Vernazza, Hiking in Cinque Terre, ItalyWe woke up to another beautiful day in Vernazza. It was delightful to walk around the village early morning and to take in its charm and colors.  After the spectacular hike the previous day, we were excited to continue the second half of the hike today and to tackle the harder part of the trail.

To see Part 1 of the post, click here.

Windows in Vernazza, Cinque Terre, ItalyLocals welcoming the morning from their windows.

Vernazza, Cinque Terre, ItalyWalking along the main thoroughfare of Vernazza where boats are parked on the streets instead of cars.


Corniglia, Hiking in Cinque Terre, ItalyWe started today’s hike in Corniglia, Cinque Terre’s town #3 and the only one of the five not situated on the water.

We took a train from Vernazza to Corniglia. To get from the train station to the town center of Corniglia, we had to climb a winding footpath with 400 steps! It was definitely a good way to warm up for the hike.Streets and Locals of Corniglia, Cinque Terre, ItalyWe found Corniglia a quiet and mellow town. Being the most remote and least visited among Cinque Terre towns, we found it pleasant to so see purely local scenes as we walked around its narrow streets.

Viewpoint in Corniglia, Hiking in Cinque Terre, ItalyThe End-of-Town Viewpoint is the scenic end of Corniglia. It offers a sweeping view of the Lingurian Sea and the hills of Cinque Terre.

Corniglia, Hiking in Cinque Terre, ItalyOn top of the hill behind Keith is Vernazza. It gives you an idea of the steep trail we have to tackle from here.

We followed trail # 2 on Corniglia-Vernazza segment.

Corniglia-Vernazza Trail, Hiking in Cinque Terre, Italy

This segment takes about 90 minutes without stop. But, of course, you would like to take many stops to smell the beautiful cacti that grow abundantly along the traill. Although very hilly and rocky in most part, this segment is the greenest portion of the coast making it very rewarding.

Corniglia-Vernazza Trail, Hiking in Cinque Terre, Italy

Keith didn’t look too thrilled as he caught sight of the steep trail ahead.

Corniglia, Hiking in Cinque Terre, Italy.jpgThe view of Corniglia as we looked back from the trail.

Corniglia-Vernazza Trail, Hiking in Cinque Terre, ItalyBeautiful azure sea + scenic hills = breathtaking coastal trails.

Vernazza,  Hiking in Cinque Terre, ItalyFinally, Vernazza came into view from the trail. (The first peach house you see on the left towards the center of the photos was our home in Vernazza.)

We were so famished when we reached Vernazza. A good l lunch was in order at Ristorante Pizzeria Vulnetia at the waterfront.

Lunch in Vernazza,  Hiking in Cinque Terre, ItalyTop left: The refreshing beer was well-deserved after the sweaty hike. Keith imbibed his so quick like it was water.
Botttom left: I had a pesto in a trofie pasta. Trofie is a handrolled pasta with grooves, designed specifically for pesto to cling to. Keith had a traditional pizza.
Right: Finishing with good cups of macchiato. Now all fueled up to resume the hike.

Umbrellas in Piazza Marconi,  Vernazza,  Hiking in Cinque Terre, ItalyWe had our glorious lunch under the sea of these colorful umbrellas.

Vernazza, Cinque Terre, ItalyOn our way back to the trail, we passed by Gambero Rossi, a lovely and well-recommended ristorante by the waterfront.  We decided this was where were feasting for tonight’s dinner.


Vernazza Trail, Hiking in Cinque Terre, Italy

The start of the Vernazza-Monterosso trail. This segments also takes about 90 minutes without stop. This trail of steps seemed to be going up and up forever.

Vernazza Trail, Hiking in Cinque Terre, ItalyHuffing and puffing, we looked back and were rewarded with this spectacular view of Vernazza.

Vernazza-Monterosso Trail, Hiking in Cinque Terre, ItalyThe trail got steeper and steeper and then it got narrower and narrower and then  it went up and down, up and down.  It was very scenic though.

Hiking in Cinque Terre, Italy A glimpse of the deep blue Ligurian Sea from the trail.

As we were nearing Monterosso, the trail flattened…..

Vernazza-Monterosso Trail, Hiking in Cinque Terre, Italy

…and went into steep downhill.

Vernazza-Monterosso Trail, Hiking in Cinque Terre, ItalyFinally, the sight of Monterosso came into view from the trail.

Monterroso, town #5,  is known as the resort town of Cinque Terre.  It is the only one of the five hamlets that is built on flat land and the only town where you can actually drive all the way to the town, hence, it attracts a lot of day trippers. It is also the only town with hotels (all other towns have B&B’s, rooms and apartments).

Monterosso Beach Hiking in Cinque Terre, ItalyBathers on the rocks by the end of the trail.

