Cinque Terre is a fascinating area of the eastern Ligurian Riviera, made up of five seaside villages: Riomaggiore, Manarola, Corniglia, Vernazza and Monterosso.
Included on the UNESCO World Heritage List in 1997, the Cinque Terre area is one of the most beautiful parts of the entire Mediterranean. Visitors will be enchanted by the beauty of its five ancient and colourful villages perched above the sea.
This wonderful territory is one of the most uncontaminated areas in Italy, characterised by picturesque views where the land meets the sea to create a unique and breathtaking landscape. Over 120 kilometres of pathways wind through nature offering spectacular panoramic views.
Arriving from La Spezia, the first village you come to is Riomaggiore, in the narrow valley of the river Rivus Maior, which is now covered over. It takes its name from the position of the characteristic tower houses built along the river (rio). The landscape is characterised by pastel-coloured houses that climb up to the castle, making the marina a unique visual spectacle. The village is home to monuments of great interest.
The second village in the Cinque Terre is Manarola, considered the most photogenic of the five. An authentic urban jewel, rich in tower-houses built in typical Genoan style. Perched on a rocky spur over the sea, Manarola' s origins date back to ancient times, when it was founded by the inhabitants of the settlement of Volastra. Unique views can be admired from the promontory of Punta Bonfiglio.
The only village of the Cinque Terre not in contact with the sea, Corniglia stands one hundred metres up on a rocky promontory overlooking the sea, from which you can enjoy a wonderful view. The village is reached via a long and characteristic flight of 382 steps, called the Lardarina. The sea laps the famous beach of Givano at the foot of the promontory.
Considered by many people to be the most beautiful of the five villages, Vernazza is a delightful seaside village that looks like it has come straight out of a painting. Perched on the slopes of a rocky spur, the village is criss-crossed by steep, narrow streets that run down towards the little square in front of the characteristic harbour, nestled in a picturesque inlet. The most important historical monument is the Church of Santa Margherita di Antiochia.
The last village of the Cinque Terre is the ancient nucleus of Monterosso al Mare. Perched on a hill from which you can admire a magnificent view, the village is divided into two parts, the old village and Fegina, linked by a short tunnel measuring just 100 metres. It is home to important monuments, including the ancient Castle, the Church of San Giovanni Battista and the Monastery of the Cappuccini monks.