Western Liguria. Just a stone’s throw from France.
Famous for its mild climate, the English knew it well and chose Western Liguria as a holiday resort during frigid english winters since the second half of the 19th century.
Ventimiglia, thanks to the quaint old town, has all the characteristics of a typical border town. The stretch of coast towards France is wild and luscious: the Hanbury Botanical Garden houses thousands of botanical species of tropical and subtropical origin, that are divided in areas.
Well-known are the Balzi Rossi Caverns too, where prehistoric man traces dating back to 20 000 years ago have been found.
Take in the sights of Vallecrosia Alta Town or of the curious Song Museum.
You cannot miss Bordighera, a stylish town made unique by the Via Romana, the Hotels dunked in the green, the palm groves which inspired the painter Monet and one of the most refined inner cities of the coast.
What makes particularly attractive this part of Liguria is the charming inland, made peculiar by ancient medieval towns situated in the mountains jutting out into the sea. It’s wonderful to stroll in the typical alleys, the carruggi, which intertwine one another.
Val Roja is in the neighbourhood of Ventimiglia, just farther the tunnel near Airole, town of medieval origin with a Baroque Church. All of a sudden you can see one of the most beautiful landscapes in Liguria. The road leads to Tenda, in France; and then to Limone Piemonte, one of the favoured ski resorts. Roja waters are clear and, in certain parts, of a bright green, crossed in different spots by the bridges of the railroad lines.
Val Nervia, on the other hand, is in the neighbourhood of Camporosso, already inhabited during the Bronze Age and protected by the impenetrable castle walls, it was an important communication route in the Middle Ages.The mouth of the river is a natural oasis protected by WWF, where strolling and birdwatching is possible.
Exploring the valley you can enjoy uncontaminated landscapes and historical towns of great interest such as Dolceacqua, overlooked by Doria’s Castle, Pigna, famous for its spa resort, Isolabona or Apricale.
Alta Val Nervia is situated inside the regional Natural Park Alpi Liguri, as well as the valleys Argentina and Arroscia. Despite its proximity to the sea, it offers one of the most beautiful landscapes of the Alps. In the part closer to the sea there is mediterranean vegetation: olive trees, vineyards, flower plantations. Then, all of a sudden, you enter the alpine area, characterised by pine groves, oaks, firs and beech trees. It’s one of the most varied environments of the world. The mountains Toraggio (m.1973) e Pietravecchia (m. 2038), where groundhogs live and rhododendron grows, have been nicknamed “the small Dolomites”.
There are plenty of towns of great interest in the rear of Bordighera and Ventimiglia, we recommend you Vallebona, Seborga and its principality, Perinaldo, Soldano and Olivetta San Michele too.