How to Get to Portofino by Air, Train, Bus and Ferry:
Portofino is located about 45km east of Genoa on the eastern stretch of the Italian Riviera. Genoa is the hub for all transportation along the Italian Riviera and from Genoa to Portofino travellers have a choice of travel by train or ferry. Portofino is also easily reachable from Rome by train.
The nearest airport is Genoa Cristoforo Colombo Airport, about 45km west of Portofino. The airport is served by Alitalia, British Airways (from Gatwick), AirFrance, Lufthansa, Turkish Airlines and a raft of budget airlines such as Ryanair, AirDolomiti and Vueling. There are taxis and car rental agencies at the airport or your hotel may be able to arrange transfers.
If you don’t have big cases, there is an airport bus to Genova Brignole station where you can catch the train to Santa Margherita Ligure-Portofino.
The closest train station to Portofino is Santa Margherita Ligure-Portofino. The following are some Trenitalia (www.trenitalia.com) route options:
From Rome : Roma Termini – (change at Rapallo) – S. Margherita Ligure-Portofino (Travel time: 4hrs 41mins)
From Rome : Roma Termini – (change at La Spezia Centrale) – S. Margherita Ligure-Portofino (Travel time: 4hrs 34mins)
From Genoa : Genova – S. Margherita Ligure-Portofino (Travel time: 45 mins)
From Florence: Firenze S.M. Novella – (change at Pisa Centrale) – S. Margherita Ligure-Portofino (Travel time: 5hrs 12mins)
There are taxis outside the station or you can catch the public bus which takes you to Martyrs Square of Liberty in Portofino (see below).
From the Santa Margherita Ligure station, there is a regular bus service to the Martyrs Square of Liberty in Portofino. Journey time is about 15 minutes. The service runs every 20 minutes from 6:15 to 22:00 (up to 00:45 in summer). We were staying at the Best Western Regina Elena in Santa Margherita and our coach door malfunction on the morning that we were going to Portofino, so the group of us piled into this public bus. The driver was very good-natured and transported us to Portofino without a complaint.
If you’re staying on the Ligurian coast, a great way to visit Portofino and enjoy views of the coastline is by ferry. There are a number ferry and boat services that link towns on the Ligurian coast. See www.traghettiportofini.it, www.battellierigenova.it and www.golfoparadiso.it.
Take the A12 Genova-Roma motorway and exit at Rapallo. Follow the signs to Santa Margherita-Portofino which is about a 20-minute drive. Parking is at the covered carpark in the Martyrs Square of Liberty. Portofino is a car-free zone.
For wheel-chair bound travellers, it is easy to get from the car-park to the Portofino harbour. The ground is a little uneven in parts, but it’s not a problem for wheelchairs.