We all know Carrara marble, so beautiful and white, famous for being used by Michelangelo to sculpt David. But let's be honest, it's quite common. There are about 13 kilometers of 500-meter-high mountains of this marble, and it will be available for eons.
Did you know that in Portovenere, there is a much rarer and more precious marble? It's called Portoro. It's extremely rare, with only a few tons in existence worldwide, and the only two remaining quarries mining it are both in Portovenere.
To give you an idea, this marble costs 17 times more than the standard white Carrara marble.
At Capitolare, we've created a unique tour for you to discover it.
Portovenere today is a charming seaside village full of colors and tourists. But its true roots go back over 100 years ago. It was a different world. In the village, there was only one car, belonging to the Baroness. Her age-old wealth came from Portovenere's "black gold," the Portoro. After more than a century, we retrace the almost extinct story, returning to the same quarry where it all began.
Portovenere was a city of expert quarrymen. At the peak of extraction in the late 1800s, there were believed to be at least 30 active quarries.
The experience starts from the Capitolare tower in the afternoon. From there, a 10-minute car transfer takes you to the Grazie quarry. After a tour and explanation of the underground quarry by the family that manages it, we'll enjoy a magnificent aperitif overlooking the Gulf of Poets. After the aperitif, we'll embark on a short 20-minute trek to the original quarry of the Baroness. From there, we'll witness the same sunset that marked the end of the quarrymen's workday 100 years ago.
Possible extra: marble sculpture lesson with a local artist (250€)