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Doge's Palace (Palazzo Ducale) Tours

Doge's Palace (Palazzo Ducale)
Built in 1298 to demonstrate Genoa’s wealth after it had become an important maritime trade center, the Doge's Palace (Palazzo Ducale) was the residence of the doge, ruler of Genoa. Today a cultural center, event space, and museum hosting rotating exhibits, the palace offers visitors a glimpse of the splendor of Genoa’s history.

The Basics
Rebuilt and refurbished many times due to fires, expansions, and restorations, Palazzo Ducale serves as a lavish event space and houses civil offices as it has for centuries. The opulent palace has marble columns, beautiful sculptures, and restored 17th-century Giovanni Battista Carlone frescoes that depict prominent Genoese including Christopher Columbus.

To explore the palace’s interior, visitors may attend one of the art exhibits, conferences, meetings, or concerts hosted here throughout the year. Hop-on hop-off bus tours of Genoa pass by Palazzo Ducale, as well as city landmarks such as the Genoa Cathedral (Cattedrale di San Lorenzo).

Things to Know Before You Go
  • Palazzo Ducale is a must-visit for architecture lovers and Italian history buffs.
  • The palace is entirely wheelchair accessible and has an accessible entrance at Piazza de Ferrari.
  • An on-site café/bistro serves meals, coffee, and aperitifs.

How to Get There
Palazzo Ducale is located at Piazza Giacomo Matteotti 9, next to Piazza de Ferrari, the city’s bustling main square best known for its three-tiered circular fountain. Many visitors reach the Doge’s Palace on foot while strolling Genoa’s historical core, and it’s also easily accessible by public transit—the de Ferrari metro stop is directly in front of the palace.

When to Get There
Palazzo Ducale is open daily, but hours for art exhibitions and events change frequently. Visitors are advised to consult the tourist information center or stop by the Doge’s Palace itself to find out what’s on the calendar while you’re there.

The Tower of Palazzo Ducale
The original medieval core of Palazzo Ducale is its tower, also known as La Grimaldina or Torre del Popolo (People’s Tower). Built around 1298, it became a symbol of the Republic of Genoa’s political power. From the 13th century through the 1930s, the tower served as a jail for political prisoners, conspirators, anarchists, and common prisoners, including Giuseppe Garibaldi, credited with helping to unify Italy, and famed violinist Niccolò Paganini. Paintings, engravings, and etched graffiti left by the inmates can still be seen on its walls.
Address: Piazza Giacomo Matteotti, 9, 16123 Genova GE, Italy, Genova 16123, Italy
Admission: Varies
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14 Tours and Activities to Experience Doge's Palace (Palazzo Ducale)

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Genoa City Hop-On Hop-Off TourBus Tours

Genoa City Hop-On Hop-Off Tour

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See all the highlights of the beautiful coastal city of Genoa with a hop-on hop-off bus ticket good for 48 hours. Enjoy great views of the city from the open-air top of a double-decker bus as you listen to commentary about the city and what you’re seeing. Get on at any of the 8 stops, and hop off any time you want to explore one of the nearby attractions. It’s the perfect way to get to know Genoa.
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Segway Tour CaruggiPrivate and Luxury

Segway Tour Caruggi

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Explore the city of Genoa with ease on a Segway during this small-group sightseeing tour. Learn about the importance of this historic port city as you zoom around historic landmarks including the Old Port district, the UNESCO-listed Caruggi area, and the Ducal Palace. End your tour with a relaxed walk along the seafront in the Porto Antico. All necessary equipment is provided and no previous Segway experience is necessary.
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Genoa Private Walking Tour with Ride up to the Private Sightseeing Tours

Genoa Private Walking Tour with Ride up to the "360 ° city view Balcony" by Lift

Do you want to spend a few hours with your family in Genoa being guided by local? This tour is perfect for you! Meet your guide at the port of Genoa and start your journey through the tiny alleyways of the historical center called "Caruggi" in Ligurian dialect. Pass by Piazza Banchi and the Cathedral of San Lorenzo, with its black and white striped facade. Continue your way through Via Garibaldi where you can admire at the Rolli Palaces, a series of royal palaces that were assigned to the noble families that would embellish them in the best way. Rolli contain true works of architecture! Finally arrive at Piazza De Ferrari where you can admire the Ducal Palace (the residence of the Doge), the Carlo Felice Opera House, and the remains of the house of Christopher Columbus. End the tour on Spanata Castelletto where you can marvel at Genoa's beauties from above and discover its true essence!
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Old Port bike Tour Mountain Bike Tours

Old Port bike Tour

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Hop on a bicycle and explore Genoa’s historic centre with us. You will encounter an urban city towards Art and Architecture, from the Middle Ages to the Modern Era. It has never been so easy and fun to discover Genoa by bike, so don't miss the opportunity and visit us. Bring your own camera to record everything. We will stop in a few important sites, very appreciated and visited by those who love sightseeing and breathtaking canvas. This tour was developed especially for those who cannot abandon a bicycle and really want to take a different and unique tour throughout Genoa’s downtown.
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Genoa City Center Semi-Private Tour with San Lorenzo Cathedral & Rolli's StreetCultural Tours

