Jump to content
Clare
Clare

Day 2: Cinque Terre

Sign in to follow this  

We didn't get woken up by church bells this morning, but once we were awake we could hear a loud noise in the distance. Could it be the sound of waves crashing on the cliffs? We opened the shutters, and sure enough the weather outside had definitely taken a turn for the worse overnight.

cinqueterre-118.jpg

The water was completely white and there were some enormous waves in the sea!

Although the sky looked dark, it didn't actually appear to be raining though.

cinqueterre-123.jpg

We went to the viewpoint around the corner from where we were staying.

cinqueterre-131.jpg

The sky wasn't clear, but we could just make out one of the other Cinque Terre villages (Manarola) in the distance.

cinqueterre-129.jpg

Time for breakfast! As our room is quite basic, it's not even possible to make coffee there so we needed to find a cafe. Luckily in Italy that isn't normally too difficult, and we were soon eating warm pain au chocolat and drinking americanos :) 

cinqueterre-133.jpg

Our plan for today was to visit all five of the Cinque Terre villages. Obviously we were starting off in Corniglia, which is the middle village.

cinqueterre-134.jpg

That meant we needed to decide whether to first travel south, towards Manarola and Riomaggiore, or north towards Vernazza and Monterosso. 

cinqueterre-136.jpg

But before we could go anywhere, we needed to climb down the steps to Corniglia's train station.

cinqueterre-137.jpg

It was a long way down!

cinqueterre-143.jpg

There were some beautiful views on the way, though :)

And with time, the train tracks became a little closer. As you can see from this picture, the villages are perched so precariously above the sea that they are completely inaccessible by road. Instead, they are linked by the train line and by a series of footpaths. Today didn't feel like weather for a hike though, so we were definitely taking the train :)

cinqueterre-148.jpg

We found it rather amusing that at the bottom of the steps, there is a sign advertising a pharmacy at the top :D I suspect some people might well be in need of it when they get to the top!

cinqueterre-152.jpg

We'd pretty much decided that we were going to travel south, when we got to the train station and found there was a train about to arrive heading north. We made a quick change of plan, and within a couple of minutes we were exiting the train in Vernazza.

cinqueterre-196.jpg

First impressions were that it immediately seemed bigger (and flatter!) than Corniglia.

cinqueterre-154.jpg

We strolled down the main street, where there were some beautifully colourful houses...

cinqueterre-157.jpg

...and we soon found a tiny archway in the rock, through which we could see the sea.

cinqueterre-158.jpg

Vernazza is one of the villages that is right down at sea level, which means it has suffered with flooding in the past.  When we got down to the harbour, it wasn't hard to see why!

cinqueterre-159.jpg

We stood and watched some truly enormous waves in the harbour.

Tim got a little bit over-excited about the waves and decided to go nearer for a better view.

cinqueterre-169.jpg

That was a decision which he soon came to regret :D 

Let's just say he ended up rather damp!

cinqueterre-170.jpg

It wasn't really surprising with waves like this!

cinqueterre-174.jpg

We turned around and walked back towards the centre of the village.

cinqueterre-164.jpg

It was really pretty, with lots of brightly coloured houses...

cinqueterre-177.jpg

and narrow alleyways.

cinqueterre-179.jpg

It was starting to drizzle by this point, so we decided to go back to the station and get on the train to the most northerly village, Monterosso. We had bought Cinque Terre cards for today which enabled us to jump on and off the trains as many times as we wanted, which was good. Less good was the weather, which had deteriorated into proper rain by the time we got to Monterosso.

cinqueterre-181.jpg

As we left the station, we had a wonderful view back down the coast in the direction we'd just come. Unfortunately it's not very clear in the photo, but if you look carefully you might be able to see a blob which is Vernazza at the foot of one of the hills.

cinqueterre-183.jpg

And if you look even more carefully, you might see a faint blob on the top of a smaller hill towards the right of this photo, which is Corniglia.

cinqueterre-184.jpg

The coastline in the opposite direction looked beautiful too. It must be amazing on a sunny day :)

Today was still decidedly damp, though.

cinqueterre-188.jpg

Monterosso is one of the bigger villages, and I think the only one which has a proper beach. 

cinqueterre-190.jpg

The guidebook had described it as "tacky", but that didn't really seem to be the case.

cinqueterre-195.jpg

There was a large central square, with a big clock tower.

cinqueterre-194.jpg

We explored for a while but it really was quite wet, so we decided to head back towards the train station.

cinqueterre-189.jpg

Sitting on a warm, dry train felt like quite an attractive prospect, so we decided to stay on until we reached the southernmost Cinque Terre village: Riomaggiore.

cinqueterre-199.jpg

Riomaggiore was a bit wet too!

cinqueterre-200.jpg

There were some lovely buildings though :) 

cinqueterre-201.jpg

And a steep main street, with views up towards a tower on the hill behind.

cinqueterre-204.jpg

Again, on a sunny day it must be amazing :D 

cinqueterre-210.jpg

We thought about getting lunch here in the hope of having some time to dry off, but we were a bit too early for Italian standards. So we got back on the train to travel to the fifth village: Manarola.

cinqueterre-212.jpg

Manarola wasn't any drier!

cinqueterre-215.jpg

We climbed upwards towards a church tower on the hill...

cinqueterre-216.jpg

...with views up towards brightly coloured houses as we went.

cinqueterre-217.jpg

The church itself wasn't particularly photogenic...

cinqueterre-218.jpg

...but from the far side of the church tower, there were some fantastic views of Manarola.

cinqueterre-222.jpg

I could see why this one is described as being one of the prettiest Cinque Terre villages :)

cinqueterre-223.jpg

After we'd enjoyed the views, we climbed back down into the main village.

cinqueterre-230.jpg

This time we managed to find a restaurant with indoor seating and enjoyed some amazing lasagne (which we forgot to take a photo of!) and half a litre of some local wine :)

cinqueterre-231.jpg

I had hoped it might magically dry up while we were eating, but it didn't! So all that remained was for us to get a train back along the coast to our home village of Corniglia :) 

cinqueterre-232.jpg

This time we chickened out of the steps and took the little local shuttle bus up the hill towards our accommodation, where we began the much-needed process of drying out :D 

Today hasn't quite been the weather I'd hoped for in Cinque Terre, but it is a really beautiful part of the world regardless :) 

cinqueterre-165.jpg

Edited by Clare

Sign in to follow this  


User Feedback

Recommended Comments

There are no comments to display.



Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Add a comment...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.


×
×
  • Create New...

Important Information

We have placed cookies on your device to help make this website better. You can adjust your cookie settings, otherwise we'll assume you're okay to continue.