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Guide to Rapallo

Little-known to tourists and loved by Italians

Bigger than its neighbours on the Italian Riviera, there’s a hustle and bustle about Rapallo that feels infectious. From its terracotta buildings and busy weekly market, to its mountainous backdrop and palm-lined port, it’s a slice of old-fashioned Italian seaside town that charms anyone who steps onto its shores

When a Mediterranean yacht charter destination is more popular with holidaying Italians than it is with foreigners, you know you’re onto a good thing. Rapallo may be less known for its glamour, unlike some other Ligurian hot spots, but it has plenty going for it and also serves as a great base to explore the rest of the coastline with Portofino and the Cinque Terre not far away.

One of Rapallo’s most distinctive features is its small 16th Century castle which, perched proudly on a rocky promontory overlooking the sea, was built to protect the town from pirates. If you make a visit in July, be sure to watch the castle symbolically ‘set on fire’ using fireworks - a celebration that happens on the 3rd every year. And what better way to enjoy the spectacle than from the deck of a superyacht?

Rapallo’s history can be seen throughout the town and clusters of hillside houses. A stroll around the historic centre is a must while you’re ashore, where you can enjoy the Trompe l’oeil-decorated façades of 18th-Century buildings and some beautiful examples of fine Ligurian architecture. Further away in the hills but relatively unknown to tourists is the Sanctuary of Montallegro. As legend has it, this beautiful church was built when the Virgin Mary appeared to a local farmer, asking for a sanctuary to be built in that exact location. Since then the local have used the church to give thanks and today the walls are covered in silver hearts and paintings.

Those exploring the Liguria region of Italy on a private yacht charter will love the unique allure of Rapallo. Begin planning your summer yachting vacation now by viewing the complete fleet of luxury yachts for charter in the Italian Riviera.

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Reasons to Visit

Explore the historic centre
Pick up some beautiful locally made lace and silks
Take a morning hike to Portofino
See collections of gold, china, and ivory in the Gaffoglio Museum
Watch the castle fireworks in July

Good For

  • Monuments
  • Nature
  • Anchorage
  • Mountains

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