The 5 small towns which together are Cinque Terre are a very popular photo scene. I’m sure you’ve seen a picture of the colourful houses built into cliffs right by the ocean. Levanto and La Spezia are the cities marking the beginning and the end of the 5 towns that are only connected by trekking trail or train.
The streets that lead down to the cities are all dead-ends and some even turn in streets for residents only and won’t allow any tourists. Even though visitors can’t go down all the way, there are a few other options to get there.
- By car. You could park the car as close as possible and walk into the centre. If you can’t find a bend that isn’t already overstuffed with parking cars, there are parking lots provided, which are unfortunately very expensive. We parked our car in a bend way up the road in Vernazza and walked into the centre. From there we then took the train to each city.
- By ship. You could take the ship. There is a ferry boat taking visitors from town to town. It probably is the prettiest way of seeing all towns of Cinque Terre since the view from the boat will be a whole lot different than the ones one is able to get from the mainland.
- By train. You could ride the train which connects them all; starting at Levanto all the way to la Spezia. With 4€ per ride, this option is quite expansive but also the most convenient one. If you decide to use the train a lot there are a few options to choose from that accommodate travellers. You may want consider purchasing a day ticket instead of buying a ticket for every single ride.
- By feet. You could walk the trekking trails connecting each town. Simple accommodations along the way make it able to hike the trail not all at once – even though we met some people who did walk the 40 kilometres in one day.
Overall it can be said that Cinque Terre is very crowded but even prettier than I imagined. It’s a struggle to go there by car, which is why I advise to ride the train or trek the trail connecting the towns. You should definitely bring some time and maybe even a swimsuit 🙂
Nevertheless, as always, just go and make your own experiences.
From the West to the East the 5 towns of Cinque Terre are Monterosso, Vernazza, Corniglia, Manarola and Riomaggiore.
If I got in detail about each city in this post, it would be way to long and overwhelming. Therefore I split them up and each city got its own post. By simply clicking on the town you’re interested in, it will take you the post about it. Enjoy 🙂
Note: We skipped town #5, which is Riomaggiore, this day. I’m sure it is well worth a visit and one day I will return. City Travel Guides for the first four towns, from Monterosso to Manarola, are written and can be read by simply clicking on the words above