One Perfect Day in the Cinque Terre

by Bianca Gignac

one day cinque terre

Are you heading to the Cinque Terre just for one day?

Here are my best tips for your upcoming sprint.

Secretly, I do think the Cinque Terre warrants more time. But let’s just work with what you’ve got my friend.

What to do in the Cinque Terre for 1 DAY:

If it’s hot and sunny

  • For swimming: Jump in the water at my favorite swimming spots: a) the marina in Manarola b) the beach in Riomaggiore c) the beach in Bonassola (definitely go here if the water is rough at the other two places, or you prefer a sandy beach and more space). In Bonassola, I like to splurge 20 euros and rent a sun lounger and an umbrella. FYI: Italy has many private beaches so you can lounge in comfort with chairs, umbrellas, food, drink, and showers. It’s a VERY easy luxury to get used to. That is, after you get over resenting the fact that many of the prettiest Italian beaches are a pay-to-play situation.
  • For eating: See my recommended restaurants in my sister post, What to Do in the Cinque Terre.
  • For chilling out with a view: The outside bar Nessun Dorma at Punta Bonfiglio in Manarola is a heart-skipper.
  • For wandering: Just village hop. The trains frequently run all day, and no you can’t pick a “bad one” so just roll with it.

If it’s raining

  • For afternoon sipping: Discover grappa! It’s a spirit made from the skins, pulp, seeds, and stems of grapes left over from the wine-making process. Grappa is for sipping slowly, like a good tequila (don’t drink it like a shooter). They have a massive grappa list at Enoteca da Elisio in Monterosso, which is super cozy in the rain.
  • For channelling your inner Italian Stallion: If you’re traveling with your love, when is the last time you booked a hotel … just for the day? Warning: Racy idea ahead that will impress (the pants off) your partner. Your action plan: Check in to a hotel (avoid the ones that are out of the way). Leave the hotel and go buy snacks, candles, and prosecco. Head back to the hotel. Open the wine, light the candles and see what happens. The snacks are if you decide you never want to leave.
  • For foodies: Book a cooking class. I love this place.
  • For artists/creatives/photographers/connectors: Visit the home of an amazing collector. It may be the most fascinating thing you’ll do in Italy. Email The Archivio della Memoria at collettivoparisse@gmail.com for private appointments by donation.
  • Get wet: You won’t melt. Just wander around any of the villages. Monterosso, Vernazza and Levanto have the most action.

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If you’re there for the hiking

  • In 15 minutes: The famous Via dell’Amore is closed until further notice (current as of August 2016). An alternative small stroll is the promenade of Monterosso.
  • In 45 minutes: From Riomaggiore to a church (with an amazing view to all the five villages and the French coastline) and back down again. Follow the trail from the top of the village to the Santuario di Nostra Signora di Montenero.
  • In 1 hour: Hike the steep trail from Manarola to Volastra. If you want to keep going you can do the next section I chat about below, or take the bus back down to Manarola.
  • In 1.5 – 3 hours: Hike the high trail from Volastra to Corniglia. It will take you 1 -1.5 hours. You can keep going to Vernazza — it will take you about three hours in total to go from Volastra to Corniglia to Vernazza (including a visit to the village of Corniglia). This is my fave day hike, and since it’s harder to access than the lower trails, it’s less crowded (I might have ruined that now).
  • For 5+ hours: Riomaggiore to Portovenere on foot, and then ferry back (ferries run during peak season). This plan is for the adventurous soul. Bring a map. It’s gorg-e-ous!

If you’re traveling with kids

  • For playing: Head to the piazze or the parco giochi in each town (ask the locals). The parco giochi in Manarola has an incredible view.
  • For a beach day: Go to the sandy beach in Bonassola (which is just a half an hour train ride out of the Cinque Terre). This one has a playground for kids right on the sand.
  • For strollers: Monterosso (officially the “Cinque Terre”), Levanto (close) or Bonassola (close) are the most stroller friendly villages. I think Bonassola is the best kid-friendly spot and it’s popular with Italian vacationers (but totally under the radar to foreign travelers).

More tips

My other (sizzlin’) Cinque Terre advice is here (currently enjoyed by 20,000 peeps a month)

Your turn

Leave a comment: Have you been to the Cinque Terre for one day? What’s your favorite memory? Or leave a question and I’ll do my best to help.

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{ 104 comments… read them below or add one }

Gelina

Ciao!

