By Graceful Avenue

Italy's Liguria

I have always felt a deep connection and sense of belonging to the fascinating Italian region of Liguria. There is no denying that this part of the country is simply beautiful beyond words. Even in my wildest dreams I could never imagine the sort of towns that decorate the northwestern coast of Italy from the undiscovered Lerici on the Gulf of Poets to the region's crowning glory, Portofino, with its multi-million dollar yachts and views to match. So many places are ideally located by the sparkling crystal clear water of the Ligurian Sea, which adds a special sensation to being a tourist there. Many visitors are drawn to the magical towns of the Cinque Terre, where each of the five fishing villages invite you in with open arms and leave impressions that stay with you long after you've gone. Here candy-coloured houses hug the cliffside unlike anything that's ever been seen before. It fascinates me every single visit just how these towns were even built! Journey further north to the capital of the region, Genoa, and feel as though you've stepped back in time. There's no denying that Liguria is beautiful and now you can see it for yourself. I'm so excited to share with you my first collection of prints on Travel Brings Joy and hope that every time you pass my photograph in your home it transports you to that place and brings you so much joy! Soak up the spirit of the sea, feel each town's unique identity and imagine yourself there time and time again, for Liguria is now just as much a part of you as it is of me.

Always Look Up

Italy is famous for its historic palaces and churches where it's imperative to take in all the details around you, especially the ceiling view. While exploring Portofino I happened to look up and capture this angle of the neighbourhood - raw, ageing, inspiring. Always look up in Italy!
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At Home In Genoa

Transport yourself to the majestic living quarters of Genoa, capital of the Liguria region. I cannot tell you what's behind the beautiful brown doors or exactly where they lead, but this typical Italian scene feels ultra-satisfying to observe as a visitor to the city!
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Blue Stripes

These iconic blue and white beach umbrellas were photographed in Monterosso al Mare - part of Italy's beautiful UNESCO World Heritage Site of Cinque Terre - five vibrant fishing villages connected by hiking trails, a train line and ferry service. I made sure to arrive there before the tourists did to capture this stunning sight of clear turquoise waters, soft sand, blue deck chairs and stripy umbrellas. Enjoy that summer feeling every time you pass this print in your home!
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Boccadasse

Sometimes we discover places just by taking a simple stroll. Venturing east from central Genoa along the beach promenade Corso Italia I ended up in the quaint town of Boccadasse where this view captivated me instantly.
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Castle On The Hill

Castello Brown sits high above the picturesque village of Portofino. This is the view of the castle from the other side of town, with the threat of rain amid dark clouds providing a dramatic backdrop.
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Cinque Terre

The quaint fishing village of Vernazza is the most photographed of Italy's Cinque Terre (five villages). Mountain and sea views combine with the region's signature pastel houses to definitely leave an unforgettable impression on visitors. This photo was taken from a unique vantage point looking towards Monterosso in the distance just after a summer rainstorm.
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Dreaming Of Lerici

Is there anything more beautiful than the pink, mustard and burgundy tints of Italian homes with stylish green shutters and stunning floral displays on balconies? Well, throw in a dominating castle, vertical living and a stunning sea view and you end up in Lerici, one of the most underrated gems in Liguria and arguably one of the most beautiful.
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Dreamy Portofino

To me, Portofino is the jewel in Liguria's crown. I dream of calling one of the apartments in this image my own someday. That would truly be something! To visit Portofino, even for a few hours, evokes such dreams in many of us because that place is beyond beautiful.
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Fleeting Moment

This was one of those instances where clicking the shutter button on my camera would leave me with a souvenir of my visit to Portofino I cannot even remember taking. I can't tell you where I was standing in this moment because it was so fleeting but thankfully we can take in this amazing view time and time again. Italians sure know how to build on the edge of cliffs and that may be the greenest water I've ever seen leading towards Paraggi inlet!
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Genoa View

The port city of Genoa, capital of Liguria, looks virtually unchanged since the Middle Ages. With Europe's largest medieval town centre, you can truly step back in time and marvel at the history before your very eyes.
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In Love With Lerici

There's a certain romantic spirit in the Gulf of Poets, specifically in Lerici, where this photo was taken. It's not possible to put into words the beauty of this town especially on a warm summer's day.
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Italian Vista

With the railway line below and stunning green hills above this is the town of Monterosso without its famous beaches. Here we see every day local life and an Italian vista that's bound to impress.
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Ligurian Beach Umbrellas

Step right into summer and imagine yourself here in Monterosso al Mare under a beach umbrella with an Aperol Spritz in hand. What more could you need?
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Ligurian Sea Cruise

There's something very special about taking in a town's view from the sea as was the case with Santa Margherita Ligure. Standing at the back of the boat, heading out to Portofino, this vista transpired before me and brought me instant joy!
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Little Harbour

