in many dishes, including pasta and pizza. You can always order from the huge variety of pastas and pizzas available, but trying the pesto-based one is a must to experience traditional Genoese cuisine.

Another must of Genoese or Ligurian cuisine is focaccia, which can be seasoned with onions, herbs or other food products. They are quite tasty and often cheaper than pizzas. There are numerous 'Focaccerie' scattered around Genoa and its surroundings. These are basically take out places and easy on the wallet too. In many focaccia shops you will find improvised focaccia varieties, but usually the tastiest ones come with just tomatoes or onions and a little olive oil. The original "focaccia" is simply seasoned with olive oil, salt and a little white wine. Do not miss the farinata, a thin and crunchy cake made with chickpea flour, water, salt and olive oil.

Among the first courses there are different types of pasta, seasoned with pesto or meat sauces, such as troffie, trenette and taglierini. Try the pansotti, ravioli filled with vegetables and herbs, as well as excellent with walnut sauce. Among the various meat dishes, one of the most characteristic is the tomaselle, rolled up stuffed with veal, eggs and aromatic herbs. Don't forget to try the lamb stew with artichokes. One dish is the typical Genoese Cima, bacon stuffed with various ingredients, then served cold, sliced. Mushrooms are present in the Ligurian provincial cuisine, they give flavor to meat dishes and complement fish dishes.

Fish truly occupies a place of honor on the menus of Genoese restaurants. A true masterpiece of Ligurian cuisine is the cappon magro: a very elaborate dish based on different types of fish and cooked vegetables, seasoned and with a sauce of herbs and pine nuts. Other popular recipes are fritto misto (mixed fried fish), salade di pesce (seafood salad), red mullet, stoccafisso in agrodolce (cod in sweet and sour sauce), with pine nuts and raisins. Mussels are ubiquitous, marinated or stuffed with meat, cheese, egg or marjoram. Finally the anchovies, which can be eaten cold, but are better if stuffed.

Among the desserts, one of the most characteristic is pandolce, a dish that is found on every Christmas table. Genoa is a city famous for its desserts: canestrelli, amaretti, baci di dama and gobeletti.


Where stay

A list of all the hotels in Genoa and its province that are members of the "Hoteliers of Genoa" association can be found on the website



Petty crime
The streets of Genoa are generally quite safe, especially in the main tourist areas and residential areas. The centre, Quarto dei Mille, Quinto del Mare and Nervi are all safe neighborhoods both during the day and in the evening. The alleys of the historic center are very characteristic and charming, but not all of them are completely safe.

However, some limited areas of the historic center off the main alleyways may be prone to petty crime or simply be unappealing to the general tourist (e.g. prostitutes waiting for clients in the middle of the day in dark alleyways just a couple of blocks away 'tourist attraction). Especially north of Piazza Caricamento / via Banchi / via Luccoli, around Via Pré and in the Principe Station area, it is advisable to pay particular attention and follow common sense, for example avoid walking in narrower, darker and deserted alleys outside off the main routes unless you know where you are going. Try to stay in the busier and brighter ones, especially in the evening. In particular, avoid the quadrilateral formed by via del Campo, via Lomellini, piazza della Nunziata and via delle Fontane which constitutes the ancient Jewish ghetto, today an area of profound decay. Pay particular attention to your surroundings, avoid displaying flashy objects and do not carry large amounts of money or valuables.

Robbery or violence against tourists is rare, however skilled pickpockets are not uncommon. Pay particular attention in the area of via San Lorenzo / via San Bernardo / via San Donato (which is a busy area with a lot of nightlife for students and young people) and also on city buses.

When walking, motorists (especially on scooters and motorcyclists) should not be expected to be particularly disciplined. On unmarked pedestrian crossings it may be necessary to insist on the right of way by starting to cross the road (with caution!), rather than waiting for motorists to stop. If a car, van or truck has stopped to let you across, be very careful and always assume that there may be a scooter passing that vehicle at high speed without seeing you.

Virtually all the beaches in and around Genoa are made of pebbles, rocks and cliffs. The seabed is normally very steep and you will not be able to hit the bottom a few meters from shore, so be careful if your swimming skills are not good. When swimming, be extremely careful as the stones under the water are mostly overgrown and very slippery. Absolutely avoid bathing if the sea is not calm: the waves that may seem innocent from the shore, but could be strong enough to make getting out of the sea quite a dangerous undertaking, running the risk of being slammed onto the shore or a rock (which you may not see because it is under water). There is usually no lifeguard service on free public beaches.

Galliera Hospital.
San Martino Hospital,


How to keep in touch

The post office in via Dante is open from Monday to Friday from 8.00 to 18.30 and on Saturday from 8.00 to 13.30.

The Municipality has joined the national FreeItaliaWifi network.


Physical geography

The city is located in the central and internal part of the homonymous gulf overlooking the Ligurian Sea. It is located between the coast and the hills of the Ligurian-Genoese Apennines, which have an average height of about 1200 m.s.l.m. and it is made up of easily erodible rocks, with rounded peaks and steep slopes, engraved by steep valleys. In the valleys that develop mainly longitudinally, streams such as the Polcevera and Bisagno flow and, outside the municipal area, the Lavagna, which, due to the shortness of the maritime side, never reach significant lengths. The unequal distribution of the rains, the impermeable nature of the soil and the hydrogeological instability that characterizes the urban territory, are factors that have contributed to making the regime of these waterways irregular, which alternate sudden and violent floods with low periods. The reliefs that surround the city, partially blocking the cold winds from the north, allow for sunny and bright winters, with less low temperatures than in Milan or Turin, and hot and not sultry summers thanks to the sea breezes and rains that touch the 1000 mm per year.



The city is a good base for exploring the Italian Riviera and world-famous places such as Portofino and the Cinque Terre.

Forts of Genoa - Set of military fortifications dating back to different eras, which the Republic of Genoa built to defend the urban territory throughout its history. The building projects were also taken up and used in the Napoleonic era, the Risorgimento and during the first and second world wars. Several hiking trails are open which unite the various bulwarks (some intact and reused for other purposes, of others only the ruins exist).
Genoa-Casella railway (three valleys railway) - Very suggestive narrow-gauge railway line that connects the center of the city of Genoa with its hinterland, reaching the village of Casella in the upper Scrivia valley. The route is just over 24 kilometers long and crosses a totally mountainous route touching the Bisagno, Polcevera and Scrivia valleys.

Via Postumia — This is the itinerary of the ancient Roman consular road, which winds through Liguria, Piedmont, Lombardy, Emilia-Romagna, Veneto and Friuli-Venezia Giulia.



The territory of the municipality of Genoa extends for 240.29 km² in the center of the homonymous gulf and extends over a coastal strip about thirty kilometers long, from Voltri to Nervi, with an almost equal development from west to east, behind which there are reliefs, even of considerable height, in the immediate vicinity of the sea. The territory, with its gulf, the coast and the hills, sees the alternation of different natural landscapes and environmental characteristics.

The western coastal area, now highly urbanized and at the service of industry and the port, in pre-industrial times featured the main beaches of the current municipal area: Sestri, Cornigliano and Sampierdarena.

The urban territory, as well as along the coast, goes inland along the furrows of the Val Polcevera to the west and the Val Bisagno, to the east, forming a sort of inverted Pi. The first is wider, almost rectilinear and perpendicular to the coast, the second with a path oriented first to the west, between Struppa and Molassana and then to the south-west up to the Foce.

In crossing the Polcevera and Bisagno valleys or the western coast from Sampierdarena to Voltri, scattered with residential and industrial complexes, or the eastern one from Albaro to Nervi, even if more scarce and fragmentary due to a different orographic situation, one can still perceive the presence of culturally autonomous urban centers, corresponding to the municipalities incorporated in 1926 in the Greater Genoa but still clearly distinguishable in the fabric of the modern administrative conurbation.

