Information & Facts
Among the many delights that Italian cuisine has brought to the
world, Genoa can claim two as its own: the city was the birthplace
of pesto sauce, traditionally made from herbs, olive oil and pine
nuts. It is used in abundance on pizzas and pastas in Genoa, so
there are plenty of opportunities to sample Genovese varieties.
The other invention now known worldwide is foccaccia, a kind of
flat oven-baked bread topped with olive oil and white wine (or
whatever you want to pile on). Foccaccia is staple fast-food in
Genoa - a relatively filling and cheap snack to grab on the
There are many excellent restaurants in Genoa. Many charge a
fixed rate per person, and are open from 12:30 to 3pm for lunch and
7:30 to 10pm for dinner; however, you'll find many cafes and
trattorias that stay open in the afternoon. The Old Town area of
the city has many good restaurants (like Trattoria Sa Pesta), and
there's also a good selection in Porto Antico, down by the
The official language of Italy is Italian. English is
understood in the larger cities but not in the more remote parts of
The Euro (EUR) is the official currency, which is divided into
100 cents. Those arriving in Italy with foreign currency can obtain
Euros through any bank, ATM or bureaux de change. ATMs are
widespread. Travellers cheques can be exchanged with ease in the
large cities, not so in the smaller towns. Credit cards are
accepted in upmarket establishments and shops around the cities.
Banks are closed on weekends, but tend to have better rates than
casas de cambios.
Shopping in Genoa is as elegant an experience as in any other
city in Italy. Bargain-hunters will have their choice of luxury
boutiques, antique stores, gourmet food shops and department stores
- in addition to a plethora of souvenir and gift shops.
For those looking for high-end purchases, the best fashion shops
in Genoa can be found along the Via Settembre, Via Luccoli and Via
San Luca. Souvenir-hunters will love the handmade lace and carved
olive wood in the shops lining the medieval-style Via Soziglia.
There is a large shopping centre near the Genova Sampierdarena
train station called Fiumara, which has a variety of shops and is
near restaurants and entertainment venues like bowling alleys and
Popular Genoa souvenirs include the intricate silver and gold
jewellery made in the area, as well as Ligurian ceramic