Today we're leaving together to discover Tellaro, a charming village on the Gulf of Poets that you can't absolutely miss on your next trip to Liguria!
Are you planning to go on holiday in Liguria? Today we suggest you a destination to include in your travel itinerary, we are sure you will not regret it: we are talking about Tellaro.
Tellaro is a small and charming village placed on the Ligurian cliff overlooking the Gulf of Poets, one of the most romantic and evocative in Liguria, and now it is part of the municipality of Lerici. In this article we discover together what to see and what to do in Tellaro, how to get there starting from the larger cities in the territory and what are the best experiences in this splendid location.
The village of Tellaro stands out for its timeless beauty and for the charm it instills in the eyes and hearts of those who arrive there as visitors. It's not a surprise if there are many Italian and foreign artists who have fallen in love with this little precious gem, especially the writer Mario Soldati, who lived in Tellaro throughout his old age and told about his love for this small town with these words in his tale for children entitled “The Octopus and the Pirates”:
“Once upon a time, and still it is today, here's the village of Tellaro. It is all built on the rocks of a promontory that juts out into the sea, at the foot of a large hill covered with olive woods [...]. I love Tellaro for this very reason. It is a place that cannot be crossed. It's a place you get to. [...] There is a unique sense of calm and closure […] a real nirvana between the sea and the sky, between the rocks and the green mountain”.
Tellaro in Liguria: what to see in this village on the Gulf of Poets
Enchanted by Soldati's beautiful words, we are finally ready to leave for a memorable walk through the streets of this seaside town and find out what to see and what to do in Tellaro, in the marvelous landscape of Liguria.
Among the main attractions to see in Tellaro, the suggestive Church of St. George stands out as the symbol of the village both for aesthetics and for folklore. The building, characterized by its pink colour in contrast with the deep blue of the sea, was built in the second half of the 16th century on the remains of a tower overlooking the sea and its history is related to local legends: in fact, stories tell that Tellaro was saved from the sudden attack of pirates by a giant octopus, which would have helped the people of village by ringing the church bells at night, thus awakening them and making it possible to resist the assault - it's been told that the legendary animal would also have contributed to the resistance. Between reality and myth, one way or another this story is still literally carved into stone on a wall in the temple.
Leaving the church, it's a must for tourists to enjoy a walk along the Sottoripa portico, a typical promenade of the sea side villages in Liguria: a beautiful and decorated pedestrian gallery about 70 m long built around the ancient walls, giving a breathtaking view on the sea that is perfect especially for romantic moments with your soulmate. Walking on, it is possible to explore on foot the small bay of Tellaro with its small port and the rocky coast along the sea side.
Walking through the colorful streets of Tellaro, with its gaudy buildings typical of the landscape in the coast of Liguria, you can't miss to visit the Church of Stella Maris: built in 1942, today it is the main place of worship in the village and houses on the inside some interesting examples of sacred arts such as the statue of St. George.
What to do in Tellaro: a place to experience and discover
What to do in Tellaro after visiting the most interesting places? This small seaside village on the coast of Liguri is certainly a very intriguing destination for those looking for experience tourism by hiking both sea side and hinterland.
Especially in the warm seasons, we suggest you to experience boat trips around Tellaro and the Gulf of Poets, usually departing from La Spezia), or even the adrenaline of exploring these places on rafts or kayak.
On the other hand, if you prefer to move on land you will certainly be interested in the possibility of hiking between Tellaro and Lerici, along the hilly paths exploring the olive woods. These routes are well organized and supplied with road signs and can be explored within a few hours, giving you a truly unique view to enjoy where the green of the land blends with the blue of the sea. Some longer paths also lead to discover the ruins of the ancient forsaken villages of Barbazzano and Portesone, the 'ancestors' of Tellaro.
To conclude your trip to Tellaro, what could be better than tasting some local food? We suggest the octopus, seasoned with oil, lemon, parsley and olives according to the local recipe, or the variant of octopus in hell, made with garlic and chilli pepper and served with potatoes or bread. Craving for dessert? For you there is the sweet focaccia made with raisins and pine nuts.
How to get to Tellaro, hidden gem in Liguria
Tellaro is about 3 km far from Lerici. What are the best options to reach the village? Let's see together how to get to Tellaro.
First you need to reach Lerici starting from La Spezia. You can travel by car, along the SP331 road on the coast, or by bus (available during the week), and in both cases the journey takes around 20 minutes. Once you arrive in Lerici you can venture towards Tellaro. However, despite the short distance between the two locations, it is not recommended to travel by car considering that there is only one road available for driving and parking spaces are limited.
The best options to get to Tellaro from Lerici are:
- by bus with regular runs of about 15/20 minutes with the last stop at the Church of Stella Maris;
- on foot along the internal paths, a march of about half an hour or so; the same route can also be run by bike in about 10/15 minutes;
- by boat, the most suggestive option but available only in summer, with the possibility of moving directly from La Spezia and exploring the entire Gulf of Poets by boat.
Hey, do you want to discover the beauty of Cinque Terre on a suggestive boat tour? Click the button below!
Don't miss the Palio of the Gulf's boat race, an event between sport and folklore
Do you have any plans on the first Sunday of August? If the answer is no, then we suggest you to travel to Tellaro and don't miss the Palio of the Gulf! It is a sporty boat race taking place every year and challenging 13 villages in rowing competitions in the waters of this gulf in Liguria in the men's, juniors' (since 1964) and women's (since 1995) divisions, as well as in a parade through the streets of the center of La Spezia (since 1981) performing choreographies and wearing traditional clothes. Unfortunately, Tellaro's team has only triumphed once in the men's division with one only historic victory in 1973 - but we are confident that the trophy case will soon be filled with new cups!
Since 1932 this annual event has combined sport and folklore and characterized the culture of the population of the Gulf of Poets. It is in fact the main event that celebrates the Festival of Seas, a typically Italian summer folk celebration that involves many cities and villages that have built their identity and history on the relationship with the sea, by fishing, sailing, travelling and trading. The top moment of the celebration in Tellaro concerns the octopus festival, a true tradition for the village and its citizens to praise the summer, the sea and its symbolic animal.