A subdivision of the municipal territory into five zones is outlined: the center, the Polcevera valley, the Bisagno valley, the west and the east.

The oldest part of the city until the establishment of the Great Genoa represented the entire municipal territory, it is enclosed within the hilly amphitheater crowned by the seventeenth-century walls; the urbanized area also extends vertically, going up from the port to the residential districts of Carignano and Castelletto, connected to the center by steep pedestrian paths called "crêuze", public lifts and funiculars, as well as by a complex road development. The historic center is characterized by the massive urbanization of the territory and the central presence of the port, which with its structures completely occupies the sea view. Over the centuries, but especially at the turn of the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, on the hills above the ancient historic districts arose elegant districts, such as Carignano and Castelletto, but also popular, such as Lagaccio and Oregina, which have incorporated some pre-existing villages such as Granarolo. Only the top part of the hill has been preserved from overbuilding, thanks also to the presence of military servants linked to the complex of walls and fortifications and to the more recent enhancement of these artifacts after their disposal from the military property. In the administrative division in force since 2007, the center is divided into two "Municipalities". Municipio I - Centro Est includes the oldest districts of the city and the hilly areas of the nineteenth-twentieth-century urban expansion, Municipio II - Centro Ovest includes part of the ancient San Teodoro district, joined to Sampierdarena, the main industrial town outside the walls incorporated in 1926.


Val Polcevera develops perpendicularly to the coast line, with a rather linear trend, and has always been the main access road to Genoa from the Po valley, once through the Apennine passes of Giovi and Bocchetta, to which they were added in the 'The two railway lines for Turin and Milan in the nineteenth century and the A7 motorway in the twentieth century. It is a wide and sunny valley, formed by the meeting of the Verde and Riccò streams in Pontedecimo. The left bank is the most densely populated, both along the stream and in the hilly areas; the right bank is mainly occupied by industrial activities, warehouses and shopping centers. On the heights survive hill towns of ancient origin such as Cesino, San Biagio Murta, Trasta and Fegino, on the right side, Morego, Cremeno, Brazil, Geminiano and Begato, Garbo and Fregoso on the left side; all these villages were once located along the transit routes directed beyond the Apennines, which favored the hilly routes over the valley floor, made treacherous by the frequent flooding of the streams. Mount Figogna (804 m) dominates the valley, on top of which stands the Sanctuary of Nostra Signora della Guardia. Val Polcevera, formed by the former districts of Rivarolo, Bolzaneto and Pontedecimo, constitutes the Municipality V - Valpolcevera.

The western part of the city is a thin flat belt behind which rises mountains that even exceed 1000 m and culminate in Mount Reixa (1183 m), the highest point of the municipal area, which in this area reaches and in some points crosses the Apennine watershed ( in correspondence with the high course of the Stura torrent), and borders (the only Ligurian municipality among those with access to the sea) directly with Piedmont (municipality of Bosio). Over the centuries the holiday resort of the Genoese patrician families (the villa Duchessa di Galliera in Voltri, the villa Durazzo-Pallavicini in Pegli and the villa Durazzo Bombrini in Cornigliano testify to this), the west was mostly sacrificed during the twentieth century to the development of heavy industry (steel, chemical, shipbuilding) and the port of Pra ', which ended up occupying almost the entire coast with its infrastructures. Residual stretches of beach remain in Pegli, Multedo and Voltri. Since the 2000s, some interventions have been carried out aimed at balancing liveability and progress, such as the recovery of the so-called "buffer zone" of Pra ', the reconversion of the former steelworks areas of Cornigliano, up to the ambitious project of the scientific and technological park on the Erzelli hill, on the hills between Cornigliano and Sestri Ponente. In the valleys of the west there are numerous testimonies of the first manufacturing activities of the modern age, such as paper mills and lime quarries, surrounded by the remains of ancient agricultural terraces, as indeed in the Val Polcevera and Val Bisagno. The west is divided between the VI - Medio Ponente Municipality (Cornigliano and Sestri Ponente) and the VII - Ponente Municipality (Pegli, Pra 'and Voltri).

The Bisagno valley has a sinuous course and is tighter in its mountains than the Polcevera valley. The torrent enters the municipal territory at Prato, in the Struppa district, and heads west for a stretch to the Molassana district, where it veers southwest towards Staglieno. In this first section the settlements arise mostly on the right bank of the stream, more exposed to the sun, where there are numerous hamlets that have largely preserved their rural aspect. The lower part of the valley, incorporated into the municipality of Genoa with the first expansion in 1873, was immediately destined to host infrastructures related to public services: here the Luigi Ferraris stadium, the Marassi prison, the monumental cemetery of Staglieno were built, the gas workshops, the public slaughterhouse and the fruit and vegetable market, which since 2009 moved to Bolzaneto. On the ridges that delimit the valley on both sides there are two distinct systems of fortifications, built between the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries: the first, on the right bank, between fort Sperone and fort Diamante; the second on the heights of Quezzi. After the Staglieno cemetery, the landscape becomes purely urban: the Bisagno, squeezed between the buildings, flows partially buried until it flows near the Fiera di Genova. The hills of the Bisagno valley, on the right side, are crossed by the historic aqueduct, which until the end of the nineteenth century ensured the water supply to the city by taking water from the Bisagno and its tributaries. The Bisagno valley is divided between the Municipality III - Bassa Valbisagno (San Fruttuoso and Marassi) and the Municipality IV - Media Valbisagno (Staglieno and Molassana and Struppa).


The eastern part of the city, an ancient holiday resort of the Genoese patrician families and today a prestigious residential area, has preserved its coast almost intact, full of inlets, overlooked by intact fishing villages such as Boccadasse and Vernazzola, and cliffs, crossed by splendid walks like that of Nervi. In the background dominates Mount Fasce (846 m), which with the nearby Mount Bastia protects this part of the city from the cold eastern winds and the north wind and from whose top you can enjoy a wide view over the entire eastern part of the city. The east is divided between the Municipality VIII - Medio Levante (Foce, Albaro and San Martino) and the Municipality IX - Levante (Valle Sturla, Quarto, Quinto and Nervi).



The municipal territory has a rather complex terrain, with numerous valleys that descend towards the sea from the Ligurian-Po watershed or its buttresses, separated by ridges with mountain reliefs at altitudes between 400 and 1200 meters high, which are between 6 and 10 meters high. kilometers from the sea. Istat classifies the municipality as belonging to the "coastal mountain" altimetric zone (an area with reliefs with altitudes above 600 m).

The most significant reliefs are found in the western area, in particular on the right side of the valley of the Cerusa stream, surrounded by Mount Reixa, which with 1183 m is the highest point in the municipal area and by Bric del Dente (1107 m).

Another important mountain system is, always to the west, that along the ridge between the Varenna valley and the valleys of the Branega and Acquasanta streams, behind the Pegli, Pra 'and Voltri coast, which culminates in the plateau of Monte Penello (996 m ) and in the tip Martin (1001 m). It is an area characterized by steep rocky valleys that culminate along the ridges in wide grasslands with rocky outcrops. At the head of the Varenna valley, Mount Proratado (928 m) rises on the ridge with the Polcevera valley.

Another relief of the west is Mount Gazzo (419 m), which dominates the town of Sestri Ponente and on the top of which stands the Sanctuary of Nostra Signora del Gazzo. The mountain has been the subject of a considerable extraction of limestone which has heavily modified its original appearance, also destroying many of the caves that opened in its sides.

