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October 14th 2008
Published: March 30th 2009
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Ligurian HillsLigurian HillsLigurian Hills

A sinewy road in the hills above Genoa.
Approaching Genoa on the coast, I find myself tiring of the autostrada and beat a quick exit for a road following the coastline in the hills above Genoa. It turns out to be a fortuitous decision as the road turns out to be a freshly paved supermotard track. Unfortunately it’s a track that contains four-wheeled competitors so care must be taken on blind curves.

I have to say…Gawd, I love Italian riding. Motorcycles can get away with anything short of murder and cops just look the other way. You pass where you want, when you want and nobody honks at you. Solid white lines are meaningless. There were times when I would fall back into American riding, trundling along behind slower traffic, only to be buzzed by a sweet young thing on her moped.

I’m old enough now where my manhood isn’t threatened by such things. In one town a young thang zipped by me, while waving to a friend she saw. At least she wasn’t texting and waving. I stayed behind her on the narrow road to Portofino. Coming around one corner, we met a bus that took up most of the road, leaving a three foot gap
Santa MargheritaSanta MargheritaSanta Margherita

Approaching the coast overlooking the town of Santa Margherita.
between the bus and a wall of granite. Miss moped didn’t bat an eyelash, kept the throttle pinned and shot the gap between the bus and the wall. I stayed in her mirrors just to preserve my masculinity.

I decide to head for the quaint, if touristy village of Portofino and find a hotel that can make a martini. I strike paydirt, scoring a nice hotel near the mouth of the harbor. The last time I visited Portofino was in May of 2002 and I had gotten a bad vibe from the place from the rampant tourism. In October, it was a different story. With the throngs of tourists gone, you could almost squint and imagine what a lovely place it once was.

Additional photos below
Photos: 5, Displayed: 5


Portofino RoadPortofino Road
Portofino Road

The road to Portofino

Overlooking Portofino.
Ligurian CoastLigurian Coast
Ligurian Coast

Looking towards Santa Margherita from Portofino.

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