×
Interested in our Partner Program for businesses or our Local Guide Program for experienced expats and digital nomads? Click here to learn more.
Expat Exchange - The Insider's Guide to Portofino 2024
Expat Exchange
Free MembershipSign In


The Insider's Guide to Portofino

By Betsy Burlingame

Tripiamo
Tripiamo

Summary: Living it Up in Portofino: Your Insider's Guide to Top Attractions, Culinary Hotspots, Nightlife, and More. Discover the Best Recreational Activities, Connect with Friendly Locals, and Experience the Charm of the City.

Welcome to Portofino! If you're planning to move to Portofino, congratulations on taking the first step towards a new adventure. While there are many things to think about before you leave, such as visas, housing, and transportation, it's important to remember that once you arrive, the fun really begins. In this article, we'll introduce you to some of the best sites, restaurants, and nightlife that Portofino has to offer, as well as provide tips on recreational activities and making friends in Portofino.

Portofino, is a picturesque fishing village on the Italian Riviera coastline, known for its pastel-colored houses, high-end boutiques, and seafood restaurants. One of the most iconic sites in Portofino is the Brown Castle (Castello Brown), a fortress offering panoramic views of the town and the Ligurian Sea. The Church of St. Martin (Chiesa di San Martino) is another must-visit, showcasing beautiful 12th-century architecture. The Portofino Natural Park is perfect for nature lovers, offering hiking trails with stunning views. The park is home to diverse flora and fauna, including several rare species. The Portofino Lighthouse (Faro di Portofino), located at the extreme tip of the Portofino promontory, is another popular spot, offering breathtaking views, especially at sunset. The Piazzetta, a small square overlooking the harbor, is the heart of Portofino, where you can relax, people-watch, and enjoy the beautiful surroundings. The nearby Abbey of San Fruttuoso is a hidden gem accessible only by boat or on foot, offering a tranquil beach and a medieval abbey.

Portofino's restaurant scene is dominated by seafood, given its coastal location. One of the most popular restaurants is Da u Batti, known for its traditional Ligurian dishes, especially the Scampi Thermidor. Ristorante Puny, located in the main square, is famous for its fresh seafood and pasta dishes, and its terrace offers a beautiful view of the harbor. Trattoria Concordia is another favorite, known for its authentic Italian cuisine and friendly service. For a more upscale dining experience, La Terrazza Restaurant at the Belmond Hotel Splendido offers gourmet cuisine with a stunning view of the bay. The nightlife in Portofino is relatively quiet and laid-back, with a few notable exceptions. The Winterose Portofino is a popular bar offering a wide selection of wines and cocktails, and the Chuflay Bar at the Belmond Hotel Splendido is a favorite spot for a nightcap, often featuring live music.

Portofino offers a variety of recreational activities for both locals and tourists. Hiking is a popular activity, with several trails starting from the town and leading to the Portofino Natural Park and the surrounding hills. The most popular trail is the one leading to the San Fruttuoso Abbey, offering stunning views of the coastline. The Ligurian Sea offers excellent opportunities for sailing, with several companies offering boat rentals and tours. Diving is another popular activity, with the Portofino Marine Protected Area offering a diverse marine life and several interesting dive sites. The Diving Center Portofino is one of the most popular places to arrange diving trips. For those interested in fishing, Fishing Tourism Liguria offers fishing trips with local fishermen. Finally, the beaches around Portofino, such as Paraggi Beach and San Fruttuoso Beach, are perfect for swimming, sunbathing, and snorkeling.

Allianz CareAllianz Care
Get Quote

Allianz Care's plans ensure that you have access to quality healthcare whenever you need it. Our flexible solutions allow you to tailor your cover to meet your needs and budget. You can submit your claims digitally and our helpline is available 24/7 to help you anytime.