The Polcevera and Bisagno valleys have at their head reliefs close to or higher than 1100 m (Monte Taccone and Monte Leco) but the territory of Genoa includes only the lower part of these valleys, with reliefs of a more contained height placed on the lateral ridges. Mount Figogna (804 m), on which stands the Sanctuary of Nostra Signora della Guardia, entirely included in the Val Polcevera, which characterizes the landscape of the entire valley, is located in the municipality of Ceranesi. Along the western ridge, between Polcevera and Chiaravagna, the major peaks included in the municipality of Genoa are the Teiolo mountains (660 m) and Rocca dei Corvi (582 m). After the latter, the ridge drops rapidly in altitude, touching Borzoli to end with the hills of Coronata and Erzelli, overlooking Cornigliano.

The ridge between the two major valleys detaches from the Apennine watershed at Mount Alpe (800 m), included in the municipality of Genoa only from the side of the Bisagno valley. The major relief in this section, Monte Diamante (672 m), on which the homonymous fort stands, is part of the municipality of Sant'Olcese, while Monte Spino (622 m), buttress facing the Val Polcevera, on which the strong Brother Minor stands. The ridge gradually descends in altitude to Mount Peralto (489 m), where the strong Sperone is located. From this hill, which is the highest point of the hilly amphitheater that encloses the historic center of Genoa, the two ridges branch off, crowned by the seventeenth-century walls. That polceverasca, to the west, with the forts Begato, Tenaglia and Crocetta, ends with the hills of Belvedere and degli Angeli, which once continued with that of San Benigno, completely excavated in the first half of the twentieth century, which closed the circle of walls at the Lantern.

The ridge facing the Bisagno valley, with the Castellaccio fort and the Righi hill, also gradually descends to the Bisagno plain and ends with the Carignano hill, overlooking the port and the Foce area.

The entire area that extends around the seventeenth-century walls converging on the strong Sperone constitutes the "Urban Park of the Walls".


As for the Bisagno valley, in the Struppa area the municipal territory reaches the Apennine watershed, with the Creto hill (603 m), which leads to the Upper Scrivia valley, and some significant reliefs, such as the aforementioned Monte Alpe, the mountain Alpesisa (989 m) and Mount Lago (941 m). On the opposite side, which divides the Bisagno valley from the Sturla valley, the main relief is Mount Ratti (560 m), with the homonymous fort. This ridge, with a series of hill fortifications, not connected by a curtain wall (Fort Richelieu, Fort Quezzi and Torre Quezzi, Fort Santa Tecla, Fort San Martino) gradually slopes down towards the Albaro hill and ends at the sea with Fort San Giuliano and with its non-urbanized part constitutes the “Urban Park of the Forts”.

The set of hill fortifications included in the two urban parks connotes the image of Genoa from different points of view and represents an exceptional historical and landscape value.

The Genoese east is characterized by the background of Mount Fasce (834 m), at the origin of the valleys of the various streams in the area. In the higher areas the territory is rugged, with steep slopes and rocky outcrops. The south-facing slopes show dry grasslands and are today devoid of settlements, while isolated remains of small buildings testify to an ancient agricultural use of these marginal territories. The slopes slope rapidly with a series of buttresses to the sea. Among these, the best known is Mount Moro (412 m), just above the town of Nervi, where there are the remains of a battery that was part of the coastal defense system during the Second World War.



The territory and the valleys of the city are crossed by streams with basins of different importance. The largest flow along the valleys of the same name and are the Polcevera, west of the center, with an enlarged basin and a straight path up to the sea and, to the east, the Bisagno with a narrower basin and more tortuous course. The city developed urbanistically in these two valleys with residential districts, productive settlements and infrastructures.

In the Bisagno valley the main tributary is the Fereggiano, which crosses Quezzi and Marassi, but there are numerous minor tributaries: on the right orographic canate, Torbido, Geirato, Trensasco, Cicala and Veilino, on the left, in addition to the Fereggiano, Lentro, Mermi and Noce , the latter fully covered.

In the Polcevera valley there are few tributaries included in the Genoese territory (we can mention the Burba and the Geminiano in Bolzaneto, the Pianego in Borzoli, the Torbella and the Maltempo in Rivarolo), while the main tributaries (Verde, Riccò and Secca) flow almost entirely outside the municipal area.

In the west of the city there are Chiaravagna in Sestri Ponente, Cerusa and Leira in Voltri, Branega and San Pietro in Pra ', Varenna in Pegli and Multedo.

In the east the main streams are the Sturla in whose valley the districts of Bavari, San Desiderio, Borgoratti and Sturla are included and the Nervi which crosses the district of the same name, as well as the smaller canals Vernazza, Priaruggia, Castagna and Bagnara.

The area of ​​the historic center, almost completely urbanized, is divided between the basins of numerous but short watercourses that descend from the hills behind. The main of these streams are San Bartolomeo, San Lazzaro, San Teodoro, Lagaccio, Sant'Ugo, Santa Brigida, Carbonara, Sant'Anna and Rio Torbido, which run through the streets of the various districts, with the exception of mount of the rio Lagaccio and the rio San Lazzaro.



The seismic classification places the territory in zone 3 and 4 with low and very low seismicity. In some chronicles of the past (Il Cittadino, Giornale del popolo, 24 February 1887) there is news of significant seismic episodes, such as that of 23 February 1887.



According to the Köppen climate classification, Genoa, in its coastal strip, belongs to the Cfa and Csa zone, i.e. to the Mediterranean climate, with hot summers and average temperatures above +22 °C, rainfall of less than 30 mm during the summer month heat. To the east and inland, in the valleys and in most of the territory, the transition to the CFSA climatic zone with a temperate transitional climate to the Mediterranean is reached, in which rainfall exceeds 30 mm. Above 500 m of altitude, the climatic zone passes to the Cfsb with Temperate climate in warm summer, with an average temperature below +22 °C. According to the climatic classification, which regulates the switching on of heating systems, it is in climatic zone D, 1435 GG. (switching on from November 1st to April 15th, with 12 hours per day).

Thanks to its environmental position, in the center of the gulf, on the sea, sheltered by the mountains and facing south, it enjoys a favorable Mediterranean climate. The temperature range between the maximum daytime temperature and the minimum night-time temperature is limited, on average around 6 °C throughout the year.

The morphology of the territory and the distance from the coast can cause the temperature to vary from area to area by a few degrees, with milder temperatures on the coast. As regards the characteristics of the climate, depending on the year, there are on average three or four hailstorms a year and, more rarely, some snowfalls, especially in inland or hilly areas. Although the Genoese winter climate is mild, thanks to the phenomenon of the "dark north wind" the snowfalls can also be relatively copious, with accumulations that often exceed 30 cm in the internal valleys, while they are generally more modest in the city. However, the snow usually melts within a day or two as temperatures rise, sometimes even within a few hours. The wind has an average speed of 2.5 m/s and makes the city breezy. Humidity is lower during the winter, while the wettest month on average is June. As for rainfall, it falls within the average of Mediterranean climates. Over the years, however, there have been sudden stormy episodes of great magnitude between September and November, which with their intensity and duration have caused floods in different parts of the city. It is a sunny city, with an average of 13.8 MJ/m and an average of 16 days of clear skies in a month.

For the temperatures recorded, the days of February 13, 1929, with -7.0 °C and January 8, 1985, with -6.0 °C for the minimum and August 7, 2015 with 38.7 °C must be remembered C (DICCA Villa Cambiaso Weather Station).


Origins of the name

The origin of the name "Genova", deriving from the Latin Genua, is traced back to an Indo-European root geneu- ("knee") or from genu- ("jaw, mouth"); genu- would be an allusion to the estuary ("mouth") of one of the site's ancient streams or the shape of the settlement by the sea. This evidence is corroborated by the fact that many linguists consider Genua and Genaua (Geneva) variants of the same name. The discovery of a Bronze Age village in Piazza Brignole, the stilt house from 5000 BC in piazza della Vittoria and the Etruscan necropolis at Acquasola have confirmed that the first settlements of Genoa arose along the right bank of the Bisagno stream, and according to the archaeologist Filippo Maria Gambari, this would prove the origin of the name of the city from Genaua, a term Celtic-Ligurian of the Iron Age with the meaning of "mouth", precisely because it was born as a river port.

