Five small villages spread over a distance of 10 km along the immense coast of Italy, which has a length of 7,600 km.
The villages were only discovered by tourists at the end of the 20th century, but in a short time they acquired a popular attraction that even threatens their authenticity.
You should thoroughly prepare for a visit to Cinque Terre. Fortunately, information is abundantly available, thoughs not always up-to-date on the internet. So beware is the message.
Here are some of the most frequently asked questions, with a short answer. More detailed information can be found on our website and in our guideboo.
On our website and in our unique (self-assembled) guidebook you will find everything you need to really discover Cinque Terre. We wish you a lot of fun with it.
Photos are the best way to know what to expect from your visit. Browse through our photo album to get seduced!
The Cinque Terre, or the five villages, lie on a fairly inaccessible coast and were virtually closed to the outside world until the middle of the 19th century. The path along the coast was the only link between the villages.
When in the mid-19th century a railway was built between Rome and Genoa, they did get a station, but it remained fairly quiet there. It was not until the end of the 20th century that tourism got underway after an iconic photo of Vernazza was shown in large format at New York airport.
The success continued. In 2017, plans were even put on the table to limit the number of visitors. In the first place, this would be a measure to protect the area, which is highly susceptible to erosion. A noble intention, but according to ancient Italian tradition, the plans were quickly put away because of a lack of consensus.
Which villages should you visit?
For each of the villages, take an hour for a walk in the villages and to visit the sights (a bit more for Monterosso), of course excluding the meals and the terraces.
Our favorite combination for a day trip : by car to Manarola, walking to Corniglia via Volastra, walking to Vernazza (or by train), by boat to Monterosso, by train to Manarola.
How do you get from one village to another?
Cinque Terre owes a large part of its appeal to its hiking trails, especially the walking path along the coast. Long ago this was the only link between the villages.
However, there are dozens of paths in the mountains, most of which are no wider than half a meter. Some linger between the vineyards, others go steeply up to the National Park of the Cinque Terre, a protected natural park in the hills above the villages.
Many paths are vulnerable due to erosion. There have been many landslides in recent years, especially after the memorable storm of October 25, 2011. Some paths and even roads were completely washed away. The damage has since been repaired, but in heavy rain the paths are preventively closed. You can check this on the Parco Nazionale website . In practice, the paths are not really closed. You can alway walk but 'at your own risk'.
When you visit Cinque Terre you almost inevitably end up in one or more of the neighboring villages.
Within a radius of 100 kilometers around Cinque Terre, you have numerous sites where you can spend at least a day. Enough for a 7-day trip
Marble mines in a beautiful mountain landscape
The Piazza dei Miracoli
A walled city
Saint-Tropez on the Ligurian Coast
and the Parco Regionale Montemarcello
In our travel guide you will find a detailed description of all these destinations.
In our guidebook, you will find ways to discover Cinque Terre off the beaten track.
Whether your visit is for one week or for just a day, it will help you to make the right choices.
Just consider what it's worth not to lose an hour every day, just by making the right choices.
Bestseller since 2010, updated every year,
PDF-format, readable on tablet and smartphone,
can be downloaded on multiple devices.
120 trails along the coast and into the hills le long de la côte et dans les collines,
Folder with maps of the 5 villages, Portovenere, Levanto & Bonassola,
Booklet with description and pictures of photos of the 5 villages, Portovenere and Levanto,