15 Best Places And Things To Do in La Spezia, Italy

La Spezia, located in the Liguria region of Italy, is a charming coastal city known for its picturesque landscapes, historic sites, and delicious cuisine. Nestled between the Gulf of La Spezia and the beautiful Ligurian hills, this vibrant city offers a delightful blend of natural beauty, cultural attractions, and a relaxed atmosphere. Here are some of the best places to visit and things to do in La Spezia:

1. Cinque Terre

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La Spezia serves as an excellent base for exploring the famous Cinque Terre, a UNESCO World Heritage site. Cinque Terre consists of five colorful fishing villages—Riomaggiore, Manarola, Corniglia, Vernazza, and Monterosso al Mare—perched along the rugged coastline. You can hike along the scenic trails, swim in crystal-clear waters, indulge in fresh seafood, and capture stunning photographs of the iconic landscapes. Address:

The Cinque Terre consists of five villages along the Ligurian coast. Each village has its own address:

  • Riomaggiore: 19017 Riomaggiore, La Spezia, Italy
  • Manarola: 19017 Manarola, La Spezia, Italy
  • Corniglia: 19018 Corniglia, La Spezia, Italy
  • Vernazza: 19018 Vernazza, La Spezia, Italy
  • Monterosso al Mare: 19016 Monterosso al Mare, La Spezia, Italy

2. Portovenere

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Just a short boat ride away from La Spezia lies the enchanting town of Portovenere. Known for its medieval architecture, pastel-colored houses, and breathtaking views, Portovenere is a hidden gem worth exploring. Visit the Church of San Pietro perched on a cliff, stroll along the harbor promenade, and take a boat trip to the nearby Palmaria Island for a tranquil beach experience. Address: Via Capellini, 19025 Portovenere SP, Italy

3. Museo Tecnico Navale

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If you have an interest in naval history, a visit to the Museo Tecnico Navale is a must. Located in La Spezia, this naval museum showcases a fascinating collection of ships, submarines, weapons, and other maritime artifacts. You can explore the exhibits, learn about Italy’s naval heritage, and gain insights into the city’s important naval role. Address: Viale Amendola, 1, 19122 La Spezia SP, Italy

4. Castello San Giorgio

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Perched on a hill overlooking La Spezia, Castello San Giorgio is an ancient castle that offers panoramic views of the city and its surroundings. Take a leisurely walk up to the castle, explore its historical architecture, and soak in the breathtaking vistas of the Gulf of La Spezia. The castle also houses the Museum of Amedeo Lia, featuring an extensive collection of art and artifacts. Address: Piazza Saint Bon, 9, 19124 La Spezia SP, Italy

5. La Spezia Promenade

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The waterfront promenade of La Spezia is a delightful place to relax and take in the coastal ambiance. Stroll along the palm-lined avenue, enjoy the views of the marina, and savor gelato or a cup of coffee at one of the many cafes. In the evening, the promenade comes alive with street performers and musicians, creating a vibrant atmosphere. Address: Lungomare Vittorio Veneto, 19121 La Spezia SP, Italy

6. La Spezia Central Market

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Immerse yourself in the local culinary scene by visiting the bustling Central Market. Here, you can find a variety of fresh produce, regional delicacies, cheeses, meats, and more. Indulge in Ligurian specialties such as pesto, focaccia, and seafood, and engage in friendly conversations with local vendors. Address: Piazza Cavour, 19121 La Spezia SP, Italy

7. Naval Arsenal

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La Spezia has a long-standing naval tradition, and a visit to the Naval Arsenal provides a glimpse into this history. Take a guided tour of the shipyards and see how vessels are built and repaired. It’s a fascinating opportunity to learn about Italy’s maritime industry and the city’s contribution to naval development. Address: Viale Amendola, 2, 19122 La Spezia SP, Italy

8. A boat trip to Palmaria Island

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Embark on a boat excursion from La Spezia to Palmaria Island, located in the Gulf of La Spezia. Enjoy the unspoiled beauty of this island, hike along its nature trails, and relax on secluded beaches. The island offers a tranquil escape from the bustling city life and provides excellent opportunities for swimming, sunbathing, and picnicking. Address: Accessible by boat from La Spezia harbor

9. Church of Santa Maria Assunta

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Located in the heart of La Spezia, the Church of Santa Maria Assunta is a beautiful place of worship that shouldn’t be missed. Admire the stunning architecture, intricate frescoes, and ornate decorations that adorn the interior. The church also houses a remarkable collection of religious art, providing insight into the region’s cultural heritage. Address: Via XX Settembre, 43, 19121 La Spezia SP, Italy

10. Palazzo delle Arti

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Art enthusiasts will appreciate a visit to Palazzo delle Arti, a contemporary art museum in La Spezia. The museum hosts a diverse range of exhibitions, showcasing works by local and international artists. From paintings and sculptures to multimedia installations, Palazzo delle Arti offers a thought-provoking artistic experience. Address: Via Prione, 234, 19121 La Spezia SP, Italy

11. Piccolo Museo del Mare

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Dive into La Spezia’s maritime history at the Piccolo Museo del Mare (Small Museum of the Sea). Located in a historic building near the harbor, this museum showcases artifacts, models, and photographs that depict the city’s connection to the sea. Learn about La Spezia’s role as a naval hub and gain insights into the maritime traditions of the region. Address: Calata Ca’ d’Andrea, 1, 19124 La Spezia SP, Italy

12. Regional Natural Park of Montemarcello-Magra

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For nature lovers, a visit to the Regional Natural Park of Montemarcello-Magra is highly recommended. This protected area offers breathtaking landscapes, including rugged cliffs, lush forests, and panoramic views of the coastline. Hike along the well-marked trails, spot diverse flora and fauna, and immerse yourself in the tranquility of the surrounding nature. Address: Various access points along the coast near La Spezia. The park covers the area between Lerici and Ameglia.

13. La Spezia Naval Museum

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Another fascinating museum dedicated to naval history is the La Spezia Naval Museum. Located within the historic military arsenal, this museum showcases a vast collection of naval artifacts, models, and documents. Discover the evolution of naval technology, learn about significant naval battles, and explore the rich maritime heritage of the city. Address: Via XX Settembre, 39, 19121 La Spezia SP, Italy

14. Explore the Old Town

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Take a leisurely stroll through the charming streets of La Spezia’s Old Town, filled with vibrant shops, cafes, and local boutiques. Admire the colorful facades, discover hidden alleyways, and soak up the authentic Italian atmosphere. Don’t miss the Piazza Garibaldi, the main square of the city, which is a hub of activity and a great place to people-watch. Address: The Old Town area is centered around Piazza Garibaldi, which is located in the heart of La Spezia.

15. Taste the local cuisine

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La Spezia is renowned for its delicious Ligurian cuisine, and no visit is complete without savoring the local flavors. Indulge in pesto, a traditional Ligurian sauce made with fresh basil, pine nuts, garlic, and Parmesan cheese. Enjoy a slice of focaccia, a savory bread topped with olive oil and various toppings. Seafood lovers can relish in the abundance of fresh fish and seafood dishes, including the famous “pesce alla Vernazzana,” a local specialty. Address: Various locations throughout La Spezia. You can explore the city’s streets and squares to discover authentic eateries serving Ligurian cuisine.