This article is about the Italian port city. For other uses, see Genoa (disambiguation) and Genova (disambiguation).
Comune di Genova

A collage of Genoa, clockwise from top left: Lighthouse of Genoa, Piazza De Ferrari, Galleria Mazzini, Brigata Liguria Street, view of San Teodoro from Port of Genoa


Coat of arms

Location of Genoa in Italy

Coordinates: 44°24′40″N 8°55′58″E / 44.41111°N 8.93278°E / 44.41111; 8.93278Coordinates: 44°24′40″N 8°55′58″E / 44.41111°N 8.93278°E / 44.41111; 8.93278
Country Italy
Region Liguria
Province / Metropolitan city Genoa (GE)
  Mayor Marco Doria (Independent)
  Total 243.60 km2 (94.05 sq mi)
Elevation 20 m (70 ft)
Population (30 April 2015)
  Total 588,688
  Density 2,400/km2 (6,300/sq mi)
Demonym(s) Genovesi, Genoese
Time zone CET (UTC+1)
  Summer (DST) CEST (UTC+2)
Postal code 16121-16167
Dialing code 010
Patron saint John the Baptist
Saint day June 24
Website Official website

Genoa (/ˈɛn.ə/ JEN-oh-ə; Italian: Genova [ˈdʒɛːnova]; Genoese and Ligurian Zena [ˈzeːna]; Latin and archaic English Genua) the capital of Liguria is located in the Gulf of Genoa in front of the Ligurian Sea and is the sixth largest city in Italy with a population of 588,688[1] within its administrative limits on a land area of 243.6 km2 (94 sq mi). The urban area of Genoa, coinciding with its metropolitan city, has a population of 862,885.[2] Over 1.5 million[2] people live in a wider metropolitan area that stretches all along the Riviera. Genoa is one of Europe's largest cities on the Mediterranean Sea and the largest seaport in Italy.

Genoa has been nicknamed la Superba ("the Proud one") due to its glorious past and impressive landmarks.[3] Part of the old town of Genoa was inscribed on the World Heritage List (UNESCO) in 2006 (see below). The city's rich cultural history in notably its art, music and cuisine allowed it to become the 2004 European Capital of Culture. It is the birthplace of Christopher Columbus, Niccolò Paganini and Giuseppe Mazzini

Genoa, which forms the southern corner of the Milan-Turin-Genoa industrial triangle of north-west Italy, is one of the country’s major economic centres.[4][5] The city has hosted massive shipyards and steelworks since the 19th century, and its solid financial sector dates back to the Middle Ages. The Bank of Saint George, founded in 1407, is among the oldest in the world and has played an important role in the city’s prosperity since the middle of the 15th century.[6][7] Today a number of leading Italian companies are based in the city, including Fincantieri, Selex ES,[8] Ansaldo Energia,[9] Ansaldo STS, Edoardo Raffinerie Garrone, Piaggio Aerospace and Costa Cruises.


Prehistory and antiquity

The Polcevera bronze tablet, evidence of the Roman and pre-Roman past of Genoa.

The Genoa area has been inhabited since the fifth or fourth millennium B.C. In the ancient times this area was frequented and inhabited by "Ligures", "Phoenicians", "Phocaeans", "Greeks", and "Etruscans". The city cemetery, dating from the 6th and 5th centuries BC, testifies to the occupation of the site by the Greeks, but the fine harbour probably saw use much earlier, perhaps by the Etruscans. In the V century BC was founded the first oppidum at the foot of the hill today called the "Castle hill" which now is inside the medieval old town. The ancient Ligurian city was known as Stalia (Σταλìα), so referred to by Artemidorus Ephesius and Pomponius Mela (this toponym is possibly preserved in the name of Staglieno, some 3 km (2 mi) from the coast). Ligurian Stalia was overshadowed by the powerful Marseille and Vada Sabatia, near modern Savona. Stalia had an alliance with Rome through a foedus aequum ("equal pact") in the course of the Second Punic War (218-201 BC). The Carthaginians accordingly destroyed it in 209 BC. The town was rebuilt and, after the Carthaginian Wars ended in 146 BC. it received municipal rights. The original castrum thenceforth expanded towards the current areas of Santa Maria di Castello and the San Lorenzo promontory. Trades included skins, wood, and honey. Goods were shipped to the mainland, up to major cities like Tortona and Piacenza. Among the archeological remains from the Roman period it was also found an amphitheater.

The city's current name derives from the Latin word meaning "knee" (genu; plural, genua) but according to other theories could derive from Janus, because Genoa like the god Janus has two faces, a face that looks at the sea and the other turned to the mountains. In the Cathedral there is an inscription that says: <<Janus, primus Rex Italiae de progenie gigantum, qui fundavit Genuam temporae Abrahae>> which means: <<Janus, the first King of Italy of the progeny of the giants, who founded Genoa in the days of Abraham>>. Another theory traces the name to the Etruscan word "Kainua" which means "New City" and still another from the Latin word "Janua" which means: Door or Passage. From its geographical position at the centre of the Ligurian coastal arch, thus akin to the name of Geneva.[10] The Latin name, oppidum Genua, is recorded by Pliny the Elder (Nat. Hist. 3.48) as part of the Augustean Regio IX Liguria.

After the fall of the Western Roman Empire the Ostrogoths occupied Genoa. After the Gothic War, the Byzantines made it the seat of their vicar. When the Lombards invaded Italy in 568, Bishop Honoratus of Milan fled and held his seat in Genoa.[11] Pope Gregory the Great was closely connected to these bishops in exile, for example involving himself the election of Deusdedit.[12] The Lombards, under King Rothari, finally captured Genoa and other Ligurian cities in about 643.[13] In 725 arrived in Genoa the mortal remains of Augustine of Hippo. In 773 the Lombard Kingdom was annexed by the Frankish Empire; the first Carolingian count of Genoa was Ademarus, who was given the title praefectus civitatis Genuensis. Ademarus died in Corsica while fighting against the Saracens. In this period the Roman walls, destroyed by the Lombards, were rebuilt and extended.

For the following several centuries, Genoa was little more than a small centre, slowly building its merchant fleet which was to become the leading commercial carrier of the Mediterranean Sea. The town was thoroughly sacked and burned in 934-35 by a Fatimid fleet under Ya'qub ibn Ishaq al-Tamimi and likely abandoned for a few years.[14] In the 10th century the city, now part of the Marca Januensis ("Genoese March") was under the Obertenghi family, whose first member was Obertus I. Genoa became one of the first cities in Italy to have some citizenship rights granted by local feudatories.

Middle ages and Renaissance

Main article: Republic of Genoa

Before 1100, Genoa emerged as an independent city-state, one of a number of Italian city-states during this period. Nominally, the Holy Roman Emperor was sovereign and the Bishop of Genoa was head of state; however, actual power was wielded by a number of "consuls" annually elected by popular assembly. Genoa was one of the so-called "Repubbliche Marinare", (Maritime Republics), along with Venice, Pisa, and Amalfi. Trade, shipbuilding, and banking helped support one of the largest and most powerful navies in the Mediterranean. There is an old saying that says: <<Genuensis ergo mercator>> which means "Genoese therefore merchants" but the genoese were merchants and skilled sailors as ferocious warriors, (see also the Genoese crossbowmen). In 1098 it said that have arrived in Genoa the ashes of John the Baptist, now the patron saint of the city. The Adorno, Campofregoso, and other smaller merchant families all fought for power in this republic, as the power of the consuls allowed each family faction to gain wealth and power in the city. The Republic of Genoa extended over modern Liguria, Piedmont, Sardinia, (see also Pisan-Genoese expeditions to Sardinia), Corsica and Nice, and it had practically complete control of the Tyrrhenian Sea. Through Genoese participation on the Crusades, colonies were established in the "Middle East", "Aegean", "Sicily" and Northern Africa. The cronista of the genoese vicissitudes was Caffaro di Rustico da Caschifellone and the Hero and Military leader was Guglielmo Embriaco called "Testadimaglio", meaning "mallet head", (see also Siege of Jerusalem 1099) . Genoese Crusaders brought home a green glass goblet from the Levant (see also Holy Chalice), which Genoese long regarded as the Holy Grail. In his work entitled Golden Legend, the Archbisop of Genoa, Jacobus de Voragine tells about the history of the Holy Grail. Not all of Genoa's merchandise was so innocuous, however, as medieval Genoa became a major player in the slave trade.[15]

Genoese invented and created the cloth than called "Blue Jean", from which will be named the modern Jeans. The sailors used this cloth for work and to cover and protect their goods on the docks from the weather. During the Republic of Genoa genoese merchants and sailors exported this cloth throughout Europe. We must also remember the Genoese lace.

The iconic Lanterna, renaissance lighthouse of Genoa built in 1543

The collapse of the Crusader States was offset by Genoa’s alliance with the Byzantine Empire. As Venice's relations with the Byzantines were temporarily disrupted by the Fourth Crusade and its aftermath, Genoa was able to improve its position. Genoa took advantage of the opportunity to expand into the Black Sea and Crimea. Internal feuds between the powerful families, the Grimaldi and Fieschi, the Doria, Spinola and others, caused much disruption, but in general the republic was run much as a business affair. In 1218–1220 Genoa was served by the Guelph podestà Rambertino Buvalelli, who probably introduced Occitan literature to the city, which was soon to boast such troubadours as Jacme Grils, Lanfranc Cigala and Bonifaci Calvo. During this time, 1218-1219, a genoese fleet under Simone Doria with the famous genoese pirate Alamanno da Costa participates in the Siege of Damietta, about this period we must also remember the genoese privateer and pirate, "Henry, Count of Malta". The alliance between Byzantines and Genoese went into crisis after the Battle of Settepozzi, admirably described in the Annales ianuenses but the Genoa's political zenith came with its victory over the Republic of Pisa at the naval Battle of Meloria in 1284, and with a temporary victory over its rival, Venice, at the naval Battle of Curzola in 1298, (see also Venetian-Genoese Wars). The Genoese navy was at par with the Venitian navy and both cities had the power to rule the sea. About conflicts between Byzantines and Genoese remember the Genoese occupation of Rhodes and the Byzantine-Genoese War.