During the Middle Ages the toponym was altered into Ianua, Latin for "entrance door", "passage" and this gave birth to the legend that the city takes its name from the Roman god Janus, protector of doors, because just like the two-faced Janus , Genoa has two faces: one facing the sea, the other beyond the mountains that surround it. The legend of Janus is taken from an epigraph located in the cathedral of San Lorenzo under a head of Janus, with the inscription Janus, primus rex Italiae de progenie gigantum, qui fundavit Genuam tempore Abrahae (that is: Janus, first king of Italy of the race of Giants, who founded Genoa in the time of Abraham) mixing legends and antiquities of different origins.

According to other theories, the origin of the name could be attributable to an Etruscan word, found on a pot shard, containing the inscription Kainua, which in the Etruscan language would mean "new city", or deriving from the Greek Xenos (Ξένος), "foreigner" , understood as a meeting place for foreigners, characteristic of a port city.




The oldest traces found so far in the city area concern a small settlement from the Neolithic era (in the Brignole area) from the 5th and 4th millennium BC. and arrangements from the Early Bronze Age (a terracing dry wall at the mouth of the Bisagno). The city of Genoa was probably founded by the Ligurians and originated from the most ancient settlement of the oppidum called "di Castello" (Sarzano), on the hill overlooking the ancient port (now Piazza Cavour), founded at the beginning of the 5th century BC. In this period the Genoese oppidum, inhabited by the "Genuati" Ligurians, was considered "the emporium of the Ligurians", due to its strong commercial character. Timber for shipbuilding, livestock, hides, honey, fabrics were some of the Ligurian commercial products.


Medieval age

The history of Genoa is the history of its inhabitants who were (or were defined), at the same time, lords of the sea, merchants and warriors capable, if necessary, of unheard-of ferocity. In an age of domination, they were able to create their own republic, the Republic of Genoa, born from the free municipality, which was governed over eight centuries by various forms of government: from the consular to the dogal to the oligarchic form. However, his policy was always based on a design of regional domination, studied and carried forward from the very beginning, based above all on the influence of powerful families who drew their power from the economic resources drawn from the mercantile activity.

The dominion over the Ligurian coast and the construction of an impressive fleet, both military and merchant, was of vital importance to give impetus to the birth of a state which for over four hundred years based its existence on diplomacy and neutrality, as well as on trade. By land, the city tried, not always successfully, to maintain control of the territories of the Oltregiogo, which guaranteed communication, including commercial communication, with the territories of the Po valley and the kingdoms present there.

The saying "Genuensis, ergo mercator" ("Genoese therefore merchant") - by an anonymous author - was an admirable synthesis of that haggling so famous in the world on which the Genoese based a colonial empire founded on overseas colonies which ranged from Iraq to Canary Islands, from England to Palestine (reached since the First Crusade), enclosing in its fist the entire western Mediterranean Sea and the Black Sea, defined as the Genoese Lake, and standing up when not placing under its control three empires: the Swabian , the Byzantine and the Habsburg one, of which the Genoese controlled the economy and trade. Caffa, Solcati, Tana, Chio, Focea, Mitilene, Pera are just a few of the many Genoas that the merchants of the Superba made to shine in commerce.

Its robust financial sector dates back to the Middle Ages. Banco di San Giorgio, founded in 1407, is the oldest known state depository bank in the world and has played an important role in the city's prosperity since the mid-15th century.


Modern age

Having lost its power over the seas, but not over the markets of the world, in 1797 the long wave of the French Revolution also hit the republic which paid for its condition of neutrality with unsustainable external pressures which led to its occupation in 1805 and subsequent annexation to the Napoleonic empire. During the French occupation, several works of art made their way to France due to Napoleonic looting. According to the catalog published in the Bulletin de la Société de l'art français of 1936, of the 9 works of art from Genoa, only 6 returned to Italy after the Congress of Vienna. An interesting anecdote occurred during the repatriation of Giulio Romano's Martyrdom of Saint Stephen to the city of Genoa, when Vivant Denon, director of the Louvre, claimed that the work had been "offered as a tribute to the French government by the Genoa city council" and that the transport would have put the fragility of the work at risk, knowing full well that the work had essentially been confiscated as a cultural tribute and at the same time giving an order to the French interior ministry to block the work at customs without mentioning its fragility or criticizing its legitimacy of the Piedmontese instances.

In 1814, following the capitulation of Paris, Genoa was besieged and occupied by the British navy which formed a provisional government, fearing a return to the status quo ante. In 1815, however, the European powers, largely indebted to the ancient Banco di San Giorgio, decided to suppress the republic and annex it to the Kingdom of Sardinia, despite the desperate attempts of foreign minister Antonio Brignole Sale in Vienna to maintain independence.

In April 1849, taking advantage of the Piedmontese defeat in the first war of independence, the city attempted to regain its independence. General Alfonso La Marmora was sent to put down the revolt with extreme harshness.

The area of influence of Genoa, although not officially institutionalized, extends, for historical, linguistic, cultural, economic and infrastructural reasons, as well as to the entire metropolitan city of Genoa and part of the neighboring Ligurian cities of La Spezia and Savona, to the Alessandria plain, the areas of Oltregiogo (Novi Ligure), Lower Piedmont and the district of Bobbio (in the province of Piacenza).


Genoa and its defences: a description of the 1800s

In his work History of the blockade of Genoa in the year 1800, Angelo Petracchi, chronicler of the siege of the city, provides a detailed description of Genoa and its defenses during the period of the Ligurian Republic:
«The city of Genoa is situated on the back of a mountain, which rests its slopes on the shore of the Ligurian sea. On the land side it has a double surrounding of walls, one of which is internal, which almost exactly encloses the inhabited area, and which forms a kind of oval figure. This is equipped with some bulwarks, which having been of no use in this siege, it is needless to detail. It is the other external one, and rising from the two maritime peaks it rises up to a great height of the mountain. This second district makes the city look almost like a triangle; while ending at the top of the hill, it descends on both sides to almost form the two sides which are closed and joined by the sea. Several forts surround this circle of walls. On the top there is that of the Sperone; towards the west side, more below the middle, there is another called delle Tenaglie, and at the end of the same there is another called di S. Benigno. This produces, that on that side the city of Genoa is almost impregnable; especially since the locality combines so propitiously to defend it, that it gives little or no hope to the besiegers of taking it. It is not the same on the eastern side, where being dominated from the outside by some heights, it was considered useless to raise other forts there. Failing that, a sort of parallel has been made outside, or rather a covered path which, by fortifying those same heights which dominate the city, compensates for this defect; therefore it is necessary for those who defend Genoa to keep this external line, and those fortifications, which are the Monte dei Ratti, on the summit of which is the Fort of Quezzi; Fort Richelieu, which was built by the famous Marshal of that name when he occupied Genoa; that of S. Tecla, and the Madonna of Albaro. Higher up than the Sperone, and almost perpendicular to the same, is the fort of the Diamante, which dominates the same Sperone, although it is believed by some that it is a little too distant from it; however, it too is of extreme importance for the besieged, greatly supporting the operations of the other external fortifications. Between the Diamante and the Sperone there is the Monte de' due Fratelli, which makes two different points: this situation is very remarkable, because it brings about the reunion between the besiegers, and could take the external works of the eastern line behind; but since there the crossing of the fires of the Sperone and the Diamante is feared, it is very difficult to take possession of it, although there is a certain site which is said to be immune from the artillery of both forts. On the sea side, many beautiful batteries defend the city and the port, as well as the maritime walls also secured by Nature. Such lately reassembled batteries took away all pain from that side. The most beautiful are those of the Strega, of the Cava, of both Moli, and of the Lanterna. On the western side there is the Polcevera river; on the eastern side that of Need. Albaro is a small and delightful village, which on this side is close to Genoa by almost a single mile, as on the other side is the equally charming village of S. Pier d'Arena».



