The village of Portovenere is located on the extreme western end of the Gulf of La Spezia.
Porto Venere was named Portus Veneris (the Port of Venus) because of its beauty. Its natural landscape is enhanced by the beautiful row of coloured tower-houses, which form an ancient defensive structure. The Church of San Pietro and the Castello Doria, which overlook Porto Venere and the sea, should not be missed.
Beneath the church of San Pietro is the Byron Grotto, so-named in memory of the English Romantic poet’s visit to Portovenere.
Porto Venere and its archipelago, which includes the islands of Palmaria, Tino and Tinetto have been declared a UNESCO World Heritage site.
This area is also part of a Natural Regional Park, (www.parconaturaleportovenere.it).
A well-equipped tourist marina is available for those who arrive in Porto Venere by boat. From the marina, ferries depart on daily tours for the Cinque Terre, the islands, the coves and the promontories along the coast. The magnificent water along the coast is an excellent spot for scuba diving and all water sports.
The lovely bay of Le Grazie and the seaside village of Fezzano are also worth a visit.
Thanks to its mild climate, Porto Venere can be visited all year round.
In spring and summer, ferries and boat tours depart daily from Porto Venere to the other gulf towns, the Cinque Terre, the Riviera and Portofino, weather and sea conditions permitting (info: www.navigazionedelgolfodeipoeti.it )
Highway A12, 30 km. far from the tollgate of Brugnato
Train station: Vernazza (info: www.trenitalia.com)