Location: Province of Imperia, Italy
Length: 56.7 km
Wide: minimum 5 m, standard
Surface quality (out of 5): 4 – 5
Operating times: throughout the year
SS 1 Strada Statale 1 Via Aurelia
Route: Cervo – Imperia – San Lorenzo al Mare – Santo Stefano al Mare – Sanremo – Bordighera – Ventimiglia
Riviera dei Fiori (English: The Riviera of Flowers) is the part of the Italian Riviera that extends from the western border with France and the French Riviera, to the small town of Cervo in the East. Part of the famous Riviera di Ponente extending westwards from Genoa, the Riviera of Flowers is one of the best known coastal drives in Italy.
The Riviera dei Fiori is considered to be one of the most important places in Europe for the cultivation of exotic plants, with more than 6000 species being grown here. The Riviera of Flowers received its beautiful name due to the fact that cut flowers is one of the most lucrative exports. The air is filled with their heavy scent and each year, around 20.000 tons of roses, mimosas and carnations are exported from this region.
Driving along the Italian Riviera truly is an unforgettable experience. The narrow, winding road is called Strada Statale 1 Via Aurelia (SS 1) and was constructed in 241 BC to connect Rome with what is now France. It is a well-travelled route that will make you discover northern Italy’s finest coastal landscapes.
Starting from Cervo, a very old town inhabited since prehistoric times, the drive is 56.7 km long and follows the Via Aurelia road along the coastline, towards the city of Ventimiglia, the end point of our journey.
After driving a distance of 8.9 km, the first point of interest on this amazing coastal road is the city of Imperia, the capital of the province and a very popular summer destination for visitors of the Italian Riviera. Imperia is also well known for the cultivation of flowers and olives.
Continuing along the coast, we pass San Lorenzo al Mare, the smallest town in the province of Imperia and in the region, with only 1.297 inhabitants. This small hilltop village has an interesting church dating back from the 13th century and it’s definitely worth a visit. The next destination is Santo Stefano al Mare, another charming coastal village set in a special geographic position that favors an exceptionally mild and pleasant climate all year round.
Leaving Santo Stefano behind, the curvy road takes you to Sanremo, a famous resort town nicknamed “ The City of Flowers”. Here you can wander on the intricate labyrinth of streets and staircases that form visit the medieval center of the city. At the sea shore you can visit the worldwide popular Casinò, where high rollers from all over the world try their luck.
Finally, after passing Bordighera, a very old city with a rich architectural heritage, you will reach Ventimiglia. The end point of our amazing journey on the Riviera dei Fiori, Ventimiglia is a city renowned for its climate, great sandy beaches for its historic and natural sites.
Photos: hotelroomsearch.net, hauteresidence.com,a1.r9cdn.net, iwanttocookthat.wordpress.com, camperingiro.wordpress.com,s-ec.bstatic.com, zastavki.com, holidaymag.co.uk,ventimiglia.town, ichef.bbci.co.uk