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Someone might think it’s a bit too early for summer thoughts, but here in Cinque Terre area, relaxing on the beach with a book is already part of my daily routine. I, therefore, wanted to talk a bit about my Liguria, better known as the Italian Riviera, and its beautiful coves and particularly picturesque beaches, which seem created to give emotions and get away from daily life.

The verticality of the coast, a succession of bays, cliffs, promontories dotted with typical pastel colors houses offer various views, crystal clear waters that reflect Mediterranean nature, and backdrops that make the delight of scuba divers.

The countless beaches that follow each other, village after village, alternating sand and pebbles, are often separated by cliffs overlooking the sea.

Among the most famous and poetic, these twelve are my favorite. Yes, I know that the canonical rankings usually stop at ten, but I couldn’t skip two amazing beaches only cause of this… so, here are my top 12 Italian Riviera beaches 🙂

San Fruttuoso di Capodimonte

A small pearl set among the rocks separates Camogli and Portofino, reachable by boat, with a rental local fishing boat (free buoys) or along a beautiful footpath.

San Fruttuoso is a small village dominated by the Abbey and the Doria Tower, both worth visiting and with an amazing sea view. The beach is tiny and stony, but it is exceptional. Relax on a lounger by the sea while enjoying the freshly cooked mussels, and sipping iced Vermentino are small bonuses that make it unique.

If you love diving, you can also swim around the Christ of the Abyss, the bronze statue placed on the seabed at 15 meters deep.

Santa Chiara in Genoa

The promontory of Santa Chiara hides this little truly magical rocky beach. One of the many beauties of Genoa.

You can reach it via a steep staircase or, if the tide is low, walking along the coast. It is a blue and white pontoon where hours fly away and where the happy hour at sunset never disappoints.

Baia dei Saraceni in Varigotti 

The bay of the Saracens in Varigotti is one of the few free beaches of Liguria and is also one of the longest. Its fine white sand, crystal clear waters, the scent of olive and lemon trees that line it are important small details that make it a must.

Baia Blu in Lerici 

The Blue Bay in Lerici is a small cove sheltered by Punta Santa Teresa and Punta Galera, within walking distance and just beautiful. Everything contributes to its magic: Caribbean-style water, olive trees, and oak trees as a frame, and of course, a beautiful view.

Monterosso beach in Cinque Terre

Monterosso is the first of Cinque Terre, starting from the west. It is also the largest and the only one with a beach. The little corner I like the most is just below the tunnel connecting the new district of Fegina to the old town Monterosso, near a rock as a kid I imagined to be my castle … The beach is a mixture of sand and pebbles, and the crystal-clear water makes people daydream.

Baia del Silenzio in Sestri Levante 

Out of season, this narrow strip of fine sand framed by typical Ligurian pastel-colored houses is a small paradise of peace and poetry. You can also enjoy delicious grilled fish directly on the beach, listening to the surf while scanning the horizon.

During high season unfortunately the Silence Bay is overcrowded and very noisy …

Lido delle Sirene in Bergeggi

A long staircase separates the real world from this micro black gravel and movie set water heaven. This beach is in a natural park, and if you love to snorkel, this is the place for you!

Paraggi beach in Portofino 

It is located in a beautiful bay surrounded by Mediterranean vegetation reflected from the sea, beautiful old villas, and endless silence. Heading towards Portofino, you come to a small beach known as Beach of Canoee, a small gem, a paradise for diving lovers.

Balzi Rossi Beach in Grimaldi di Ventimiglia

Also known as the Beach of the Eggs due to the thousands of eroded ovoid shape rocks. It’s located at the Italian-French border and is very popular with celebrities. The water has nothing to envy to that seen on Caribbean travel brochures, and the red rocks that protect it only increase its beauty.

Vallesanta Beach in Bonassola

The small beach is located after the first tunnel of the bike path that connects Levanto to Bonassola. A small patch of pebbles beach surrounded by green-gray rocks and dominated by an imposing vertical wall dotted with pine trees. Beautiful and easy to access.

Punta Crena Beach in Finale Ligure

Beautiful, wild, and extremely difficult to access: you need to actually climb up and down using ropes or rowing or swimming there… so, to sum it up, you really need to want to get there, but it’s with the effort! Sheer vertical cliffs surround this small beach on a stretch of the emerald sea. I have been there in the canoe, and I recommend it.

Canuei, or the Eggs Beach in Levanto

You get there along a steep path that intersects the n° 1 trail between Levanto and Monterosso or, for more romance, the ideal option is getting there on a typical wooden fishing boat, lulled by the muttering of a slow inboard engine.

As the homonymous beach of Ventimiglia this one also owes its name to the perfectly smooth oval stones.

The 12 most beautiful Italian Riviera beaches: picturesque bays and coves, surfing spots, paradise sandy beaches and clear water.

Don’t you feel like visiting the Italian Riviera and relaxing on its beaches? In case you decide to plan a trip around here, do not hesitate to get in touch for more info and tips 😉

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Silvia's Trips

Hi there! My name is Silvia and after 15 years between the Paris Opera and the Palau de les Arts in Valencia I now run a boutique hotel in Cinque Terre, deal with tourism management and blogging, sail, horse-ride, play guitar and write about my solo trips around the world. For more info about me and my travel blog check my full bio.