Monterosso, Hiking in Cinque Terre, ItalyHiking is finito! Goodbye hiking shoes, hello flip-flops

Monterosso, Hiking in Cinque Terre, Italy A well-deserved drinks by the beachfront.

Monterosso Cafe, Hiking in Cinque Terre, Italy Then off exploring the streets of Monterosso’s old town..

Monterosso, Hiking in Cinque Terre, Italy

One of the colorful shops in old town.

Locals of Monterosso, Hiking in Cinque Terre, ItalyGossip time for local ladies.

Monterosso Beach  Hiking in Cinque Terre, ItalyBeach time in Monterosso!

VERNAZZAIl Gambero Rosso Restaurant, Vernazza Cinque Terre, ItalyWe were excited to return to Vernazza after the hike for another evening of gastronomic feast. Left: The chef’s special at Gamberro Rosso.  Although we didn’t understand all of them, they all sounded scrumptious!  Right: Diners having festive,  flambé dinner.

Dining in Vernazza, Cinque Terre, ItalyTired and starved after the day’s hike, the superb mixed grilled fish dinner hit the spot. Gamberro Rosso didn’t disappoint.

Children in Vernazza, Cinque Terre, Italy From our dinner table, we were amused at the sight of these adorable  kids having a great playful time at the piazza.

Passeggiate in Vernazza, Cinque Terre, ItalyAfter dinner, we joined the locals for another “passegiate” – walking lazily up and down the street together.

Castle in Vernazza, Cinque Terre, ItalyWe had a night cap at our terrace with the illuminated view of the Medieval castle in the background.


Vernazza, Cinque Terre, ItalyAnother beautiful morning Vernazza.  With all the hiking done, we just relaxed on our third day and enjoyed more of Vernazza. We really loved Vernazza and were thankful we made it our base in Cinque Terre. We liked that inspite of being popular with visitors, Vernazza has remained a very authentic community.

Vernazza, Cinque Terre, ItalyThere are only 1,000 residents in the village of Vernazza. Families are tight and go back many generations and centuries and homes are normally passed down within the family. The locals resisted modern developments in an effort to keep Vernazza small and real.

Vernazza, Cinque Terre, ItalyKeith hanging out with the lovely local ladies at the piazza.

Vernazza's Beach, Cinque Terre, ItalyJoining the bathers on the small beach.

Vernazza, Cinque Terre, ItalyBathers by the rock.

Lunch Vernazza, Cinque Terre, ItalyOur last meal at Cinque Terre – a delicious pesto sandwich for lunch with a refreshing cerveza.

Leaving Vernazza, Cinque Terre, Italy

Sadly, it was time to leave this magical place.
Left: No bellhop service here. My Superman had to carry our luggage down the steep stairs.
Right: At the Vernazza train station, waiting for the train to our next destination.

I hope you enjoyed hiking and devouring in Cinque Terre with us.


Travel Notes:
  • Hikers need to purchase The Cinque Terre Card, a pass that is presented at the entry of each trail. For current pricing, click here.
  • Walking sticks or trekking poles are helpful. Except for the Riomaggiore-Manarola segment, the rest of the trail can be rocky, narrow and steep with lots of steps.
  • We visited Cinque Terre in September 2011.  We found the month of September a good time to go when the weather is pleasant and the towns and trails are less crowded. Locals told us that towns and trails can be crowded (mostly with day trippers) from June to August.


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About Marisol

Taking you on our journey one photo - and footstep - at a time.

53 responses to “Hiking and Devouring in Cinque Terre – Part 2

  1. It all looks so colourful and picture perfect. Such wonderful primary colours everywhere, I love that. I also love the fact that boats are parked down the middle of the street instead of cars in one of the photos :)

    • HI Jo, I’m glad you appreciate the colors as much as I do. I don’t think I’ll ever get tired of them. And yes, the car-less street made the villages much more charming.

  2. The view of Corniglia from the trail is breathtaking…

  3. I so want to go there – the walk, the views, the towns, the food, the colour, the people, the atmosphere – all perfect. I love those boats in the street. But I would have to get into some serious training before hand. I keep talking about this place to my husband, but he keeps ignoring me.

    • Hey Jill, there’s really nothing not to love in Cinque Terre. I really hope from the bottom of my heart that you get there soon. We just have to work on convincing your husband a little bit more:) I’m sure that after all is said and done, he’ll be head over heels in love with CT as well.

  4. Oh you’ve captured one of my favorite scenes in Europe: the old folks sitting on the benches and visiting. I absolutely adore looking at them. You’ve also reminded me just how narrow those little town’s streets are, not to mention the trail. My favorite shot however is the flipflop/hiking boot. How often we’ve done just that!!!
    Jackie Smith recently posted..Crete: A Tiny ‘Ferry” Tale About A Sunday SailMy Profile

    • HI Jackie,
      Oh, we also so adored the old folks! They were so laid back and so content. Glad we were able to bring you fond memories of CT. Isn’t switching from hiking shoes to flip-flops such a wonderful relief?