However, this prosperity did not last. The Black Death was imported into Europe in 1347 from the Genoese trading post at Caffa (Theodosia) in Crimea on the Black Sea. Following the economic and population collapse, Genoa adopted the Venetian model of government, and was presided over by a doge (see Doge of Genoa). The wars with Venice continued, and the War of Chioggia (1378–1381)-- where Genoa almost managed to decisively subdue Venice—ended with Venice's recovery of dominance in the Adriatic. In 1390 Genoa initiated the Barbary Crusade with help from the French and laid siege to Mahdia. Though it has not been well-studied, the 15th century seems to have been a tumultuous time for Genoa. The city had a strong tradition for trading Levant goods and its financial expertise was recognized all over Europe. After a period of French domination from 1394 to 1409, Genoa came under rule by the Visconti of Milan, (see also Battle of Ponza). Genoa lost Sardinia to Aragon, Corsica to internal revolt, and its Middle Eastern, Eastern European, and Asia Minor colonies to the Turkish Ottoman Empire.

In Genoa were founded two of the first banks in the world: Bank of Saint George, founded in 1407, was the oldest chartered bank of the world. Banca Carige was founded in 1483 as a mount of piety.

Genoa was able to stabilise its position as it moved into the 16th century, particularly thanks to the efforts of doge Andrea Doria, who granted a new constitution in 1528, making Genoa a satellite of the Spanish Empire, (Siege of Coron 1532/34, Battle of Preveza 1538, Battle of Girolata 1540, Battle of Lepanto 1571, Relief of Genoa 1625). Remarkable were the careers of genoese at the service of the crown of Spain, remember the maritime explorers Juan Bautista Pastene and Leon Pancaldo, the general Ambrogio Spinola, the naval captain Giovanni della Croce Bernardotte and "Jorge Burgues". Under the ensuing economic recovery, many aristocratic Genoese families, such as the Balbi, Doria, Grimaldi, Pallavicini and Serra, amassed tremendous fortunes. According to Felipe Fernandez-Armesto and others, the practices Genoa developed in the Mediterranean (such as chattel slavery) were crucial in the exploration and exploitation of the New World.[16] Pioneers in cartography were the genoese Pietro Vesconte, Giovanni da Carignano and Battista Beccario, ( see Genoese map before the discovery of the Americas). Christopher Columbus himself was a native of Genoa and donated one-tenth of his income from the discovery of the Americas for Spain to the Bank of Saint George in Genoa for the relief of taxation on food.

Cristopher Columbus was a culmination of a long tradition of genoese navigators and explorers as: "Vandino and Ugolino Vivaldi", "Lancelotto Malocello", "Luca Tarigo", "Antonio de Noli", "Antonio Malfante" and Antoniotto Usodimare. The famous genoese navigator John Cabot, contemporary of Colombo, discovered under the commission of Henry VII of England, parts of North America.

During his rise and his apogee, Genoa founded Colonies in many parts of the world, from Crimea to North Africa, from Spain to Americas, leaving everywhere valuable architectural works, among which the forts of "Caffa", "Balaklava", "Sudak" and Tabarka, the Galata Tower in Istambul, the Lighthouse in Constanța, the Towers in Corsica and Sardinia. Around Black Sea and Sea of Azof were full of genoese commercial basis and the name that they gave to this area was Gazaria. The genoese settled in flourishing communities in Constantinople, Cádiz, Lisbon and Gibraltar, (see also History of the Genoese in Gibraltar and Levantines), these communities were organized and governed by Maona, (see also Chio's Maona and Focea). Fascinanting is the story of Cigalazade Yusuf Sinan Pasha or Scipione Cicala, member of the aristocratic genoese family of Cicala, he was caught by the Ottomans in the Battle of Djerba and then he became Kapudan Pasha or Grand Admiral of the Ottoman fleet, (this adventure story is sung by Fabrizio De André in "Sinàn Capudàn Pascià" song).

View of Genoa in 1572.

At the time of Genoa’s zenith in the 16th century, the city attracted many artists, including Rubens, Caravaggio and Van Dyck. The famed architect Galeazzo Alessi (1512–1572) designed many of the city’s splendid palazzi, and Bartolomeo Bianco (1590–1657) designed the centrepieces of University of Genoa. A number of Genoese Baroque and Rococo artists settled elsewhere and a number of local artists became prominent.

However, in the 17th century, Genoa entered a period of crisis. In May 1625 a French-Savoian army invaded the republic, but was successfully driven out by the combined Spanish and Genoese armies. In 1656-57, a new outburst of plague killed as much as half of the population.[17] In May 1684, as a punishment for Genoese support for Spain, the city was subjected to a French naval bombardment, with some 13,000 cannonballs aimed at the city.[18] Genoa was eventually occupied by Austria in 1746 during the War of the Austrian Succession, (Siege of Genoa 1746, Siege of Genoa 1747, Siege of Genoa 1800) . This episode in the city's history is mainly remembered for the Genoese revolt, precipitated by a legendary boy named Giovan Battista Perasso and nicknamed Balilla, who threw a stone at an Austrian official and became a national hero to later generations of Genoese (and Italians in general). Unable to retain its rule in Corsica, where the rebel Corsican Republic was proclaimed in 1755, Genoa was forced by the endemic rebellion to sell its claim to Corsica to the French, in the Treaty of Versailles of 1768.

Modern history

Genoa in 1810

With the shift in world economy and trade routes to the New World and away from the Mediterranean, Genoa's political and economic power went into steady decline. Remember the Raid on Genoa 1793 and the Battle of Genoa 1795 where they fought the French fleet and the English. In 1797, under pressure from Napoleon, Genoa became a French protectorate called the Ligurian Republic, which was annexed by France in 1805. This affair is commemorated in the famous first sentence of Tolstoy's War and Peace:

Well, Prince, so Genoa and Lucca are now just family estates of the Buonapartes.(...) And what do you think of this latest comedy, the coronation at Milan, the comedy of the people of Genoa and Lucca laying their petitions [to be annexed to France] before Monsieur Buonaparte, and Monsieur Buonaparte sitting on a throne and granting the petitions of the nations?" (spoken by a thoroughly anti-Boanapartist Russian aristocrat, soon after the news reached Saint Petersburg).

Although the Genoese revolted against France in 1814 and liberated the city on their own, delegates at the Congress of Vienna sanctioned its incorporation into Piedmont (Kingdom of Sardinia), thus ending the three century old struggle by the House of Savoy to acquire the city.

Garibaldi leading the Expedition of the Thousand.

The city soon gained a reputation as a hotbed of anti-Savoy republican agitation although the union with Savoy was economically very beneficial. Genoa is the center of an important reform movement that makes constant pressure on Turin for the granting of freedom of the press and more liberal laws. The citizens of the ancient and glorious republic can not stand the role of subjects of an absolute monarchy like that of Piedmont, wanting to be Italian rather than Piedmontese and in fact relations with the Piedmont improve with the war against Austria. But after the defeat in the First War of Independence and the armistice of Salasco, the genoese, fearing the loss of freedom and independence as a concequence of a peace imposed by Austria, rise hup and hunt the piedmontese garrison. After the uprising the troops of the general Alfonso Ferrero La Marmora moves against the city, besieging, bombarding and sacking, (see also the Sack of Genoa). With the growth of the Risorgimento movement, the Genoese turned their struggles from Giuseppe Mazzini's vision of a local republic into a struggle for a unified Italy under a liberalised Savoy monarchy. In 1860, General Giuseppe Garibaldi set out from Genoa with over a thousand volunteers to begin the conquest of Southern Italy; among them is to remember the general Nino Bixio. Today a monument is set on the rock where the patriot departed from, Quarto dei Mille.

In the 19th century and the early 20th century, Genoa consolidated its role as a major seaport and an important stell and shipbuilding centre.. In 1853 Giovanni Ansaldo founded in Genoa Gio. Ansaldo & C. in which schipyards will be built among the most beautiful ships in the world as "ARA Garibaldi", "SS Roma", "MS Augustus", "SS Rex", "SS Andrea Doria", "SS Cristoforo Colombo", "MS Gripsholm", "SS Leonardo da Vinci", "SS Michelangelo", "SS SeaBreeze". In 1854 born in Genoa the ferry companiy Costa Crociere and then the "Lloyd Italiano" company. In 1861 will create the Registro Italiano Navale and in 1879 the Yacht Club Italiano. The owner Raffaele Rubattino in 1881 will be among the founders of the ferry company Navigazione Generale Italiana which then become the Italian Line. Rinaldo Piaggio founded in 1884 the Piaggio & C. that produced locomotives and railway carriages and in 1923 started the production of aircraft. The company as Piaggio Aerospace at present is owned by Mubadala Development Company and is based in Villanova d'Albenga. (After World War II, Enrico Piaggio son of Rinaldo Piaggio, with the engineer Corradino D'Ascanio will conceive and realize one of the most common means of transport, the Vespa). In 1870 was founded "Banca di Genova" which in 1895 change its name in Credito Italiano and in 1998 will become Unicredit, always in Genoa in 1898 born the insurance company called Alleanza Assicurazioni. In 1874 the city is completely connected by railway lines to France and the rest of Italy: "Genoa-Turin", "Genoa-Ventimiglia", "Genoa-Pisa". Born in Genoa the shipyards: "Cantiere Navale di Sestri Ponente", "Cantiere della Foce", "Cantiere navale di Riva Trigoso", "Cantieri navali di Voltri" but also the sugar factory "Eridania", the food brands "Saiwa", "Elah" and "Icat Food". This technological and industrial developments will gain the worldwide exposure when the city hosts in 1892 the international exhibition: "Esposizione Italo-Americana" and in 1914 the international exhibition: "Esposizione Internazionale di Marina e di igiene marinara", (see the List of world's fairs). The strong industrialization attracts large masses of workers and this is one of the reasons why in in 1892 will be founded in Genoa by "Filippo Turati", "Andrea Costa" and "Anna Kuliscioff" the "Italian Socialist Party". In 1886 was founded the newspaper Il Secolo XIX and in 1903 the socialist newspaper "Il Lavoro". Born in Genoa, in 1893, Palmiro Togliatti, one of the most influential italian politicians of the 20th century.

