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A perfect day in Genoa

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Stroll through gorgeous museums and stunning churches to get a feel for the centuries of history. Enjoy the flavors of focaccia, pesto, and gelato. Then stroll along the sea, watch the catch come in at day's end, and head up to the ancient towers of the Barbarossa walls—or to Castelletto at sunset for a beautiful view of the lights coming on over the harbor.
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Via di Canneto Il Curto, 54-56r, 16123 Genova GE, Italy
Turn down the little Via di Canneto, and you can't miss this focacceria on your left. The line will literally always be out the door, especially in the morning hours. But the wait is worth every minute (and the amazingly kind women working inside...
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Piazza San Lorenzo, 16123 Genova GE, Italy
Easter (or Pasqua, in Italian) is a gorgeous time to visit Genova. Enjoy the delicious breads and cakes made especially for this season, tour the beautiful 14th century Cathedral of St Lorenzo, and enjoy a spring time boat ride to the neighboring...
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Via Garibaldi, 18, 16124 Genova GE, Italy
Built in the mid-1670's, Palazzo Rosso was the private home of the Brignole Sale family until 1874, when Maria (disenchanted with her only remaining son) donated it to the City of Genoa on her deathbed. Although devastatingly damaged during the...
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Via David Chiossone, 5/r, 16123 Genova GE, Italy
Just steps from the historic Doria Church of San Matteo (with its gorgeous glass mosaic door embellishment), La Buca di San Matteo serves a delicious prix-fix lunch in their beautifully classic sunken dining room for only 20 euro (if pesto is on...
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Vico Superiore del Ferro, 14, 16123 Genova GE, Italy
Hidden down the Vico Superiore del Ferro, this tiny shop is a secret gem. While most gelaterias keep their colorful products out in plain view, luring children in from the street with their mounds of chocolate and mango and black cherry, Gelateria...
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Via dei Macelli di Soziglia, 69, 16123 Genova GE, Italy
Probably originating in Persia, Pandolce has been a Genovese staple for centuries - an homage to the incredible amount of global trading that has occurred in this ancient port city. Enjoy one of these delicious fruited cakes from Le Gramole during...
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Via del Portello, 2r, 16124 Genova GE, Italy
Take one step inside this stunning candy shop and be breathlessly taken back in time - nearly 200 years! Lining the back are glass jars of every color candy, and the front cases are stuffed to bursting with chocolates, gianduja (think nutella),...
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Via di Porta Soprana, 16123 Genova GE, Italy
Just remember that these towers have been standing since 1163. They probably won't fall today! But even if you have a fear of heights, do pay the 2 euro to walk up the beautiful interior circular staircases in these ancient towers of the...
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Campetto, 8, 16123 Genova GE, Italy
Cocktails are not a huge part of the Italian culture, especially not those involving tequila. But at Bar Les Rouges, the three brothers who own the bar mix up one amazing margarita (They even come to your table asking you to sample which salt you...
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Millo Porto Antico, Calata Cattaneo, 15, 16126 Genova GE, Italy
If you have had pasta al pesto genovese (the delicious combination of fresh or dried pasta, potatoes, green beans, and pesto sauce) anywhere other than in Liguria, I challenge you to come to Il Marin for chef Enrico Panero's play on the Italian...
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Piazza Giacomo Matteotti, 84, 16123 Genova GE, Italy
Take your morning coffee in the sunshine, shaded by the the Palazzo Ducale. With quite a few tables, Douce does a busy morning cappuccino/focaccia business, so you can also come later in the afternoon (when it's slightly warmer) to make sure you...