Layover in Genoa: Tuesday - An Autumn by the Sea - CycleBlaze

October 30, 2018

Layover in Genoa: Tuesday

We got in a bit of biking today, so I guess I should blog it.  First, we biked about a half mile from our apartment to the Torino train station, for the train to Genoa.  Later in the day, we biked a mile and a half from the Genoa Brignole station to our new hotel, in Genoa.  Neither of the rides was that noteworthy, really - flat, urban, mixed surface, the usual.  Dry, which was especially nice.  Not worth posting a map for, even.  Still, a tidy two miles to add to the trip total.

So, that’s the ride.  As long as you’re here anyway, you might as well hear how the rest of the day went and see a few pics.

The big story for the day was the weather.   Last night an intense storm terrorized Italy from Rome north to the mountains, creating havoc everywhere.  Venice had its worst ‘Aqua Alta’ event in a decade, and most of the city is under water this morning.  Liguria, the coastal region that includes Genoa, experienced almost unheard of 110 mph winds.  Several deaths from such incidents as fallen trees.  Train lines temporarily closed due to wind damage.  Crushed cars, swamped boats.

It had all blown over by the time we left the room, but one lingering effect was on the train schedule.  Most of the arrivals were experiencing length delays, and some trains were cancelled.  Ours was fortunately a go but we were held up by about a half hour for track repairs.  We feel very lucky on the timing.

The Turino train station is a huge structure. The front two thirds of it is a large shopping mall.
Heart 2 Comment 0
Our departure to Genoa is scheduled to leave I’m 15 minutes, but the gate hasn’t posted yet. We’re hoping it won’t be delayed due to damage from last night’s storm, like nearly all of the arrivals have been.
Heart 0 Comment 0

It’s actually quite nice when we arrive in Genoa, and stays that way until late afternoon when the rains returned.  Partly sunny, and nearly fifteen degrees warmer here at the coast than in the Piemonte.  After stopping at a cafe for paninis, we checked in to our hotel in early afternoon.  We’re staying in the very elegant (but surprisingly inexpensive - they have a special rate on) Bristol Palace, in a great location in the old city.  It’s a nice, welcoming place that was very accommodating of our bikes.  We wheeled them in to the front desk, and they carted them off to the storage room without question.  A beautiful place, with the a impressive six story spiral staircase.

We arrive in Genoa only a half hour late, which is better than we had hoped for. Last night’s storm was severe, with wind gusts up to 110 mph near Genoa and disasters all across northern Italy. Here, we’re stopped at the cafe on the left for lunch on the way to our hotel.
Heart 2 Comment 0
In the lobby of our hotel, the elegant Bristol Palace.
Heart 2 Comment 0
It’s easy to believe that this was a palace, alright. Here we are at the top of the staircase, looking down to the lobby.
Heart 5 Comment 0

Immediately after checking in, we both went off to explore the city in our own way.  Rachael is antsy for some real exercise - the two mile bike ride just didn’t cut it for her - so she went on an uphill hike at a good clip, logging seven miles and 1,400’ of elevation gain by the time she returned.  I went sideways, into the old town, randomly poking around to see what popped up.  A lot popped up, because Genoa is a phenomenal place.  I’d like to have put in my own seven mile hike too, but my Panasonic kept insisting that I slow down and look around once or twice per block.  It’s a much more interesting destination than I expected, really - I’ve got a much outdated image of it as a big, sprawling, dirty port town.  And it is all of that, but much more.  The city is really investing in cleaning up its act, and it has an amazing amount to show and tell you about.

Pretty tough city for bicycling in though, at least along the coastal strip.  We’re still discussing whether to bike out of here when we leave on Friday or catch another train to get us past the sprawl.

And don’t ask me why I’m naming it Genoa here, rather than its Italian name, Génova.  Why Turino, but not Génova?  Who knows; but just so you know, I know the difference.  My blog, my rules.

Our hotel is in one of the newer sections of the historic core. The streets here are covered, lined with old palaces, and beautifully tiled with a different patten on each block. This is Via XX Settembre , the main commercial avenue through this section of the city. Our room is about a block down the street in the other direction, near iconic Piazza de Ferrari.
Heart 4 Comment 0
I should have kept better notes, rather than just walking around and taking random photos. I don’t know what this is, or many other photos I took here. Oh, well. I like it anyway.
Heart 2 Comment 0
A curious way of walking, but pay no attention to the attention getter. The important feature is the XII century Porta Soprana at the far end of the street. It was the eastern gate in the series of walls (the Barbarossa Walls) hurriedly built around 1550 to defend the city against Barbarossa (HRE emperor Frederick I) and his expansionist interests.
Heart 2 Comment 0
In the old town, riddled with narrow lanes like this walled in by tall buildings. Some of them are pretty run down, just a bit spooky.
Heart 4 Comment 0
A well branded latteria (dairy)
Heart 2 Comment 0
Another pretty mystery
Heart 1 Comment 0
San Donato Church. Originally XII century Romanesque, the church has been restored several times while retaining the original style.
Heart 1 Comment 0
I’d say Genoa is quite bike friendly, but not really bicycle friendly. We saw very few bicycles in town, but scenes like this were common.
Heart 1 Comment 0
Not that I’m all that crazy about motorcycles really, but I liked the pattern here.
Heart 1 Comment 0
A view to the northeast
Heart 4 Comment 0
An intense, private discussion
Heart 4 Comment 0
While I was wandering around in the old city, Rachael hit the heights, hiked seven miles, and came back with some nice shots. I don’t know what this amazing place is, either.
Heart 2 Comment 2
Jacquie GaudetHow far did she go? The weather looks quite different!
Reply to this comment
1 month ago
Scott AndersonSeven miles. You’re right, there’s a lot of blue in that sky. It didn’t last that long though. She was pretty wet by the time she got back to the room.
Reply to this comment
1 month ago
The high point on Rachael’s hike (here, not way up there), about a thousand feet above town.
Heart 1 Comment 0
Genoa from above
Heart 1 Comment 0
La Pietra is just my kind of place. A nice jazz track, classical LP’s for placemats, a decent menu.
Heart 1 Comment 0
Wow. Pieces of beef, with a chocolate walnut sauce.
Heart 2 Comment 0
Heart 2 Comment 0
Piazza de Ferrari
Heart 1 Comment 0
On Via Settembre XX
Heart 1 Comment 0
On Via Settembre XX
Heart 2 Comment 0
On Via Settembre XX
Heart 3 Comment 0
On Via Settembre XX
Heart 0 Comment 0
The staircase in our hotel is even more impressive looking up from below.
Heart 3 Comment 1
Steve Miller/GrampiesWhat a good test track for bad knees.
Reply to this comment
1 month ago

Today's ride: 2 miles (3 km)
Total: 2,023 miles (3,256 km)

Rate this entry's writing Heart 6
Comment on this entry Comment 1
Bill ShaneyfeltGood to know that you weathered the storm well. I was kind of wondering how it might have affected you.
Reply to this comment
1 month ago