In this period many Genoese emigrated to the Americas (see also Italian diaspora), among the most interesting experiences of this exodus there is the creation of the Buenos Aires district called La Boca, now famous for its colorful houses in the Ligurian Style, furthermore on 3 April 1905 a group of genoese boys founded the Boca Juniors football club. This is why the fans of Boca Juniors are called "Los Xeneizes" which means the Genoese. Son of genoese immigrants in North America was also Amedeo Giannini who founded the Bank of America, (see also "Italian Peruvians", "Italian Chileans", "Italian Uruguayans").

During the First World War the genoese yards were strong activity to ensure all the material necessary to the war effort of the Country and between thirty thousand and eighty thousand were the genoese who left for the battlefront. About this period we have to remember the admiral Raffaele Rossetti, famous for the sinking of the battleship SMS Viribus Unitis. Under Fascism were realized important urban and architectural works, among which: Piazza Dante, where is the Piacentini's Tower, Piazza della Vittoria where is the Arco della Vittoria and the coverage of the Bisagno stream, furthermore in 1935 was inaugurated in Genoa the only Synagogue built in Italy during the Fascism. Born in Genoa numerous industries like the steelworks "S.I.A.C." in Cornigliano, the metallurgical company "F.I.T.", the oil refining company "IPLOM SpA" and the energy company ERG. In 1921 Carlo Guzzi with Angelo and Giorgio Parodi founded in Genoa, Moto Guzzi. The fascist regime believed in the symbolic and strategic value of the city and uniting the Chief Town to nineteen municipalities, until then autonomous, will create in 1926 the so-called Grande Genova which means "Big Genoa". In 1922 the city was the headquarters of the financial and economic conference called the Genoa Conference that was a consequence of the Treaty of Rapallo.

During World War II, Genoa suffered heavy damages, from both naval and aerial bombings, Operation Grog. The city was liberated by the partisans a few days before the arrival of the Allies. About this period we must remember the story of the admiral Luigi Durand de la Penne, whose exploits, especially the Raid on Alexandria, will be told in several films such as: The Valiant, The Silent Enemy or Human Torpedoes.

In the post-war years, Genoa played a pivotal role in the Italian economic miracle, as the third corner of the so-called "Industrial Triangle" of Northern Italy, formed by the manufacturer hubs of Milan and Turin and the seaport of Genoa itself. Since 1962, the Genoa International Boat Show has evolved as one of the largest annually recurring events in Genoa. The city becomes an important industrial center, born companies of diving equipment: Cressi-Sub, "Mares (scuba gear company)"and "Techisub SpA", ferry companies: "GNV" and Home Lines, the "OSN-Orizzonti Sistemi Navali" the oil company "IP-Italiana Petroli", the textile brand SLAM, the food brand "Elah Dufour" the large-scale organised distribution "Sogegross", "FISIA-Italimpianti" and "NIRA" advanced Italian nuclear reactors, closed after the Chernobyl disaster. Because of population increase, also due to the strong immigration from other parts of Italy, new neighborhoods are built. Are the years of the building speculation and of the destruction of two historic districts of the city, the first in 1964 called "Piccapietra-Portoria" and the second in 1974 called "Madre di Dio" where was the house of Paganini, both events are an indelible scar in the city and in the memory of citizens. In 1965 was founded by Arrigo Cervetto and Lorenzo Parodi the political party Lotta Comunista. Shipwrecked in 1970 off the coast of Genoa the SS London Valour, the episode is the theme of a song by the local minstrel Fabrizio De Andrè entitled "Parlando del Naufragio della London Valour" which means "Talking about the sinking of the London Valour". In this period Genoa is the center of protest movements that sometimes take the way of the armed struggle. We are in so-called Years of Lead, the group Red Brigades in Genoa form a very active column which in 1974 will kidnap the magistrate Mario Sossi and in 1979 will kill the worker Guido Rossa and the professor Fausto Cuocolo. In 1980 the genoese column of B.R. is eliminated at the hands of a special detachment under Carlo Alberto Dalla Chiesa orders. 1991 shipwrecked off the coast of Genoa the MT Haven but the 1992 marks the rebirth of the city with Genoa Expo '92. Genoa the city home to Christopher Columbus celebrates the 500th anniversary of the discovery of America. For the occasion, thanks to the intervention of the architect Renzo Piano, the Old Harbour changes face.

The 27th G8 summit in the city, in July 2001, was overshadowed by violent protests (Anti-globalization movement), with one protester, Carlo Giuliani, killed. In 2007, 15 officials, including police, prison officials and two doctors, were found guilty by an Italian court of mistreating protesters, (2001 Raid on Armando Diaz). A judge handed down prison sentences ranging from five months to five years.[19]

In 2004, the European Union designated Genoa as the European Capital of Culture, along with the French city of Lille.

2009 the genoese actor and political activist Beppe Grillo founded Five Star Movement.

2011 European floods. Genoa, like other European city was involved in a disastrous flood.

In 2013 the cargo ship Jolly Nero impacts the control tower of the port, with the consequent collapse of the latter and the killing of 11 people.

In 2014 the ship Costa Concordia is trasported in the port of Genoa to be demolished, (Costa Concordia disaster).


St George's flag flying on Doge's Palace, Genoa.

The flag of Genoa is simply a St George's Cross, a red cross on a lime white field; thus, it is identical to the flag of England. The patron saint of Genoa was Saint Lawrence of Rome until at least 958, but the Genoese transferred their allegiance to Saint George at some point during the 11th or 12th century, most likely under the impression of the rising popularity of the "warrior saint" during the crusades. Genoa also had a banner displaying a cross since at least 1218, possibly as early as 1113.[20] But the cross banner was not associated with the saint; indeed, the saint had his own flag, the vexillum beati Georgii (first mentioned 1198), a red flag showing George and the dragon. A depiction of this flag is shown in the Genoese annals under the year 1227. The Genoese flag with the red cross was used alongside this "Saint George's flag", from at least 1218, known as the insignia cruxata comunis Janue ("cross ensign of the commune of Genoa"). The saint's flag was the city's main war flag, but the cross flag was used alongside it in the 1240s.[21] The Saint George's flag (i.e. the flag depicting the saint) remained the main flag of Genoa at least until the 1280s. The flag now known as the "St George's Cross" seems to have replaced it as Genoa's main flag at some point during the 14th century. The Book of Knowledge of All Kingdoms (c. 1385) shows it, inscribed with the word iustiçia, and described as:

And the lord of this place has as his ensign a white pennant with a red cross. At the top it is inscribed with 'justice', in this manner.[22]


A panoramic view of Genoa (click to enlarge)

The city of Genoa covers an area of 243 square kilometres (94 sq mi) between the Ligurian Sea and the Apennine Mountains. The city stretches along the coast for about 30 kilometres (19 mi) from the neighbourhood of Voltri to Nervi, and for 10 kilometres (6.2 mi) from the coast to the north along the valleys Polcevera and Bisagno. The territory of Genoa can then be popularly divided into 5 main zones: the centre, the west, the east, the Polcevera and the Bisagno Valley.

Genoa is adjacent to two popular Ligurian vacation spots, Camogli and Portofino. In the metropolitan area of Genoa lies Aveto Natural Regional Park.


Genoa has a borderline humid subtropical (Cfa) and Mediterranean climate (Csa) in the Köppen climate classification, since only one summer month has less than 40 millimetres (1.57 in) of rainfall, preventing it from being classified as solely humid subtropical or Mediterranean; with a special note for the Genoa low.

The average yearly temperature is around 19 °C (66 °F) during the day and 13 °C (55 °F) at night. In the coldest months: December, January and February, the average temperature is 12 °C (54 °F) during the day and 6 °C (43 °F) at night. In the warmest months – July and August – the average temperature is 27.5 °C (82 °F) during the day and 21 °C (70 °F) at night. The daily temperature range is limited, with an average range of about 6 °C (11 °F) between high and low temperatures. Genoa also sees significant moderation from the sea, in stark contrast to areas behind the Ligurian mountains such as Parma, where summers are hotter and winter are quite cold.

Annually, the average 2.9 of nights recorded temperatures of ≤0 °C (32 °F) (mainly in January). The coldest temperature ever recorded was −8 °C (18 °F) on the night of February 2012; the highest temperature ever recorded during the day is 38.5 °C (101 °F) on the August 2015. Average annual number of days with temperatures of ≥30 °C (86 °F) is about 8, average four days in July and August.[23]

Average annual temperature of the sea is 17.5 °C (64 °F), from 13 °C (55 °F) in the period January–March to 25 °C (77 °F) in August. In the period from June to October, the average sea temperature exceeds 19 °C (66 °F).[24]

Genoa is also a windy city, especially during winter when northern winds often bring cool air from the Po Valley (usually accompanied by lower temperatures, high pressure and clear skies). Another typical wind blows from southeast, mostly as a consequence of atlantic disturbances and storms, bringing humid and warmer air from the sea. Snowfall is sporadic, but does occur almost every year, albeit big amounts in the city centre are rare.[25][26]

Annual average relative humidity is 68%, ranging from 63% in February to 73% in May.[23]

Sunshine hours total above 2,200 per year, from an average 4 hours of sunshine duration per day in winter to average 9 hours in summer. This value is an average between the northern half of Europe and North Africa.[24]

Climate data for Genoa
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Average high °C (°F) 11.5
Daily mean °C (°F) 8.5
Average low °C (°F) 5.5
Average rainfall mm (inches) 101.8
Average rainy days (≥ 1.0 mm) 7.7 5.6 6.9 8.1 7.0 5.0 2.8 5.0 6.0 8.0 7.1 6.5 75.7
Average snowy days 0.9 0.5 0.2 0.7 2.3
Mean monthly sunshine hours 117.8 130.5 158.1 192.0 220.1 246.0 294.5 266.6 201.0 173.6 111.0 111.6 2,222.8
Source #1: Servizio Meteorologico,[23] data of sunshine hours[27]
Source #2: Rivista Ligure "La neve sulle coste del Maditerraneo" [28]


Municipal government

The Municipal Council of Genoa is currently led by a left-wing majority, elected in May 2012. The mayor is Marco Doria, expression of a progressive alliance composed by Democratic Party, Italy of Values, Left Ecology Freedom, Communist Refoundation Party and other minor lists.