I’m traveling to Italy in dec n specifically going to cinque terre for 1 night in dec. 5-6 dec. I’m concerned about the cold weather! Will the hike trails still be open? And what are down routes good to take in winter and shops / restaurants .. How many will open for business?
How will the acitivity be like?
Thanks for ur help !

Reply

Bianca Gignac

Hi Gelina,

The average temperature for early December is 58°F/14°C. The trails don’t close, (except if there are landslides and the park decides to close a section). I recommend just planning to hike a section of the trail (the network is spread between the villages and surrounding hills), and deciding on what that section will be when you arrive, depending on what is not closed due to landslides. You can easily take the train to any of the villages where the trail heads start, no matter where you stay. As far as hotels, restaurants and shops being open; expect the majority to be closed in winter (December until Easter). In the dead of winter and you always manage to find something open — and it can be pretty cosy too! The big winter bonus is you have the place almost to yourself.

Enjoy your stay,
xx Bianca

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ADAM

Hello,

I am going to Italy next week and have one day or so extra. I would like to hike and see as much as possible in one day. Is it possible to hike to all 5 villages in one day. If so how long. If possible is there a way to get back to starting point or should i book two separate stays(one at the beginning of the tour for the night before and one at the end of the hike after the 5th town? Basically I want to do as much as possible in one day and I am in good shape.

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Dominic Thurlow-Wood

I’m thinking of a spontaneous trip this weekend. I’d only be able to get there on Friday night and would have to leave on Sunday at 3pm but would love to see le Cinque Terre. Do you have any advice for hotels for this kind of trip? I’m also happy to walk as much as is necessary to see what I can of the villages. Would there be a recommended route for a day and a half?

Many thanks, Dominic

Reply

Bianca Gignac

Hello Dominic,

A weekend trip to the Cinque Terre sounds lovely! For hotel recommendation see my post, A Beginner’s Guide to the Cinque Terre. As far as hiking, you could add the section from Vernazza to Monterosso, or Monterosso to Levanto (or both!).

Have a wonderful stay!

xx Bianca

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Liz

My husband and I are traveling in to Cinque Terre this May and we will have a rental car. Which city will accommodate a car?

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Kiiri @ Italian Fix

Hi Liz!
All of the villages have parking areas, with Monterosso’s being the largest. Don’t expect to drive around in the villages with a car as they’re mostly pedestrian-only, and expect to pay upwards of €20 per day for parking. There’s also a parking area at the train station in La Spezia where you can leave your car and then take the train to Riomaggiore less than ten minutes away. Best of luck!
Kiiri @ Italian Fix

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Gina Trejo

Hi Bianca,
Just found your site-love it. From Marseille to Rome we have 8 full days to spend in Italy. We’d rather do less and enjoy than be rushed, Ive always wanted to go to a quaint Tuscan Village, if time permits stop in Cinque Terre, Rome for a few days before flying to Greece. Is this do able? is so how many days do in need in each place or should we skip Cinque Terre.
Your suggestions would be most appreciated.

Thanks,
Gina,

Reply

Kiiri @ Italian Fix

Hi Gina,
You can definitely do the Cinque Terre in a couple of days, so if you want to experience it, then by all means, make it a stop on your trip. You could do two or three days checking out the 5T villages, a couple of days in Tuscany (San Gimignano is a personal favorite of mine!), and then your remaining days in Rome. Have a great trip!
Kiiri @ Italian Fix

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Jitka

Hello Bianca,
thank you for your great hints to Cinque Terre trip. We are planing to come with a car and I would like to ask you, how much accessible is the place with the car. My question is almost the same as from Cecilie Rudolph. Where we could stay with a car and which village would you recommend?
Thank you a lot for your answer 🙂
Best Regards
Jitu 🙂

Reply

Kiiri @ Italian Fix

Hi Jitu,
Most of the villages are not accessible by car, but each one has a public parking area, so you will have someplace to leave it during your stay. Once you’ve parked, you’ll find that getting around to the other villages by train and ferry is much more convenient.
Kiiri @ Italian Fix

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rachel

Hello Bianca.my friend and i want to travel in june to italy.i tried to find a day trip to Cinq Terre from Milan on friday but i cant find any .why that?we dont have time to go another day and its our first time in italy so a little bit afraid to be lost with ferries and train to go to Cinq Terre.any advice ? we have no problem if it s hiking or else.all we want is to see Cinq Terre.thanks a lot .

