Plan A Visit To Le Cinque Terre!
After visiting the Cinque Terre in June, there was no doubt I was going to write about it! This paradise on earth located in Liguria (Northern Italy) is a UNESCO World Heritage site. Le Cinque Terre means the five lands, which stands for five villages along the coastline that seem to be frozen in time. This charming destination is perfect for a romantic week or just a day full of wonder. Enjoy!
The Cinque Terre were once five isolated villages, accessible by sea only. Two of them, Monterosso and Vernazza, were around as far back as the 11th century, according to ancient historical documents. Now, the site has become a tourist destination and is reachable by the railway line from Genova to La Spezia.
Before thinking of visiting this gorgeous place, you have to take a look at the weather! This paradise can be a nightmare if there’s a storm. However, it’s lovely when it’s sunny. If you like tranquility, you’ll prefer visiting in April, May, June or September when there are fewer tourists. You can also get up very early and visit the towns in the reverse order of most tourism companies (from Monterosso to Riomaggiore) so that Monterosso, which is the bigger and most touristic village, will seem very calm.
This destination is also great for those who like hiking. Unfortunately, most of the tracks were closed because of a rock fall when I was there. The most famous walking track is called “La Via dell’amore” (the love road) and people say the view is outstanding!
You can stay in the Cinque Terre for a few days if you book on Airbnb or in a hotel in advance. Or you can visit the five villages in only one day while touring the area. That’s what I did. It was awesome, but a bit intense! I would recommend you do it all in one day if you’re especially sporty. There are 382 steps to reach Corniglia (the third village) from the train station and on hot days it can get challenging. You can also choose to skip one or two villages (Corniglia is often skipped) and to take your time exploring the others. For one day, I spent a total of €57. This is how:
- €23 for a round-trip ticket on the train from Lucca (Tuscany) to La Spezia to Monterosso;
- €12 for the train between each village (it’s €4 per 75-minute journey, so I used one ticket for two villages);
- €3 to take a coffee, a snack and water (bring water!);
- €16 for lunch (minus €4 if you don’t want a good glass of wine); and,
- €3 for a delicious gelato!
Even if you don’t have a gift for photography, you’ll end up with pretty good pictures! This is great for filling up your Instagram or other social medias. I can give you a peek of each village so that you get a feel of each one of them (I took the photos myself):
MONTEROSSO AL MARE.
Go left from the station to go to the city center or go right and find the high grounds. The higher you go, nicer the landscape is!
Really small, but it becomes crowded at lunch! All the restaurants with a view on the sea fill up fast.
The view is worth the 382 steps! Corniglia is the smallest village and the quietest.
The village you mostly see on photos of the Cinque Terre. I found a place by going further along the path on the right, where I could bathe with fewer tourists.
This village is quite calm around 6.30pm. It has amazing landscapes where you can take photos!