1. Italy
  2. Liguria
  3. Genoa

Guided Tour of Rolli Palaces UNESCO Site, Genoa

Product ID: 29705
Take an exclusive tour of some of the most wonderful palaces in Genoa, dating back to the 16th century when the city was at the heart of Italy's nobility and Golden Century. Enjoy this unique chance to visit some real noble residences open just for you!
About this activity
Duration: 2 hours
Printed or mobile voucher accepted
Instant confirmation
Live tour guide
Italian, French, English
Free cancellation up to 24 hours before activity starts

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  • Take a tour of some of Genoa's magnificent palaces, dating back to the 16th-17th century
  • Admire the "Golden Room" in Palazzo Tobia Pallavicino and discover the hidden fresco in Palazzo Lomellino
  • Visit the most beautiful rooms of the Palazzo Bianco Museum
  • Walk up on the magnificent stairs of Palazzo Imperiale
Full description
Visit the wonderful Genoese residences of the XVI century and join this guided tour of the Rolli Palaces, a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

A guided tour of some of the most sumptuous residences built by the aristocratic Genoese families during the so-called “ Secolo d’Oro“ (“The Golden Century”), between the 16th and 17th century.

The System of the "Palazzi dei Rolli" includes splendid palaces with open staircases, courtyards and loggias overlooking gardens. The palaces, positioned at different levels, were part of a network of public hospitality houses for state visits, as decreed by the Senate of the Republic of Genoa in 1576.

The “Rolli” (named from the parchment rolls in which the palaces were inscribed) were subdivided into three “bussoli”, balloting lists, where the palaces were registered according to their richness and dimension. Lots were drawn to decide which palace would have the privilege - and the duty - of playing host to visiting state dignitaries.

The first “bussolo” was for cardinals, princes and viceroys, the second for large scale landowners and third for princes of lesser standing and ambassadors: the first example of hôtellerie in Europe.

The “Rolli” were declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2006.

These exclusive and elegantly decorated residences did not escape the eye of a fine artist as the great Flemish painter Rubens, who at the beginning of the 17th century published a book collecting the drawings of these buildings as a residential model for the Antwerp nobility. Experience a piece of Italy's extravagant Golden Century in Genoa.
  • Guided tour
  • Entrance to Palazzo Bianco Museum
  • Entrance to Palazzo Lomellino, Palazzo Tobia Pallavicino e Palazzo Imperiale
What’s Not Included
  • Entrance to Strada Nuova Museums (Palazzo Rosso and Palazzo Tursi)
  • Gratuities (optional)

Prepare for the activity

Meeting point

The tour starts from the Tourist Information Centre, Via Garibaldi, 12r, 16124 Genova GE, Italy.

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Customer reviews

Overall rating

4.5 / 5

based on 86 reviews

Review summary

  • Service
    4.3 / 5
  • Organization
    4 / 5
  • Value for money
    4.3 / 5
  • Safety
    4.3 / 5
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una sorpresa

La visita ci ha aperto una visione su una Genova che non sospettavamo, o che non conoscevamo. Dietro alla potenza della Repubblica Marinara abbiamo trovato una ricchezza e una raffinatezza che, pur nella riservatezza di quel mondo, si proponevano con il sostegno di una grande cultura. La guida ci introdotto ai palazzi e alla vita delle famiglie con competenza, brillantezza ma senza appesantimenti.

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July 9, 2017


Fantastic guide, great knowledgeable, good english

A very good tour, very professional guide. We really enjoyed it.

May 27, 2019

The wealth of art and frescoes are exceptional linked with the history

Christina certainly made our visit to the palaces very enriching and provided just the right amount of information on the history, art and buildings. Well worth a visit

May 2, 2019

Organized by

Genova Tourism Board

Product ID: 29705