The coat of arms of the city has always been linked to the political vicissitudes of Genoa: in the last period of the Republic the coat of arms consisted of a crusader shield with a royal crown supported by two griffins with straight tails, but being then subject to French power, after the Jacobin revolution of 1797 the destruction of the ancient insignia was decreed and therefore also the two heraldic figures of the city's coat of arms were abolished. With the annexation to the Kingdom of Sardinia, at the request of the General Council of the Citizen Body, in 1816, Genoa obtained from King Vittorio Emanuele I the municipal emblem « [...] with a red cross on a white field with a shield adorned with griffins [ ...] with their tails between their paws», as a sign of submission. This coat of arms remained in use until 1897, the year in which the City Council requested and obtained from Umberto I of Savoy on 21 March 1897, the right to display the current coat of arms with the tail of the two griffins positioned outwards, as a reminder of past dignity. After more than a century and a careful historical investigation, the Civic Administration has modified the griffins' tails to stand upright. Furthermore, the base of the coat of arms boasts on each side the bronze rostrum of a Roman ship with a boar's head, fished in 1597 in the port of Genoa and kept in the Royal Armory of Turin.

The flag of Genoa, or Cross of San Giorgio is made up of a red cross on a white field, and in ancient times it was the symbol of pilgrims who went to the holy places of Christianity and who, after 1095, the year of the conquest of Jerusalem by of the Seljuk Turks, mostly moved (at first) by a sincere spirit of mission, decided to take up the cross and arm themselves to free the land where Jesus was born and lived, in response to the repeated attacks suffered by the Turks, decided - overwhelmed the Arabs - to go on to conquer the Byzantine Empire.

The symbolism of the "Salvific banner of the true cross" - as Jacopo da Varazze indicated the cross of Saint George - determined in contemporary times, for armed pilgrimages, the appellation of crusaders. The use of the banner by the Genoese seems to date back to ancient times, when the Byzantine army was stationed in the city and the banner of the garrison (a red cross on a white field) was carried as a tribute to the small church of San Giorgio, overlooking the ancient market square, of Roman origin. It is usually said that in 1190 London and England asked and obtained the possibility of using the Genoese crusader flag on their ships, to have the protection and respect enjoyed by the Genoese fleet in the area it controlled, in the Mediterranean Sea and in part of the Black Sea, thus avoiding numerous piracy attacks; for this privilege, the English monarch paid an annual tribute to the Doge of the Republic of Genoa. However, the medieval historian Antonio Musarra points out that this notion is not supported by any historical or archival document and is in clear contrast with other historical events, such as for example the fact that the figure of the Doge of Genoa was born in 1339, and that the flag with the red cross on a white field is mentioned in the Annals of Genoa only starting from 1242. England, the city of London and the Royal Navy hoist the flag of San Giorgio, and the insignia is part of the Union Jack , the British national flag.

The historian Francesco Maria Accinelli erroneously indicates the Milanese coat of arms as a derivation of the Genoese one: « [...] And sent by the Republic 500 crossbowmen with the aforementioned insignia to help the Milanese in 1247, conquered with their valor the city Victoria again built by Federico II near Parma, the Milanese wanted to take on the emblem of the Genoese standard for greater honor», which instead dates back to 1066, when the effigy was officially delivered by Pope Alexander II (the Milanese Anselmo da Baggio) to Erembaldo, captain of the People of Milan in revolt against the Empire.

Since 2014, the city has had a new logo to promote its image: "Genova More Than This", which comes from the European Urbact-CityLogo project.




Among the 14 metropolitan cities of Italy, the Ligurian capital is third in terms of surface area, sixth in terms of municipal population and its agglomeration, as well as the fifth largest city in the country in terms of economic movement.

Its vast metropolitan area is instead the seventh in the country by population and the fourth by extension, thus determining a low population density, essentially due to the presence of Apennine hills between the coast and the metropolitan hinterland. To make up for this urban discontinuity, bodies have been specifically created to protect the Apennine green areas (for example the Beigua Regional Park), which have transformed the status of these areas into a metropolitan park.


Demographic evolution

As at 31 December 2011, according to the local statistical office, the Municipality of Genoa had 606,978 inhabitants, of whom 285,337 were male and 321,641 were female, representing approximately 76% of the entire Genoese urban area of over 800,000 inhabitants. The population is predominantly of Italian origin. The presence of immigrants is growing (in 2003 the number of immigrants returned to being greater than that of emigrants, remaining the same until today, with the exception of the years 2006 and 2007): as at 31 December 2011 there were in fact between the residents 54 521 foreigners (25 455 males and 29 066 females), equal to 9% of the total residents. The majority group is that of Ecuadorians, which increased from 3,048 in 2000 to 17,436 in 2011 (the year in which they represent 32% of foreign residents).

After a limited growth in the second half of the 19th century, a period in which many Genoese emigrated to the Americas, for most of the 20th century the city experienced a demographic explosion linked to the growing expansion of the port and the engineering industry. An initial phase of immigration from the valleys of Genoa and lower Piedmont was followed, after the First World War, by a considerable influx of Venetians and Friulians.

In the fifties, sixties and seventies the demographic explosion was emphasized by internal immigration mainly from southern Italy (in particular of residents of Sicily and Sardinia), which caused urban planning difficulties due to the lack of flat building spaces, with the consequent massive urbanization of the hilly areas behind the city center and the coastal outlets.

Population growth gradually stopped until it turned into a regression. In fact, the inhabitants have gone from over 816,000 in 1971 to around 610,000 in 2001: Genoa has lost a quarter of its population in 30 years. An accomplice to this situation is also the average age of the residents, which is decidedly high especially in some districts, which leads to a higher number of deaths than births (in 2011 there were 4 411 births against 8 190 deaths).

Comparing the data of the population of the 1981 census with that of 2001, the population of Genoa has changed from 762 895 to 610 307 inhabitants, for a decrease of 152 588 units, equal to a negative variation of about 20%. Contrary to most of the other densely populated cities which had a decrease in residents in the same years, where a loss of population in the capital corresponded to an average increase in the population of the municipalities in the same province, capable of compensating for the first even exceed it, in the case of Genoa also the sum of the population of the other 66 municipalities of the province decreased, passing from 282 214 inhabitants in 1981 to 267 775 inhabitants in 2001, for a decrease of 14 439 units, equal to a negative variation of about 5.1%. However, through the phenomenon of tourist rapalization along the east coast, and the building expansion linked to the activities of the industrial ports of Genoa, Savona and Vado Ligure, in connection with each other, the city has merged with the coastal municipalities into a single urban agglomeration of over 800,000 inhabitants, reconfirming its metropolitan reality beyond its municipal boundaries.

The average age of the Genoese (as of 31/12/2010) is 47.2 years, with a peak of 48.8 years in the municipality (former district) Medio Levante. The old age index (ratio between over 65s and under 15s) in the city is 233 (i.e. there are 233 people aged 65 and over for every 100 young people under 15), with extremes in the Val Polcevera municipalities (199) and Lower Valbisagno (263); in 2001 the city old-age index was 245.

