Located near Genoa in the enchanting setting of the Italian Riviera, the Cinque Terre is an exceptional destination. Classified as a World Heritage Site since 1997, the Cinque Terre is made up of five medieval villages perched between sea and mountain. Among them, a village is distinguished by its beauty and elegance: Vernazza.
Vernazza the elegant
Choosing a village from the Cinque Terre for a romantic stay is anything but simple. Each village competes for beauty and makes it difficult to choose. Nevertheless one can easily eliminate Monterosso which has the least charm and put Corgnilia aside for its lack of access to the sea. But choosing between Manarola, Vernazza and Riommagiore is not easy. Indeed these three villages are the stars of Cinque Terre and it is really difficult to separate them as they possess charm and beauty. Nevertheless Vernazza has a little extra that sets it apart. Its elongated and stretched shape extending towards the sea gives it more character and elegance. Considered the most picturesque and romantic of the Cinque Terre, Vernazza revolves around a main street with a series of houses with colorful facades. A small square overlooking a small port and its fishing boats complete the postcard décor. On these flanks, a maze of labyrinthine alleys allows you to gain height and reach the ruins of a castle that dominates the village and offers a superb view of the sea. Vernazza also has architectural elements that bear witness to a time when the village was the richest of the Cinque Terre with carved portals, loggias and arcades. A thousand-year-old village that still has remnants of fortifications and watchtowers erected in the 16th century to protect against pirate attacks. Vernazza is a true postcard décor and is one of the most beautiful villages in Italy.
Overlooking the Mediterranean Sea, The Cinque Terre has a striking backdrop. How can we not be seized by the beauty of the place ? Miniature villages clinging to cliffs descending to the sea surrounded by steep hills and terraced vines. Between each village, the rocky coast is interspersed with bays, coves and cliffs. To come to Cinque Terre is to have the feeling of being cut off from the world, to take refuge in a landlocked territory on a small strip of land of 15km. The Cinque Terre were for a long time difficult to reach, access was facilitated by the railway. The arrival by train is spectacular, a world of colors is discovered in the eyes of the traveler at each exit of the tunnel giving a taste of the charms of Cinque Terre. Unfortunately in fine weather the Cinque Terre are overrun by tourists. Only 5,000 inhabitants live there year-round and welcome several million visitors each year. The feeling of crowds is enhanced by the limited space available in the villages. A visit therefore more than ever out of season. It should be noted that most tourists do not live in the villages but rather in La Spezia or Genoa and come to visit for a day to take some pictures. At the end of the day, the bulk of the crowd disappears and gives lucky travellers the opportunity to make the most of Vernazza. All the more reason to stay on site.
The Cinque Terre is also a small paradise for hikers. The park offers several trails through the vineyards and olive trees connecting all the villages to each other. The trails offer spectacular and vertiginous views. The most accessible is the Azzurro Trail which runs along the coast and connects all the villages. Parts of the trail may be closed due to flooding. The Via dei Santuari trail is much more demanding. It winds up the heights of the villages, connecting the five shrines dedicated to the Virgin perched above the villages. From Vernazza, visitors can easily reach Corniglia and Monterosso, the two closest villages. The bravest can continue to Manarola and Riomaggiore. For the less adventurous all the villages are connected by train and in just a few minutes you can pass from one village to another.
A must-see destination for romantic nature lovers and breathtaking views. The Cinque Terre offers the traveller a sumptuous landscape, unique in the world and one of the most magical places in Italy.
Lovers, at your luggage!
Undoubtedly, one of the most beautiful villages of Cinque Terre that rivals Vernazza. Manarola has a lot of charm despite a very high attendance. The starting point of the beautiful Via Dell’amore trail to Riomaggiore. Don’t miss it!
Riomaggiore is the most residential village with the most accommodation to rent. Not devoid of charm, Riomaggiore is a good alternative to Manarola and Vernazza because less crowded.
Perched 100 metres high, Corniglia is the only village in Cinque Terre that is not connected to the sea. Corniglia has no less charm. It is accessed by a staircase of 377 steps from the station. Corniglia is therefore less visited than the other villages and offers another look at the Cinque Terre.
Monterosso al Mare
The largest villages in Cinque Terre and the only one with a real beach. Although Monterosso offers a beautiful historical centre, you can easily do without the visit if you run out of time and focus on the other villages that are much more picturesque.
#When to go
As for the other destinations of this blog, I advise you to go to Vernazza off-season, especially in the spring or fall to avoid the masses of tourists. Weather in Vernazza
Genoa and Pisa airports less than 100km away. Direct flight on Easyjet from Paris to Pisa airport. Train link to Cinque Terre from Pisa and Genoa stations.
Flight search: www.misterfly.fr ; www.skyscanner.com
Whatever the destination, I advise travellers to book accommodation in the centre to take full advantage of the charms of the place. Vernazza has few hotels, a few charming guest rooms and many apartments with relatively high prices. Favorite for the charming La Malà guest rooms and the La Bloo studio with their sea views.
For a search for guest rooms : www.bed-and-breakfast.it
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