Anyone that has ever set foot in colourful Portofino knows just how special it is! Visitors come and go - from day trippers to luxury yacht owners and millionaires. Life here feels carefree and liberating. With water views like this one, how can it not?
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Mornings In Monterosso

This beach in Monterosso is very popular during the summer. Those green and orange umbrellas are hot property in peak season and with such a captivating view, why wouldn't they be? Imagine yourself diving right into that beautiful water every time you walk past this photograph in your home!
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Paradise On Earth

This blissful angle of Portofino during the afternoon makes for a delightful view. It's the kind of paradise that doesn't feel real. Look a little closer and you can see the locals at top-class restaurants sitting outside in the sun watching the boats coming and going. Tourists arrive and enter the quaint souvenir shops and enjoy a gelato. Those with money to spend can enjoy the more lavish designer shops and retire to their luxury yachts on the harbour. Having this place as your backdrop for all these activities makes this paradise on earth, in my opinion!
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Pastel Summer

Life under the shadow of the impressive Lerici Castle for these local residents must be quite something. Most of their windows look out onto the Ligurian Sea with a myriad of boats sparkling along the harbour in the distance. I could never tire of seeing homes of varying pastel hues outside my window, could you?
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Perfect Neighbours

Santa Margherita Ligure is a fantastic base for exploring Portofino as this is where the train station is and where boats and buses depart from. This photograph was taken there during my usual rush in or out. Someday I hope to devote more time to this charming seaside town to discover more views like this one. These perfect homes sure do appear to be perfect neighbours!
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Portofino Facades

Take a closer look at the homes of the Portofinesi and you'll find facades with intricate painted details, dark green shutters and the pastel colours that Italy is famous for. Combined with water views, lush hills and delightful boats dotted along the harbour - Portofino is every bit as dreamy as it appears.
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Red Fiat 500

These tiny cars are the true symbols of Italy and the sweet life. I always light up just from sighting one of these on the streets during my travels. It's snapped here in the capital of Liguria, Genoa.
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Riomaggiore

The first town of the Cinque Terre (five fishing villages) when heading there from the south, Riomaggiore is every bit as wonderful as it sounds. Pictured here is the local life - with the washing hung out to dry, the immaculate Bougainvillea cascading down the side of the building and the possibility of the church bells of San Giovanni Battista ringing out at any moment. Italians know how to make the most of the simple things in life.
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Shades Of Manarola

For anyone that appreciates the candy-coloured houses of Italy as much as I do, owning this print is a must! We find ourselves in Manarola, a town part of Italy's Cinque Terre and a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
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Simply Lerici

Everything quietens down in Italy during siesta. On a warm summer's day in Lerici I found myself admiring the restaurants and trattorias without patrons and taking in all the details of the homes in the backdrop, all enticing me to take this photograph. The Italian way of life is truly wonderful.
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Stairway To Heaven

I went as far as one could go on the Via alla Penisola and reached the scenic lighthouse in Portofino. Somewhere along the way I took this photo. I cannot tell you exactly where the stairs lead, you'll just have to discover it for yourself!
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Stunning Portofino

It feels as though the colourful reflection on the surface of the water in Portofino is a painting. You can feel each brushstroke dancing in movement in the light. This is Portofino and it's a marvellous feast for all the senses.
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Summer Dip

Sometimes discovering views like this by chance makes it even more special. I had no idea that after walking through a long dark tunnel I would emerge and find this spectacular vista in Lerici where the crystal clear turquoise sea was warm enough for some children to take a summer dip, without the crowds.
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Summer In Italy

Dive right into this photograph taken at Monterosso al Mare. Who can resist imagining themselves under one of those glamorous umbrellas holding a refreshing drink whilst listening to the waves coming in one by one? Summer never looked so good!
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Summertime

This is the Cinque Terre's most popular beach hangout and it's easy to see why. In the peak of summer at Monterosso you'll need to have luck on your side to find an empty sunbed with parasol!
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Umbrellas Above

Give me any street in the world lined with floating umbrellas and I'll be happy! This photograph of a street in Genoa immortalises these umbrellas unfortunately no longer to be found there.
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Vernazza

The enchanting fishing villages of Italy's Cinque Terre are extremely popular tourist destinations. It is believed that Vernazza is the most visited of the five towns. This photograph was taken right after a summer rainstorm and you can see how the town appears to have grown organically from nature as it's built on the edge of a cliff.
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View Of Portofino

Climb up the steps of Castello Brown and the entire town of Portofino appears right before you. The stunning emerald sea and invigorating mountains, the colourful homes, the luscious hilltop villas and the tiny boats down below make this the most beautiful view in the world, in my humble opinion!
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View Over Vernazza

The 14th century Church of St. Margaret of Antioch stands mighty proud in Vernazza. As always I was delighted to climb a few steps and be rewarded with majestic views such as this one.
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