The cruise ships are not able to dock in this port, you will be tendered ashore to the center of town. Some larger ships visiting the area are required to tender off the coast of Santa Margherita, a little over two miles south, and are bussed into Portofino.
Be aware that in slightly rough conditions the tender operation will not take place. For this reason, ships scheduled to anchor at Portofino are often diverted to Genoa.
There is a shuttle bus to Santa Margherita Ligure (arriving every 20 minutes),
Portofino is a fairy-tale hamlet on Italy's Ligurian coast.
Map of Portofino.
Cruise calendar for Portofino.
Watch a destination video.
Portofino is a very rich and well to do town, The yacht harbor, its beautiful homes, its magnificent backdrop makes it one of finest towns on the Riviera.
A nice stroll to Santa Margherita Ligure, along the boardwalk is a pleasant way to start your visit. About 2-3 km.
Santurario di San Giorgio: At the western end of the yacht harbor is a trail that takes you walking up the hill. The scenery is absolutely beautiful and the trail is easy. During the Roman period, the sanctuary had a dual role: church and observation fortress. Indeed, the views from here are spectacular, down to the town and to the sea, with the boats and yachts in the harbor and the hills covered in flowers, vines and trees. The church and its fortress are open daily until 7 p.m.
Castello Brown is a 16th century castle/fort, once used for the area's defense, but now primarily a museum with a fantastic view of the harbor and the Mediterranean Sea.
Take the bus to Santa Margherita, where the train station is. Trains go on a regular basis to Genua and La Spezia, stopping a most towns on the Riviera.
Camogli and the Abbey of San Fruttuoso: This is a boat tour from the pier in Portofino sailing around the promontory to the town of Camogli with its colorful houses, busy little harbor and the region's aquarium, and visit the Abbey of San Fruttuoso. Fancy villas visible only from the sea will be identified by the guide as you sail along.
It pays to compare your cruise line shore excursions here.
Portofino is well-known for its "macrame lace," which is created by women in the village and surrounding towns as taught by their mothers and grandmothers before them.
As is true in many italian resorts, you pay for the privilege: A drink on a terrace with a stunning view might be 5 times as expensive a the same drink on the market square. Pane e coperto (bread and utensils) is an extra charge always added to lunch or dinner receipt.
For Internet service in Portofino, you can check out one of the hotels to see if you can buy time on theirs; otherwise, you have to go to Santa Margherita Ligure to find an Internet cafe or public library. Make sure you bring your passport for identification.
Opening Hours and Holidays:
Most shops and businesses in Italy open from Monday to Saturday from around 8am until 1pm, and from about 4pm until 7pm, though many shops close on Saturday afternoons and Monday mornings, and in the south the day can begin and end an hour later.
In the north some businesses work to a 9am-5pm day to facilitate international dealings. Traditionally, everything except bars and restaurants closes on Sunday, though most towns have a pasticceria open in the mornings, while in large cities and tourist areas, Sunday opening is becoming more common.
January 1 (New Year's Day)
January 6 (Epiphany)
Pasquetta (Easter Monday)
April 25 (Liberation Day)
May 1 (Labour Day)
August 15 ( Ferragosto ; Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary)
November 1 ( Ognissanti ; All Souls Day)
December 8 ( Immaccolata ; Immaculate Conception of the Blessed Virgin Mary)
December 25 ( Natale ; Christmas)
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