Ah, the Italian Riviera, a place so beguiling it actually looks in real life just like it does in those dreamy postcards and movie scenes in which it stars so often. This charming and colorful destination truly lives up to the hype. That’s also why it can get quite crowded, particularly in the long, lazy days of summer. We’re here to give you a quick peek at this pretty village, tell you when to go to Portofino to avoid crowds, and what to do in Portofino for active travelers.
When should I go to Portofino?
If you really must have the most ideal weather conditions, you may have to put up with the tourist crowd and aim for summer (May to August). This way, you’re all but guaranteed sunny skies and warm temperatures.
If, however, you have a little wiggle room in your travel calendar, consider visiting Portofino just before or after summer (April or September/early October). There’s much less humidity, making your day’s adventures more pleasant. The crowds have either dissipated or have yet to arrive.
What can I do in Portofino?
With its Ligurian Riviera location and a protected marine park at its front doorstep, Portofino offers plenty to do for the active traveler.
See the sights from a SUP
If you’re a fan of stand-up paddleboarding, hop on a SUP tour that explores the marine protected area where you can admire the unspoiled nature of the region. You’ll learn the basics in the quiet bay of Paraggi, then set off to get great views of Portofino and its tidy port, the Castle of Paraggi, San Giorgio’s Church, and Castello Brown from the water.
Take a hike in the mountains
Take it slow and steady as you climb nearly 2,000 feet above sea level to drink in dramatic coastal views from the Portofino mountains. Hike through the serene landscape, past ancient water mills, making your way to the village of San Rocco, the tiny hamlet of Mortola, and the seaside town of Camogli. Best part? Refueling afterward with a traditional Liguria seafood lunch.
Go kayaking in the Bay of Paraggi
If your kayaking excursions have been limited to your local lakes and ponds, you’ll absolutely love this chance to paddle in Portofino. The village’s marine splendor will be on full display, as will the Portofino coastline, as you glide from Paraggi to Olivetta to the lighthouse (where you can take a refreshing swim if you’re so inspired). Care to snorkel? We can arrange for a kayak and snorkel tour that allows you to marvel at the Bay of Paraggi’s underwater life.
Take an e-bike ride along the coast
Love to cycle, but don’t want to max out your legs on a long ride? Take an e-bike tour along the Ligurian Riviera between Portofino Nature Park and Camogli. Stop at hilltop viewpoints for incredible ocean vistas. Take your time and explore traditional Italian seaside villages. Enjoy the diverse natural landscapes of the coastline. And, if there’s time, follow the coastal road to Santa Margherita Ligure, an equally enticing, yet less known village than Portofino.
Whether you’re visiting Portofino as part of a longer Italian tour, or are stopping here as part of a Mediterranean cruise, let’s chat about how to make the most of your time here.