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How to Spend 3 Days in La Spezia

How to Spend 3 Days in La Spezia

The Ligurian coast is home to the modern seaport of La Spezia as well as the time-capsule fishing villages of the Cinque Terre. With three days, you can explore both and still have time to adventure farther down the coastline to the spectacular marble quarries of Carrara. Here’s how to make the most of three days in La Spezia.

Day 1: La Spezia

La Spezia’s modern port area belies the charm of its nearby old town, a delightful stretch of lanes thick with small shops and old-school restaurants—and hardly a tourist in sight. Soak in the authentic atmosphere and pretty art nouveau architecture along the main thoroughfares and seaside promenade, stopping to take in sights such as San Giorgio Castle and the Church of Santa Maria Assunta. In the afternoon, discover the city’s excellent cuisine with a food tour through the historic center, stopping at delis and trattorias to sample local specialties such as focaccia and pasta with pesto or walnut sauce. Finally, participate in a home-cooking class or demonstration to learn the history and techniques behind La Spezia’s most beloved dishes, followed by a family-style meal. 

Day 2: The Cinque Terre

For many travelers, La Spezia is the gateway to the Cinque Terre. On your second day, follow the crowds and visit this clutch of five delightfully colorful fishing villages on a driving tour, boat or sailboat trip, or an e-bike tour. Most guided tours include a stop in one or two of the five villages—Monterosso al Mare, Vernazza, Corniglia, Manarola, and Riomaggiore—and time to have lunch at one of the tiny trattorias tucked among the steep, narrow lanes. Wine enthusiasts can combine a tour of the Cinque Terre with a tasting to discover the excellent wines grown on the terraced hillsides of the Ligurian coast.

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Day 3: Carrara

Farther down the coast into Tuscany, the marble quarries of Carrara are one of the most unique sights in the steep foothills of the Apuan Alps and an easy day trip from La Spezia. Devote your third day to exploring these historic quarries with a 4WD, learning about the white rock used to to create everything from the ancient Roman Pantheon to Michelangelo’s David. See how massive blocks have been excavated from deep inside the mountains for two millennia, and tour open-air, terraced, and underground quarries in the mountains above the Colonnata Valley. End your tour by tasting the local delicacy,lardo di Colonnata, a traditional fatback cured with salt and herbs and aged in Carrara-marble basins. 

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13 Tours and Activities | All La Spezia Tours

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Private Tour: Cinque Terre from La Spezia

Private Tour: Cinque Terre from La Spezia

star-5
Explore Cinque Terre on a private tour with a guide. Travel by boat and train from La Spezia Port and visit three charming towns. Don’t worry about train schedules, or navigating, just relax and settle in to the Ligurian lifestyle while your guide takes care of the logistics. Have time to explore on your own and choose a spot for lunch (own expense) and learn about the region’s history and culture on the guided portions of the tour.
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  • 6 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From
$324.94
Price varies by group size
From
$324.94
Price varies by group size

Cinque Terre Sailing Day Trip from La Spezia

Cinque Terre Sailing Day Trip from La Spezia

star-4.5
See Cinque Terre from another perspective: from a boat at sea. Spend a full day sailing along the Italian riviera, viewing the five seaside towns and learning about the history of the area from your skipper. Drink in the views of the colorful villages that hug the coastline. Learn some sailing tips from the crew. Stop to swim in the shimmering sea. And then indulge in a lunch of Ligurian specialties, washing it down with some locally produced wine. Participants are limited to just 10 people on this small-group tour, ensuring plenty of personalized attention.
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  • 7 hours
From
$183.48
From
$183.48

Cinque Terre sunset boat tour with aperitivo in Vernazza

Cinque Terre sunset boat tour with aperitivo in Vernazza

Explore the UNESCO-listed Cinque Terre National Park by boat—and enjoy a rare perspective on the sights, when you time your visit for sunset. Meet in Monterosso, climb aboard your vessel, and enjoy a welcome drink: with just a small group for company, you’re guaranteed a personal sightseeing experience. Venture all the way along the Cinque Terre coast, pause to swim or snorkel in the turquoise waters, and enjoy traditional aperitif nibbles on board.
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  • 3 hours
  • Taking safety measures
From
$175.03
From
$175.03
Taking safety measures

La Spezia Cinque Terre Food Tour - Do Eat Better Experience

La Spezia Cinque Terre Food Tour - Do Eat Better Experience

star-5
Embark on a savory gastronomic journey through the historic port city of La Spezia, led by a friendly foodie guide. Sample tasty regional specialties at 5 different food stops, pre-selected to bring you the best of local cuisine. Taste briny fried anchovies, or a delicate chickpea pancake. Menus are seasonal, guaranteeing the freshest ingredients, and small groups are capped to ensure a personalized tasting adventure.
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  • 3 hours
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures
From
$91.76
From
$91.76
Taking safety measures

