Cinque Terre

Cinque Terre Travel Blog

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View from Lover's Path

So this day happened to be my birthday, and Cinque Terre seemed like a great place to spend it!

I jumped on a train to La Spezia early in the morning, and headed out of Florence.  After a quick stop in La Spezia, I was off to Riomaggiore, the first of the five towns along the coast of Italy.  For those that do not know, Cinque Terre is just that - five towns along the coast, each connected by train and a walking path.  Each city is breathtaking, and the views out over the sea are equally so.

After taking a walk through Riomaggiore, I went up to the beginning of the path and paid the three euro to be able to walk between the cities.

Lover's Path (between Riomaggiore and Manarola)
  It's a bit of a bummer that you have to pay, but 3 euro for a walk along the sea seemed like a great deal to me.  The path between Riomaggiore and Manarola is Via dell'Amore - the Lover's Path - since it offers a peaceful and beautiful look out over the sea.  It is by far the easiest path between cities, and only takes about 20 minutes.

One in Manarola, I stopped and grabbed some lunch, which I would carry with me on the next hike.  I really wish I could describe how beautiful the walks were, how much fun it was and how neat each of the unique little towns was.  I hope the pictures do it some justice.  After walking around Manarola, I remembered that the trail between it and Corniglia was closed.

Manarola village
  I never did find out why.  My options were to go on a 4 hour long trail to get to Corniglia, or take a 4 minute train ride.  I do not consider myself lazy, and I came out there to hike, but I didn't want to spend my whole day in the middle of nowhere trying to find the next town.  So, I jumped on the train and before I knew it I was in Corniglia.  I will add, though, that the train station was a ways below the city, and there was quite a hike up stairs to enter it!  So there was some work involved anyway.

Corniglia has some of the best views of the sea, as it is quite a bit off the water's edge.  The next two towns were all right on the water, so I took this opportunity to get some great shots.  I even bumped into some Americans there and we chatted for a bit...sometimes it is good to speak English!  I swear, the hardest part about these hikes is finding where the entrance of the trails are from town to town!  You can spend quite a bit of time walking around town trying to find the trail to the next one.

That's the path between cities
  Not that there's anything wrong with getting lost in a beautiful town in Italy, but it can get frustrating!

I began the rigorous hike to Vernazza next.  I say rigorous because the next two hikes were by far the most fun!  They were the most narrow and tedious, sometimes with a walkway a foot wide and a straight drop to the water to your left, mountain to your right.  I really enjoyed it!  There were times you had to stop and wait for people coming the other way to pass before you could continue.  If you got stuck behind slow people, you could forget it!  It started to get really hot, so I stopped off the trail and ate my lunch.  It gave me the energy I needed to get to Vernazza.

After spending time in Vernazza, I started the final leg of the journey to Monterrosso.

Vernazza
  This was another fun walk that takes you up from the water's edge and offers great views of both towns before taking you back down to Monterrosso.  As I was nearing this final town, I lost my balance crossing over a creek and fell off the bridge, landing in the muddy water.  The whole thing caught me by surprise, but I was unhurt.  After getting out of the spring, I was caked in a nice layer of fresh mud.  Knowing that I was going into Monterrosso in a few minutes, I was looking forward to all the stares!  I didn't worry much about it though, checking out the beach and the rest of the town.  I cleaned myself up as best as I could, and headed back to La Spezia, and from there Florence.

Cinque Terre is an amazing place and a unique opportunity that should not be missed, even if you do not want to hike.  I would highly reccommend the hiking, as you will find some amazing views of the countryside and the water, but the towns themselves are spectacular.

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View from Lovers Path
View from Lover's Path
Lovers Path (between Riomaggiore …
Lover's Path (between Riomaggiore…
Manarola village
Manarola village
Thats the path between cities
That's the path between cities
Vernazza
Vernazza
Vernazza
Vernazza
Monterrosso in the distance
Monterrosso in the distance
Monterrosso
Monterrosso
Vernazza
Vernazza
Listening to music in Vernazza
Listening to music in Vernazza
Vernazza
Vernazza
Vernazza
Vernazza
View over the sea
View over the sea
Following the path between Vernazz…
Following the path between Vernaz…
Monterrosso
Monterrosso
The countryside
The countryside
Looking back from Corniglia
Looking back from Corniglia
The countryside
The countryside
Corniglia
Corniglia
The countryside
The countryside
Looking back to Manarola
Looking back to Manarola
Following the path between Cornigl…
Following the path between Cornig…
Corniglia in the distance
Corniglia in the distance
The sea from Vernazza
The sea from Vernazza
Hanging out in Corniglia
Hanging out in Corniglia
Corniglia village
Corniglia village
Corniglia village
Corniglia village
Corniglia village
Corniglia village
Vernazza village
Vernazza village
Monterosso village
Monterosso village
Looking out over the sea
Looking out over the sea
Manarola
Manarola
Vernazza
Vernazza
Cinque Terre
photo by: Eric