  5. I’ve been eagerly antcipating Part 2, and it did not disappoint. Those pictures of the boats in the middle of the street are both surprising and striking. What did you think of all the bathers at Monterosso? That crows doesn’t jive with the rest of Cinque Terre. Last of all, why have I never thought of a Pesto sandwich? Genius!
    Michele {Malaysian Meanders} recently posted..The Remarkable Rocks and Admirals Arch of Kangaroo IslandMy Profile

    • Hi Michelle, Oh I’m so glad it didn’t disappoint!
      You know, Monterosso being the most accessible among the five towns attract a lot of day trippers. They’re more of the “tourists” kind and not “travelers” who linger more in Cinque Terre. Oh yes, the pesto sandwich is so divine! After this trip, I got pesto addicted that i make it from scratch (using pestle and mortar!).

    • Hi Noel, we want edto make the post shorter than it is but then we feel that it would be shortchanging our Cinque Terre experience and we would love to share as much beauty of it as we can. I’m sure you would agree that there’s so much beauty in such a small place. Oh yes, the eat, eat part is truly magnifico!

  6. Lovely photos, as always, Marisol. I especially like the one of the umbrellas, and of the bathers on the rocks, which is a very romantic picture. Hope they didn’t see you taking their pic?
    Freya Renders recently posted..Things to do in and around DinantMy Profile

    • Hi Freya, I’m pleased you enjoyed the photos. The bathers did see me taking the photo but they were too relaxed to care:)

  7. Marcia

    What an amazing tour! This is really a beautiful part of Italy. I loved the photos of the men and women sitting outside and catching up. You fit right in, Keith!
    I liked how family homes are passed down, same thing usually happens here. Wonder, though, how many of the next generation stay.
    Marcia recently posted..Pastor Brown’s Eye Catching HouseMy Profile

    • Hey Marcia, aren’t the old folks adorable?
      The new generation are pretty much grounded. They stay and work in Cinque Terre during busy summer season and go elsewhere to enjoy their summer earnings during winter time.

  8. I find your posts very helpful. Have emailed it to my friend who will be there in September – just the time you recommend. I like how you have captured the locals in this very touristy area.
    budget jan recently posted..A Walk or three in KurandaMy Profile

    • Hi Jan,
      Oh, I so hope that this will be helpful to your friend. I’m sure he or she will be in for a special time. Capturing the locals is not hard if you linger longer. We saw more of them than visitors.

  9. You lovebirds certainly deserved all that delicious food and drinks after that strenuous hike. I was getting tired from following your trek through the towns. :) The views are gorgeous and all those towns are so scenic that it seems to worth every step. Love those views of Corniglia and my favorite has to be that one of Vernazza’s coat. Awesome detailed post, Marisol!
    Mary {The World Is A Book} recently posted..A Bird’s Eye View of PragueMy Profile

    • Thanks Mary! It’s really motivating to do the hikes if you know that there’s gastronomic treat at the end of the trail:) Glad you enjoyed the hike with us.

  10. Lulu

    We explored Cinque Terra two years ago and I absolutely loved it. In fact I think we had lunch right under those same brightly colored umbrellas.
    Lulu recently posted..Summer is for LobsterMy Profile

  11. Denise

    These places are really as gorgeous as everyone says they are. How long do you reckon one should spend in the region to do it justice? I am also not much of a hiker, and was wondering if I could still come across those sweeping vistas and cheated and caught the train in between???
    Denise recently posted..By the water in SingaporeMy Profile

    • HI Denise, we spent 3 days and 3 nights in CT and we found it a good amount of time to slowly enjoy the area. You can train it to each town and try to hike a little to the trail to the point where you can see enough vista of each town and the sea. You may get also good vista of each town from a ferry. Unfortunately, we were not able to do this as the ferry services were stalled due to strong currents while we were there.

  12. Bama

    What a beautiful wrap up of your series on Cinque Terre, Marisol! I really really hope when I go to Italy I will have enough time to spend a few days in this part of the country. Gorgeous photos as always!
    Bama recently posted..The Fading Charm of the Little NetherlandsMy Profile

    • Marisol@TravelingSolemates

      Hi Bama, thanks! I really hope that you make it to Cinque Terre when you visit Italy.

