Circular Route around Palmaria Island


Circular Route around Palmaria Island – Photo: Ass. Mangia Trekking


From the Terrizzo hamlet, accessible by tourist boats from Porto Venere and La Spezia.

3 hours and 30 minutes.


Parts of the track feature different levels of difficulty. There are abrupt changes in altitude over a total height difference 198 meters and walkers are advised to be properly equipped.

The track begins on a dirt road that smoothly climbs in altitude hugging the part of the island facing the Gulf of La Spezia, which allows us to admire the Fortress of Umberto I°, the Torre Scola and the numerous beaches of Cala della Fornace. An uphill deviation on the right of the track, leads to the ex telegraph station, in the Roccio locality, considered one of Liguria’s most beautiful terraced areas and surrounded in spring time by blossoming broom , red valerian but most of all home of the red rock roses (Cistus creticus subsp. eriocephalus (Viv.) Greuter & Burdet, ex Cistus incanus L) at the outer limit of its distribution area.Continuing along the hilly track that follows the island’s side towards south, through an area of Mediterranean scrub alternated with areas of scrubland and Holm forest, follow the steep descent which requires caution but allows you to reach the beach of Pozzale and the other dock of Palmaria (it is possible to return to Terrizzo or to Porto Venere by boat). A pleasant walk on the promenade connects the beaches with the nearby area distinguished by a Portoro Marble quarry, which in the recent past was a place of work  and now is the undisputed kingdom of the herring gulls that nest there. Leaving behind the view of Tino Island, set out on the ascent through the wildest and barest part of the track that leads to the top of Palmaria at a height of 186 m above sea level. This route offers extraordinary scenic glimpses of the vast open sea and the cliffs, undisputed territory of the Porto Venere cornflower, exclusive species of the Protected Area.  Once you reach the road, from where various alternative routes start, turn left towards the Center of Environmental Education (C.E.A.). Further on, you reach the dirt road from where the most complex trail of the island starts opposite the headland of Arpaia where the church of San Pietro of Porto Venere was built . Down at sea level an effortless route winds between beach and trail, with the perfume of sea and the caress of the wind, splashing waves and screeching gulls, bringing you back to the starting point in Terrizzo.

Alternative route 1
Punta Mariella – track that leads to sea -At the Roccio hamlet, instead of continuing for Pozzale go down the trail towards the sea surrounded, in spring time, by blossoming broom, valerian and rock roses, reaching the crest below, a destination for bathers who love tranquility because it can only be reached by this trail or, from the sea or with a private boat.

Alternative route 2
Road open to vehicles, not busy, from C.E.A to Terrizzo. An effortless walk of approximately 45 minutes, under the shade of majestic trees, typical of vegetation that has not suffered the consequences of human contamination.

Alternative route 3
Convicts’ Road – track from C.E.A. to Terrizzo. From the road on the right a dirt road departs running alongside the moat edge of Forte Cavour, at the end of which you descend a trail with a series of bends and steps which allow the walker to admire views differing in altitude and prospective in an area rich with heady fragrances from aromatic plants (myrtle, rue, thyme, etc.).

Alternative route 4
Canalone – shortcut from C.E.A. to Terrizzo – Descend the steps that lead to “Casa dell’Ammiraglio” recognizable from the monumental domestic pine tree, follow the road and after a couple of bends, take the track on the left which leads into the humid area of Palmaria allowing the walker to reach Terrizzo in approximately 20 minutes.

Track N. 1 (From Porto Venere to Levanto)  
Martina Track (From Le Grazie to Porto Venere) 
Woodland Track (From Fezzano to Track N.1)