Carrara: Exclusive Marble Cave Jeep Tour Adventure

Carrara: Exclusive Marble Cave Jeep Tour Adventure

star-4
Journey deep into the jagged world of the Carrara marble quarries on this 4WD adventure. Exploring with a guide in a group no larger than six, discover the “white gold” that built the Pantheon and Michelangelo’s David. Learn about ancient and modern excavation techniques at a historic quarry; tour an open sky quarry, a terraced quarry, and an underground quarry; and taste the local marble-aged cold cut, “lardo di Colonnata”.
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  • 2 hours 18 minutes
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures
From
$79.67
From
$79.67
Taking safety measures

Cinque Terre Cooking Lesson in La Spezia

Cinque Terre Cooking Lesson in La Spezia

star-5
Learn the secrets of the Italian kitchen with this 3-hour cooking class in La Spezia. Led by an expert chef, begin at the local market to select fresh seafood and vegetables for your dishes. Then, bring your ingredients to the kitchen of a nearby ‘osteria.’ Receive hands-on training in your small group as you craft three courses of delicious Ligurian cuisine, sitting down to feast on your creations afterward. Numbers are limited to four people to keep the experience intimate.
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  • 3 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From
$168.99
From
$168.99

Cinque Terre: Full-Day Private Tour with Wine Tasting

Cinque Terre: Full-Day Private Tour with Wine Tasting

star-5
Rather than navigating on your own, sit back and enjoy the scenery when you book a private day trip to Cinque Terre, a group of fishing villages just 40 kilometers north of La Spezia. The private tour ensures you are able to customize the itinerary according to your interests. With your guide’s insider recommendations, explore the area at your own pace and enjoy vineyard tours with complimentary wine tastings.
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  • 6 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From
$296.56
Price varies by group size
From
$296.56
Price varies by group size

Authentic Pesto cooking class at the Cinque Terre

Authentic Pesto cooking class at the Cinque Terre

star-3
Discover the secrets of authentic Italian cuisine with this home pesto-making and tasting experience along the Cinque Terre coast. Visit a beautiful La Spezia home; get hands-on with a mortar and pestle as you cook up your own pesto, using fresh basil and pine nuts; then tuck into your delicious homemade creations.
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  • 2 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From
$79.99
From
$79.99

E-bike tours from La Spezia

E-bike tours from La Spezia

star-3.5
Enjoy a leisurely e-bike ride in the La Spezia region with an option of four fun tours. Take the classic tour from La Spezia to Cinque Terre, bike around the Gulf of Poets from La Spezia to either Portovenere or Montemarcello, or tour Val di Magra. Each tour option features beautiful views of the seaside scenery and takes about four hours to complete.
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  • 4 hours
From
$124.33
From
$124.33

Food & Wine evening tour La Spezia

Food & Wine evening tour La Spezia

star-5
Immerse yourself in the culinary culture of the Liguraian coast on this walking food tour. Sample local delicacies like stuffed anchovies, octopus salad, hand rolled pasta and pesto sauce, and learn the stories behind the dishes. Taste local wines and learn regional traditions and history as you stroll the streets and pass by architectural landmarks. End the evening with an extended stop at a restaurant to continue the conversation.
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  • 2 to 3 hours
From
$96.57
From
$96.57

Dining experience at a local's home in La Spezia with show cooking

Dining experience at a local's home in La Spezia with show cooking

star-5
Immerse yourself in a private dining experience at a local's home, enjoy an exclusive show cooking and taste authentic La Spezia recipes treasured in family cookbooks passed down by real Italian Mammas. Feel the warmth of Italian hospitality as you connect with local people. Enjoy a 4-course menu including starter, pasta, main course with side dish, dessert with drinks included (water, selection of red and white wines from Liguria cellars and coffee). This experience is held by Cesarine: Italy’s oldest network of 1000+ home cooks all over the country in more than 500 cities. They are passionate and welcoming hosts that open the doors of their own homes to curious travellers for immersive culinary experiences.
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  • 2 hours 30 minutes
  • Free Cancellation
From
$102.60
From
$102.60

Private tour of The Poet's Gulf in Cinque Terre

Private tour of The Poet's Gulf in Cinque Terre

Leave the large crowds of Cinque Terre behind on a private 8-hour tour of the Poet’s Gulf. A ferry from Portovenere takes you to the picturesque Palmaria, Tino, and Tinetto. Serving as inspiration for Byron, DH Lawrence, Virginia Woolf, and other literary greats, the islands are today a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Together with your guide, decide how much time to spend at each location.
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  • 8 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From
$324.21
Price varies by group size
From
$324.21
Price varies by group size

Cinque Terre Private Boat Tour from La Spezia (3 hours max 4 people)

Cinque Terre Private Boat Tour from La Spezia (3 hours max 4 people)

star-5
Arrive at the Cinque Terre in style with this boat cruise from La Spezia to Monterosso, the largest of the UNESCO-listed region’s villages. Offering a convenient and fun way to get to the Cinque Terre, the cruise also includes a stop in the port town of Portovenere, a chic spot often overlooked by the tourist crowds. Transport back to La Spezia is not included, making this a great option if you have plans to stay longer in the Cinque Terre region.
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  • 3 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From
$724.26
per group
From
$724.26
per group