Genoa is a historic coastal city and the largest Italian port in northern Italy, the capital of the province of Genoa and the historical region of Liguria. Located on the shores of the Genoese Bay in the Ligurian Sea (part of the Mediterranean Sea), 120 km south of Milan. Apennine mountains come close to the city from the north. The population is about 600,000 people. Genoa extends 35 km along the coast from Voltri to Nervi.
The whole history of Genoa is connected with navigation and trade.
The capital of Liguria, Genoa, is often poetically compared with the interior of an ancient theater: the stalls are a colorful port surrounded by lodges – palaces, and city blocks go down from the nearest hills with an amphitheater directly to the bay. Many ancient palaces have been preserved here, from which it still blows its former splendor, which, combined with the brisk life of the port city, makes up the unique charm of today’s Genoa. Thanks to the features of its layout, numerous gardens and parks and views of the Mediterranean Sea, Genoa is one of the most beautiful Italian cities.
Today, Genoa is a city of universities, as well as a tourist and scientific center. In 2004, it was proclaimed the European Capital of Culture.
There is such a hypothesis that somewhere near the current Genoa, around the 4th century. BC, the Greeks approached the shore, looked around and said: “This is a song!” Music, in Greek, is ligussa, – so the coast and the port city – Liguria got its name.
Genoa is the birthplace of the great navigator Christopher Columbus and the genius of violin music Niccolo Paganini. This is a city where culture and art have firmly entered into life, where between the narrow streets called “koruji”, all the charm and charm of this ancient port city is hidden from the cursory glance of tourists eternally hurrying somewhere.
Restrained and full of dignity, Genoa will forever remain in the soul of those who know it. Charles Dickens wrote of Genoa like this: “Until recently, I would never have believed that even the stones of the streets of Genoa would attract me and I would remember this city with admiration, as a place where I spent many hours in peace and happiness …” Italian Sketches, 1843
Everyone says that in order to see Genoa, you need to start from the sea, from the atmosphere of an old port, especially beautiful during sunset. The local port is still one of the most important in Italy, as well as one of the largest in Europe. The main attraction of the Genoese port is its lighthouse, known as La Lanterna.
In the old port of Genoa is located the Aquarium, the largest marine zoo in Europe: 48 pools and aquariums, 500 species of marine animals and fish.
“Palazzo San Giorgio” is located in the old port. The palace was built in the middle of the 13th century and is now a clear example of medieval Renaissance architecture.
Piazza Banks was the focus of the commercial life of the Genoese Republic, the decoration of which is the Loggia dei Mercanti, the place where the first commodity exchange in Italy was opened.
Via San Lorenzo leads to the Cathedral of San Lorenzo, consecrated in 1118 by Pope Gelasius II; The main alterations of its appearance date back to the beginning of the XIV and the middle of the XVI century. The Cathedral Chapel of San Giovanni (1450-65) was conceived as a receptacle of Christian relics of Genoa, mainly associated with the name of John the Baptist. The chapel contains the remains of a cousin of Jesus Christ. The Genoese are very proud that their warlike ancestors managed to remove the relics of the saint during the next Crusade.
The most striking reminder of the medieval power of Genoa is the high gate of Porta Soprano – a surviving fragment of the city wall of the XII century.
The “Palazzo Spinola di Pellicceria”, which currently houses the “National Gallery of Liguria” (Galleria Nazionale della Liguria). The interior walls of the gallery are made in the Baroque style, and inside there is very expensive, valuable furniture and beautiful Albisola ceramics. Very interesting is the “gallery of mirrors” (Galleria degli specchi).
The Palazzo Ducale was built in several passes and reflects the tastes of different eras; the total area of related facilities exceeds 35 thousand square meters. m. Palazzo once served as the seat of government of the Genoese Republic. Currently, the largest exhibitions in the city are organized in the huge halls and courtyards of the Palace.
The Palazzo Reale, with its main facade, is oriented towards the sleepless anthill of the port harbor. There must have been no greater pleasure for the Genoese monarchs than waking up to the rattle of winches and the rude screams of movers in the port, admiring the rusty anchors or breathing in the indestructible “aroma” of fishing nets.
Piazza Ferrari is the “heart” of modern Genoa. A large fountain pulsates in the center of the space, dousing passersby with diamond splashes. In the depths of the square, right behind the bronze monument of Giuseppe Garibaldi, is the main city theater Carlo Felice, built in 1828 according to the project of the main Genoese town planner Carlo Barabino.