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La Spezia, Liguria, Italy

We were once a few days in the most inaccessible and mountainous (but also very scenic) area of Tuscany called Lunigiano. There were plenty of mountains unlike the ones known from the Tuscan vistas - they rather resembled menacing Alp summits. So we decided to go one day to the sea just to change the surroundings. We planned to visit the Cinque Terre, but it ended up visiting the city of La Spezia located on the border of Tuscany and Liguria.

Parking in La Spezia

We wanted to park the car in the historical center, while not being far from the port. We managed to find quite a good parking lot in Piazza Giulio Beverini (P; GPS: 44.1046019, 9.819603

Strolling the town

This is another, typical port town visited by us - previously we have been to Livorno. We were worried that the impressions would be as bad as before. It turned out, however, that we were wrong. The atmosphere prevailing in La Spezia was completely different than in Livorno. Here you can feel the typical atmosphere of Italian towns. The streets were clean, and the parks and squares neat. In the very center there were many restaurants and bars with outdoor tables (if you like such a dish, we recommend the local seafood!). Generally, it's worth to get around the center, stroll the streets, look at the beautiful tenement houses, and then go to the nearby port.

Just go through Via Domenico Chiodo street, then through a nice city park (A; GPS: 44.103083, 9.823240) - so-called Giardini Pubblici, or Public Gardens - and you're already at the port itself. There's a very nice promenade available where you can walk. You can also just sit on a bench by the sea and look at ships and water trams.

We also have the opportunity to visit a nearby navy museum with a collection of cannons, weapons and other artillery (B; GPS: 44.103083, 9.823240). If you still feel unsatisfied, you can walk away from the port and visit the interesting castle - Castello di San Giorgio (C; GPS: 44.106434, 9.821580).

Cinque Terre

It turns out that the Cinque Terre is not worth visiting by car. Why? Because the few parking lots are small and very crowded (there may even be some local formal restrictions on car traffic). It is much better to drive to the city of La Spezia, leave the car here, and go to the train station, buy a ticket and take a train to the nearby and beautiful Cinque Terre towns. Alternatively, you can take a boat here - such cruises take place from La Spezia every day.

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