Cinque Terre Photo Gallery

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Cinque Terre, meaning Five Lands, is a beautiful stretch of coastline on the western side of Italy famous for its 5 towns. It is possible to hike between all 5, which takes at least 2 full days at a leisurely pace. While regular trains connect them to larger towns outside the national park such as La Spezia and Genoa, I recommend staying in one of the towns so you can beat the crowds in the morning and fully enjoy the small town atmosphere.

I chose to stay in Corniglia, smack in the middle of the 5 towns, with hikes divided into going east for one day and going west for the second day. At the end of each day, I would time to take the train back to my base. These towns quiet down significantly after the day trippers are gone, and I was delighted to find grocery trucks come on some days, especially the seafood and cheese ones, so I could cook a delicious dinner throughout my stay. There are still locals living here, although the threat of tourism is prompting authorities to think about limiting numbers and not letting this region become another Venice.

For those who don't want to hike so extensively, regional trains take less than 20 minutes from the westernmost town of Monterosso to Riomaggiore, the easternmost, and only about 3 minutes between each pair of towns. In the end, I only hiked between 4 of the 5, and spent my spare day with a side trip to Lucca.

Corniglia - Manarola Hike


Manarola - Riomaggiore Walk

Corniglia - Vernazza Hike


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