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Holidays To Portofino

Holidays to Portofino


Portofino, an idyllic Italian fishing village turned luxury resort town, is nestled on the Ligurian Sea of the Italian Riviera. Famous for its picturesque harbor adorned with brightly-colored houses and surrounded by lush green hills, Portofino captures the heart of every visitor with its enchanting beauty. The town's winding streets are home to chic boutiques, exquisite restaurants serving fresh seafood and local specialties, and historical sites such as the Brown Castle and the Church of St. George.

Whether indulging in outdoor activities like hiking in Portofino Natural Park or exploring the marine life in the protected marine area, basking in the luxury of high-end resorts, or immersing oneself in the charming Italian culture, Portofino presents an unforgettable holiday experience.


Monterosso Beach Cinque Terre Italy
Photo: Monterosso Beach, Cinque Terre, Italy

Portofino, located on the Italian Riviera, is a popular holiday destination for several reasons:

  • Natural Beauty: Portofino is recognized for its picturesque setting with a half-moon shaped harbor filled with fishing boats and surrounded by lush green hills. The scenic beauty of Portofino and its surroundings are a treat for the eyes, whether you're a nature lover or a photographer.
  • Historical Charm: The colorful houses, narrow lanes, and the brown cobbled square at the harbor lend the town an old-world charm. Sites like the Brown Castle, Church of San Martino, and the Church of St. George add to this historical appeal.
  • Luxury: Portofino is synonymous with luxury and is well-known for its upscale hotels, high-end boutiques, and luxury yachts. It's a preferred getaway for celebrities and a stylish destination for people who appreciate the finer things in life.
  • Food and Wine: Italian cuisine is famous worldwide and Portofino offers a fantastic food and wine scene. The restaurants serve a variety of dishes, with an emphasis on fresh seafood. The region is also famous for its wines.
  • Outdoor Activities: The Portofino Natural Park and the Marine Protected Area offer numerous trails for hiking and routes for scuba diving or snorkeling. The crystal clear waters are perfect for exploring the rich marine life of the Mediterranean Sea.
  • Nearby Destinations: Portofino's location makes it a great base for exploring other Riviera destinations like Cinque Terre and Genoa, both easily accessible by boat or train.
  • Italian Culture: Experiencing the Italian way of life, with its leisurely pace, friendly locals, mid-afternoon siestas, and vibrant festivals can be a refreshing change and a unique experience in itself.

Each of these factors contributes to making Portofino a top-notch holiday destination. It has something to offer for every kind of traveler, whether you're seeking relaxation, adventure, gastronomical delights, or a touch of luxury.

Piazza De Ferrari Fountain, Genoa, Italy
Photo: Piazza De Ferrari Fountain, Genoa, Italy

Weather in Portofino

The best time to visit Portofino in terms of weather is typically during late spring, summer, and early autumn - from May through October. These months tend to offer the most pleasant and warm weather, ideal for sightseeing, hiking, and enjoying the beaches.

Spring (March to May): In spring, Portofino begins to awaken from its winter slumber. Temperatures start to rise, typically ranging between 50°F (10°C) and 70°F (21°C) towards the end of the season. The region sees more rainfall during early spring, but it gradually decreases as the season progresses. Late spring (May) is particularly beautiful with blooming flowers and a pleasant climate.

Summer (June to August): Summer is the peak tourist season in Portofino.The months of July and August can be especially warm and also represent the peak of the tourist season, so you can expect larger crowds during this period. The weather is usually warm and sunny with temperatures ranging from 70°F (21°C) to 85°F (29°C), making it perfect for outdoor activities and enjoying the beach. However, occasional heat waves can make the temperatures soar above the typical range. Rainfall is minimal in these months.

Autumn (September to November): Early autumn continues the warm and pleasant climate of summer but the temperatures start to fall gradually. September and early October still make for excellent beach weather. By late October and November, temperatures can range between 50°F (10°C) and 65°F (18°C). Rainfall increases towards late autumn.