Administrative subdivision

The city of Genoa is subdivided into 9 Municipi (administrative districts), as approved by the Municipal Council in 2007.[29]

The 9 districts of Genoa
Municipio Population (% of total) Quarters included
Centro-Est 91,402 (15.0%) Prè, Molo, Maddalena, Oregina, Lagaccio, San Nicola, Castelletto, Manin, San Vincenzo, Carignano
Centro-Ovest 66,626 (10.9%) Sampierdarena, Campasso, San Teodoro, San Bartolomeo
Bassa Val Bisagno 78,791 (12.9%) San Fruttuoso, Marassi, Quezzi
Media Val Bisagno 58,742 (9,6%) Staglieno, Sant'Eusebio, San Gottardo, Molassana, Struppa
Valpolcevera 62,492 (10.3%) Borzoli, Fegino, Certosa, Rivarolo, Teglia, Begato, Bolzaneto, Morego, San Quirico, Pontedecimo
Medio Ponente 61,810 (10.1%) Sestri, Cornigliano, Campi
Ponente 63,027 (10.3%) Crevari, Voltri, Palmaro, Prà, Pegli, Multedo
Medio Levante 61,759 (10.1%) Foce, Brignole, Albaro, San Martino, San Giuliano, Lido, Puggia
Levante 66,155 (10.8%) Sturla, Quarto, Quinto, Nervi, Sant'Ilario, Bavari, San Desiderio, Borgoratti


The port of Genoa at night-time, with lights illuminating it.
A panoramic image showing the port of Genoa at night-time, which has brought trade, commerce and wealth to the city for centuries, greatly contributing to its cultural and historical heritage.

Main sights

Doge's Palace, ancient seat of the government of the oligarghic republic.
Royal Palace of Genoa, 16th century.
Palace of Saint George, built in 1260.
Medieval gates of Genoa are a rare survivor of the city's oldest buildings.

Famous and important are the so-called Palazzi dei Rolli, included in UNESCO World Heritage Site, among the most important palaces we remember: "Palazzo Rosso", "Palazzo Bianco", "Palazzo Podestà o di Nicolosio Lomellino", "Palazzo Reale", "Palazzo Angelo Giovanni Spinola", "Palazzo Pietro Spinola di San Luca", "Palazzo Spinola di Pellicceria".

Genoa's historic centre is articulated in a maze of squares and narrow caruggi (typical genoese alleys). It joins a medieval dimension with following 16th century and Baroque interventions, (the ancient via Aurea, now Via Garibaldi).

Near Via Garibaldi, through the public elevator "Castelletto Levante" you reach one of the most scenic places in the city, Belvedere Castelletto. The center of Genoa is connected to its upper part by ancient pahts caught between tall palaces, called "Creuze". Walking along these small paths you can reach magnificent places like the "Santuario di Nostra Signora di Loreto". Very beautiful is the upper ring road so-called "Circonvallazione a Monte" that includes: Corso Firenze, Corso Paganini, Corso Magenta, Via Solferino, Corso Armellini.

San Lorenzo cathedral has a splendid portal and the dome designed by Galeazzo Alessi. Inside we find the tresaure of the Cathedral where among other objects there is also what is said to be the Holy Chalice.

The symbols of the city are the Lanterna (the lighthouse) (117 metres (384 feet) high), old and standing lighthouse visible in the distance from the sea (beyond 30 kilometres (19 miles)), and the monumental fountain of Piazza De Ferrari, recently restored, out-and-out core of the city's life. Near Piazza De Ferrari and Teatro Carlo Felice is the "Mazzini Gallery" a typical nineteenth-century structure where many elegant shops and coffee bars.

Another tourist destination is the ancient seaside district of Boccadasse (means: "The mouth of the donkey"), with its multicolour boats, set as a seal to Corso Italia, the promenade which runs along the Lido d'Albaro, and known for its ice-creams. After Boccadasse you can continue along the sea up to Sturla.

Just out of the city centre, but still part of the 33 km (21 mi) of coast included in the municipality's territory, are Nervi, natural doorway to the Ligurian East Riviera, and Pegli, the point of access to the West Riviera.

Nervi, the doorway of the East Riviera, offers many attractions: The promenade overlooking the sea called "Passeggiata Anita Garibaldi", parks covered with lush tropical vegetation and numerous villas and palaces open to the public that now house museums like: "GAM-Galleria d'Arte Moderna", "Raccolte Frugone Museum", "Museo Giannettino Luxoro", "Wolfson collection" foundation by Mitchell Wolfson, Jr.. The East Riviera of Genoa called "Riviera di Levante" is part of the Italian Riviera. East Riviera is full of interesting towns to visit, and then from Genoa to east meet: "Bogliasco", "Pieve Ligure", "Sori", "Recco", "Camogli", "Portofino", "Santa Margherita Ligure", "Rapallo", "Zoagli", "Chiavari", "Lavagna" and "Sestri Levante".

In the West instead, Pegli is the site of the famous Villa Durazzo-Pallavicini and Arenzano is a seaside town at the foot of the Parco naturale regionale del Beigua.

The new Genoa based its rebirth upon the restoration of the green areas of the immediate inland parts among them the Parco naturale regionale del Beigua and upon the realisation of facilities such as the Aquarium of Genoa in the Old Harbour - the biggest in Italy and one of the major in Europe - and its Marina (the tourist small port which holds hundreds of pleasure boats). All of this inside the restored Expo Area, arranged in occasion of the Columbian Celebrations of 1992.

Near the city are Camogli and San Fruttuoso abbey accessible by a daily ferry from the Old Harbour (Porto Antico) of Genoa. In the seabed in front of the San Fruttuoso abbey there is the Christ of the Abyss. From the Old Harbour you can reach by boat other famous seaside places around Genoa such as Portofino or little more distant, Lerici and the Cinque Terre.

The regained pride gave back to the city the consciousness of being capable of looking to the future without forgetting its past. The resumption of several flourishing hand-crafting activities, far-back absent from the caruggi of the old town, is a direct evidence of it. The restoration of many of Genoa's churches and palaces in the 1980s and the 1990s contributed to the city's rebirth. A notable example the Renaissance, Basilica of Santa Maria Assunta, sitting on the top of the hill of Carignano and visible from almost every part of the city. The total restoration of Doge's Palace - once venue of dogi and senators and nowadays location of cultural events - and of the Old Harbour and the rebuilding of Teatro Carlo Felice, destroyed by the Second World War bombings that only spared the neoclassic pronao of the architect Carlo Barabino, were two more points of strength for the realisation of a new Genoa.

Genoa could not renounce, especially as from the 1960s, to a great renewal, which as happened in several other metropolis, should necessarily get through the realisation of big council houses' complexes, whose quality, utility and functionality has been and still is controversial for those residents living there. Concerning this, the most known cases are those of the so-called "Biscione", a development in the shape of a long snake, situated on the hills of the populous district of Marassi, and the one of the group of houses known as "Le Lavatrici" (the washing machines), in the district of Prà.

Beyond a complete restyling of the area, the ancient port zone nearby the Mandraccio opening, in Porta Siberia, was enriched by Genoese architect Renzo Piano with a large sphere made of metal and glass, installed in the port's waters, not far from the Aquarium of Genoa, and unveiled in 2001 in occasion of the G8 Summit held in Genoa. The sphere (called by the citizens "Piano's bubble" or "The Ball"), after hosting an exposition of fens from Genoa's Botanical Gardens, currently houses the reconstruction of a tropical environment, with several plants, little animals and butterflies. Piano also designed the subway stations and, in the hills area, the construction - in collaboration with UNESCO - of Punta Nave, base of the Renzo Piano Building Workshop.

Nearby the Old Harbour is the so-called "Matitone", a skyscraper in shape of a pencil, that lays side by side with the group of the WTC towers, core of the San Benigno development, today base of part of the Municipality's administration and of several companies.


Santa Maria Assunta di Carignano

St. Lawrence Cathedral (Cattedrale di San Lorenzo) is the city's cathedral, built in a Gothic-Romanesque style. Other notable historical churches are: the Commandery of the Saint John's Order called Commenda di San Giovanni di Pré, "San Matteo", "San Donato", "Santa Maria di Castello", "Sant'Agostino" (deconsecrated since 19th century, sometimes is used for theatrical representations), "Santo Stefano", "Santi Vittore e Carlo", "Basilica della Santissima Annunziata del Vastato", "San Pietro in Banchi", "Santa Maria delle Vigne", "Nostra Signora della Consolazione", "San Siro", Santa Maria Maddalena, "Santa Maria Assunta di Carignano" and Chiesa del Gesù. San Bartolomeo degli Armeni houses the Image of Edessa and San Pancrazio after the World War II was entrusted to the ligurian delegation of the Sovereign Military Order of Malta. These churches and basilicas are built in Romanesque (San Donato, Santa Maria di Castello, Commenda di San Giovanni di Pré), Gothic (San Matteo, Santo Stefano, Sant'Agostino), Baroque (San Siro) or Renaissance (Santa Maria Assunta di Carignano, San Pietro in Banchi) appearance, or a mix of different styles (Nostra Signora della Consolazione, Santissima Annunziata del Vastato: this last has Baroque interior and a Neoclassicist façade).

Another well known genoese church is the shrine of Saint Francis of Paola, notable for the outer courtyard overlooking the port and the memorial to all those who died at sea. This church is of artistic mention in that the tile depictions of the Via Crucis Stations along the brick path to the church. Near Genoa we find the Shrine of Nostra Signora della Guardia, (the sanctuary is said to have inspired the writer Umberto Eco in making his novel The Name of the Rose). Another interesting church in the neighborhoods of Genoa is San Siro di Struppa.