In Genoa, the average number of members per family as at 12/31/2010 was 1.99 and there were 302,656 families. Among the families, 43.9% consisted of a single member (132 960 families), 27.5% of two people (83 314 families), 16.9% of three people (51 141 families), 9 .4% from four people (28 522 families) and the remaining 2.2% (6 719 families) with five or more members.

In 2011, 1,534 marriages were celebrated (570 with a religious rite and 964 with a civil one), 28 more than in 2010 (+1.9%); since 2007 (when there were 2,087 unions) there has been a sharp decline in the overall number of marriages, despite the fact that the resident population changed little during the period. However, the average annual number of marriages per decade had been declining for some time (4380 in the 1970s, 3075 in the 1980s, 2551 in the 1990s and 1928 in the first decade of the new century), but this was partly attributable to the decline in the general population. Marriages between divorced persons in 2011 represented 42.3% of civil ceremonies and 26.5% of total marriages. Since 2004, the number of civil marriages has exceeded that of religious marriages (mainly due to the increase in marriages in which at least one spouse is divorced).

As at 31 December 2011, according to municipal data, the most populous municipality was I Centro Est, with 90,098 residents and a population density of 127 inhabitants per hectare, while the one with the highest population density was II Centro Ovest, with 141 inhabitants per hectare , for a total of 68 378 residents.

The territory of the municipality of Genoa assumed its current extension in 1926 with the unification of 19 surrounding municipalities. At the 1931 census (the first following the annexation) the population was calculated at 590,736 units, higher than that of the last census of 2011, at the presentation of which the population was 586,180 inhabitants.



Reggio nell'Emilia in 1893 Socialist Party of Italian Workers and then in Parma in 1895 Italian Socialist Party), there has always been a balance between local powers and the Catholic curia which, for its part, has expressed strong personalities such as that of Cardinal Giuseppe Siri.

The Genoese left itself has rarely taken anticlerical positions and the coexistence between these two souls has sometimes led to compromises between both parties, as in the case of the mediations of Cardinal Giuseppe Siri between the camalli and the Genoese Port Authority. Towards the end of the Second World War, the same cardinal, when he was still vicar general of Archbishop Boetto, had played the role of mediator between the citizens and the German occupation administration, effectively saving the port of Genoa from destruction, first of the abandonment of the German forces.

Genoese were Pope Benedict XV and Cardinal Siri, while Archbishop Angelo Bagnasco was born in the province of Brescia into a Genoese family. Known at national level were don Gianni Baget Bozzo, political scientist, for a period close to the craxian current of the Italian Socialist Party (for which he was MEP from 1989 to 1994) and one of the founders of Forza Italia, and don Andrea Gallo, founder of the Community of San Benedetto al Porto and close to the no-global movement.

There are numerous saints and blesseds of Genoese birth or Genoese adoption, witnesses of the Christian faith in Genoa and Liguria, among them: Caterina Fieschi Adorno, Francesco Maria da Camporosso, Agostino Roscelli, Eugenia Ravasco, Tommaso Reggio, Benedetta Cambiagio Frassinello, Gianna Beretta Molla, Luigi Orione, Virginia Centurione Bracelli, Paola Frassinetti.

Several Marian sanctuaries are present in the municipal area, while the best known one, a traditional destination for pilgrimages in the Genoese area, the Sanctuary of Nostra Signora della Guardia on Mount Figogna, is located in the nearby municipality of Ceranesi. Finally, the Sanctuary of Nostra Signora della Vittoria should also be mentioned, erected by the Republic of Genoa near Passo del Pertuso, in the municipality of Mignanego, in memory of the victory achieved by the Genoese on 10 May 1625 over the army of the Duke of Savoy Carlo Emanuele I The unexpected victory, obtained with the contribution of numerous Polceveraschi volunteers, was attributed to the intercession of the Madonna.



The first printed gazette to appear in Italy is considered to be the one published in Genoa from 22 July 1639 (Genova (giornale 1639-1646)). The short story writer Michele Castelli, after having obtained the privilege of publishing from the doge Agostino Pallavicini, had begun publications up to 1646. Before April 1642, with the title Il Genova, he began publications on a weekly basis and was published on Saturdays. The typographer was Giovanni Maria Farroni, until 25 November 1656 when he was locked up in prison, for which from 12 January to 26 October 1658 the couple formed by Pier Giovanni Calenzani and Francesco Meschini took over. Publications stopped in 1684.

The first newspaper of Genoa, and one of the oldest in Italy, was the Corriere Mercantile, closed due to the crisis in July 2015. Il Secolo XIX was born in 1886, still today the main newspaper of Genoa, with headquarters in Piazza Piccapietra. Il Lavoro was also born in Genoa in 1903, currently part of the L'Espresso Publishing Group and local supplement of the Republic.

TV and radio
The television stations located in Genoa are Telegenova, Primocanale, Telenord and Antenna Blu; the main radio stations are instead Radio Santaleo (one of the first free radio stations in Italy and the most listened to in Liguria), Radio Nostalgia and Radio 19, owned by Secolo XIX.


Anthropogenic geography

Urban planning

Metropolitan area
In the concept of an extended metropolitan area, the territory includes the entire metropolitan city of Genoa and the Province of Savona, the urban cordon made up of the coastal municipalities of the Riviera dei Fiori in the Province of Imperia and the Riviera Spezzina in the Province of La Spezia, and the territories of the Ovadese and Novese, outside the regional borders, and administratively belonging to Piedmont (Province of Alessandria), for a total of 4,836.84 km² and 1,539,669 inhabitants.

The coastal strip is frequently urbanised; scarce anthropological elements are found only in the vicinity of the Portofino Regional Natural Park and some portions of the coast, in particular in the Cinque Terre, between Deiva Marina and Framura, near Punta Mesco, Punta Manara and Punta Baffe, around Zoagli, in the area of Vesima, in the Piani d'Invrea locality and near the promontory of Celle Ligure, in the Finale area and near Punta Murena; the hinterland instead extends along the Ligurian Apennines, whose summit is reached by Monte Maggiorasca with its 1,809 m. Various protected areas have been established along the hills such as the Beigua Regional Natural Park, the Antola Regional Natural Park, the Aveto Regional Natural Park, the Bric Tana Regional Natural Park, the Piana Crixia Regional Natural Park, the Capanne di Marcarolo natural park.

The main rivers are: the Letimbro, the Sansobbia, the Cerusa, the Leira, the Polcevera, the Bisagno, the Entella, the Petronio and the Vara which flow into the Ligurian Sea; the Bormida, the Stura, the Orba, the Lemme, the Scrivia and the Trebbia which are sub-tributaries of the Po. There are numerous small Apennine lakes, many of which are artificial. One of the most relevant is Lake Brugneto.

Although the metropolitan area is not an institutionalized concept, unlike the metropolitan city, in the Genoese case it is formed by the continuity of some territories, connected to each other for geographical, urban planning, socio-cultural, economic, linguistic, and historical reasons.

The territory also extends beyond the regional administrative boundaries and embraces practically the whole region, except for the non-coastal municipalities of the provinces of Imperia and La Spezia. Five large districts are thus identified, two central to the metropolitan area (Metropolitan City of Genoa and the Province of Savona) and three peripheral (Riviera dei Fiori, Riviera Spezzina and Oltregiogo). Of these three, two represent the coastal metropolitan corridor, and the third is its natural hinterland.


Administrative subdivisions

Until the mid-19th century, the urban territory of Genoa remained the one delimited by the seventeenth-century walls, the so-called New Walls, divided into six districts, called sestieri. The urban expansion of the municipality, motivated by the need to expand the city boundaries to make room for new infrastructures and residential areas, began in 1874, when the neighboring municipalities of the lower Val Bisagno Foce, Marassi, San Francesco di Albaro, San Fruttuoso, San Martino di Albaro and Staglieno.