Allianz CareAllianz Care

Allianz Care's plans ensure that you have access to quality healthcare whenever you need it. Our flexible solutions allow you to tailor your cover to meet your needs and budget. You can submit your claims digitally and our helpline is available 24/7 to help you anytime.
Get Quote

Insider Tips from Expats in Portofino: Making the Most of Life and Connections

"Expats in Portofino, often join local clubs and organizations to meet people and immerse themselves in the local culture. These can include language exchange clubs, where they can practice their Italian and help locals with English, or cooking classes to learn traditional Italian cuisine. Many expats also participate in sports clubs, such as sailing or hiking groups, which are popular in the coastal town of Portofino. Joining a local gym or fitness center can also be a great way to meet locals and other expats.Cultural activities, such as art classes or music groups, are also popular among expats. These provide opportunities to learn about Italian culture and history while meeting like-minded individuals.Expats often attend local events and festivals, which are frequent in Portofino and provide a great opportunity to mingle with locals and other expats. These can range from food and wine festivals to art exhibitions and concerts.Volunteering is another way expats meet people in Portofino. Many local charities and organizations welcome the help of foreigners, and this can be a rewarding way to give back to the community and make new friends.Finally, simply frequenting local cafes, restaurants, and bars can be a great way to meet people. Italians are known for their friendly and welcoming nature, and striking up a conversation with a local can often lead to new friendships," said one expat living in Portofino.

Allianz CareAllianz Care
Get Quote

Allianz Care's plans ensure that you have access to quality healthcare whenever you need it. Our flexible solutions allow you to tailor your cover to meet your needs and budget. You can submit your claims digitally and our helpline is available 24/7 to help you anytime.

Allianz CareAllianz Care

Allianz Care's plans ensure that you have access to quality healthcare whenever you need it. Our flexible solutions allow you to tailor your cover to meet your needs and budget. You can submit your claims digitally and our helpline is available 24/7 to help you anytime.
Get Quote

"Life for expats and digital nomads in Portofino is often described as idyllic and relaxed. The small fishing village offers a tranquil environment with stunning views of the Mediterranean Sea. The local community is welcoming and friendly, making it easy for newcomers to feel at home. The pace of life is slow, allowing expats and digital nomads to enjoy a balanced lifestyle. The village is known for its high-quality restaurants, offering a variety of delicious Italian cuisine. There are also plenty of outdoor activities to enjoy, such as hiking, sailing, and exploring the beautiful coastline.Despite its small size, Portofino has a good infrastructure with reliable internet, making it suitable for remote work. However, the cost of living is quite high due to its popularity as a tourist destination and the high standard of living. The language barrier can be a challenge as English is not widely spoken outside of the tourism industry. Therefore, learning some basic Italian phrases can be beneficial. Overall, living in Portofino offers a unique opportunity to immerse oneself in Italian culture, enjoy a laid-back lifestyle, and work in one of the most beautiful settings in the world," commented an expat living in Portofino.

Allianz CareAllianz Care
Get Quote

Allianz Care's plans ensure that you have access to quality healthcare whenever you need it. Our flexible solutions allow you to tailor your cover to meet your needs and budget. You can submit your claims digitally and our helpline is available 24/7 to help you anytime.

Allianz CareAllianz Care

Allianz Care's plans ensure that you have access to quality healthcare whenever you need it. Our flexible solutions allow you to tailor your cover to meet your needs and budget. You can submit your claims digitally and our helpline is available 24/7 to help you anytime.
Get Quote

About the Author

Betsy Burlingame Betsy Burlingame is the Founder and President of Expat Exchange and is one of the Founders of Digital Nomad Exchange. She launched Expat Exchange in 1997 as her Master's thesis project at NYU. Prior to Expat Exchange, Betsy worked at AT&T in International and Mass Market Marketing. She graduated from Ohio Wesleyan University with a BA in International Business and German.

Some of Betsy's articles include 12 Best Places to Live in Portugal, 7 Best Places to Live in Panama and 12 Things to Know Before Moving to the Dominican Republic. Betsy loves to travel and spend time with her family. Connect with Betsy on LinkedIn.


Tripiamo
Tripiamo

Tripiamo
Tripiamo

Allianz Care
Allianz Care

Flexible solutions allow you to tailor your cover to meet your needs and budget. Use Promocode: LIFE10 and get 10% off your international health insurance for life!
Get Quote

Allianz CareAllianz Care

Flexible solutions allow you to tailor your cover to meet your needs and budget. Use Promocode: LIFE10 and get 10% off your international health insurance for life!
Get Quote

Contribute to Italy Network Contribute
Help others in Italy by answering questions about the challenges and adventures of living in Italy.

Tripiamo
Tripiamo

Copyright 1997-2024 Burlingame Interactive, Inc.

Privacy Policy Legal Partners & Local Guides