The city has been the bithplace of some Popes: "Innocent IV", "Adrian V", "Innocent VIII", "Benedict XV". Saints from Genoa are: "Syrus of Genoa", "Romulus of Genoa", "Catherine of Genoa", "Virginia Centurione Bracelli". Notable man was the Archbishop of Genoa Jacobus de Voragine, who wrote the Golden Legend, the Superior General of the Society of Jesus, "Giovanni Paolo Oliva" and the Archbishop of Aix, "Girolamo Grimaldi-Cavalleroni". Renowned philosopher and theologian was the priest Ausonio Franchi and from Genoa were also the cardinal Giuseppe Siri and the priests Francesco Repetto, Giuseppe Dossetti, Gianni Baget Bozzo and Andrea Gallo. The present Archbishop of Genoa, the cardinal Angelo Bagnasco, comes from a genoese family but was born in Pontevico, near Brescia, (see also Archdiocese of Genoa).

Buildings and palaces

UNESCO World Heritage Site
Genoa: Le Strade Nuove and the system of the Palazzi dei Rolli
Name as inscribed on the World Heritage List
Type Cultural
Criteria ii, iv
Reference 1211
UNESCO region Europe and North America
Inscription history
Inscription 2006 (30th Session)

The main features of central Genoa include Piazza De Ferrari, around which are sited the Opera and the Palace of the Doges. There is also a house where Christopher Columbus is said to have been born.

The Palazzo di San Giorgio was the headquarters of the Bank of Saint George and here Marco Polo and Rustichello da Pisa composed The Travels of Marco Polo. The port of Genoa also contains an ancient Lighthouse called "La Lanterna".

Strada Nuova (now Via Garibaldi), in the old city, was inscribed on the World Heritage List in 2006. This district was designed in the mid-16th century to accommodate Mannerist palaces of the city's most eminent families. In Genoa there are 114 noble palaces (see also Rolli di Genova) among these 42 are inscribed on the World Heritage List. Among the Palazzi dei Rolli most famous are: "Palazzo Rosso" (now a museum), "Palazzo Bianco", Palazzo Gerolamo Grimaldi, Palazzo Lomellino, "Palazzo Reale", "Palazzo Angelo Giovanni Spinola", "Palazzo Pietro Spinola di San Luca", "Palazzo Spinola di Pellicceria", "Palazzo Cicala". Palazzo Bianco and Palazzo Rosso are also known as Musei di Strada Nuova. The famous art college is also located on this street. The genoese artistic renaissance begins with the construction of Villa del Principe commissioned by Andrea Doria: the architects were Giovanni Angelo Montorsoli and Giovanni Ponzello, the interior was painted by Perino del Vaga and the garden fountain was realized by Taddeo Carlone. In 1548 Galeazzo Alessi, with the project of "Villa Giustiniani-Cambiaso", invents the new prototype of genoese palace that will be an inspiration to other architects working in Genoa as Bartolomeo Bianco, "Pietro Antonio Corradi", "Rocco Lurago", "Giovan Battista Castello", "Bernardino Cantone". Peter Paul Rubens realizes in 1622 a book dedicated to the palaces of Genoa: Palazzi di Genova.

As it regards the 19th century remember the architects "Ignazio Gardella (senior)", and "Carlo Barabino" which among other things, realizes together with "Giovanni Battista Resasco", the Monumental Cemetery of Staglieno ". The Monumental Cemetery is renowned for its statues and sepulchral monuments that preserve the mortal remains of notable personalities, including Giuseppe Mazzini, Fabrizio De André and Oscar Wilde's wife, Constance Lloyd. In the first half of 19th century they are completed the Albergo dei Poveri and the Acquedotto storico. In 1901 Giovanni Antonio Porcheddu realizes the Silos Granari.

The city is rich in testimony of the Gothic Revival like Albertis Castle, Castello Bruzzo and Mackenzie Castle designed by the architect Gino Coppedè. Genoa is also rich of Art Nouveau works, among which: Palazzo della Borsa, Via XX Settembre, "Hotel Bristol Palace", Grand Hotel Miramare and Stazione marittima . Works of Rationalist architecture of the first half of the 20th century are Torre Piacentini" and "Piazza della Vittoria" where Arco della Vittoria, both designed by the architect Marcello Piacentini. Other architects who have changed the face of Genoa in the 20th century are: Ignazio Gardella, Luigi Carlo Daneri who realized the Piazza Rossetti and the residential complex so-called Il Biscione, Mario Labò, Aldo Rossi, Ludovico Quaroni, Franco Albini who designed the interiors of Palazzo Rosso and Piero Gambacciani. The Edoardo Chiossone Museum of Oriental Art, designed by Mario Labò, has one of the largest collections of Oriental art in Europe.

Other architectural works to remember are: the Ponte Morandi by Riccardo Morandi, the Old Harbour's new-design with Aquarium, Bigo and Biosfera by Renzo Piano, the Palasport di Genova, the so-called Matitone, and the B Pavillon of Genoa Fair, by Jean Nouvel.

Old harbour

The old harbour ("porto antico" in Italian) is the ancient part of the port of Genoa. The harbor gave access to outside communities creating a good geographical situation for the city.[30] The city is spread out geographically along a section of the Liguria coast, which makes trading by ship possible. Before the invention of car, train, and airplane technology, the main outside access for the city was the sea, as the surrounding mountains made trade north by land more difficult than coastal trade. Trade routes have always connected Genoa on an international scale, with increasingly farther reach starting from trade along Europe’s coastline before the medieval period to today’s connection across continents.[31]

As the Genoa harbor was so important to the merchants for their own economic success, other nearby harbors and ports were seen as competition for a landing point for foreign traders. In the 16th century, the Genovese worked to destroy the local shipping competition, the Savona[30] harbor. Taking matters into their own hands, the Genoa merchants and the politically powerful in Genoa attacked the harbor of Savona with stones.[30] This action was taken to preserve the economic stability and wealth of the city during the rise in prominence of Savona. The Genovese would go as far as to war with other coastal, trading cities such as Venice,[30] in order to protect the trade industry.

Renzo Piano redeveloped the area for public access, restoring the historical buildings (like the Cotton warehouses) and creating new landmarks like the Aquarium, the Bigo and recently the "Bolla" (the Sphere). The main touristic attractions of this area are the famous Aquarium and the Museum of the Sea (MuMA). In 2007 these attracted almost 1.7 million visitors.[32]

Walls and fortresses

Main article: Walls of Genoa

The city of Genoa during its long history at least since 9th century had been defended by different line of walls. To this day, large portions of these walls remain, and Genoa has more and longer walls than any other city in Italy. The main city walls are known as “Ninth century walls”, "Barbarossa Walls" (12th century), "Fourteenth century walls", "Sixteenth century walls" and "New Walls" ("Mura Nuove" in Italian), the more imposing, built in the first half of 17th century on the ridge of hills around the city, having a length of almost 20 km (12 mi). Some fortresses stand along the perimeter of the "New Walls" or close them.


Main article: The Parks of Genoa

Genoa has 82,000 square metres (880,000 square feet) of public parks in the city centre, such as Villetta Di Negro which is right in the heart of the town, overlooking the historical centre. Many bigger green spaces are situated outside the centre: in the east are the Parks of Nervi (96,000 square metres or 1,030,000 square feet) overlooking the sea, in the west the beautiful gardens of Villa Durazzo Pallavicini and its Giardino botanico Clelia Durazzo Grimaldi. (265,000 square metres or 2,850,000 square feet). The numerous villas and palaces of the city also have their own gardens, like Palazzo del Principe, Villa Doria, Palazzo Bianco and Palazzo Tursi, Palazzo Nicolosio Lomellino, Albertis Castle, Villa Rosazza, Villa Croce, Villa Imperiale Cattaneo, Villa Bombrini, Villa Brignole Sale Duchessa di Galliera, Villa Serra and many more.[33]

The city is surrounded by natural parks such as: "Parco naturale regionale dell'Antola", "Parco naturale regionale del Beigua", "Aveto Natural Regional Park" and the "Ligurian Sea Cetacean Sanctuary".


Corso Italia runs for 2.5 km (1.6 mi) in the quartiere of Albaro, linking two neighbourhoods of Foce and Boccadasse. The promenade, which was built in 1908, overlooks the sea, towards the promontory of Portofino, and the main landmarks are the small lighthouse of Punta Vagno, the San Giuliano Abbey, the Lido of Albaro.

"Passeggiata Anita Garibaldi", promenade overlooking the sea and 2 kilometres (1.2 miles) long, Nervi.

Tour of the Forts and News Walls of Genoa.

Promenade of the upper ring road, so-called:"Circonvallazione a Monte" that includes: Corso Firenze, Corso Paganini, Corso Magenta, Via Solferino, Corso Armellini.

Beautiful Walks can be made from the center of Genoa following one of the many ancient paths cought between tall palaces and so-called "Creuze" to reach the higher areas of the city where there are magnificent places like: Belvedere Castelletto, the "Righi's district", the "Santuario di Nostra Signora di Loreto", the "Santuario della Madonnetta", the "Santuario di San Francesco da Paola".

From Monte Fasce you will enjoy a complete view of the city.

To reach the hinterland of Province of Genoa you can use the Genoa - Casella Old Railway, characteristic 25 kilometres (16 miles) of railway between the genoese mountains.


Historical population
1115 50,000    
1300 100,000+100.0%
1400 100,000+0.0%
1400+ 117,000+17.0%
1861 242,447+107.2%
1871 256,486+5.8%
1881 289,234+12.8%
1901 377,610+30.6%
1911 465,496+23.3%
1921 541,562+16.3%
1931 590,736+9.1%
1936 634,646+7.4%
1951 688,447+8.5%
1961 784,194+13.9%
1971 816,872+4.2%
1981 762,895−6.6%
1991 678,771−11.0%
2001 610,307−10.1%
2011 608,493−0.3%
2015 588,668−3.3%
Source: ISTAT 2001[34][35][36]

At the beginning of 2011, there were 608,493 people residing in Genoa, of whom 47% were male and 53% were female. The city is characterised by rapid aging and a long history of demographic decline, that has shown a partial slowdown in the last decade. Genoa has the lowest birth rate and is the most aged of any large Italian city. Minors (children ages 18 and younger) totalled only 14.12% of the population compared to pensioners who number 26.67%. This compares with the Italian average of 18.06% (minors) and 19.94% (pensioners). The median age of Genoa's residents is 47, compared to the Italian average of 42. The current birth rate of the city is only 7.49 births per 1,000 inhabitants, compared to the national average of 9.45. As of 2006, 94.23% of the population was Italian. The largest immigrant group is from the Americas (mostly Ecuador): 2.76%, other European nations (mostly Albania, Ukraine, the former Yugoslavia and Romania): 1.37%, and North Africa: 0.62%. The city is predominantly Roman Catholic, with small numbers of Protestant adherents.


