The village, the history and the park museum
We reach Portofino looking for a true inhabitant of Portofino to tell us the point of view of a genuine inhabitant of Portofino! They advise us to go on foot up to Castello and up to the lighthouse spit. We walk ... Even if it is uphill, we recommend this walk as a good way to get away from the most touristic routes.
The beauty of Portofino has inspired many poets, like Antonia Pozzi, who writes “but slowly the peninsula undoes its knots of earth, unfurls on the peak sails of dark forests.” Even the retreating Germans didn’t dare bomb Portofino!
A piece of advice to sailors: if you reach Portofino at least go up to the San Giorgio church, from which you can see a marvellous panorama.
A curiosity: Portofino is a small place but with two patron saints, St. George and St. Martin. We see the flag, which tells a particular story: at Portofino Napoleon lost a battle against the English, who decided to assault the fortress. At the end of the bombardments the English hoisted their flag as a sign of victory ... But the English flag was the same as the Genoese one and to the symbolic one of St. George!
Among the historical sites there is also a castle purchased for 7,000 liras at the end of the nineteenth century by an English consul, who then restructured it and it preserved it as well as possible. In full English style, the consul had a magnificent garden created. Now the castle belongs to the Council and hosts exhibitions and other cultural initiatives.
At Portofino there is a particular life, it is very much photographed, very much populated, but there are not only shops for tourists ... Another reason for great fame is the rite of the aperitif!
The Portofino Park Museum
In Portofino harbour Patrizio meets ... a rhino! He follows a path that takes him to a special place: the Park Museum. An outdoor museum, situated in a garden that displays contemporary sculptures. The craftsman of it all is Daniele Crippa, the President of the Park Museum, whom Patrizio seizes the opportunity to interview. Why create a museum of the kind in a place like this? he asks him. Daniele says he began as an art merchant; with a pinch of folly and the luck of having found a garden looking out on one of the most beautiful places in the world he began to display his own works there. In the course of time other artists arrived, who today spontaneously bring their works and autonomously decide where to position them. Patrizio is very curious about the close connection between beauty, tourism, art and artists. According to Daniele artists realise that those who frequent Portofino are privileged people, and so for them that place constitutes an effective showcase, without any need to display at Moma in New York! For this reason there are always new works on display and the museum-garden is always different. The conclusion on which Patrizio and Daniele agree is that “artistic marketing” is also translated into “territorial marketing” because the place benefits from all these comings and goings! So Patrizio wanders among the sculptures displayed, with Daniele as an exceptional guide...
Practical information and useful numbers
Portofino Tourist Information Office
Via Roma, 35 - 16034 Portofino
Tel/fax 0185 269 024
Molo Umberto I, 1 - 16034 Portofino
Contacts: Daniele Crippa (President) tel. 337 33 37 37 e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
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- > Area Marina Protetta di Portofino
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- > Il sito del comune di Portofino
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