Ranking the best beaches of Genoa and Liguria is rather complicated: there are always places you risk to forget, others that are overrated, or those chosen according to criteria that cannot satisfy everybody.
After all, tastes are personal.
That’s why I’ve decided to tell you about the locations I prefer (and that can be easily reached via public transport), more specifically my 5 favourite beaches. My unbiased advice is to visit them at all costs!
Hi, I’m Andrea from Discover Genoa and in this article I will list those that, in my opinion, are the 5 most beautiful public beaches in Genoa Italy and the coast of Liguria.
(For convenience, I arranged them from the closest to the most distant from the city centre; it’s not a ranking.)
In choosing my top 5 beaches around Genova, I had to leave out others, as lovely as these ones: it’s all part of the game. Add the other ones in the comments.
Are you ready to swim in Genoa? Here we go!
The top 5 beautiful beaches around Genoa and the Ligurian Riviera
Does Genova have a beach? Yes! If you don’t want to go too far from the city centre, the best place where you can go to sunbathe is undoubtedly Boccadasse.
Boccadasse is a little fishing village that you can reach with a 10-minute bus ride from the central station of Genova Brignole.
The sea is not as clear as you can find in other locations, but Boccadasse is the best place to chill on a little pebble beach or to wander its streets while enjoying one of the yummiest ice creams in Genoa, in the historical ice-cream parlour Antica Gelateria Amedeo.
It’s the perfect setting for a romantic dinner by the sea and for an evening stroll in the neighbouring Corso Italia.
Boccadasse was rated the best attraction in Genoa on TripAdvisor.
In one of the most recent comments, Fabio V claims that ‘watching the sunset from the rocks is an unforgettable experience’
How to get to Boccadasse
- on foot: just follow the directions to Corso Italia
- by bus: you can take bus n.31 from Genova Brignole and exit the bus in Boccadasse stop
Camogli is a marvellous hamlet, one of my favourites.
A group of colourful houses scattered on a slope overlooking the sea, all very close to one another.
It’s a pebble beach with crystal-clear water.
Behind it, you can find a promenade running along the sea and a maze of alleys, towered by tall houses (some of them even have six or more storeys) standing one next to the other and with multicoloured façades.
How to get to Camogli
From Genoa’s city centre, you can reach Camogli in 3 different ways:
- by train: from the train station of Genova Brignole (you can find the timetables on www.trenitalia.com); the beach is very close to the station of Camogli (Genoa)
- by car: you have to take the motorway exit of Recco (on the A12 motorway; it’s then 2 Km from Recco to Camogli)
- by boat (you can find the timetables on www.battellierigenova.it)
San Fruttuoso di Camogli
From Camogli, you can easily reach San Fruttuoso, a little bay with pure water and an abbey which is the property of the FAI (Fondo Ambiente Italiano, the National Trust of Italy).
It’s one of the few beaches in the world where you can take a swim with a solitary and majestic abbey behind you.
On TripAdvisor, Irene G wrote: ‘This abbey is not only wonderful and well kept; it’s also nestled in the most heavenly gulf, boasting the clearest water in the world.’
So, if you come to Liguria, you simply have to visit San Fruttuoso.
Its only flaw is that, in August, the beach is too crowded and the few bars and restaurants are really expensive. I recommend bringing a packed lunch.
How to get to San Fruttuoso
You can reach it from Camogli:
- on foot (following a rather challenging path for about two hours and a half)
- by boat, that will take you to your destination in 20 minutes (here you can check the times of the routes: www.golfoparadiso.it).
Tickets for Abbey of San Fruttuoso
Baia del Silenzio (Sestri Levante)
Baia del Silenzio (Bay of Silence) is a beach framed by pastel-coloured houses and fishermen’s boats.
It’s so enchanting that it was ranked among the top 10 beaches in Italy, for its crystal-clear water and the finest sand. It’s located about 40 km from the centre of Genoa.
On TripAdvisor, Mario stated: ‘Out of season, it’s a mystical place. The best thing to do is enjoy the atmosphere at dawn or at sunset. The waves break on the shore, while the bay turns red, orange and yellow. It becomes an utmost romantic location, while the typical colourful houses surrounding the bay make the landscape lovely, especially in the evening, when the street lights encircle the sea.’
How to get to Baia del Silenzio
From Genoa’s city centre, you can reach Sestri Levante in 2 different ways:
- by train: from the train station of Genova Brignole (you can find the timetables on www.trenitalia.com) in about 50 minutes
- by car: enter the motorway at Genova Est, at the crossroads follow the direction ‘Livorno’ and exit at Sestri Levante (it takes about 45 minutes).
Baia dei Saraceni (Varigotti)
Baia dei Saraceni (Bay of the Saracens) is one of the best sandy beaches near Genoa with the finest sand, turquoise water and white seabed.
It’s in my opinion one of the best beaches between Nice and Genoa.
It owes its name to the picturesque Scoglio dei Saraceni (Rock of the Saracens), where many merchants disembarked in the days of yore.
To access the beach, you will be charged a fee (from €5.00 to 10.00 each) for the services provided, including lifeguard duty as well as rental of beach chairs and umbrellas (paying a surcharge).
However, I personally think it’s money well spent.
There are free parking spaces, but if you want to find one I suggest that you arrive very early in the morning.
I also recommend to visit Varigotti and Noli, the two villages near the beach, that boast a lovely medieval old town.
How to get to Baia dei Saraceni
From Genoa’s city centre, you can reach Baia dei Saraceni in 2 different ways:
- by train: from the train station of Genova Brignole. Get off at Finale Ligure Marina and take a bus: you will reach your destination in a few minutes. You can find the timetables on www.trenitalia.it. Duration: about 1 hour and 25 minutes
- by car: take the motorway in the direction of ‘Savona.’ Go on for about 40 minutes, then take the exit at Spotorno. From there, continue on the main road, in the direction of Varigotti (duration: about 1 hour).
Map of the 5 best beaches near Genoa Italy
Here is an interactive map of the 5 best beaches in Genoa Italy and on the Riviera Ligure (the Ligurian coast).
Click the four icons and you will be shown a short description and some pictures.
Where to stay in Genoa
If you intend to visit the city and go to one of these beaches close to Genoa, I recommend you this accommodation in the city centre.
From there, you can take a train or the public transportation (it’s very difficult to find a parking space in Genoa, especially near the sea and during the summer).
Where to swim in Genoa: conclusions
I will certainly have forgotten many other beaches around Genoa Italy, as beautiful and as picturesque as the ones I have mentioned.
For now, though, these are my favourites.
I’m ready to put more names on the list following your advice.
In your opinion, which are the best beaches in Genoa and the Ligurian Riviera?
Write them down in the comments below.