An idyllic weekend in the Italian Riviera

19 June 2023
Written by
The Italy Insider

Everything you need to know to plan your trip

The Italian Riviera is one of Italy’s most charming and romantic destinations. An expanse of land that encloses Rapallo, Santa Margherita Ligure, Paraggi, Portofino and more gems tucked along the azure coloured coastline. From savouring Ligurian specialties to living the Dolce Vita in the Piazzetta di Portofino, here is everything you need to know about La Riviera Ligure.


Baia Cannone

What to do

La Portofinese Eco Farm

The Portofinese Eco Farm is a self-sustainable farm, with the ultimate aim of making its visitors discover also the fascinating Portofino hillsides. The idea is that of recovering land that is abandoned for traditional cultivation and to promote agricultural activities. In the Eco Farm you will see the bee path, where they produce their honey, the wine road and their olive trees. WEBSITE

San Fruttuoso 

In between the blue waters of Liguria di Levante and the woods of the Portofino Mountains, the Monastero Benedettino arises. Located in an oasis of complete tranquility, with a unique architecture that is perfectly aligned with its surroundings, the site of the Monastery was originally chosen by martyr Fruttuoso.


A typical maritime village characterised by beautiful houses coloured in bright tones. The village was initially dedicated to maritime and commercial activities, however, over time they started developing other activities such as spinning, weaving and dyeing of fabrics.

Valle dei Mulini

Located in the Portofino National Park, you can walk through the footpath along the Valle dei Mulini, characterized by the remains of 35 mills.  

Walk from Paraggi to Portofino

Starting from Santa Margherita Ligure, and passing through Paraggi, Passeggiata dei Bacini is a romantic and panoramic path to see Portofino. The road runs along the seaside, showing a beautiful and absolutely relaxing view.

Museo del Parco di Portofino 

A museum located in a beautiful Portofino park with an amazing view of the sea. Created by Baron Mumm in the 80’, the park hosts a collection of rare plants and an important number of contemporary sculptures that keep growing every year, making it a cultural space immersed in the beauty of nature. WEBSITE 

Lunch at San Fruttuoso. Ph. Courtesy of Belmond
San Fruttuoso. Ph. Courtesy of Belmond

Where to eat

Da I Gemelli 

Da I Gemelli is a family-run restaurant from 1850 located in the small Portofino port. Today Paolo and Matteo represent the 8th generation of entrepreneurs that run the restaurant. Thanks to the culinary secrets handed down from the mothers and grandmothers, this restaurant will take you on a unique culinary experience across the tradition and elegance of Liguria. WEBSITE

Da ö Battj (originale a Santa Margherita) 

Located on the top of a calm and relaxing hill that overlooks the Santa Margherita Gulf we find a traditional restaurant called Da ö Battj. Their signature dish that you need to try is the Scampi alla Battj, a secret recipe that has been passed on for more than 3 generations. WEBSITE

Cracco portofino

In the scenographic village of Portofino, from where you can admire Golfo del Tigullio, we find Cracco Portofino restaurant. A real journey discovering the traditions of the land with a contemporary twist reinterpreted by Chef Cracco. WEBSITE

DaV Mare

A family-run business that started several years ago with the opening of the well-noted restaurant Da Vittorio in Bergamo. The dream of the family was that of extending their business and opening another restaurant in the small yet iconic port of Portofino. Fish and shellfish will be the main protagonists of their new menu. WEBSITE 

Paccheri DaV Mare. Ph. Courtesy of Marco Valmarana
Cracco Portofino


Bar Morena da Ugo

For a beautiful aperitivo in the main square of Portofino, you absolutely need to try Bar Morena da Ugo. The perfect place to drink a glass of wine, eat some snacks and just admire the Portofino port. WEBSITE

Where to Sleep

Splendido Mare, a belmond hotel

Located in one of the most amazing spots of the Riviera Ligure, we find the Splendido Mare A Belmond Hotel. With its unique elegance, just by the sea, immersed in the typical Portofino atmosphere, this hotel is perfect for a relaxing vacation tasting the authentic Italian spirit. The hotel also offers a refined restaurant, DaV, that will take you on a culinary journey tasting seafood delights. WEBSITE

Splendido Mare, a Belmond Hotel. Ph. Courtesy of Belmond


Bagni Fiore. Ph. Courtesy of Marco Valmarana

What to do

Bagni Fiore Dior 

Get immersed in the Dolce Vita style in the beauty of Bagno Fiori, this year branded by Dior. Made even more unique by a pop-up spa, a new lounge area and an exclusive concept store. Bagno Fiori is located in the heart of Portofino in the Splendido Mare, surrounded by the rocky coast typical of the area. WEBSITE

Where to eat


Langosteria is a restaurant located in the beautiful bay of Paraggi. From there you can admire the amazing sunsets in the summer, breathing the fresh summer breeze. Their signature dish is the Pansotti di Santa Margherita Ligure with scampi sauce, a typical dish from the Genoese tradition. WEBSITE

Langosteria Paraggi


What to do

Il Cinemino

The Cinemino is a cultural space originally born in Milano with a cinema room and a bar. A hybrid space where the cinema acts as a confrontation place and the bar as a space to meet up getting inspired by the cinematographic scenery. WEBSITE

Gelateria Centrale

One of the best ice creams in Santa Margherita is for sure at Gelateria Centrale. A selection of flavours made special by ‘Pinguino’ is their signature chocolate creme to add on top of your ice cream.  


Drogheria Seghezzo

La Bottega di Seghezzo is one of the oldest shops in Santa Margherita founded in 1905. The aim of the Seghezzo family is that of maintaining the aesthetics of the old shop while modernising some aspects for the new clients. WEBSITE

Where to eat

Osteria N. 7

A traditional osteria with a rustic style where you can taste the flavours of the Liguria territory. From the trofie al pesto to the pansotti liguri Osteria N. 7 is a welcoming place for a dinner in typical Ligurian style.  


Located in Santa Margherita Ligure in the characteristic quarter of Corte, we find Fioridiponti bakery that reinterprets the typical receipts from Liguria with genuine ingredients. Here you will taste the focaccia, farinata and savoury pies. WEBSITE

Sunset over the port of Santa Margherita Ligure


Il Vernissage 

In a location from where you can admire the beauty of the bay, we find Il Vernissage. Some small tables on the way up to the castle, where you can enjoy a typical aperitivo.

Tortuga American Bar

Located in the Santa Margherita marina, the Tortuga American Bar is for sure an iconic location. Here you can enjoy an aperitif watching the sun setting or an after dinner drink in company.  

Where to sleep

Grand Hotel Miramare 

A unique pearl located in the Riviera Ligure, more specifically in Santa Margherita Ligure. Born in 1903 the Grand Hotel Miramare, still has that unique charm of the Dolce Vita times. 75 rooms and suites with the walls that recall the pastel shades of Liguria, that overlook the breathtaking bay and the calmness of the park. WEBSITE



La Casana 

A typical Ligurian bakery where you can find the traditional pastries and delicacies from the territory. From the trofie to the pansoti, which follow the original recipes from Rapallo. 

Where to sleep

Hotel Bristol

A 5-star hotel located in Rapallo with a sensational view of Portofino and the gulf. Immersed in the natural world of the Levante Ligure, with its perfume, relaxing green areas and the calming sound of waves crashing the shore. The suites and rooms have a classical and elegant style with a unique natural light, that will make your stay even more comfortable. WEBSITE


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