I took a full day Cinque Terre tour. We visited all 5 towns. First stop, Manarola (town 2 they say). When I arrived at the iconic view, I didn’t even realize I was enjoying the view that had inspired me to make the trip out here. When you’re there, everything around you is beautiful. There are views all around. It’s hard to even compare it to a photo. I was convinced I never made it to the view until I scrolled through my pictures and saw THIS:
AHH So Amazing! But imagine houses on the left just keep going and it’s just the big, vast ocean on the right. Totally not focused on comparing this to a picture! It’s just beautiful! Also, in photos, people tend to saturate the colors and when you arrive, it just…isn’t like that. Our guide warned us all before we arrived. ha. Anyway, that’s the iconic view. Below is the actual town we walked through to get to this site.
I actually kept thinking of Valparaiso in Chile because of the colorful buildings and the port town vibe. But sunnier and hotter and probably way older.
If you take a close look at the first photo, you’ll notice stones on the roof of the house in the bottom left corner. Apparently, people cover their roofs with stones because of the superstition that the devil will tear it down if you don’t… Aka it could get blown away in the winter time from the strong winds.
We took a short hike to the next town Corniglia for some lunch. Seafood appetizer and pesto with an amazing view of the Mediterranean!
And then, off on our hike! The first thing I noticed was a bunch of American cactus and some bamboo, random herbs and blackberries. The area is known for growing lemons though. Half way through our hike, we got to stop for a lemon icee. It was a nice break from the heat. The landscape is pretty dry. Apparently the terraces are all falling apart because no one is tending to them so the Italian government is offering to give you a piece of the terrace to farm for 20 years if you can successfully grow something there. It’s free but they won’t pay for a house which is also expensive in that area.
As we neared the end of the hike, the town of Vernazza started coming into view. Since I arrived in the town so early, I had a ton of time to explore. First stop, gelato! The guide recommended cinnamon and so I had to try it. Yeah..cinnamon, ice cream flavor for the summer? Cinnamon is for the holidays right? But, it was surprisingly really really good. Then it was time to relax by the seaside – sneakers off, flip flops on!
After relaxing on the water, we took a train to the resort town of Monterosso. First stop, the original torta monterossina- chocolate, custard, and apricot jam inside this flaky pie crust. Buonissima! Did a little shopping and just wandered around the town. I just loved the vibe here. Strolling down shaded narrow passageways was a nice escape from the beaming sun on the beach. It felt more relaxed and not as crowded as Vernazza.
Next was a short boat ride to Riomaggiore. The houses here some how seem more vibrant. It’s another iconic view (although not as inspiring as Manarola to me). Same as my last 3 stops, food first! Fried calamari and anchovies, please. This town didn’t seem to have the same charm as Monterossa, maybe because it’s bigger. It was definitely easy to get lost between the homes here.
I loved my day trip to Cinque Terre. It was nice to be active and enjoy the sun. Also, I’m glad I got to experience all the towns in #reallife #nofilter.