Portofino, Province of Genova, Liguria

Portofino is a small city located on the Italian Riviera, considered to be among the most beautiful Mediterranean ports, and is a popular tourist destination. Portofino has even been recreated in detail at the Portofino Bay Resort at Universal Orlando Resort in Orlando, Florida. Aubrey Herbert( 1880-1923) was one of the most famous Englishmen to maintain a villa at Portofino.


  • Population: about 500 inhabitants
  • Zip/postal code: 16034
  • Dialing Area Code: +39 0185
Follow Italy Heritage on Facebook
Provinces of Liguria


According to Pliny the Elder, Portofino was founded by the Romans and named Portus Delphini, or Port of Dolphins, because of the large number of dolphins that inhabited the Tigullian Gulf. The city's natural harbor provided a safe haven for the growing merchant marine of the growing Republic of Genoa during the Middle Ages. In the early 20th century, first British, then German tourist began to visit Portofino. Eventually they built expensive vacation houses, and by 1950 tourism had supplanted fishing as the city's chief industry.

What to see

  • The Castello Brown, surrounded by gardens full of flowers and Mediterranean plants, and with walls decorated in marble, ardesia, and low-reliefs.
  • The church of San Giorgio, hosting the relics of the patron saint, broght here by mariners during the Crusades. It was built on a previous early Christian church, reported as a meeting point of the Lombard leaders. A first reconstruction in the Romanesque style took place in 1154 as reported in an inscription in the church. It was completely reconstructed after 1944. bombings.