    • Hi Kathryn, aren’t those pestos to die for? One of the best things I took home with me from the trip is the Ligurian pesto recipe. Yes, Keith is such an old chicks magnet:)

  13. Leigh

    Where do I start with a post like this? First your pictures are wonderful. Second – the hiking looks sublime and I like the fact you can travel lightly. Third – the food and the drinks look delicious and refreshing. And fourth – it looks like you can get such an authentic experience even with the tourists. I would like to hike/visit late one September when the temperatures are a little more moderate. All in all your time here sounds fantastic.
    Leigh recently posted..A Coastal Hike in Forillon National Park, QuebecMy Profile

    • Hi Leigh, I’m so pleased that you enjoyed the post. Such a compliment coming from my hiking hero. Although the trail may be tame for you, I’m sure you will enjoy it for its amazing view. September is a great time to go for the weather and for less crowd. We enjoyed every minute of our stay in Cinque Terre and I’m pretty sure you will, too.
      Marisol@TravelingSolemates recently posted..Hiking and Devouring in Cinque Terre – Part 2My Profile

  14. I’ve seen lots of pics of Cinque Terre, but always from afar. Your pics have strengthened my resolve to go back to Italy and spend a lot more time there. Love Italy so much, especially the small towns. The beach is not white sand, but it looks clean. Is it?
    Aleah | recently posted..A Lazy Weekend at the Loreland Farm ResortMy Profile

    • Marisol

      Hi Aleah, Italy is one place that I don’t think anyone would get tired of returning to. I hope you can get back soon. Oh yes, the beaches are very clean.

  15. Dennis

    This is one trip where even eating well keeps the waistlines in check what with all the fantastic walks you guys did. For me, this is living la dolce vita! Your beautiful photos got me envious Marisol.
    Dennis recently posted..The Citadel of QuébecMy Profile

    • Marisol

      Hi Dennis, it was indeed a la dolce vita for us! It got everything we were looking for – the hiking, the view, the food and the charming towns and locals. So glad you enjoyed the photos!

    • Marisol

      Hello Swati, thanks! I’m pretty sure you’ll have a lovely holiday. It truly is an amazing place.

  16. I love how bright and vibrant the building (and people) in Cinque Terre look! You keep making me jealous with all the fabulous food you got to eat. I would love to hike around this city one day. Thanks for letting me vicariously come on your adventure :)
    Amy | Club Narwhal recently posted..MICHIGAN MONDAYS | MEXICANTOWN DETROITMy Profile

    • Marisol

      Hi Amy, our pleasure! You have to go! The fabulous food and the spectacular trail will surely enamoured you.

    • Marisol

      Hi Patti, I’m pleased that you enjoyed your visit:)

    • Marisol

      Hi Irene, I’m glad we were able to transport you back to CT.

  17. Ruth

    It is so pretty there. I am a bit jealous that you have a soulmate to travel with. Looks like you had one of the best times ever.
    Ruth recently posted..ZionMy Profile

    • Marisol

      Hi Jill, you’re welcome. I’m glad you have tagged along:)

  18. Marissa

    Hi Marisol, always a joy reading your posts and fabulous pictures. We have a sudden change in travel plans from ASIA to somewhere in Europe and Cinque Terre seems ideal for next month. Can you recommend any of your resources for booking
    accommodation, transportation, etc? Btw, thanks for your Santorini tips, we made it there last year and had the most wonderful time.

    • Marisol

      Hi Marissa, I’m so pleased that you have been enjoying our posts and photos and that you found our Santorini tips helpful. Nice to hear about your European trip plan. As for accommodation, we normally book directly with the hotels. For big city hotels, we normally book through American Express Platinum if our choice of hotel is part of their fine hotel network (as booking with them would give us extra benefit like room upgrade). To research for accommodation, we first go to Expedia to see the choices of hotels in certain city. Once we narrow down our choice, we check out Trip Advisors to see reviews. We also check out guide books for review and recommendation. Then we go directly to hotel websites to book or through Amex. (Other than Amex, we don’t recommend booking through any other third booking companies because they’re normally hard to deal with in case of any reservation cancellation, refund or changes. The little discount they offer isn’t even worth the hassle.) We also book our flights with Amex(to get us extra points and extra services). As for trains, we book directly online or buy tickets at the stations. You can check out the train schedules online through the official rail link for each country. If you need tips for particular city, please let me know. You may email me at

  19. Debbie

    Your photos are very good. Thanks for sharing. We’re going to visit Italy in May 2014 (me, my hubby and two teenagers) – so excited.

  20. It’s actually a great along with valuable part of info. Now i am fulfilled that you just embraced this useful information and facts with us. You should stop us up to par such as this. Thank you for revealing.

  21. Joseff

    Cinque Terre looks great. There are great scenes that are worth to visit and explore and I can say that place can give fun and laughter when traveling especially with family. You must had a great adventure in Cinque Terre. I’m sure I’ll visit this place soon.

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