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  • Writer's pictureKate Woodman

Trois jolis villages liguriens (three pretty Ligurian villages)

Updated: Feb 16, 2020


Je reviens d’une visite à ma sœur, Carol, d’Italie. Pendant ma séjour, nous avons visité 3 petits bourgs liguriens, au bord du Golfe de Gênes et près de Gênes. J’avais lu qu'Alassio était un bourg très populaire avec les britanniques il y a 100 ans, mais pas maintenant. Aujourd’hui c’est une station estivale pour les italiens, bien connu pour ces longues étendues de plages sablonneuses.

I’ve just come from visiting my sister, Carol, in Italy. While I was there, Carol and I visited three small Ligurian villages, located on the Gulf of Genoa and not far from the city of Genoa. We stayed in Alassio, which I had read was very popular with the British 100 years ago. Today it’s a summer resort primarily for Italians and is well-known for its vast expanse of sandy beaches. A sandy beach is rare along the Riviera and one as long as that in Alassio even more so.

Alassio beach

Alassio marina

Fishing competition….50 participants stretching from Alassio to Laigueglia

Carol at our hotel beach entrance (true colors….NOT enhanced)….though not fancy, we had a large, clean room with a fabulous seaside terrace…Hotel Eden

Le concierge à notre hôtel nous a recommendé de visiter Laigueglia, un village plus petit qu’Alassio et pas loin. Il faisait chaud et agréable, donc nous avons marché à côté de la mer à Laigueglia, environ 5-6 kilomètres. Nous aimons Laigueglia beaucoup. C’est plus calme qu’Alassio et très joli. Comme Alassio, il y a un « budello » (la cœur ou intestine de la ville), une rue étroite derrière la promenade de mer, où on trouve petits magasins, épiceries et cafés.

The concierge at our hotel recommended that we visit Laigueglia, a small village just up the beach from Alassio. It was a warm and beautiful day, so we walked along the promenade to Laigueglia, about 5-6 kilometers. We really liked Laigueglia. Smaller that Alassio, it was quiet and quite beautiful. As in Alassio, there is a “budello” (the heart or literally “intestine” of the town), a narrow street behind the seaside promenade, lined with small boutiques, fine food shops and cafes,.

Laigueglia beach

Cappuccino and coffee parfait on the Piazza Marconi in Laigueglia

Laigueglia’s “budello”

Ligurian specialties

Mais le mieux était la grande église que vous pouvez voir qui domine le centre de Laigueglia: l' Église de Saint Matthew et l’oratoire de Santa Maria Maddalena. L'église a été construite dans la seconde moitié du XVIIIe siècle dans un style Baroque l’église. Nous avons aimé la couleur et la texture des murs extérieurs, notamment de l'oratoire….magnifique !

But the best thing was the large church which dominates the center of Laigueglia: St. Matthew’s Church and the adjoining Oratory of Santa Maria Maddalena. The church was built in the second half of the 18th century in the Baroque style. We loved the color and texture of the exterior walls, particularly those of the oratory….magnificent!

St. Matthew's church towers

Church door

Oratory window

Oratory wall....love this!

Church tower and beginning of oratory

Oratory with lemon tree

En route à Rapallo, on a arrêté à Finale Ligure. Nous avons pris un taxi de la gare à la vieux ville de Finale Ligure, qui est un village muré très charmant et historique. Nous avons déjeuné très bien au petit restaurant, Bistrot i Torchietti.

On our way home to Rapallo, we stopped in Finale Ligure, another seaside town close to Genoa. We took a taxi from the train station to the old town centre (5 minutes, but we were lugging our suitcases). The old town is walled and quite charming. We had an excellent lunch at a small restaurant, Bistrot I Torchietti (small torch). We were attracted by the quirky décor and were delighted with the excellent food, ambiance and pleasant service.

Outside the walls of the old town of Finale Ligure

Typical narrow cobblestoned street in Finale Ligure

Bike staged to be photo-ready!

Shop window

Alleyway

Medieval gateway

Church doors

Restaurant recommendation for Alassio: Osteria Mezzaluna

Mezzaluna was the only waterfront restaurant we saw that had any real charm. It's cozy, warm and lively, with live music every night. The food was fine. Go more for the music and ambience. Very popular so reservations are a good idea.

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