The Genoa metropolitan area had a GDP amounting to $30.1 billion in 2011, or $33,003 per capita.[37]

San Benigno business district.

Ligurian agriculture has increased its specialisation pattern in high-quality products (flowers, wine, olive oil) and has thus managed to maintain the gross value-added per worker at a level much higher than the national average (the difference was about 42% in 1999).[38] The value of flower production represents over 75% of the agriculture sector turnover, followed by animal farming (11.2%) and vegetable growing (6.4%).

Steel, once a major industry during the booming 1950s and 1960s, phased out after the late 1980s crisis, as Italy moved away from the heavy industry to pursue more technologically advanced and less polluting productions. So the Ligurian industry has turned towards a widely diversified range of high-quality and high-tech products (food, shipbuilding (in Sestri Ponente and in metropolitan area - Sestri Levante), electrical engineering and electronics, petrochemicals, aerospace etc.). Nonetheless, the regions still maintains a flourishing shipbuilding sector (yacht construction and maintenance, cruise liner building, military shipyards).[38] In the services sector, the gross value-added per worker in Liguria is 4% above the national average. This is due to the increasing diffusion of modern technologies, particularly in commerce and tourism. A good motorway network (376 km (234 mi) in 2000) makes communications with the border regions relatively easy. The main motorway is located along the coastline, connecting the main ports of Nice (in France), Savona, Genoa and La Spezia. The number of passenger cars per 1000 inhabitants (524 in 2001) is below the national average (584). On average, about 17 million tonnes of cargo are shipped from the main ports of the region and about 57 million tonnes enter the region.[38] The Port of Genoa, with a trade volume of 58.6 million tonnes[39] ranks first in Italy,[40] second in terms of twenty-foot equivalent units after the transshipment port of Gioia Tauro, with a trade volume of over 2 million TEUs.[41] The main destinations for the cargo-passenger traffic are Sicily, Sardinia, Corsica, Barcelona, and the Canary Islands.

Some companies based in Genoa include: Ansaldo STS, Ansaldo Energia, Edoardo Raffinerie Garrone, Registro Italiano Navale, Banca Carige, SLAM,


Aquarium of Genoa

The Aquarium of Genoa (in Italian: Acquario di Genova) is the largest aquarium in Italy and among the largest in Europe. Built for Genoa Expo '92, it is an educational, scientific and cultural centre. Its mission is to educate and raise public awareness as regards conservation, management and responsible use of aquatic environments. It welcomes over 1.2 million visitors a year.

Control of the entire environment, including the temperature, filtration and lighting of the tanks was provided by local Automation Supplier Orsi Automazione, acquired in 2001 by Siemens. The Aquarium of Genoa is co-ordinating the AquaRing EU project. It also provides scientific expertise and a great deal of content for AquaRing, including documents, images, academic content and interactive online courses, via its Online Resource Centre.[42]

Visual art

Portrait of a Young Man, by Albrecht Dürer. Gallery of Palazzo Rosso.

In the 14th century were active in Genoa the painters Barnaba da Modena and its local followers Nicolò da Voltri and at the same time, the sculptor Giovanni Pisano reaches Genoa to make the monument for Margaret of Brabant, today housed in the Sant'Agostino's museum.

In the 16th century along with the flourishing trade between the Republic of Genoa and the Flanders also grew the cultural exchanges. The painters Lucas and Cornelis de Wael live for a long time in Genoa where they play the role of a magnet for many Flemish painters like Jaan Roos, Giacomo Legi, Jan Matsys, Andries van Eertvelt and Vincent Malo. This creative environment also attracts the two most important Flemish painters, Rubens and Van Dyck, who along with Bernardo Strozzi.[43] give life to the Genoese Painting School of the 17th century.

Much of the city's art is found in its churches and palaces, where there are numerous Renaissance, Baroque and Rococo frescos. They are rich in works of art the Cathedral, the "Church of Gesù" where The Circumcision and the "Miracles of St. Ignatius" by Rubens, the Church of San Donato which contains works of Barnaba da Modena, Nicolò da Voltri and Joos van Cleve,[43] the Church of Santo Stefano where "The Stoning of St. Stephen" by Giulio Romano and the Church of Santa Maria Assunta where the sculptures by Filippo Parodi and Pierre Puget. But most of the works are kept in the Palaces like <<Palazzo Bianco>> where "Ecce Homo" by Caravaggio, "Susannah and the Elders" by Veronese, the "Garden Party in Albaro" by Magnasco. <<Palazzo Rosso>> where works of Guido Reni, van Dyck, Dürer, Bernardo Strozzi, Mattia Preti, Veronese. <<Palazzo Spinola di Pellicceria>> where the "Portrait of Giovanni Carlo Doria on Horseback" by Rubens and "Ecce Homo" by Antonello da Messina. <<Palazzo Tursi>> where the "Penitent Magdalene" by Canova and <<Palazzo Reale>> which contains works of Strozzi, Gaulli, Tintoretto, van Dyck, Simon Vouet, Guercino.

The most important genoese painters are: "Luca Cambiaso", "Bernardo" and "Valerio Castello", "Giovanni Benedetto Castiglione", "Domenico" and "Paolo Gerolamo Piola", "Gregorio De Ferrari", "Bernardo Strozzi", "Giovanni Battista Gaulli" and "Alessandro Magnasco". As regards the sculpture remember Filippo Parodi, the wood sculptor Anton Maria Maragliano, Francesco Maria Schiaffino and Agostino Carlini who was member of the Royal Academy.

We have to remember that in Genoa on February 14, 1404 born the famous humanist author, architect, poet and philosopher Leon Battista Alberti. From Genoa was also Simonetta Vespucci considered the most beautiful woman of her time, we find portrayed in The Birth of Venus and Allegory of Primavera by Sandro Botticelli and in Portrait of Simonetta Vespucci by Piero di Cosimo.

Genoa is also famous for its numerous tapestries, which decorated the city's many salons. Whilst the patrician palaces and villas in the city were and still are austere and majestic, the interiors tended to be luxurious and elaborate, often full of tapestries, many of which were Flemish.[43] Famous is the Genoese lace called with its name of Turkish origin "Macramè". Very used in Genoa is the Cobblestone called "Risseu" and a kind of Azulejo called "Laggioni".

Genoa has been likened by many to a Mediterranean New York, perhaps for its high houses that in the Middle Ages were the equivalent of today's skyscrapers, perhaps for the sea route Genoa-New York which in past centuries has been travelled by millions of emigrants. The architect Renzo Picasso in his visionary designs reinforces this strange affinity between the two cities.

In the Monumental Cemetery of Staglieno you can admire some magnificent sculpture of the 19th century and early 20th century like Monteverde Angel by Giulio Monteverde, or works by artists such as "Augusto Rivalta", "Leonardo Bistolfi", "Edoardo Alfieri", "Santo Varni".

Among the genoese painters of the 19th century and of the first half of the 20th century remember: "Tammar Luxoro", "Ernesto Rayper", "Rubaldo Merello" and "Antonio Giuseppe Santagata", in Genoa also grows up the sculptor Francesco Messina.

In 1967 the genoese historian, critic and curator Germano Celant coined the term Arte Povera. "Enrico Accatino" was another important art theorist and Emanuele Luzzati was the production designer and illustrator like Lorenzo Mongiardino also him a production designer and architect. Two other important artists are Emilio Scanavino and Vanessa Beecroft.

In 1972 was founded in Rapallo near Genoa the annual art exhibition International Cartoonists Exhibition. About this, we have to remember the illustrator and comics artist, Giovan Battista Carpi


"Anonymous of Genoa" was one of the first authors in Liguria and Italy who wrote verses in Vernacular. It said that in Genoa Marco Polo and Rustichello da Pisa, in the prisons of Palazzo San Giorgio, have written The Travels of Marco Polo. The Golden Legend is a collection of hagiographies written by the Archbishop of Genoa Jacobus de Voragine. To animate the genoese literary environment of the 16th century were Gabriello Chiabrera and "Ansaldo Cebà", the latter best known for his correspondence with Sara Copia Sullam. The city has been the birthplace of the historian Caffaro di Rustico da Caschifellone, of the poet "Martin Piaggio", of the famous historian, philosopher and journalist Giuseppe Mazzini, of the writer Piero Jahier, of the poet Nobel Prize Eugenio Montale. Were born in Genoa the writer and translator Fernanda Pivano, the journalist "Vito Elio Petrucci" and the poet Edoardo Sanguineti, the literay critic Carlo Bo instead was born in Sestri Levante near Genoa. We have also remember the dialet poet Edoardo Firpo and the symbolist Ceccardo Roccatagliata Ceccardi. The city of Genoa has been an inspiration to many writers and poets among which: Dino Campana, Camillo Sbarbaro, Gaspare Invrea who wrote "The mouth of the wolf" and Giorgio Caproni. Between the alleys of the historical center there is the Old Libreria Bozzi. The "Berio Civic Library" houses the precious manuscript entitled "The Durazzo Book of Hours". In the first half of the 20th century the Mazzini Gallery's was a meeting place of many artists, writers and intellectuals among which Guido Gozzano, Salvatore Quasimodo, Camillo Sbarbaro, Francesco Messina, Pierangelo Baratono, Eugenio Montale. In the thirties of the 20th century was active in Genoa the Circoli magazine and after the world war II the "Il Gallo" magazine. Coveted and known from the sixties to the eighties of the 20th century was the genoese literary lounge animated by the writer Minnie Alzona.

Since 1995, all the months of june takes place in Genoa the Genoa's International Poetry Festival, conceived by Claudio Pozzani with the help of Massimo Bacigalupo.


