"Portus Veneris" - as it was called from the 2nd century A.D., when in an ancient itinerary it is indicated as the naval station of the Roman triremes - in 1113 became "Genoa's military outpost in the Tyrrhenian Sea" and it was the Genoese who built the fortified village as we can still see it today: the boundary walls and the Borgo gate, the Doria Castle, the Church of San Lorenzo, the Grotto of Byron, the Church of San Pietro and the row of colourful tower-houses on the sea front.
Porto Venere is a cultural area of exceptional value, showing the harmonious relationship between man and nature to which we owe a landscape of extraordinary scenic beauty, demonstrating a traditional way of life that has been preserved for a thousand years and continues to play an important socio-economic role in the life of the community. These are the reasons that led UNESCO to declare Porto Venere a World Heritage Site.
The patron saint of the town is Madonna Bianca, who is celebrated every 17 August with a suggestive ceremony.
Porto Venere offers itself today, in its almost unchanged form over the course of eight centuries, to tourists who can appreciate the incomparable panorama, the characteristic and picturesque views, the uniqueness of the ancient portals of the tower-houses that line the carruggi and the calata.
However, the town also fascinates visitors with its natural beauty: near the ancient city walls is the arrival point of the famous AV5T (ex n.1) path, which connects Porto Venere to Levanto by crossing the Cinque Terre and which every year is the destination of a growing number of excursionists. The path, which winds halfway up the slopes of Monte Muzzerone and Monte Castellana, offers unique views and unforgettable emotions. Numerous boats leave from the pier in front of the Palazzata for Palmaria Island, Lerici and the Cinque Terre.