The process of establishing the "Greater Genoa" was completed in 1926 with one of the largest territorial expansions carried out in Italy in that period. In the same years the fascist regime had carried out similar unification operations in many large Italian cities, but the Genoese case was distinguished by the extent of the territorial and demographic increase, which saw the involvement, alongside small rural municipalities, real towns characterized by a strong identity such as Sampierdarena and Sestri Ponente.

With this enlargement, the boundaries of the city were brought to the west as far as Voltri, to the east as far as Nervi, and to the north as far as Pontedecimo and Struppa, reaching a considerable extension and bringing the population of the municipality from 335,000 to 580,000 inhabitants. The historic municipalities incorporated into the municipality of Genoa, at the time called "delegations" and now incorporated into the nine city municipalities, still retain largely unchanged the original structure of small towns, with their own centers and suburbs, cultures and traditions.

During the economic boom of the sixties all the neighborhoods were expanded with new buildings and new popular neighborhoods were built such as Ca' Nuova and il Biscione.

It is not difficult to observe how the inhabitants of the peripheral districts look at the city center as a different city, using the phrase go to Genoa to refer to their intention to go to the city centre. This set of different localities, merged into a single urban and suburban reality, makes the city fascinating and unique, similar in some ways to certain industrial urban agglomerations of England.

The city of Genoa is divided into nine large areas, called Municipi, established in 2007 by the municipal council of Genoa. Each Municipality has an average of about 65,000 inhabitants and the two most populous are the Centre-East and the Lower Val Bisagno.



In the Middle Ages Genoa boasted the primacy of being the first city to reintroduce gold in Western coinage in a modern key, minting the Genovino, immediately copied by Florence in weight and fineness and, even later by Venice. Genoese economic primacy reached its apogee at the end of the 13th century, when Pisa was defeated and trade was at its peak.

Genoa was the seat of the first labor and trade union movements of the twentieth century and of the cooperative of port workers of the camalli (direct derivation of the Caravana).

Its economy and world of work have undergone considerable changes in recent decades, passing from a purely industrial connotation based on the main industry, that of the port, to a more modern one based on services (advanced tertiary sector, tourism, commerce, etc. ).

In this sense, the recovery of degraded areas in the valleys of the two main city streams, Bisagno and Polcevera, should be considered. Genoa is also home to the Boat Show, which takes place in the city's fairgrounds, the main European pleasure boating exhibition.

Port activity is clearly recovering, although it is still held back by an insufficient infrastructural support network, especially the railways. In this sense, it is believed that the planned high-speed-high-capacity railway line Tortona/Novi Ligure-Genoa ("third pass of the Giovi"), which will link Genoa to Rotterdam), could solve, if completed, part of these problems .

Another new factor in Genoa is technological research. Alongside the already existing research centers (among which the Gaslini children's hospital stands out) the Italian Institute of Technology (IIT) has recently joined. Furthermore, work is underway on the Erzelli hill for the construction of a scientific and technological park, which among other things involves the transfer of the former Engineering Faculty of the University of Genoa to the hill.

Genoa is an industrial city in a modern key with important companies and multinationals such as "Port of Genoa" (which includes around twenty terminal-companies including VTE), Leonardo, Ansaldo Energia, Ansaldo STS, ERG, Piaggio Aerospace, Costa Cruises, RINA, Genoa Sestri Ponente Shipyard; it is also a city of scientific-technological development and a city of art, culture and tourism (the historic center is rich in monuments, such as Porto Antico, Palazzo Imperiale, Palazzo Reale, Palazzo Ducale, Palazzo Rosso, Palazzo Bianco, Aquarium, International Fair, as well as many museums, castles, villas and noble palaces, parks, historic villages such as Boccadasse and the seaside coasts of the extreme west and east of the city).



Since the summer of 2017 it has rediscovered itself in the city with a strong tourist value, as demonstrated by the data published by the Liguria Region which cite 7.6 million presences in the 2017 summer season.

The strong driving force of tourism is represented by the Aquarium of Genoa, the neighboring seaside villages and the largest medieval historic center in Europe, characterized by narrow and steep streets called Caruggi di Genova.


Infrastructure and transport

Genoa hub

The Genoa junction is the fast-flowing road system that acts as an external and internal ring road to the city. It consists of the interchange of the Giovi (A7 Milan - Genoa), of the flowers (A10 Genoa - Ventimiglia), blue or Tyrrhenian (A12 Genoa - Rome) and tunnel (A26 Genoa - Gravellona Toce) motorways, which cross the inland and surround the coastal districts of the city upstream. The motorway network is connected to the fast-flowing road network from Sestri Ponente to Nervi, through the continuity of various arteries, equipped with their own city junctions, which allow rapid crossing of the city ("Guido Rossa" fast-flowing road, Lungomare "Giuseppe Canepa", Aldo Moro elevated road, Viale delle Brigate Partigiane and Viale Brigata Bisagno, Pedemontana Corso Europa).

The city is served by several state and provincial roads:
state road 1 Via Aurelia, Rome - Ventimiglia;
state road 45 of Val Trebbia, Genoa - Piacenza;
state road 35 dei Giovi, Genoa - Milan - Ponte Chiasso;
state road 225 of Val Fontanabuona, Chiavari - Boasi;
provincial road 226 of Valle Scrivia, Laccio - Busalla;
State Road 456 of Turchino Asti – Genoa.
Some urban crossing arteries are part of the road system of Genoa, such as the "sea" and "upstream" ring roads, as well as the coastal road axis built over the years parallel to the primitive route of the Via Aurelia.

The city is served by two important national stations, that of Genoa Piazza Principe and that of Genoa Brignole.

Within the municipal area, in addition to the main stations, there are also twenty stations and stops for regional traffic that serve the Genoese districts in a widespread manner.

From Genoa there are five railway lines, the coastal line towards the west Genoa-Ventimiglia, the coastal line towards the east Genoa-Pisa, the Genoa-Ovada-Acqui Terme line (part of the historic Genoa-Asti) towards the Ovadese and the Acquese , the Giovi branch and the Turin-Genoa railway. The two routes towards Northern Italy, both built in the second half of the 19th century, are vital for the disposal of goods in the port of Genoa. To optimize the sorting of goods arriving at the port of Genoa and speed up their transfer to their destinations in northern Italy and central-southern Europe, a new line is being built between Genoa and Tortona mainly in tunnels historically known as the "third pass".

Genoa is also connected to the locality of Casella (on the Po side of the Apennines) with a narrow-gauge railway, mainly for tourism; this railway, closed to operation since 2013 to allow for major works and reopened on 21 May 2016, connects small villages in the countryside, finally slightly exceeding the watershed ridge between the side of the Ligurian Sea and the Po Valley.


Metropolitan mobility

from trains circulating in city stations. This allows the use of regional transport buses and trains using the same ticket. The company manages 142 bus and trolleybus lines with 2498 stops, Volabus and Drinbus services, 6 Taxibus lines, 17 supplementary lines, 1 call service reserved for the disabled, 12 public lifts, the underground, 2 funiculars, the rack railway , the narrow gauge railway and the shuttle bus.

Since 1990, a mostly underground light rail line has been active in the Ligurian capital. The line was progressively lengthened with major delays and various increases in budgeted expenditure. The Genoa Metro has 8 stations and connects the city center with the suburban district of Certosa (Brin station).

In the past, the city was served by an extensive urban tramway network, the last line of which was suppressed in 1966.

