There’s a secret spot close to Portofino, which is just up the coast from the Cinque Terre called San Fruttuoso (link to wikipedia), a word-of-mouth kinda place you aren’t likely to just stumble across. You need a boat to get there, and it consists basically of a tiny beach, an ancient abbey and a restaurant, plus a super beautiful bay to swim in. The ferries that run the route to Camogli from Portofino stop at the abbey, and I’ve gotten there that way before, but next time I plan to book a private boat tour (Da Vince has a nice selection of boats that service this area) and get the captain to drop me off at San Fruttuoso as the final destination — taking the ferry back at sunset is easy enough, no need for a private pick-up. This is the kind of thing you would arrange for your partner and surprise them because it’s SUPER romantic. Brownie points galore!


Just a hop from Portofino is Sestri Levante, about an hour outside of the Cinque Terre. It’s a town known to Italians but not a lot of foreign tourists. If you’re from Milan or Genoa, having a summer house here is a thing, and a striped umbrella reserved for you for your entire holiday. Of all the pretty towns that stretch from France to Tuscany, Sestri Levante is one of our faves. After wandering around town or tucking into a novel on the beach, on your way “home,” if you’re staying in the Cinque Terre, be sure to stop at Ca di Ferae. Around since 1939, it’s just a block from the train station, so it’s a great place to go for a bite if your train is delayed. Their fondue with potatoes and truffle is a big hit with us. Follow that with some spaghetti with clams and you’re basically Ligurian now.


Actually going places! January is a planning month for us at Italian Fix, and for a lot of you, we happen to know. Let us not so subtly remind you that we have trips happening this May to both Sicily and the Cinque Terre. The month of May, weather-wise and tourist-wise, is a strategic time to visit Europe. Things are less intense than busy summer and fall, and people are excited to see you after the looong winter. We love spring in Europe! Reply to this email if you would like to hear about our availability in May for either destination. We’re down to one private room on one of the dates — just ask and we’ll share all the details. 

Many people who will be making the trek to Europe this year will want to stay for longer than a week. Know that we include amazing insight into other regions you might want to visit in Italy or beyond. All of our advice is covered in your trip fees, so we really are a back pocket resource you might not know you have. Use us to help plan your trip — only clients can use this “ask us everything anytime” service.

Image: Stefano Butturini


Taking in the new 2022 energy from Riomaggiore, Cinque Terre!

Image: Leela Cyd


PS: We have a handful of spots available on our May 2022 dates to Sicily or Cinque Terre. Curious? Just send us an email … asking is free! We’ll send you dates, rates and availability. 2022 is your year to look after yourself — let us help!



Share our newsletter, get Italian Swag. It’s a simple way for you to share Italian Fix, and be rewarded with groovy things.

Wanna play? Click to share our newsletter, and we’ll send you gifties in the mail. Not lame cheap crap, but handmade, thoughtful and useful things to make your life more beautiful.

Share with 7 people, get an art print. Share with 17 people, a beautiful candle made in Florence. Share with 37 people, we’ll send you a skincare kit from the fanciest apothecary in Italy. Cause we’re crazy like that.



With love + spaghetti






Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *