The coastal Ligurian Riviera between Cinque Terre and Portovenere is a cultural site of outstanding value, representing the harmonious interaction between man and nature to produce a landscape of exceptional scenic quality that illustrates a traditional way of life that has existed since 12th century and continues to play an important socio-economic role in the community.
This area between Levanto and La Spezia, where human communities have adapted themselves to this seemingly rough, inhospitable nature by building compact settlements grouped round religious buildings or medieval castles directly on the rock, has winding streets and layout and disposition that overcomes the disadvantages of a steep, uneven terrain.
It is a very jagged, steep coastline that transformed into an intensively terraced landscape so as to be able to wrest from nature land suitable for growing vines and olive trees.
The general use of natural stone for rooting gives these settlements a characteristic appearance.
The five medieval villages of Cinque Terre are the fortified Monterosso al Mare, Vernazza, Corniglia, Manarola and Riomaggiore, with the most prominent features being St John church (1244), ruins of old castle, and the 17th-century Capuchin monastery.
Portovenere is an important cultural centre whose remains include a large Roman villa on the coast at Varignano, a Benedictine monastery, a church with both Romanesque and Gothic elements, and culminating in the Doria castle (12th-16th centuries).
Off the coast are the three islands of Palmaria, Tino and Tinetto, noteworthy not only for their natural beauty but also for the many remains of early monastic establishments that they contain.
The flora such as natural garrigue and maquis vegetation survives intact in the higher parts of the steep ridge, while the nature of the terrain and vegetation provides food and shelter for a wide range of insect and animal species.
The Committee decided to inscribe this site on the basis of criteria (ii), (iv) and (v), considering that the eastern Ligurian Riviera between Cinque Terre and Portovenere is a cultural site of outstanding value, representing the harmonious interaction between people and nature to produce a landscape of exceptional scenic quality that illustrates a traditional way of life that has existed for a thousand years and continues to play an important socio-economic role in the life of the community.
Genoa (Italian: Genova, Ligurian: Zena) is a historic port city in northern Italy, the capital of the Liguria region. As a tourist attraction, is often overshadowed by cities such as Rome or Venice, even though it has a long history as a rich and powerful trade centre. However, with its multitude of hidden gems behind cozy alleyways, excellent cuisine (notably fish and seafood), renovated old port, beautiful sights (including one of Europe’s biggest aquariums), and its position as the European Capital of Culture in 2004, the birthplace of explorer Christopher Columbus is an enticing place which is gradually becoming more included in the touristic market. With unusual typical slate-roofed houses, artistic churches, lovely seaside villas, and several luxurious boutiques, Genoa is a must-see if you want to experience the “quintessential” Italy. [read more]
Parma is a city in the province of Parma, part of the Emilia-Romagna region of Italy. Attend the opera at the gorgeous and world-famous Teatro Regio, known for its passionate and critical local opera aficionados. Buy tickets early as the opera is extremely popular in Parma and tickets sell out early. The Festival Verdi celebrates the famous and adored Parma resident Giuseppe Verdi throughout the month of October every year. Cattedrale di Santa Maria Assunta (Duomo), Piazza Duomo. The cathedral and the adjacent baptistery, both were built in the late 12th century. The frescoes inside the building are very moving, as well as the relief sculptures on the interior stone. The painting inside the dome of the cathedral is one of the most remarkable paintings of the Renaissance. Entitled Assumption of the Virgin by Correggio, it shows the Virgin Mary being taken up to Heaven. [read more]
Milan (Italian: Milano; Milanese: Milan) is financially the most important city in Italy, and home to the Borsa Italiana stock exchange. It is the second most populous city proper in the country, but sits at the centre of Italy’s largest urban and metropolitan area. While not considered as beautiful as some Italian cities, having been greatly destroyed by Second World War bomb raids, the city has rebuilt itself into a thriving cosmopolitan business capital. In essence, for a tourist, what makes Milan interesting compared to other places is that the city is truly more about the lifestyle of enjoying worldly pleasures: a paradise for shopping, football, opera, and nightlife. Milan remains the marketplace for Italian fashion – fashion aficionados, supermodels and international paparazzi descend upon the city twice a year for its spring and autumn fairs. [read more]