Main article: Music of Genoa

Genoa was a center of Occitanie culture in Italy and for this reason it developed an important school of Troubadours: "Lanfranc Cigala", "Jacme Grils", "Bonifaci Calvo", "Luchetto Gattilusio", "Guillelma de Rosers", "Simon Doria"

Genoa is the birthplace of the composer "Simone Molinaro", of the famous violinist and composer "Niccolò Paganini", of the violinist "Camillo Sivori" and of the composer "Cesare Pugni". To remember is the famous violin maker Paolo de Barbieri. The Paganini's violin, Il Cannone Guarnerius is kept in Palazzo Tursi. The city is the site of the Niccolò Paganini Music Conservatory.

In Genoa lived and was assassinated in 1682 the Italian composer of the middle baroque, Alessandro Stradella.

"Felice Romani" was a poet who wrote many librettos for the opera composers like Gaetano Donizetti and Vincenzo Bellini. "Giovanni Ruffini" was another poet known for have written the libretto of the opera Don Pasquale for its composer Gaetano Donizetti

In 1847 Goffredo Mameli and Michele Novaro composed, Il Canto degli Italiani.

In 1857 debuts the work of Giuseppe Verdi entitled Simon Boccanegra inspired by the first Doge of Genoa, Simone Boccanegra

Genoa is also the birthplace of the condcuctor Fabio Luisi and of many opera singers like "Giuseppe Taddei", "Margherita Carosio", "Luciana Serra", "Daniela Dessì"

The neoclassical Teatro Carlo Felice.

The Teatro Carlo Felice, built in 1828 in the city in the Piazza De Ferrari, and named for the monarch of the then Kingdom of Sardinia (which included the present regions of Sardinia, Piedmont and Liguria). The theatre was the centre of music and social life in the 19th century. On various occasions in the history of the theatre, presentations have been conducted by "Mascagni", "Richard Strauss", "Hindemith" and "Stravinsky". Other genoese theaters are the "Politeama Genovese", "Teatro Stabile di Genova", "Teatro della Tosse" and "Teatro Gustavo Modena".

On the occasion of the Christopher Columbus celebration in 1992, new musical life was given to the area around the old port, including the restoration of the house of Paganini and presentations of the Trallalero, the traditional singing of Genoese dock workers.

The trallalero, traditional folk music in genoese dialect is a polyphonic vocal music, performed by five men and several songs, including the piece "Ma se ghe penso" (English: "But if I think about it"), a nostalgic memory of Genoa by an emigrant to Argentina.

The singer Natalino Otto started the swing genre in Italy and his friend and colleague Pippo Barzizza was a composer, arranger, conductor and music director. Other musicians, composers and arrangers are: "Angelo Francesco Lavagnino", "Gian Piero Reverberi", "Gian Franco Reverberi", "Oscar Prudente", "Pivio and Aldo De Scalzi".

Genoa in the second half of the 20th century was famous for an important school of italian singer-songwriters that includes: "Umberto Bindi", "Luigi Tenco", "Gino Paoli", "Bruno Lauzi", "Fabrizio de André", "Ivano Fossati", "Francesco Baccini" and "Angelo Branduardi", borned in Genoa is also Nino Ferrer. In the 70th they are formed in Genoa numerous bands of Italian progressive rock like "New Trolls", "Picchio dal Pozzo", "Latte e Miele", "Delirium". Today we point the band Buio Pesto and The Banshee band

Some songs about the city of Genoa are part of Italian popular culture like: "Via del Campo" and "La Città Vecchia" by Fabrizio de André, "Genova per noi" by Paolo Conte, "La Casa in Via del Campo" the song also sung by Amalia Rodrigues and "Piazza Alimonda" the song about the facts of Genoa 2001 by Francesco Guccini

Fabrizio de André in 1984 released the album Crêuza de mä, totally written in genoese dialect.

"I Madrigalisti di Genova" is a vocal and instrumental group formed in 1958 and specialized in medieval and renaissance repertoire

The city has numerous Music Festivals, among which: "Concerts at San Fruttuoso abbey", "Premio Paganini", "I Concerti di San Torpete", "International Music Festival Genova", "We Love Jazz", "Gezmatz Festival & Workshop", "Goa-Boa Festival". In the town of Santa Margherita Ligure the ancient abbey of Cervara is often the site of chamber music


Genoa has been the set for many films and especially for the gender so-called:Poliziotteschi. In Genoa were born the directors: Pietro Germi and Giuliano Montaldo, the actors: Gilberto Govi, Vittorio Gassman, Paolo Villaggio, Alberto Lupo, the actresses: Lina Volonghi, Delia Boccardo, Rosanna Schiaffino, Eleonora Rossi Drago, Marcella Michelangeli and the pornographic actress Moana Pozzi. We have to remember the story of the actor Bartolomeo Pagano that before his cinema career was a "Camallo" which means stevedore at the port of Genoa. His cinema career began with the film Cabiria, one of the first and most famous kolossal. In 1985 were filmed in Genoa some scenes of Pirates by Roman Polanski, finished shooting they left in the Old Harbour the Neptune (galleon).

Some Films Set in Genoa:


Main article: Genoese dialect

The Genoese dialect (Zeneize) is the most important dialect of the Ligurian language, and is commonly spoken in Genoa alongside Italian. Ligurian is listed by Ethnologue as a language in its own right, of the Romance branch, the Ligurian Romance language, and not to be confused with the ancient Ligurian language. Like the languages of Lombardy, Piedmont, and surrounding regions, it is of Gallo-Italic derivation.


There are two major football teams in Genoa: Genoa 1893 and Sampdoria; the former is the oldest football club operating in Italy, (History of Genoa C.F.C.). The football section of the club was founded in 1893 by James Richardson Spensley, an English doctor. Genoa 1893 has won 9 championships (between 1898 and 1924) and 1 Italy Cup (season 1936/1937). U.C. Sampdoria was founded in 1946 from the merger of two existing clubs, Andrea Doria (founded in 1895) and Sampierdarenese (founded in 1911). Sampdoria has won one Italian championship (Serie A – Season 1990–1991), 4 Italy Cups, 1 UEFA Cup Winners' Cup in 1989/90 and 1 Italian Super Cup. Both Genoa C.F.C. and U.C. Sampdoria play their home games in the Luigi Ferraris Stadium, which holds 36,536 spectators. Deeply felt is the derby called Derby della Lanterna.

Takes place in Genoa the international tournament AON Open Challenger.

In rugby union the city is represented by CUS Genova Rugby, which is the rugby union team of the University of Genoa Sports Centre. CUS Genova had their peak in 1971-1973 when the team was runner-up of the Italian Serie A for three consecutive seasons and contested unsuccessfully the title to Petrarca Rugby. Amongst the CUS Genova players who represented Italy at international level the most relevant were Marco Bollesan and Agostino Puppo.

In 1947 was founded the CUS Genova Hockey and in 1968 the basketball club Athletic Genova. The city hosts the FIFA World Cup in 1934 and in 1990, in 1988 the European Karate Championships and in 1992 the European Athletics Indoor Championships. In 2003 was inaugurated the indoor sporting arena, Vaillant Palace

The city lends its name to a particular type of a sailing boat so-called Genoa sail, in 2007 the city hosts the Tall Ships' Races.


Pesto sauce, a popular Genoese dressing.

Popular sauces of Genoese cuisine include Pesto sauce, garlic sauce called Agliata, "Walnut Sauce" called Salsa di noci, Green sauce, Pesto di fave, Pasta d'acciughe and the meat sauce called U Toccu. Genovese sauce instead is the contribution of Genoa to the Neapolitan cuisine. The Genoese tradition includes many varieties of pasta as Trenette, Corzetti (see also Corsetti), Trofie, Pansoti, Croxetti. Very present between the street food is the Pizza, especially in its ligurian variety called Sardenara (see also Pizza genovese) and still: "Farinata", Panissa, Cuculli. Key ingredient of Genoese cuisine is the Prescinsêua used among other things to prepare the Torta pasqualina and the Barbagiuai and still Focaccia con le cipolle, Farinata di zucca, Focaccette al formaggio and the Focaccia con il formaggio which means "Focaccia with cheese" that is even being considered for European Union PGI status. Other key ingredients are of course many varieties of fish as Sardines, Anchovies (see also Acciughe ripiene and Acciughe sotto sale), Garfish, Swordfish, Tuna, Octopus, Squid, Mussels, the Stoccafisso which means Stockfish (see also Brandacujun), the Musciame and Gianchetti. We also remember the Liguria wine such as Pigato, Vermentino, Sciacchetrà, Rossese and Ciliegiolo del Tigullio, the celebrated Ligurian Olive Oil, the cheeses like Brös, U Cabanin, San Stè cheese, Giuncata, the sausages like Testa in cassetta, Salame cotto and the Salame genovese di Sant'Olcese which is the style of Genoa salami. Fresh pasta (usually trofie) or trenette with pesto sauce is probably the most iconic among Genoese dishes. Pesto sauce is prepared with fresh Genovese basil, pine nuts, grated parmesan, garlic and olive oil pounded together.[44] Popular dishes of Genoese tradition are the Tripe coocked in various recipes like Sbira, the Polpettone di melanzane, the Tomaxelle, the Minestrone alla genovese, [45] the Bagnun, the fish-consisting Ciuppin (the precursor to San Francisco's Cioppino), the Buridda, the Seppie in zimino, the Preboggion. But the two recipes perhaps the most elaborate and sophisticated of the Genoese cuisine are: his Majesty the Cappon magro and the Cima alla genovese, there is also a song by Fabrizio De André which is titled 'A Çimma and is in fact dedicated to this Genoese recipe. Originating in Genoa is Pandolce that gave rise to Genoa cake. The city lands its name to a special paste used to prepare cakes and pastries called Genoise and to the Pain de Gênes.

In Genoa there are many food market in typical nineteenth-century iron structures as <<Mercato del Ferro>>, <<Mercato Dinegro>>, <<Mercato di Via Prè>>, <<Mercato di piazza Sarzano>>, <<Mercato del Carmine>>, <<Mercato della Foce>>, <<Mercato Romagnosi>>. The Mercato Orientale instead is in masonry and has a particular circular structure.


