Manarola is the second of the five villages.
From the station, a long tunnel leads into the main street, the Via di
Mezzo. Going up to the right, leads to the church (200 meter). However, turn right
again after 50 meter into the Via Belvedere (nothing more than a small alley).
This leads you to some beautiful views (and also to the Villa Arpaiu). At the end, turn to the right and follow the steps downwards.
Via some smaller alleys and tens of stairs, some of which count double, you
arrive in the lower part of the main street. Turn right and you end up in the
small harbour, where a regular boat service will take you to any other town of
the Cinque Terre.
The Chiesa di San Lorenzo (or Natività di Maria Vergine) is located in the upper part of the town. From the square in front of the church, you have a beautiful view on the lower part of the village and both sides of the valley.
In the port of the village, starts the path to Corniglia, which is currently inaccessible due to a landslide halfway. The first part of the trail leads you to the churchyard, at the top of the cliff facing Manarola. It is difficult to imagine that a place with such a view is reserved for the death, but thanks to this, Cinque Terre has kept its authenticity.
Since 1997 you can admire in Manarola a giant nativity scene during the Christmas period. The nativity is an initiative of a former railway worker. It is built on the terraces behind Manarola, and covers more than 4000 square meters. The 'barn' is built from rubble and lit at night with lamps, which operate on solar energy. There are about 250 'persons'. For the construction even members of the Italian Alpine Club (CAI) are participating.
The nativity remains until February 2 (Candlemas).
If you have pictures of this nativity scene, then you can always send them to email@example.com. We gladly publish them on our site.
The Via dell'Amore, in the direction of Riomaggiore, is closed. However you can reach the Bar dell'Amore (200m behind station). It's worth to go up there and have a drink (if it's open). I still remember the fresh lemon juice I had there in 2008 !
The alternative, the Sentiero 531, starts close to the church of Manarola.
Also in the direction of Corniglia, the Sentiero Azzurro is only accesible for the first 200m. However, you should not miss it. Go up to the bar 'Nessun Dorma' to enjoy one of the best views of Manarola, especially in the evening.
To reach Corniglia, you can take the bus to Volastra and then the sentiero 586 / 587 to Corniglia.
From Manarola, there are 2 sentieri going up to this trail high up in the hills : the sentiero 502 and the sentiero 506.
These will take you into the Parco Regionale delle 5 Terre, a wooded area on top of the hills, where you even have a chance to see boars.
There are no bars / restaurants on the climb, so be sure to take enough water / food with you.
In the main street of Manarola, on your way from the station to the little harbour, you find the ‘Cantina dello Zio Bramante’ on the right side. Along the street, you only see a small terrace.
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Inside, you will find more places and at night a lively café where the bartender Gabriel, grandsun of the founder, creates a cosy atmoshpere grabbing his guitar and providing a musical surprise.
Address : Via Birolli 110, Manarola
If you want to taste the acciughe (anchovy), we definitely recommend this place. You will find the Acciughe sotto sale (salted) or Marinata (marinated with olive oil and citron). With a glass of local wine, they taste delicious.
Groppo is a small village in the hills of Manarola. You can get there
There's two main reasons to go to Groppo
200 metres behind the village, on the way to Volastra, you can find the Cantina Cinque Terre, the shop of the local cooperative which associates over 300 farmers. You can ask for a wine tasting (three wines with glass and glass-holder € 9.00, with Sciacchetrà € 12.50 - without glass and glass-holder € 5.00 and € 9.00)
Opening hours :
a good restaurant in the center of Groppo. Leave the car at the small parking lot at the entrance of the village and take the stairs to the restaurant.