Portofino

Things to do in Portofino

This town may be pricey, but the photo ops and scenery are fabulous and free. From outdoor activities to art and culture, you won’t have a problem figuring out what to do in Portofino. Follow the pathway up the Salita di San Giorgio, past the yellow Church of San Giorgio, to the Castello Brown, a 16th-century castle, named after a British consul in Genoa, Montague Yeats Brown. After you catch your breath, this is the best place to take spectacular photographs of the town. Happily, the best things to do in Portofino also get you your exercise. Museo del Parco is an open-air sculpture park sits on the hillside above the port, and is home to works by more than 100 contemporary artists, from Giò Pomodoro to Lucio Fontana.

Italian brands tout their latest collections of beach, cruise and yachting wear in the tiny boutiques lining Portofino's Piazza Martiri dell'Olivetta and surrounding streets. If that’s too glitzy for you, different sorts of treasures abound on Via Romo at Mingo, an unpretentious boutique that sells moccasins, ballet slippers, and bejeweled sandals crafted by Tuscan artisans. If three meals are not enough culinary exposure, foodies can still find enticing things to do in Portofino. Take your appetite to Seghezzo, and head to Santa Margherita, where the wooden shelves of this traditional gastronomy store are stacked with delicacies such as scented Ligurian olive oil and quince-jam pie.

Yacht and villa owners come to the 1970's-style Excelsior for the town's signature cocktail: a mix of pineapple, gin, and curaçao. But the bar is best-known for its Paciugo ice creams, with fresh strawberries and whipped cream.

Head to the terrace for a drink under the stars. Cocktails, such as the pomegranate-and-spumante Tintoretto, are served at candlelit tables beneath a cream canopy in this exclusive bar at the Splendido Mare.

Portofino's social scene revolves around Piazza Martiri dell'Olivetta—known simply as La Piazzetta—where A-listers and celebrity-watchers meet. At Morena, drinks are served with Ligurian olives and nuts on white linen–draped tables in the main square.

The wooden shelves of this traditional gastronomy store in nearby Santa Margherita are stacked with area delicacies, such as scented Ligurian olive oil and house specialties like quince-jam pie.

The unpretentious boutique sells moccasins, ballet slippers, and bejeweled sandals crafted by Tuscan artisans from original thirties, forties, and fifties models by owner Maria-Luisa Oneto's father.

Italian brands from Gucci to Pucci tout their latest collections of beach, cruise, and yachting wear in the tiny boutiques lining Portofino's Piazza Martiri dell'Olivetta and surrounding streets.

Wander round the verdant pathways of the open-air sculpture park on the hillside above the port; it's home to works by more than 100 contemporary artists, from Giò Pomodoro to Lucio Fontana.

Follow the pathway up the Salita di San Giorgio, past the yellow Church of San Giorgio, to the 16th-century castle, named after a British consul in Genoa, Montague Yeats Brown. Tip: This is the best place to take spectacular photographs of the town.