Learning to Love La Spezia: Mornings
Although only live 15 minutes away by car, La Spezia can seem very far away from our little house on the hill overlooking the village of Lerici. The Bay of La Spezia does a very good job at hiding it. Yet, "just around the corner" is a small city of about 100, 000 inhabitants that is slowly but surely is having some wonderful growth spurts.
It has long been a starting point for people heading into Le Cinque Terre, Portovenere or Lerici - but finally the Spezzini are getting through their thick (and sometimes backwards) skulls, that the city has the potential to be a real hub for visitors. Many of the old liberty style building have or are in the process of being restored to their original splendor, the port has been cleaned up and a new resort port is being built, new and quite good restaurants have been popping up (at a fraction of the cost in any of the destinations listed above), nice stores have arrived and two very fine museums are worth visits.
My favorite time to visit La Spezia is the morning. The city comes alive. There is a positive energy in the air, plus it smells good: caffe, fresh pastries, flowers, produce and fish from the open air market (yes, fish can smell good!). The morning market is held Monday-Saturday from 7am-1pm at Piazza Cavour. On Fridays there is also the weekly market on Via Garibaldi where you can buy all sorts of fun stuff including gorgeous, inexpensive ceramics from Vietri and any household items you could possibly need.
It's all very exciting and I am looking forward to the continual growth of this uncovering gem!