Reply

Kiiri @ Italian Fix

Hey Rachel,
There are several direct Intercity trains from Milano Centrale to Monterosso every day – just check trenitalia.com. Once you’re here, getting from one town to the next by ferry or train is easy, so no need to worry. The hiking trails too are well-marked. If you’re looking for a private tour, Cinque Terre Tours at http://www.cinqueterretour.it/index.php/en/ gets excellent reviews. You may even be able to arrange for pick-up from Milan. Enjoy!
Kiiri @ Italian Fix

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Dexter

Buona Sera, Bianca

My husband and I are traveling to Italy in the summer and are planning on taking a day trip from Florence to Cinque Terre. We have no problem taking the early train, but were wondering if Sundays were a good day to go to the Cinque Terre? Does everything tend to be open on Sundays in June throughout the five villages?

Thank you!

Reply

Kiiri @ Italian Fix

Hi Dexter!
Yes, everything is open in the Cinque Terre during the high season on Sundays and on holidays. Just be ready for it to be busier than on the weekdays, as the weekend crowd includes Italians in addition to international tourists.
Kiiri @ Italian Fix

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Beneè

I have poured over your recommendations for cinque terre, thank you for all the info! I feel more assured after reading your site.
I just have a question about withdrawing money via debit or credit cards in Italy…what are your recommendations! We don’t feel comfortable carrying lots of cash.

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Kiiri @ Italian Fix

Hi Beneè!
Each of the villages in the Cinque Terre has at least one ATM machine, and most restaurants accept credit cards. Some room rental businesses still do not, and many small grocery stores and bars have a minimum amount they will take a card for, so though I would advise travelling with some money, you need not have lots. Do make sure to have a few different ATM and credit cards just in case one doesn’t work for some reason (it happens).
Kiiri @ Italian Fix

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gina

I really love your site – simple, informative and passionate. We (two couples) are traveling by car to Cinque Terra Sept 12-14 coming from San Pelligrino and then heading to Venice. Is it smarter to get one night in two different places or two nights in one? Which village would you suggest? we are medium active middle agers who want to do some hiking but nothing too strenuous. Also, is the Amore Walk open yet?

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Kiiri @ Italian Fix

Ciao Gina,
The Via dell’Amore is unfortunately not yet open, but there is an alternative trail between Riomaggiore and Manarola. Also, the walk leading up to the playground in Manarola gives you a bit of a feel for what the Via dell’Amore is like, so it’s nice for a short evening stroll ending in a drink at Nessun Dorma.
Our Beginner’s Guide to the Cinque Terre will answer your other questions quite nicely and give you a head start on the area before you come: http://www.italianfix.com/what-to-do-cinque-terre/
Have a great trip!
Kiiri @ Italian Fix

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Caroline Robey

In this post you say the hike from the top of Riomaggiore to the Montenero Sanctuary is 45 minutes, but in another post, you say the hike is 75 minutes one way. Which one is more accurate? Thanks!

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Kiiri @ Italian Fix

Ciao Caroline,
It’s closer to 45 minutes, but it really all depends on your physical fitness and how much you stop to enjoy the scenery and take pictures! People have definitely been known to take over an hour making their way up.
Kiiri @ Italian Fix

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edna

Hello. I’m going on a cruise with my family and will stay one day in LA Spezia. Do u think we can visit Cinque terre alone without a guide with us? And is it far from the port? Do we need taxi or bus…..? Or just straight walking ? Thanks

Reply

Kiiri @ Italian Fix

Hi Edna,
Yes, absolutely you can do the Cinque Terre without a guide. To get here from La Spezia you need to take the train to Riomaggiore, less than ten minutes away. Check out our Beginner’s Guide to the Cinque Terre for pretty much everything you need to know: http://www.italianfix.com/what-to-do-cinque-terre/
Kiiri @ Italian Fix

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Nejc

Hello!

First of all, wonderful website, full of useful informations.

What do you think? Group of four students are going on a roadtrip from Slovenia to Italy, starting in wednesday, 15. july. We are planning on arrival in the area of Cinque Terre around 1 p.m. We would like to leave our car in La Spezia train station garage and go on a train to Corniglia or at least to Manarola. And then walk to the Riomaggiore and then take the train back to La Spezia.
Is this path from Corniglia to Riomaggiore open or closed? How long is that walk?

What do you think of our idea? We are little bit short of time, because we would like to come to Pisa in our hostel around 7-8 pm.

Thanks.

