Nightlife in Genoa: Things to Do, Experiences and Tips about Bars and Pubs

Have you been walking all day long across the old town and now you’re wondering what you can do in Genoa at night?

After visiting the city, maybe you want to take an evening walk or have a beer in one of the many pubs and bars?

Then, this article is just the thing for you.

Hi, I’m Andrea of Discover Genoa and with this guide I will give you a few tips about what to do in Genoa at night.

I’ll tell you about the best bars and pubs and about the places where the locals meet to drink a beer with their friends.

Are you ready? Let’s go!

First of all, you must know that, when the Genoese go out, they live the street.

The bars and pubs of the old town are only a sort of transit point, where the locals buy a drink in a plastic cup and drink it while talking pleasantly outdoors.

Usually they stand in front of the entrance, sometimes they stroll from a caruggio (the small alleys of the old town) to the other.

Almost all bars and pubs are in the old town.

Around the Cathedral of San Lorenzo or in other little squares nearby, you will find a lot of small bars and pubs where you can get a beer, a cocktail, a glass of wine or a few shots.

With this guide, I will list the areas and the venues of the city centre that I love the most.

They will be scattered (it’s not a ranking) and at the bottom of the page there is a map showing each place of interest.

 

Nightlife in Genoa: What to Do, How to Experience It, Where to Go and other Ideas

nighlife in genoa italy
Event in Genoa – Photo by Porto Antico

 

Piazza delle Erbe

Piazza delle Erbe is a small square located near Palazzo Ducale, behind Piazza De Ferrari, the central square of Genoa.

It was renovated after the damage suffered during the Second World War and has become the heart of the city’s nightlife.

Its bars and pubs are the hottest in town and always full of people (especially on Friday and Saturday night).

My favourite bar is called Caffè Letterario.

Here is where I spent my teenage years with my friends, between a cocktail and a coffee.

Once an antiquarian bookstore, now it has become one of the cosiest bars in the old town

It’s open every day and, after ordering a drink, you can immerse yourself in a book before the alcohol hits you. 😉

Besides Caffè Letterario, in Piazza delle Erbe there are many other pubs and bars, such as Gradisca, 28Erbe, Bar Berto and Biggie.

They are all next to one another.

 

Piazza Lavagna

Every age has its trends.

For people over 25, the perfect spot for an evening aperitivo (the Italian version of the happy hour) is called Piazza Lavagna

Unlike the frenzy of Piazza delle Erbe, in Piazza Lavagna you can enjoy the company of more ‘adult’ people and a softer mood.

It’s one of the most fascinating places in the city centre, an oasis among the narrow alleys (called caruggi) and the small squares that surround it.

My favourite bar (where you can find me every Friday night) is called Tire Bouchon (which means ‘corkscrew’ in French).

As suggested by its name, it’s the perfect venue to chill while enjoying a glass of good wine, a platter of cold cuts… and some slices of focaccia (a flat oven-baked bread, typical of Genoa).

Other pubs and bars in Piazza Lavagna are Exultate, N°10 and GloGlo Bistrot.

 

Taverna Zaccaria Genova

Located in one of the most amazing settings in the old town, Zaccaria (called Zacca by the Genoese) is a pub that seems to be a combination of Middle Ages and the modern day.

There are few seats, but the best thing about having a cocktail at Zaccaria is that you can drink it while sitting on the stairs of the historical Pazzetta di San Cosimo, just opposite the pub.

When I’m not in Piazza Lavagna, you can find me here, sitting at one of the tables in front of the entrance, while I enjoy an aperitivo consisting of platters of cold cuts and cheese as well as the typical local quiches.

Thursday nights are devoted to music, with a DJ set, and sometimes even live concerts (strictly unplugged).

 

Mugugno

It’s right behind Piazza Lavagna and it’s the perfect spot for a quick lunch, but it’s even better at happy hour.

Mugugno is located in an 1180 palace in Via Luccoli, one of the slightly ‘larger’ alleys in the old town, and it’s a mixture between a bar and a small restaurant, where you can meet people of all kinds chatting with the nice barkeepers.

On the ground floor, the atmosphere is hectic (due to the size of the bar), while on the upper floor it’s more intimate.

In other words, it’s the ideal setting to relax and enjoy a cocktail.

There is a limited choice of beers, but a wider selection of wines: ask Claudio, the owner, and he will recommend you the best wine according to the occasion.

After this short list, I would like to answer a question I’m often asked:

 

Is Genoa safe at night?

genoa by night
Porto Antico di Genova – Photo by Porto Antico

Genoa is generally a safe city, even at night, but being cautious and careful never hurts.

As all cities in the world, Genoa has “nice” and “not-so-nice” neighbourhoods.

I only recommend you not to go to Via Prè and the area of Piazza Príncipe train station at night.

Otherwise, you can smoothly stroll around the old town.

I tell you as a local.

 

What to See in Genoa: TOP 10

Click play and find out what to see in Genoa in one day.

 

Conclusions

I will certainly have forgotten many other bars and pubs, just as beautiful and as typical 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.

If you are planning to visit Genoa, I suggest you take a look at one of the following guides:

All the best,
Andrea

Andrea Semonella
Hey! I'm Andrea and I am a little bit obsessed with exploring the world and meeting people on the road. I'm in love with my city, and I'm happy to share with you all the best place and most incredible secrets of Genoa, Italy.

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About Andrea

Andrea Semonella
Hey! I'm Andrea and I am a little bit obsessed with exploring the world and meeting people on the road. I'm in love with my city, and I'm happy to share with you all the best place and most incredible secrets of Genoa, Italy.

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