There are many ways to visit Genoa’s small shops. One of these is to let us be your guide: you can choose between the itineraries the Chamber of Commerce offers on Friday afternoons as seen in the box to the right. Of course, you can also go through them on your own but remember to look at the opening times.
Another way is to follow by yourself some theme itineraries related to products categories you can find on the historic counters of the small shops. We found five, as you can see in the map clicking on the icon , and we described them in the following text.
Enjoy your walk!
“Sweet” theme itinerary
The perfect itinerary for people who love to eat sweets and want to work them off at the same time. It is around one hour long and it starts from Piazza De Ferrari, which you can easily reach by the underground. The first stop is “Romeo Viganotti chocolate factory”, in Via della Castagna, and then you go on through the narrow streets (vicoli) towards “Romanengo (chocolate and sugared almond shop)” and “Klainguti bakery and bar”, which are very close to each other. The tour goes on in Via della Maddalena to reach “Marescotti bakery and liqueurs”, and passes through Via Garibaldi where you can admire its wonderful architectures: nearly the end of the street you can find “Profumo bakery”. Crossing Piazza Fontane Marose, you can proceed to Via Roma to find “Mangini café and bakery” and the second Romanengo’s small shop. The last two stops of the tour will help you to work off all the temptations you allowed to yourself: you have to go down Via XX Settembre to reach “Zuccotti chocolate factory”, a little further on Brignole train station. All you can do now is to walk a bit more to reach the Albaro neighbourhood and end the tour with a bang in the “Swiss bakery”.
“Savoury” theme itinerary
This tour is shorter: you do not have to walk more than 15 minutes through the Genoese narrow streets. The nearest reachable point by means of transport is Piazza Fontane Marose and to find the first stop of our itinerary, “Aresu old poulterer’s”, in Vico Inferiore del Ferro, you have to walk less than 5 minutes. Going on to Via dei Macelli di Soziglia, which was named because of the presence of the medieval association of butchers, you can find “Nico butcher shop”. The third stop is “Tripperia Casana” (tripe shop) in the street with the same name, where you can sit for a while to look better at the shop, whether you like tripe or not. Then you can proceed to the final stop, passing close to the Genoa Cathedral in Piazza San Lorenzo, which separates the narrow streets in two different areas. Coming back to the Genoese caruggi, you can reach “Sa’ Pesta old trattoria”, a place where you may try a slice of the typical farinata (a sort of thin pancake made with chickpea flour) before coming back home.
“Fashion” theme itinerary
In order to visit all the “fashion” theme small shops we suggest starting from Piazza De Ferrari, the heart of the city. The tour is about 2 km and 30 minutes long by foot. You can start from “Stagno footwear” to reach “Finollo clothing”, in Via Roma passing through Galleria Mazzini and go down Via XXV Aprile to find “Pissimbono clothing”. The fourth shop on the way is “Arduino antique shop” and you can reach it going through Via Garibaldi up to Palazzo Bianco. The second half of the itinerary leads us to the sea, to “Lucarda clothing” which is in the vivid and picturesque Via di Sottoripa. To reach “Giacalone old barber shop” you have to go through it and find Vico Caprettari. The penultimate stop, “Rivara fabric shop”, is located in front of the San Lorenzo Cathedral, while the last one, “Pescetto clothing”, is in Piazza Campetto, seat of the goldsmiths association.
“Arts&crafts” theme itinerary
This tour is about 2 km and 30 minutes long by foot. The most convenient starting point is Brignole train station, connected to the underground. The first stop is very close: “Gismondi silverware shop” in Via Galata, while for the second one you have to go up to Via XX Settembre and then go down Via XXV Aprile up to Piazza Fontane Marose. From there, you can find “Luico old cork factory”, in Salita Santa Caterina. To reach the next stop you can enjoy a walk through the “Palazzi dei Rolli” in Via Garibaldi up to “Bozzi bookshop” and “Busellato: stamps, plaques and engravings” if you continue through other caruggi. Very close from there, in Piazza De Marini, you can find “Dallai antique bookshop” and end the tour in “Bottaro artisan glass shop” in Vico delle Scuole Pie.
“Spiced” theme itinerary
This tour is one of the most challenging but also suggestive: it twists and turns through the narrow streets for 3 km and it is at least one hour long. We suggest starting from Palazzo San Giorgio, where the underground station is. Near there you can find “Sormani old labour pharmacy” and then, to reach “Torielli grocer’s and spices shop”, you have to walk over Via San Lorenzo up to the Cathedral and to go through the vicoli. The next stop, the “Alvigini pharmacy”, is in Piazza De Ferrari. In this square, you can have a break before walking through Via XX Settembre to reach “Viganego grocer’s” in Via Colombo. We suggest taking an evocative and eco-friendly mean of transport: the Sant’Anna funicular railway, which climbs from Piazza Portello up to the Circonvallazione a Monte (the hilly area). In the Discalced Carmelites friars’ beautiful convent, you can find “Sant’Anna pharmacy”, that they have run from more than 300 years.