Winter (December to February): Winters in Portofino are mild compared to much of Europe. Temperatures typically range from 40°F (4°C) to 55°F (13°C). While it can be rainy and the town quiet with many hotels and restaurants closed, the winter also offers a peaceful atmosphere compared to the bustling summer season.

If you prefer a quieter and somewhat cooler experience, late spring (May-June) and early autumn (September-October) are excellent choices. The weather is usually mild and pleasant during these times and there are fewer tourists.

Do remember that these are general descriptions and actual weather can vary from year to year. Always check the weather forecast close to your departure to pack appropriately.

Things to See and Do in Portofino

Portofino, despite its small size, offers a wide array of activities and sights that cater to a variety of interests. Here are some must-see sights and must-do activities in this beautiful Italian town:

Visit Castello Brown: This historic castle offers a fantastic view over Portofino and the surrounding coastline. The castle also hosts art exhibitions and its well-kept gardens are a joy to walk around in.

Stroll around Piazzetta: The small and vibrant square by the harbor, lined with restaurants and shops, is perfect for a leisurely stroll. Enjoy some people watching, grab a gelato, or have a meal in one of the outdoor cafés.

Explore Portofino Natural Park:
This park offers excellent hiking trails with varying degrees of difficulty. It's a great way to explore the natural beauty of the area and to enjoy some spectacular views of the coastline.

Take a boat ride to San Fruttuoso Abbey: Accessible only by boat or on foot, this medieval abbey located in a secluded cove between Camogli and Portofino is truly unique. You can also visit the underwater statue of Christ of the Abyss near the bay.

Visit the Church of San Martino: Located uphill, this small church is worth visiting for its peaceful ambiance and the stunning view over Portofino.

Explore the Portofino Marine Protected Area: If you're into water sports, the marine reserve offers opportunities for scuba diving and snorkeling.

Shop at exclusive boutiques: Portofino is known for its luxury, and this is reflected in its shopping scene. Browse high-end boutiques for clothing, jewelry, and more.

Savor the local cuisine: Enjoy the local seafood in one of the harborside restaurants, and don't forget to try the regional wines.

Visit the Lighthouse (Faro di Portofino): A pleasant walk from the center of town will bring you to the lighthouse. It's a wonderful place to watch the sunset.

Each of these experiences contributes to the charm and allure of Portofino, making it a must-visit destination on the Italian Riviera. If Portofino sounds like somewhere you might like to visit you might also be interested in Holidays To Capri and always remember to sort your travel insurance before you set off. Single Trip Holiday Insurance is available from


Portofino, Italy

Accommodation in Portofino

Portofino, known for its luxury and exclusivity, has a range of accommodations from high-end hotels to more modest guest houses. Here are a few options to consider:
  • Luxury Hotels: Portofino is known for its high-end, luxury hotels that offer top-notch services and facilities. These include Belmond Hotel Splendido and Hotel Piccolo Portofino, among others. These establishments often offer stunning views, exceptional dining options, and other premium amenities such as spas, pools, and private beaches.
  • Boutique Hotels: These are smaller hotels that offer personalized service and often have unique or themed interiors. They are typically upscale and provide a luxurious and intimate experience.
  • Bed & Breakfasts: Bed and Breakfasts, or B&Bs, are often family-run establishments offering a homely environment. These are excellent choices for travellers seeking local experiences and personal interaction with their hosts. Eden Portofino is one such example.
  • Villas: You can rent private villas in Portofino, some of which come with a full range of services. This can be an excellent option for families or larger groups.
  • Apartments: Fully furnished apartments or holiday homes can be rented for short-term stays. This is a good option for those who prefer self-catering accommodation and more privacy. Airbnb is a popular platform for finding such rentals.
  • Guesthouses: Guesthouses or pensioni provide simple and affordable accommodation, often in a family home. These might be more basic but can offer a more authentic experience.
Remember, no matter what type of accommodation you choose, it's best to book well in advance, especially during the peak tourist season, as Portofino is a popular destination and spaces can fill up quickly.

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