Genoa City Center Semi-Private Tour with San Lorenzo Cathedral & Rolli's Street

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Without a doubt, Genoa is one of the most charming and historically significant cities in Italy. The city 's unique blend of history and culture has long drawn visitors from all over the world. Its historical center is the largest of any European city, demonstrating Genoa's historical significance as an economic powerhouse. For two and half hours, you will be exploring the wonders of the city, led by an expert local guide. You will be weaving your way through the alley in the historical center, be enthralled by the Gothic-Romanesque style San Lorenzo Cathedral, which you can visit; and then view the incredible "Rolli" Palaces on Via Garibaldi; a real demonstration of Renaissance style. Christopher Columbus' home will stop at the main square. At the end of the tour you will go to the Castelletto esplanade and have a 360º view of the city from above. A unique ending to the tour!
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  • 2 hours 30 minutes
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Genoa private walking tour with a local guideFull-day Tours

Genoa private walking tour with a local guide

Experience Genoa with a guide on a comprehensive, private, walking tour. Discover the intricate network of alleyways that make up the City’s medieval center, see the old harbor, Piazza De Ferrari, the Opera house, and many more historic sights. Learn about the city’s culture and hear the stories behind the landmarks and buildings that you pass. Avoid tourist traps, and gain context and understanding of your surroundings with a one on one tour.
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Guided tour of Genoa with authorized local guidePrivate Sightseeing Tours

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Good Morning rider: discovering the town by bikeMountain Bike Tours

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A tour especially designed for those whom can't stop cycling. After a guided tour of the city center and a taste of our flavors you will be free to discover the town by yourself having the bike to ride until 7.00 pm. Chose your favourite bike or e-bike and unveal the beauty of "La Superba"
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Discover Europe's largest medieval historic center, with the amazing Segway, in an hour ! Let our staff accompany you on a unique adventure, crossing the ancients alleys, visiting the most important places and the most significant monuments, in complete safety and practicality. The best way to get a complete overview of the whole Genoese center, in a short time.
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  • 1 hour
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Genoa tour by taxi and on footBus Tours

SPECIAL OFFER

Genoa tour by taxi and on foot

A local tour guide, lover of his land, will explain to you every aspect of life and history of the city.
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Finance and Nobility: Explore medieval Genoa on an audio walking tourPrivate Sightseeing Tours

Finance and Nobility: Explore medieval Genoa on an audio walking tour

If you like the unexpected then follow the thread of this walking tour through the labyrinth of Genoa’s alleys in the city's historic centre. You'll discover breathtaking works of art behind almost every corner, along with other places where beauty is a carefully guarded secret. You'll see the main highlights in the city including UNESCO heritage sites, through the eyes of Antonella Cama, a local who loves to share not only the popular but also the authentic and believes that a tour must be more than dates and figures: She'll take you by the hand into "her" Genova! Some of the highlights from this self-guided GPS audio tour include: • Stories of the inhabitants of the opulent medieval residences • The interiors of Genoa’s richest church • Hear about the first football club in Italy • A historical confectionery shop • Find out why a 17th-century fountain is inside a department store • Take in the splendour of the fountain in the Piazza Raffaele De Ferrari
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Segway Tour Sant'AgostinoHistorical Tours

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Medieval Genoa, the mysterious Genoa and the oldest Genoa, and the "Movida" district. An alternative tour to discover small secrets hidden in the labyrinth of alleys of the largest pedestrian historical center in Europe. A way to immerse yourself in history and legend, also visiting the most important monuments and places.
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The heart of GenoaPrivate Sightseeing Tours

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a licensed tour guide will accompany you on a different route than usual, through the alleys of the medieval city. You will discover majestic and unexpected palaces and extraordinary works of art, commissioned and preserved in an ancient Dominican monastery. You will listen to the adventurous history of a city that has built an immense wealth on trade and the art of maritime navigation, and its cultural identity intertwined with that of the Middle East, Hispanic and Flemish.
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Private Walking Tour discovering the Ancient Trades of GenoaFull-day Tours

Private Walking Tour discovering the Ancient Trades of Genoa

This thematic visit will lead you to the discovery of the history and traditions of Genoa among unforgettable colors, flavors and scents. Your guide will take you to the large historic center: Piazza De Ferrari, Doge’s Palace, Carlo Felice Opera Theatre, Columbus' House (exterior), Porta Soprana and the splendid San Lorenzo Cathedral. We will visit Strada Nuova, which is now called Via Garibaldi, and after crossing the suggestive "caruggi" of the historical center, we will arrive in Piazza Banchi and the Porto Antico area. Free lunch. In the afternoon visit of some historical shops of the historical center of the old "Zena" (Genoa, in Genoese dialect), where you will discover Genoese craftsmanship and food and wine delicacies with tasting of typical sweets. The visit will end at the "Mercato Orientale", a market in Via XX Settembre where you will walk between the market stalls full of local products and spices.
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  • 7 hours
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Frequently Asked Questions

The answers provided below are based on answers previously given by the tour provider to customers’ questions.
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What's the best way to experience Doge's Palace (Palazzo Ducale)?