The metropolitan public transport offer in Genoa is structured through 9 urban lines equipped with 53 stations scattered throughout the municipal area and divided into the following services:

3 regional train lines with metropolitan service and 22 city stations (carried out by Trenitalia as part of the service contract stipulated with the Liguria Region):

Genoa-Casella railway (operated by AMT): Manin-Casella section with underground service and 3 city stations
Underground (managed by AMT): Brin-Brignole section and 8 city stations
Principe-Granarolo railway (managed by AMT) with 9 city stations
Zecca-Righi funicular (managed by AMT) with 7 city stations
Sant'Anna funicular (managed by AMT) with 2 city stations
Navebus Pegli-Porto Antico (managed by AMT)
The four urban railway lines continue their journey in their respective directions, serving the city and the metropolitan area. The following maritime services complete this:

Shuttle "Genova-Camogli" (managed by Alimar and Golfo Paradiso Trasporti Marittimi)
Shuttle "Genova-Portofino" (managed by Alimar and Golfo Paradiso Trasporti Marittimi)

You bring
The Port of Genoa includes the commercial port and the passenger port. The port complex has specific connotations for the various port functions and services. In it are present and developed many activities such as the commercial exchange of goods, oil, industrial and those of retroport activities and shipbuilding and ship repairs, port and railway mobility and therefore all the complex activity linked to transport of passengers and tourists. The numbers, referring to 2008, are of a total handled of 55.66 million tons, with a commercial traffic of 50.64 million tons and a passenger traffic of 3.26 million. Further development of the areas and their redesign is planned, the so-called Waterfront with which new port areas and infrastructures will be built and some of the existing spaces will be redeveloped.

The tourist ports are a separate reality: that of Sestri Ponente (commercial port 2nd category, 1st class); the Historic Port (commercial port 2nd category, 1st class); the Duca degli Abruzzi (commercial port 2nd category, 1st class); the one at the Fiera del Mare (unclassified tourist port) and that of Nervi (2nd category public port, IV class).

The Genoa-Sestri "Cristoforo Colombo" airport is located on an artificial peninsula built in the body of water in front of Sestri Ponente. It is the main one in Liguria and the traffic generated in terms of passengers, although less than in other airports, still about one and a half million passengers a year. The annual movement of goods, on the other hand, is marginal, with a total of about 25,000 tons between goods and mail.

Infrastructure under construction or planned
In addition to the existing infrastructures, in Genoa there is a series of infrastructures currently under construction or planned for future construction:
the third railway crossing, a new high-speed, high-capacity railway line under construction between Genoa and Tortona;
the gutter motorway, the new motorway in the west of the city (area west of the city centre) whose construction is planned;
the new breakwater in front of the port;
the railway junction;
the lengthening of the subway towards Rivarolo and towards San Fruttuoso;
the expansion of the airport;
the scientific-technological park of Erzelli;
the Bisagno spillway;
the East Waterfront at the Genoa fair.



On 24 October 2019 Genoa was designated European Capital of Sport for 2024.

"Football cannot be played well in Genoa because there is a macaia"
(John Brera)

The city is home to two important football teams that play respectively in Serie B and Serie A, Genoa and Sampdoria. Genoa, founded in 1893, is recognized as the oldest football club in Italy, and won the first Italian championship in 1898, winning a total of nine national championships between 1898 and 1924 and an Italian Cup in 1937. In recognition of this primacy, in 2011 Genoa was included in the International Bureau of Cultural Capitals (IBOOC) - a sort of historical sporting heritage of humanity - at the request of Xavier Tudela, president of the IBOOC. Furthermore, in 2013 Genoa was admitted to the Club of Pioneers, an association that brings together the oldest football clubs in the world. The other city team is Sampdoria, founded in 1946 from the merger of the historic clubs Sampierdarenese (1899) and Andrea Doria (1895), which boasts the record attendance among Ligurian teams in the top flight and in European competitions, won the championship Serie A and the Italian Super Cup in 1991, the 1989-1990 Cup Winners' Cup edition and 4 Italian cups. In their history, the two teams have faced each other several times in what is known as the Lanterna derby. Numerous other city teams militate in championships at an amateur level, among the oldest, with militancy in the past in important categories, are Sestrese, Rivarolese and Molassana Boero.

Other sports
In 2002 the youth rowing world championships were held in Prà, for the occasion the rowing center was built in front of the Genova Prà station, the first peripheral federal center for Italian rowing.

The Genoa Open Challenger, an international tennis tournament, has been held annually in Genoa since September 2003.

Water polo
The Genoa Cricket and Football Club Waterpolo was the water polo section of the multi-sports club Genoa Cricket and Football Club, which in its history won the first four Italian men's water polo championships. The other two Genoese clubs that have won the top Italian championship are: Società Ginnastica Andrea Doria eight times and Sportiva Sturla once. Also worth mentioning: the Nicola Mameli Sports Club, the Libertas Sports Club and the Nervi Sports Club.

Genoa has been the stage finish of the cycling Giro d'Italia many times. The last five:
1992: prologue time trial, won by Thierry Marie;
2000: 17th stage, won by Álvaro González de Galdeano,
2004: prologue time trial, won by Bradley McGee;
2015: 2nd stage, won by Elia Viviani.
2022: 12th stage, won by Stefano Oldani.
In the Pontedecimo delegation, the Giro dell'Appennino, one of the Italian classics, has also been organized since 1934.

The Rally della Lanterna is a car event that takes place in Genoa and its hinterland. Another race is the Rally delle Valli Genovesi.

The CUS Genova Rugby which plays in Serie A and the Amateur Rugby Genova are based in the municipality.

Igo Genova Volley was a men's volleyball team founded in 1979 and dissolved in 2010, the volleyball activities from that date are carried out by the company Pallavolo Genova which acquired the rights.

In field hockey Genoa boasts an excellent tradition, among the local teams we mention: CUS Genova Hockey, Hockey Club Genova and Hockey Club Superba. There is also an ice hockey team.

Among the companies based in the municipality are: CUS Genova, and Trionfo Ligure.

Among the clubs based in the municipality that are dedicated to the various disciplines of gymnastics, we can mention the historic Raffaele Rubattino Gymnastics Society, founded in 1894.

You know
In Genoa there is a strong tradition in the practice of French Boxing (savate), testified by the presence of numerous national and international sports associations. The city has also given its contribution to the evolution of the discipline, so much so that some shots, although rarely used, are called "Genoese style".

The Tambourine game was very popular in the past. The Italian Tambourine Championship has been won several times by Genoese teams: twelve times by the Barabino-Sampierdarenese company, four by the Sestrese, while Rivarolese and the Palazzo Genovese company have won the title once.

Genoa is an important international attraction for sailors, it is home to the Italian Yacht Club, the oldest sailing club in the Mediterranean, founded in 1879. From the name of the city derives Genoa jib, i.e. the jib of Genoa, the only true Italian invention in history of pleasure sailing, a triangular sail similar to the jib used for the first time in regattas by Raimondo Panario in 1926. In 2004 it was a candidate to host the 2007 America's Cup, which was then held in Valencia.

Genoa hosts several basketball sports associations. Some of these have had national successes (Basket Pegli) Other important clubs are: PGS auxilium, my basket, ASD Polisportiva Santa Caterina (SCAT) and Virtus basket Genoa.

Sport facilities
Luigi Ferraris Stadium, capacity: 36,599 spectators + 144 seats in the press box.
La Sciorba stadium, capacity: 7,000 seats;
Stadio Giacomo Carlini, capacity: 5,700 spectators;
Stadio Croce, with a capacity of 1 920, the city's main tennis stadium;
Stadio di Albaro, the city's main swimming stadium capacity: 5,000 spectators;
Palasport Palafiera, with a capacity of up to 20,000 seats;
Palasport PalaMandraccio;
Piazza delle Feste ice rink;
RDS Stadium, capacity depending on the configurations from 5000 to 6000 seats;
Swimming pool-theater, ancient port area;
Canoeing field in the Canale di Calma di Prà;
Field-School of Athletics of Villa Gentile.