Thursday, July 16, 2009

Travel Guide: Cinqueterre, Italy

Pitch: 5 quaint towns along the Italian Riviera connected by miles of trails over the mountains and through the vineyards of Cinqueterre. A must see if you are in Northern Italy (or anywhere close). Every picture you take will make you feel like a professional photog.

Stay: In Monterosso al Mare (we stayed at Hotel Palme). The town has a little more bustle and lots of beach. I also appreciated the variety of cafes and restaurants. The other 3 villages are quieter and
really chill and Vernazza is in between.

Play: Spend the morning swimming, lounging and sunbathing at Bagni Eden beach club (Via Fegina, 7-11; 39-0187-818-256). A few euro will get you a colorful chaise and use of their changing rooms. There’s no better way to enjoy a morning by the sea.

Eat lunch:  Enoteca 5 Terre di Sassarini Giancarlo (Via Fegina, 94; 39-0187-818-063) Toast your arrival with a little Franciacorta, then try the local sauvignon blanc. Nice bruscettas, pastas, and carpaccios.

Walk/hike: From Monterosso al Mare to Vernazza. Bring water, sunscreen, a camera, and supportive sandals or sneakers. Takes about 2 hours. Breathtaking journey over mountains and through vineyards...even though we had no water and donned flimsy flip flops.

Relax: Upon arrival stop for a few scoops of gelato and find some shade to watch the ferries come in and out of a rocky port. There are tons of cafes to people watch and sip on wine.

Home: Catch the train or ferry back to Monterosso al Mare. They’re constantly coming and going.

Eat dinner: L'Ancora della Tortuga (Salita Cappuccini, 6; 39-0187-800-065). Reserve an outdoor table for 8:30/9 - or right around dusk. The restaurant is a converted AND romantic. Can’t go wrong with the catch of the day and the scampi.

Stroll: L’Ancora della Tortuga is at the opposite end of Monterosso al Mare so enjoy a leisurely walk back to your hotel along Via Fegina. And who says you can’t have gelato twice in one day?!


  1. the second photo in this entry is of Vernazza right? I invariably feel nostalgic every time I see a photo of it..