THE CINQUE TERRE, ITALY
Along the Lingurian region of Italy lies this small town named “Cinque Terre”. The Cinque Terre is a yarn of five fishing villages perched on the enclave on a craggy portion of coast on Italian Riviera. The “Cinque Terra” itself means “five lands” in Italian. The five beautiful villages, coastline and the surrounding slopes are all part of UNESCO World Heritage since 1997. The villages of Cinque Terre from north to south are: Monterosso al Mare, Vernazza, Corniglia, Manrola and Riomaggiore. The town has been part of the province of La Spezia, since 1926. It is a very beautiful National Park in Italy attracting bulk of tourists every year. You will find colorful and lovely houses with steep terraces that are covered by vineyards. The food including the special Pesto sauce is amazing. You can hike on the Cliffside trail and enjoy the great view of the sea and the fishing boats that line up the harbor.
Climate: Generally blissful climate, summers are not humid with highest temperature in July and August. You can wear shorts, skirts, light top or any casual wear. Carry light sweater because it may be windy at evening even in the warm days. It rains in October or spring or fall season, so carry something for the rain. Hiking starts early from mid-March to mid-October and for swimming in the sea the appropriate time is Mid-May to mid-September.
By car: Travelling by car is strongly disheartening, as it is almost negligible and very risky because of the steeper and longer closed path along the waterfront of Cinque Terre. So it’s best not to travel by car at all
By train: The Train is the most economical and fastest means of transportation here. There are frequently running trains between all the villages all round the year during daytime. The line connecting the 5 villages is part of the main Italian railway line between Rome and Genova so in every hour there is at least one train running in both the directions.
By ferry: Using ferry from Genoa’s Old Harborto La Spezia you can reach to Cinque Terre. There are many ferries running between the villages except Corniglia.
Places of Interest
Location: - Fossola Beach of Riomaggiore
Visiting Time:-Open in Feb-October, 09:00am-01:00pm and 04:00pm-07:00pm
From the west of Fossola Beach, trail leads to this amazing tower, the Torre Gaurdiola. This is a beautiful Nature Observation and Bird-watching centre located on Fossola Beach, immediately southeast of Riomaggiore marina (one of the village in Cinque Terre). This tower is said to be one of the best lookouts, for avid birdwatchers who can see from here, different kinds of local flora and birdlife. A naval installation from WWII, also known by the name ‘La Batteria Racchia’, was built on a promontory piece of land. A botanical walking trail leads from the center along the coast giving the walkers a wonderful glimpse of nature.
Location: Vernazza, Italy
Visiting Time: Open all 7days of week
The church is a 17th century former convent church in Vernazza. The church is unique for its east facing entry and its interior is austere, dusky with typical undecorated stone walls of catholic churches. The old stone church is situated to the main harbor from Vernazza. The church has three aisles and the bell tower was rehabilitated and stands out with its contrasting sharp color with the rest of the church. Here you can spend some time and absorb the tranquility. There are few restaurants available outside the church.
Location: - Via San Francesco,Vernazza, Italy
Visiting Time: - Open all 7 days of the week from 10:00am-07:00pm in summer and 10:00am-06:00pm in winter
Commanding a spectacular view, this castle is the oldest fortification that has survived in Cinque Terre. A large part of this very old castle built around 1000, has been ruined except for the circular tower in the centre of the esplanade. To reach the castle you have to take the steep and narrow staircase by the harbor.
Spiaggi di Fegina
Location: via Fegina, Monterosso al Mare, Italy
Visiting Time: Open throughout the day
This is a gorgeous rocky beach with little combination of green waters and big grain sands. The highlight of this beach is the natural giant stone structure which stands just on the shores. The water is said to change colors throughout the day. The beach is otherwise very safe with calm waves and looks beautiful in early mornings.
Monumento a San Francescd’Assisi
Location: ColledeiCappuccini, Monterosso al Mare, Italy
Visiting Time: Open all 7 days of the week from 09:00am-06:30pm
The monument of St. Francs of Assissi was inaugurated in 1972 on the occasion of the 700th death anniversary of the saint. The 7 meters tall statue was made by the renowned sculptor Giuseppe Tonnini. The arms of the Saint in this statue are held wide open as if to embrace St.John while his disciples in bronze statues surround him. It is not only the monument that is worth seeing but also, it is a great destination for hiking; climbing up the steep staircase and then looking at the great view of the coast and the city. The statue is amazing with verses written on the sides and inscriptions on the monument. This place is unique in itself and it is really great to visit sit there for couple of hours and get mesmerized by its fantastic view.