If you are visiting the Gulf of Poets, La Spezia – which is one of the main Italian military and commercial harbors – offers some interesting sights and things to do. La Spezia is the largest town on the Bay of Poets and capital city of the namesake province in Liguria.
The city hosts a number of museums. One of the most particular is the Technical Naval Museum (Museo Tecnico Navale). Located at the main entrance of the Naval Arsenal, its main specialty is the equipment of the Italian Navy Special Forces, which were founded in La Spezia and are still stationed there.
The Civic Archaeologic Museum “Ubaldo Formentini” holds several relics found in the surrounding Lunigiana area and dating back to prehistoric and medieval times. Other museums include the National Transportation Museum, Ethnographic Civic Museum, and the Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art (CAMeC).
Among the churches, make sure to stop at the Abbey of Santa Maria Assunta. It houses a considerable series of artworks including an Incoronation of the Virgin by Andrea della Robbia, the Multiplication of Bread by Giovanni Battista Casoni and St. Bartholomew’s Martyrdom by Luca Cambiaso.
Other attractions in La Spezia include the Castle of San Giorgio, built in 1262 by Niccolò Fieschi (it hosts the Civic Archaeologic Museum); the beautiful and rich public gardens; and the idyllic Passegiata Morin, the seaside promenade embellished by palms and floral compositions, offering a panoramic view of the inspiring Gulf of Poets.
The most important annual event is the exciting Palio del Golfo. For more information see the article Palio of the Gulf: pride & tradition.
Another exciting event is the international music festival that takes place in the towns of La Spezia, Portovenere and Lerici. Learn all about it in the article about “La Spezia Jazz Festival“.
Other things to do in La Spezia include going for an entertaining show at Teatro Civico, Spezia’s main theater and the third largest in Liguria. See the calendar of events and buy tickets on www.teatrocivico.it.
If organic farming and eco-friendly initiatives are dear to you, then pay a visit to Spezia’s Organic Farmers’ Market. Learn more about Organic Farming & Urban Trekking in La Spezia.