Things to do in La Spezia

Things to do in  La Spezia

Stop and stay awhile

La Spezia’s cruise port serves as the entry point for travelers headed to high-profile destinations like the Cinque Terre, Florence, or Pisa. Those who take a few hours to visit the old town, however, are rewarded with a surprisingly charming city rich in art nouveau architecture, a historic market square, and a palm-lined promenade along the sea. This historic seaport is also known for its traditional cuisine, so visitors pause here for home cooking classes with a local host or dining experiences in the old-school trattoria eateries.

Top 2 attractions in La Spezia

Portovenere

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Portovenere’s brightly painted buildings, lively harbor, and clifftop castle make it a quintessential Italian Riviera town, perched on the rocky shores of the Gulf of Poets. An easy detour from popular Cinque Terre National Park, this tranquil seaside town has a rich history, delicious seafood, and backdrop of cliffs, caves, and coves.More

La Spezia Cruise Port (La Spezia Terminal Crociere)

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A busy Mediterranean naval port in northern Italy, the La Spezia Cruise Port (La Spezia Terminal Crociere) offers cruisers easy access to three of the country’s top destinations—Pisa, Florence, and the Cinque Terre. Cruise passengers also use La Spezia as a jumping-off point for other highlights in Piedmont and Liguria or stick around to enjoy the town's own modest but beautiful attractions.More

Top activities in La Spezia

Boat Tours 5 Terre

Boat Tours 5 Terre

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$136.37
Cinque Terre tour with limoncino tasting from La Spezia Port
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La Spezia Shore Excursion to Florence & Pisa
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Florence Roundtrip from La Spezia Port

Florence Roundtrip from La Spezia Port

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La Spezia Cinque Terre Food Tour - Do Eat Better Experience
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La Spezia Shore Excursion to Lucca & Pisa optional Leaning Tower
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Cinque Terre hiking tour from La Spezia port
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Pesto Course in Levanto

Pesto Course in Levanto

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$43.64

All about La Spezia

When to visit

La Spezia is cold in winter, with biting winds, but in spring it becomes a balmy seaside town. The town is known for its busy port, which welcomes cruise ships bound for the Cinque Terre or Tuscany. If you visit in spring (around March 19th), you can join residents in celebrating the city’s patron saint, San Giuseppe, and enjoy a sprawling three-day street market along the port and a historic rowing competition.

Getting around

La Spezia is an important transportation hub with a busy cruise and ferry port, a train station, and two national highways, making it easy to reach the city and to make it a base for exploring nearby destinations. The historic center is walking distance from both the port and the train station, so you can easily see the city’s sights on foot. The local Spezia in bici bike-sharing service also has pick-up and return spots all across the city.

Traveler tips

Spezia’s most beloved dish is a rich soup with origins rooted in poverty. La mesciua spezzina is a hearty potage made from chickpeas, beans, and wheat or spelt kernels that are simmered until they are meltingly soft and served with a drizzle of olive oil and cracked pepper. This specialty was invented by port workers’ wives, who would scavenge legumes and grains that had fallen from sacks onto the docks as ships were loaded and unloaded.

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People Also Ask

What is La Spezia in Italy known for?

Occupying a bay on Italy’s northwest coast, La Spezia boasts a port history that traces back to the days of the French Empire. It remains an important seaport today, home to a major naval base and a cruise port for visitors heading to Italy’s headline destinations like the Cinque Terre region nearby.

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Is La Spezia worth visiting?

For most travelers, La Spezia is a jumping-off point for forays further into Italy. It’s a port city and so has fewer tourist attractions compared to other coastal towns. If you have time to linger, however, a wander along the seafront’s palm-lined promenade—Passeggiata Morin—gelato in hand, is pleasant.

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How do you spend a day in La Spezia?

Start with some boat-watching at the seafront, and stroll to La Spezia’s Naval Technical Museum where collections of model ships, cannons, and battleship paraphernalia await. Stop for a lunch of Ligurian specialties in a traditional trattoria, then check out the hilltop Castle of San Giorgio, where sea views abound.

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How many days do you need in La Spezia?

One day will cover La Spezia perfectly; but if you plan to use the town as a base for exploring the Cinque Terre and Portovenere, then five days is ideal. A week would give you time to hike in the National Park of Portovenere and flop on the beaches of Forte dei Marmi, too.

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Is it better to stay in the Cinque Terre or La Spezia?

If you plan to spend more time exploring the Cinque Terre and you have a decent budget, you would be better off staying in one of the region’s five villages: Corniglia, Manarola, Monterosso-al-Mare, Riomaggiore, or Vernazza. If you want fewer tourists and more wallet-friendly accommodations, La Spezia is the better option.

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How long does it take to walk the 5 villages of the Cinque Terre?

The Cinque Terre trails cover around 75 miles (120 kilometers) of coastal terrain. If you wanted to hike between Monterosso-al-Mare and Riomaggiore the quickest way possible, you could maybe do it in around six hours. A much better idea is to dedicate two or three days to the journey, soaking up the views that abound.

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Frequently Asked Questions
The answers provided below are based on answers previously given by the tour provider to customers’ questions.
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