From Genoa have passed numerous personalities and on them the city has left an extraordinary impression. Friedrich Nietzsche loved Genoa and here he wrote some of his works. Even Sigmund Freud and Ezra Pound lived near Genoa, Rapallo. Anton Chekhov said that Genoa "is the most beautiful city in the world" and Richard Wagner wrote:"I have never seen anything like this Genoa! it is something indescribably beautiful". Among the personalities of 19th and 20th centuries who wrote about Genoa remember: "Heinrich Heine", "Osip Mandelstam", "Aleksandr Ivanovich Herzen", "Mary Shelley", "Oscar Wilde", "Charles Dickens", "Mark Twain", "Joseph Conrad", "Vicente Blasco Ibáñez", "Gustave Flaubert", "Alexandre Dumas", Louis Énault, "Valery Larbaud", "Albert Camus", "Paul Valéry", "Francis Scott Fitzgerald", "Paul Klee". "Giuseppe Verdi", "Giacomo Puccini" and "Pietro Mascagni" loved to attend Genoa and Giuseppe Verdi in his work, Simon Boccanegra, is inspired by the medieval history of the city. The poets Dino Campana, Camillo Sbarbaro and Giorgio Caproni have made Genoa a recurring element of their poetic. Famous Genoese include Sinibaldo and Ottobuono Fieschi (Popes Innocent IV and Adrian V), Giovanni Battista Cybo (Pope Innocent VIII) and Giacomo della Chiesa (Pope Benedict XV), navigators Christopher Columbus, Antonio de Noli, Enrico Alberto d'Albertis, Enrico de Candia (Henry, Count of Malta) and Andrea Doria, composers Niccolò Paganini and Michele Novaro, Italian patriots Giuseppe Mazzini, Goffredo Mameli and Nino Bixio, writer and translator Fernanda Pivano, poet Edoardo Sanguineti, Communist politician Palmiro Togliatti, architect Renzo Piano, art curator and critic Germano Celant, Physics 2002 Nobel Prize winner Riccardo Giacconi, Literature 1975 Nobel Prize winner Eugenio Montale, the court painter Giovanni Maria delle Piane (Il Mulinaretto) from the Delle Piane family, artists Vanessa Beecroft, Enrico Accatino, comedians Gilberto Govi, Paolo Villaggio, Beppe Grillo, Luca Bizzarri, Paolo Kessisoglu and Maurizio Crozza; singer-songwriters Fabrizio de André, Ivano Fossati, Umberto Bindi, Bruno Lauzi and Francesco Baccini, while Luigi Tenco and Gino Paoli are also known as Genoese singer-songwriters, although they are respectively from Cassine and Monfalcone; actor Vittorio Gassman, and actress Moana Pozzi, Giorgio Parodi who conceived the motorcycle company Moto Guzzi with Carlo Guzzi and Giovanni Ravelli. Some reports say the navigator & explorer Giovanni Caboto (John Cabot) was also from Genoa, others say he was from Savona. Saints from Genoa include Romulus, Syrus, Catherine of Genoa. Among the latest generations, musicians like Andrea Bacchetti, Giulio Plotino, Sergio Ciomei, Lorenzo Cavasanti, Stefano Bagliano and Fabrizio Cipriani, as well as academics and authors like Michele Giugliano and Roberto Dillon, help in keeping the name of the city on the international spotlight in different fields among the arts, technology and culture.


Education and Research

University of Genoa main building.

The first organized forms of higher education in Genoa date back to the 13th century when private colleges were entitled to award degrees in Medicine, Philosophy, Theology, Law, Arts.[46] Today the University of Genoa, founded in the 15th century, is one of the largest in Italy, with 11 faculties, 51 departments and 14 libraries. In 2007–2008, the University had 41,000 students and 6,540 graduates.[47]

Genoa is also home to other Colleges, Academies or Museums:

The Italian Institute of Technology was established in 2003 jointly by the Italian Ministry of Education, Universities and Research and the Italian Minister of Economy and Finance, to promote excellence in basic and applied research. The main fields of research of the Institute are Neuroscience, Robotics, Nanotechnology, Drug discovery. The central research labs and headquarters are located in Morego, in the neighbourhood of Bolzaneto.[48]

Clemson University, based in South Carolina, United States has a villa in Genoa where architecture students and students in related fields can attend for a semester or year-long study program.

Florida International University (FIU), based in Miami, Florida, United States also has a small campus in Genoa, with the University of Genoa, which offers classes within the FIU School of Architecture.


Genoa is the birthplace of "Giovanni Battista Baliani" and "Vincentio Reinieri" of the geneticist "Luigi Luca Cavalli-Sforza" of the astrophysicist, Nobel Prize, "Riccardo Giacconi" and of the astronaut Franco Malerba. The city is home to the Erzelli Hi-Tech Park, to the Istituto Italiano di Tecnologia, to the "Istituto idrografico della Marina" and annually hosts the Festival della Scienza. The city has an important tradition in the fields of the geology, paleontology, botany and naturalistic studies, among the most eminent personalities remember: "Lorenzo Pareto", "Luigi d'Albertis", "Enrico Alberto d'Albertis", "Giacomo Doria" and "Arturo Issel", we point the Orto Botanico dell'Università di Genova. Very important and renowned is the Istituto Giannina Gaslini.

In 1846 the city hosts the eighth "Meeting of Italian Scientists" and in 1902 Luigi Carnera discovers an asteroid and called it "485 Genua", dedicating it to the Latin name of Genoa.


A view of the commercial port of Genoa


Main article: Port of Genoa
Panorama of port of Genoa.

Several cruise and ferry lines serve the passenger terminals in the old port, with a traffic of 3.2 million passengers in 2007.[49] MSC Cruises chose Genoa as one of its main home ports, in competition with the Genoese company Costa Cruises, which moved its home port to Savona. The quays of the passenger terminals extend over an area of 250,000 square metres (2,700,000 square feet), with 5 equipped berths for cruise vessels and 13 for ferries, for an annual capacity of 4 million ferry passengers, 1.5 million cars and 250,000 trucks.[50] The historical maritime station of Ponte dei Mille is today a technologically advanced cruise terminal, with facilities designed after the world's most modern airports, to ensure fast embarking and disembarking of latest generation ships carrying thousand passengers. A third cruise terminal is currently under construction in the redesigned area of Ponte Parodi, once a quay used for grain traffic.

The Costa Concordia cruise ship, owned by Costs Cruises, is now docked at the port and will be soon be dismantled.[51]

Air transport

Genoa airport is built on an artificial peninsula.

The Airport of Genoa (IATA: GOA, ICAO: LIMJ) is built on an artificial peninsula, 4 NM (7.4 km; 4.6 mi) west[52] of the city. The airport is currently operated by Aeroporto di Genova S.P.A., which has recently upgraded the airport complex, that now connects Genoa with several daily flights to Rome, Naples, Paris, London, Madrid and Munich. In 2008, 1,202,168 passengers travelled through the airport,[53] with an increase of international destinations and charter flights.

Public transport

Genoa's metropolitan system

The main railway stations are Genoa Brignole and Genoa Principe, the first situated in the east side of the city centre, close to the business districts and the exhibition centre, while the second is in the west side, close to the port, the university and the historical centre. From these two stations depart the main trains connecting Genoa to France, Turin, Milan and Rome.

Genoa's third most important station is Genoa Sampierdarena, which serves the densely populated neighbourhood of Sampierdarena. A total of 23 other local stations serve the other neighbourhoods, on the 30-kilometre-long coast line from Nervi to Voltri, and on the northern line through Bolzaneto and the Polcevera Valley.

The municipal administration of Genoa is projecting to transform these urban railway lines to be part of the rapid transit system, which now consists of a light metro which connects Brin to the city centre and is called the Metropolitana di Genova (Genoa Metro). The metro line has been recently extended to Brignole Station, with the opening of the new station in December 2012. The Corvetto station between De Ferrari and Brignole is currently passed-through. A possible further extension towards the eastern, densely populated boroughs was planned, but the municipal administration is keen to improve the public transport investing in new tram lines instead of completing the extension of the light metro.[54] The current stations of the metro line are Brin-Certosa, Dinegro, Principe, Darsena, San Giorgio, Sant'Agostino and De Ferrari, and the line is 5.3 km (3.3 mi) long.

The city's hilly nature has influenced transport provision, and the city is served by three funicular railways (the Zecca–Righi funicular, the Sant'Anna funicular and the Quezzi funicular), a rack railway the Principe–Granarolo rack railway, and 10 public lifts.[55]

The city's metro, bus and trolleybus network is operated by AMT (Azienda Mobilità e Trasporti S.p.A.). There is also the Drin Bus - demand responsive transport service (DRT) that connects the hilly, low-density areas of Genoa.[56][57][58]

International relations

Genoa is twinned with:[59]

Genoa has bilateral agreements with the following sister cities:[59]


* Albania Albania * Germany Germany * Romania Romania
* Austria Austria * United Kingdom Great Britain * Russia Russia
* Azerbaijan Azerbaijan * Greece Greece * San Marino San Marino Republic
* Belgium Belgium * Guinea Guinea * Senegal Senegal
* Brazil Brazil * Equatorial Guinea Equatorial Guinea * South Africa South Africa
* Bulgaria Bulgaria * Haiti Haiti * Sweden Sweden
* Czech Republic Czech Republic * Honduras Honduras * Switzerland Switzerland
* Chile Chile * Indonesia Indonesia * Thailand Thailand
* Cyprus Cyprus * Iceland Iceland * Tunisia Tunisia
* Colombia Colombia * Lithuania Lithuania * Turkey Turkey
* Democratic Republic of the Congo Democratic Republic of the Congo * Luxembourg Luxembourg * Ukraine Ukraine
* Costa Rica Costa Rica * Malta Malta * Uganda Uganda
* Denmark Denmark * Mexico Mexico * Hungary Hungary
* Dominican Republic Dominican Republic * Monaco Monaco * Uruguay Uruguay
* Ecuador Ecuador * Norway Norway * United States United States
* El Salvador El Salvador * Netherlands Netherlands
* Estonia Estonia * Panama Panama
* Finland Finland * Peru Peru
* France France * Poland Poland
* Gabon Gabon * Portugal Portugal

Notable people

See also


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External links

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