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Cinque Terre Villages

Way mark trail, Cinque terre, ItalyOn the trail, Cinque TerreCinque Terre, ItalyThe stunning Cinque Terre coastlineBoats at Riomaggiore

Cinque Terre Villages

Trip Highlights

  • Coastal Walking on the Italian Riviera
  • Centre Based Italian Walking Holiday on the Glorious Ligurian Coast
  • Choose a Selection of Walks of Different Lengths and Grades or just Saunter Around the Beaches and Clifftops
  • Interesting Crisp White Local Wines Compliment Traditional Seafood Cuisine and 'Gelati'

Trip Summary

A tour for those who would like to go as the mood takes them! The walking takes you to the Ligurian coastline to enjoy some more sublime pleasures for walkers who enjoy being based at a single centre. The Tyrrhenian coast of Liguria has been celebrated for centuries in the arts and this holiday will take you through the ‘five lands’ using a mixture of coastal and inland footpaths. You will be staying in a traditional style ‘auberge’ in the small resort of Monterosso close to the sea, where regional dishes are very much the speciality. The idea is that on most days you either walk from the hotel or take the train from Monterosso - the station is a 10-minute walk from the hotel - to start the next walk (sometimes from where you left off on the previous evening). After walking to the next place on the itinerary you can get the train back again to Monterosso. There are frequent train departures in both directions, and on most days there are opportunities for bathing. If you don't feel like walking, or if you want to reduce the length of the existing walk, you can always spend time on the beaches or more time discovering the beautiful villages of the Cinque Terre more intimately. Each of the Cinque Terre towns and villages has its own unique character and flavour: Monterosso itself is a small beach resort with an older town behind. The evening light on the sea is quite sublime and there are a whole host of restaurants and ice cream shops. Vernazza is an old port with a turreted fort protecting an inner marina. There are many bars and old buildings that spread out behind the village to where the vineyards rise in steep terraces that are intensively mechanised with little rack railways and overhead cables to carry the grapes. The terraces merge imperceptibly with the forests higher up. Corniglia is built high above the sea on the cliffs of twisted strata jutting out into the water and is famous for its narrow streets and its churches. You will find some good trattorie here. Manarola sits at the end of the Via dell'Amore: "The Path of Love" as the tourist brochures put it; there is also the church of Nativita della Vergine with its well-known rosette window. Finally there is Riomaggiore, perhaps the most interesting town of the five, with its medieval tower blocks crammed together overlooking an inlet of intense aquamarine colour, occupied by little fishing and day trip boats. The buildings are all painted in bright pastel shades, complementing the natural Mediterranean light. The sea floor off the Cinque Terre is now a marine National Park.

Suitability

We grade this tour as ‘Easy – Moderate’, because there are easy options and also some reasonably strenuous day walks. A high standard of fitness is not necessary but in order to make the most of the walking opportunities in this area clients should be able to walk for up to 7 hours a day in hot sun on tracks and paths that can be quite steep and undulating. Some routes have steep steps or loose gravel in places. Being sensibly dressed for the sun and the heat and drinking enough water are both very important!

Itinerary

Access via the main railway line between Pisa and Genoa. There are some direct trains from Pisa central station to Monterosso; on weekdays direct services from Pisa depart about every 2 hours, with journey time 1.5 hours. Faster (Espresso and Rapido) trains normally stop only in La Spezia; if you are coming from Pisa, you may have to change onto a local train in La Spezia; if you are coming from Genoa you should change in Sestri Levante. You should aim to arrive in Monterosso by early evening. The walk from the station to the hotel takes about 10 minutes along the coastal road, 15 mins with baggage. After checking into the hotel you may still have the time to take a quick swim. The historical centre of the village is characterised by carrugi (narrow lanes) with little shops selling local handicrafts. It is only a short walk to the Capuchin monastery where you can enjoy the silence as you look out over the sea. Accommodation: Monterosso - Nights 1 to 5 are spent in a very pleasant and comfortable 3 star hotel in the old historical centre of Monterosso, a short distance from the sea. The hotel is a family-run establishment; the rooms have TV and telephone. Double/twin rooms have en-suite facilities. The hotel has a shaded garden, and a rooftop terrace which overlooks the sea and the town.

Meals:  Nil

Take a half day walk to Levanto (7km) along the beautiful coastal path and up to a high ex signaling point from where you will get a great view across to the Cinque Terre. You could then drop down to Levanto, past the old castle, have a great gelati and a swim. Before taking the train back to Monterrosso. A longer harder alternative is to train to Levanto and walk to Deiva Marina. (15km) A long day that might take you as much as seven hours to complete. However the route passes by some lovely viewpoints, giving the opportunity to pause on olive terraces overlooking the sea. If it is very hot, there is shade around with oak and pine forest clinging to the coastal hillsides. There is a steep descent down to Deiva Marina, where the train back to Monterosso takes about 15 minutes. There is usually a couple per hour. Accommodation: See night 1

Meals:  B

A rolling 10km walk that takes you through the forests around the back of the town. Beautiful shady locations for picnics and of course great sea views. Accommodation: See night 1

Meals:  B

This walk is the classic walk along the Cinque Terre! Taking the train from Monterosso to Riomaggiore, the walk returns via the coastal path taking in vineyards, citrus groves and picturesque villages as it goes. Head along "The path of love" to Manarola and then continue to Corniglia, Vernazza, and back to Monterosso. The route gets harder as you go along, but if you are feeling the heat, or are tired, you could take a train back from any of the stations. There is a lot to see today, it could take you up to 8 hours, but you could split the walking over two days, so that you could make the most of town sightseeing and picnics. Accommodation: See night 1

Meals:  B

This time, taking the train to Riomaggiore, the walk starts by ascending the magnificent coastline steeply through extensive woodlands passing Campiglia with views to islands out to sea. On the descent there are vistas of Portovenere and the church of San Pietro sitting on a rock in the Mediterranean. Return by bus to the train station at La Spezia, or take a (seasonal) ferry to Monterosso. Accommodation: See night 1

Meals:  B

Depart from the Cinque Terre after breakfast

Meals:  B

What's Included

  • 5 breakfasts
  • 5 nights in a 3 star hotel on a twin share basis with ensuite facilities
  • Information pack including route notes & maps
  • Emergency hotline

What's Not Included

  • Lunches, Dinners & Beverages
  • Cinque Terre Card. This costs approx 50 Euros
  • Entrance fees
  • Travel insurance
  • Travel to the start and from the end point of the trip
  • Personal expenses such as laundry and phone calls
  • Unscheduled transfers required during the trip

AT A GLANCE

Duration:6 Days
Countries:Italy
Starting Point:Monterosso
Finishing Point:Monterosso
Activities:Self-Guided Walking
Grade:Moderate  Click for more information
Trip Code:JTC
Prices From:GBP£580
Single Supplement:GBP£200  Click for more information

 

Per Person, Twin Share

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