Reply

Kiiri @ Italian Fix

Hi Nic,
As long as the Sentiero Azzurro (main trail) between Corniglia and Riomaggiore remains closed, there are alternative routes to each section you can take. Between Corniglia and Manarola you can take the trail up and through Volastra (a small town above the Cinque Terre) and back down again. This takes about 2 1/2 hours. Then you can take the Beccara trail between Manarola and Riomaggiore, which takes about an hour.
Have a great time!
Kiiri @ Italian Fix

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Corey

The home of an amazing collector, what is that? I can’t seem to find info online.

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Kiiri @ Italian Fix

Hi Corey,
The Archivio is a little museum in Manarola (Via Aldo Rollandi 31) that celebrates and preserves hundreds of items collected over the decades by Anselmo Crovara that tell the history of this area. Antique tools and objects that were used for centuries in the cantinas, vineyards, kitchens, shops, olive presses and mills of the Cinque Terre. This website is in Italian only, but it has a few photos so can get the idea: http://collettivoparisse.blogspot.it
Definitely worth a visit!
Kiiri @ Italian Fix

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Usheen

Looking to come aug25 and26. Was looking at monterosa but hotels were limited. If I stay in rapallo how far are the towns of cinque Terre?

Reply

Kiiri @ Italian Fix

Hi Usheen,
Rapallo is only about 45 minutes away by train, so perfect as a home base for exploring the Cinque Terre.
Have a great trip!
Kiiri @ Italian Fix

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colonel lake

Hi,
I will do a small tour group from Florenze in set 2015.

But since 2015-august-14, a travel tours advise travelers that the administration of the Cinque Terre toll then that vehicule are no longer able to park their vehicles and accompany guests or drive through the Cinque Terre, as parking areas and use of vehicles within the Cinque Terre have changed due to the unusually hight tourist volume. even the ferry schedule have change.
Can you confirm that ?
Thank

Reply

Kiiri @ Italian Fix

Ciao Colonel Lake,
Though the towns are open to traffic at certain times of the day to accommodate trucks bringing supplies to the restaurants and stores in town, you should assume that the towns are restricted to vehicles and that you cannot drive down into them. You can still park in the parking areas above the towns, but you’re right, the amount of people driving to the area is becoming unsustainable considering the parking areas are very small because of the geography of this place. While there are currently no restrictions as to who is allowed to drive and park here, you may find yourselves frustrated and unable to find a space in the high season (which September still is).
A great solution to this problem (especially if you are travelling with a larger group) is to park in La Spezia, where there is a great new parking garage at the train station. From here you can take the train into Riomaggiore and the rest of the villages.
Have a great trip!
Kiiri @ Italian Fix

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Aaron and Sarah

My wife, sister-in-law and myself will be in Cinque Terra September 21st and 22nd. We will be staying in Riomaggiore. I understand that driving through Cinque Terra can be difficult but we will have a car. Are trains rides a better option? Do trains head up and down frequently or is it hit/miss?

Reply

Kiiri @ Italian Fix

Hi Aaron and Sarah,
Yes, trains are definitely the better option for getting around in the Cinque Terre. You can park in Riomaggiore or in neighbouring La Spezia, and then rely on the trains for the rest of your stay. Trains run from town to town at least once per hour, generally speaking. You can check out schedules here: trenitalia.com.
Kiiri @ Italian Fix

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Elaine

We are planning an elopement ceremony near to Nessun Dorma in Manarola Big question How far is the walk up the hill from train station in Manarola as we will be carrying luggage is there a bus or taxi?

Reply

Kiiri @ Italian Fix

Hi Elaine,
Are you staying near Nessun Dorma, is this why you have to bring luggage up there? I’d say it’s about a ten minute walk from the station, but be aware that from the marina onwards it’s uphill. There are no cabs in the villages, and no bus that runs this particular stretch, so you’ll have to carry everything yourself. Perhaps you can contact your hotel and see if they can send someone to help you?
Congratulations on your elopement!
Kiiri @ Italian Fix

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Thomas Porter

My wife and I are staying in Monterosso in October. Is it possible to rent hiking or trekking poles for a couple of days, and if so, where?

Reply

Kiiri @ Italian Fix

Hi Thomas,
I’m afraid there aren’t any places that rent hiking poles here. If you feel you need them, you’ll have to bring them along yourself, or buy gear from Cinque Terre Trekking in Manarola. Most are fine without them though 🙂
Kiiri @ Italian Fix

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K Tag

Hi there!

My husband and myself are in Rome currently and have three days starting Sept 30 to visit somewhere in Italy before we head to Zurich! Cinque Terra really stuck out to us when researching places to go, but considering we are booking everything last minute-do you think this is a doable trip? Is it difficult to get there from Rome?? Thank you!

