Genoa, Italy, an industrial port city in the center of the Italian Riviera about 97 mi/156 km south of Milan, is known primarily as the birthplace of Christopher Columbus—you can visit his tall Gothic home near the Porta Soprana.
The city has numerous piazzas, churches, a medieval inner city, Renaissance buildings, a big aquarium and a large port (rebuilt in 1992 as a part of the 500th anniversary of the voyages of Columbus) that serves as the departure point for many of the luxury cruises of the Mediterranean.
Apart from its infamous pesto (worth the trip for foodies), it is a typical salty maritime town.
Unique to the city are the Palazzi dei Rolli, 42 lodging "palaces" built in the late 1500s to host visiting European gentry and placed on the UNESCO World Heritage list in 2006. They are mostly around Via Garibaldi and Via Babi.
Also, don't miss the medieval heart of Genoa with its famed caruggi, dark, almost cavelike covered laneways.
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