Camogli boasts an illustrious tradition in sailing activities, which is still preserved today in the Maritime Museum Gio Bono Ferrari. In the mid-1800s, in fact, Camogli was called “the city of a thousand white sailing ships”, one of the largest naval powers in the world (the fleet of Camogli was superior to that of Hamburg). Thanks to the economic growth due to maritime trade, at the time many complexes were built, such as the theater, the hospital and the kindergarten.
Fortress of Camogli was Castel Dragone, tower of defense also used in defense of the Saracen invasions, dated back to the 11th century and later expanded. The adjacent church of S. Maria Assunta originally from the 11th century still preserves many works of Ligurian artists. Castle, church and annexed houses were built on the island of the village, today joined to the mainland through Piazza Colombo, built on the water of the port.
The origin of the name of Camogli – “Camuggi” in dialect – has several interpretations, among the best known include “cà a muggi” which suggests stacked houses, a characteristic that emerges above all from the sea, or “cà da muggé” the house of wives, indicating the prevalence of the female population while the men were embarked engaged in the work of fishing.