The Italian Riviera Ligure is a continuation of the French Riviera, separated by the Piemonte mountain range.
With a wider variety of landscape, but less tourist bustle, this popular area is the perfect introduction to the Italian coastline. In many places vineyard covered mountains drop in sheer cliffs to the sea and are dotted with isolated villages.
The atmospheric port of Genoa is centrally located on the coastline and is the region's main city, and is the perfect base for exploring the area. West of Genoa, on the Riviera di Ponente, are more resorts aimed at the family market with long stretches of sandy beaches. Towns to explore with centuries of history are Albenga and Noli, as well as the seaside town of Finale Ligure.
The Levante coast, east of Genoa, is wilder and was a popular destination for 19th century Romantics, artists and poets. Popular resort towns here are the upmarket Portofino, and Santa Margherita Ligure. A great way to explore this beautiful, and mainly unspoilt area, is by taking the railway that hugs the coastline and stops at every town.
The Ligurian Riviera has a mild climate and is visited all year round, but is very hot and crowded in August, while November and December are the rainy months.