Some cities really have enormous touristic potential … but then there are those who just don’t have it, or do they?
Like Cairo Montenotte… It starts with the name, Cairo, which doesn’t sound very Italian as there is another Cairo that is much more known than this small Italian provincial town of no more than 14 000 inhabitants.
Then there are the surroundings. Ok, it’s only 25 minutes of one of the most famous coastlines of Italy: the Flower Rivièra of Liguria. But other than that? Most of the people in this town work in glass factories, which says enough. The valleys around that are wild, untamed and certainly not mentioned in touristic guides. The old castle that dominates the city? Just a ruin now.
But once in a while one of my more adventurous guests end up in the small streets in the historic center and tell me they were surprised to see such a typical Italian place where they least expected it based on the unattractive entrance to the city.
It will be no surprise either that real estate in this city is still very affordable, unlike the more renowned places in Liguria. It’s such a diverse region, with on the one hand places like Portofino, Cinque Terre and Alassio, and on the other hand unspoiled valleys and small blue collar cities like Cairo Montenotte.