Portofino is a fantastic location, based in the Riviera Ligure, Italy, considered by many, one of the world's eight wonders. It is a small town of no more than 500 people, placed upon its bay. It's kind of a natural bowl which has become the world's famous Piazzetta.
Portofino became famous in the 60s, when the rich and famous characters of the "Dolce Vita", actors, actresses, pop stars, and rich aristocrats frequently started visiting it for its twilights, exclusive parties, and breathtaking views.
At the time, the high society moved from Via Veneto and Piazza di Spagna in Rome during weekends to Portofino, Capri, Saint Tropez and Monaco, Cortina and Saint Moritz.
These were the compulsory spots, in addition to Porto Cervo, once known as the Costa Smeralda, during summers. Through time, Portofino has seen a high standard of living thanks to its exclusive guests, huge yachts, famous boat races such as the Zegna Trophy and for its incredible and natural beauty.
Today one goes to Portofino to feel good, because it is a fantastic place, full of magic, where to meditate and make peace with oneself. We suggest visiting Portofino during Easter times, that is when Easter falls in the month of April, until the end of October.
If the weather allows it, you can take a small Ferryboat from the Molo Umberto I (the one on the right) to San Fruttoso or to Camogli, two beautiful viallages right on the opposite side of the Portofino mount.
In San Fruttuoso you can either have lunch or dinner. In front of Camogli you can stay at Punta Chiappa, where you will find rocks for sun baths. There, you can eat at Trattoria da Spadin, a cozy place on the sea. Take the time to visit Camogli, a very fishermen's village mood.
During winter times we suggest Portofino only if there is good weather. During some months, between November and February, a lot of shops and accommodation are closed. However, if there is the chance of good weather, a visit is well worth the time. For the remaining period, between April to the end of October, you can come any day, although best if between Thursdays and Sundays.
Portofino is perfect to love, dream and relax. It is the best place for this goal. The Piazzetta is always full of people, and you feel as if you're in your living room.
There are many Restaurants, serving especially fish, we suggest for example "DaU Batti" at Vico Nuovo 17 (just behind the Piazzetta) where you must try their secret-recipe-cooked Scampi - amazing - or on the left pier, you can find the restaurant "U Magazin", where you can eat fish with candle light at one meter from the sea! Very romantic.
In Via Roma you'll be able to find on the right a small shop of cute local pot pieces. We also suggest an "aperitivo" at Winterose at the end of the Calata Marconi (the left one). It is a type of boutique of good wine with renowned brands.You'll be able to enjoy a glass of wine a meter away from the sea.
For anything else, if you're thinking of staying a night or two, we advise you stay at the Splendido Mare, a 5 star luxury hotel on the Piazzetta, or the Nazionale, a retro-styled 4 star hotel near it. If you also want to swim in the sea, you could stay at the Piccolo Hotel, a very nice 4 star hotel at 5 minutes walking distance from Portofino. It has a splendid private beach.
We suggest to visit Portofino's Lighthouse. It is takes about 30 minutes walking which starts from the Piazzetta on the right. There are plants, fields, and you will feel calm. Take water with you and wear heelless shoes for this walk. We also suggest you visit the Castle Brown on the same road, there is a fantastic view where you'll be able to take pictures or film the surroundings.
EVEN A BOAT TRIP IS A ROMANTIC IDEA TO PASS THE TIME IN PORTOFINO. WE SUGGEST VISITING SAN FRUTTUOSO, WITH ITS CHRIST OF THE ABYSS AND THE ABBEY. THE ROMANTIC CAMOGLI, PARAGGI WHICH HAS CRYSTAL-CLEAR WATER where you can relax during all the the day on the beach with amazing sunsets. SANTA MARGHERITA LIGURE where you can enjoy an aperitif in the middle of the crowd, have a dinner, and spend a crazy night at the trendy club Covo di Nord-Est.
The TAXI BOATS are available on the right side of the PIAZZETTA. Please ask a quote before to boarding. If you go ahead, you can find a public boat service from/to Portofino with a run every 30/45 minutes.(cheaper).
There are no nightclubs or discos in Portofino. The closest is the Carillon in Paraggi at 30 minutes walking distance. We suggest visiting it from June to September only on Friday and Saturday nights, whereas for the remaining periods, only on Saturdays. In any case, during the week-end on summer, you can hear live piano music from the Chuflay Restaurant or from live performers in Piazzetta.
If you make clubbing one of your habits we suggest you to visit Carillon only on Saturdays during the months of July and August. The people there are quite young, between 20 and 40 years of age. The dress code is fashionable, not too elegant. They play mainstream, house and 70s. For women wearing high heels and who don't want to walk, we suggest taking one of our cars.
If you want, you'll be able to have all the fun you can get by using our car plus driver service, up to 8 people - for trendy and freedom-full nights in Versilia at the Twiga, at Montecarlo's Jimmy's or at Le Vip Room and Les Caves du Roy in Saint Tropez. Round trip on the same night with no driving stress or alcohol limits.
We remind you that in Italy the alcohol consumption limit when driving is 0.50 g/l. During Friday and Saturday nights there are a lot of police controls.
you can wake up late in the morning, have breakfast in the Piazzetta, take a boat trip or swim in the Paraggi beach, enjoy an Aperitivo from 18 until 20:30, and have dinner around 21:30. During weekends and in the summer season, women usually go to dinner dressed quite elegantly. You'll have the chance of buying a nice dress in many of the famous boutiques present in Portofino.
Our famous Piazzetta
is made up of hand made sandstone, so be careful when wearing high heels. Try walking in the appropriate corridors. We always suggest wearing a tiny sweater on the shoulders from 6pm onwards. In town you will find a pharmacy, banks, ATM, some small food shops, bakery, newspapers and places where to get cigarettes.
During the high season, when the restaurant Delfino
is open (Piazzetta on the right side), you can find a free wifi connection there. The signal is reachable in around 30/50 meters.