Genoa, home to Italy’s largest seaport, is the perfect place to be in September – especially for boating enthusiasts. Each year the city hosts Il Salon Nautico (known as the Genoa International Boat Show), and this year the dates run from Sept. 30, 2015 through Oct. 5, 2015. Genoa is a vibrant city with a rich history and culture, earning it the distinction “European Capital of Culture” in 2004.
While the city is well-known for its seaport, it is also served by Genoa Cristoforo Colombo Airport (GOA / LIJM) – named after the world-famous explorer from Genoa the West refers to as “Christopher Columbus” – which handles over a million passengers each year. When traveling to Genoa, be sure to pack for a Mediterranean climate. Summer here is busy due to weather that is pleasant with highs near 80 F (26 C). Also, if you will be in town for a while, be sure to brush up on basic communication in Italian since only about one-third of the country’s population speak English.
Foodies visiting Genoa will enjoy events like the Focaccia di Recco Festival (held in May) and the Pesto e Dintorni Festival (held in October). In addition to Il Salon Nautico, you will also find a variety of other boating events throughout the year, including La Regata della Antichi Repubbliche Marinare (which runs throughout Genoa, Pisa, Venice and Amalfi), Millevele and the Tall Ships’ Race.
While Genoa is known as the origin of Genoa-style salami, pesto (a sauce made of garlic, basil, parmesan, pine nuts and olive oil) and focaccia (a flatbread similar to pizza dough), the city has many other contributions to the culinary world. Farinata (a thin crepe-like food made of chickpea flour), salsa di noci (a sauce made of walnuts), minestrone soup (vegetable and legume soup), ciuppin (garbanzo bean soup) all originate in Genoa.
History fanatics will feel right at home in Genoa, with ancient sites and art to explore. Basilica of Santa Maria di Castello features Romanesque architecture and was completed in the year 900. In addition to the structure itself being a historical site, there are many works of art inside from many of the city’s top artists, including frescoes from the 16th century. The Museo Palazzo Real (Royal Palace Museum) and the Genoa Museum are both “can’t miss” stops for those interested in local history. Genoa is also a short ride to other historical cities, like Portofino.
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