Reply

Kiiri @ Italian Fix

Hi there!
You can get to the Cinque Terre from Rome in less than 4 hours, so definitely doable. Check train schedules on trenitalia.com. September is still very much high season here in the Cinque Terre, so definitely book a place to stay instead of expecting to find a place when you get here.
Happy travels to you!
Kiiri

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Kwongsters

Hi,
my husband and I will be stopping at the La Spezia port in mid October for 12 hours. We’ve been to Florence so would like to visit Cinque Terre. We’re not big on hiking, but I read that’s the best way to see the villages. I also saw there’s ferry/boat to see the place from ocean, but worry about motion sickness. Is the ferry still open in October as the schedule shows September 2015 only.

Do you have suggestion on how we should do the day with train, easy hikes (which direction?) and possibly ferry to see it from the ocean?

thanks,

Reply

Kiiri @ Italian Fix

Hi there 🙂
The ferry usually stops running the first week of October, so it’s unlikely you’ll be able to do that when you’re here. That being said, last year the weather was so nice that they kept it running until Halloween, so you never know!
You don’t have to hike at all to see the Cinque Terre — the villages are all well-connected by train and close together — but if you want to get a hike in, the most spectacular (and difficult) are on the Monterosso end.
Have fun!
Kiiri

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Shawn Siew

Hi Bianca. I’m traveling to Italy in Nov n specifically going to cinque terre for 1 night in Nov 4-5th. Reaching around 9am and staying in Riomaggiore. Was wondering what should i do there, i have 3 ladies following me and thought wandering around. Do you have any specific things we can do? my wife and the friends prefer art and sceneries.. and of course a nice view and nice dinner
Thanks for ur help !

Reply

Kiiri @ Italian Fix

Hey Shawn,
Sounds like you have a great trip planned!
Check out our suggestions above, and this blog post for more ideas.
ps: This is not the place to come if you’re especially interested in art. The natural scenery is the draw here, not museums and galleries.
Happy travels to you!
Kiiri

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Ivan

Hi,

Thanks for the useful info but would need some advice on these two items:

1) Travelling from Milan to Cinque Terre on 5 Dec and plan to spend a night at Riomaggiore. Plan to hike from Monterosso to Riomaggiore in one day, but have no idea how to deal with my luggage while hiking.

2) Also, I understand that the path between Riomaggiore – Manarola (via dell’Amore) and Manarola – Corniglia are closed now. Are there alternative paths to reach Riomaggiore if I’m hiking from Manarola?

Reply

Kiiri @ Italian Fix

Hi Ivan,
It’s not a good idea to hike with your luggage. Why not head first to Riomaggiore, check in to your hotel, and then do the hike? You could either hike from Riomaggiore to Monterosso, or take the train to Monterosso and hike back. The Via dell’Amore is still closed and will be for the foreseeable future. Same goes for Manarola-Corniglia. There are alternative trails to both of these though — just ask at tourist information when you get here.
Happy trekking!
Kiiri

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Kathy

my husband and I are in florence from november 10 thru the 15th and wanted to see Cinque Terra and Rome…is that even doable? is it too much to try to get to both???
Please advise.
Thanks!
Kathy

Reply

Kiiri @ Italian Fix

Hi Kathy,
If you mean that you have 5 days total to see Rome, Florence and the Cinque Terre, then yes, I’d say that’s too much. Doable yes, but enjoyable? You’ll be spending the majority of your time on trains and getting set up in your hotels, so I wouldn’t recommend it. We always suggest spending at least two night in each destination, so I’d choose either Rome or Cinque Terre to see besides Florence and leave it at that.
Have a great trip!
Kiiri

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Donal McCarthy

Hi, great website and insight to Cinque erre. Glad I came across it. A couple of questions for you if I may?
There is a group of us 6, maybe 7 adults planning a trip to cinque terre in March 2016 (19-22 – arrive 19th depart 22nd) flying into Pisa. So two full days there. Most of the detail on your website centres on summer time. Can you give some advice on a 2 day stay in March (e.g.walking – usually wet/dry/good visibility? accommodation open in March? hotel for 6/7 v apartments?, eating out – are restaurants open that time of year?, site seeing – if too wet to walk will places be open to tourists?; transport between villages – full service at this time of year?) Many thanks. Donal (Dublin, Ireland)

Reply

Kiiri @ Italian Fix

Hi Donal,
The Cinque Terre start to “wake up” again around this time of year, but even in the winter, you can generally expect to find at least one restaurant open, one grocery store and one bar. So while you won’t be spoiled for choice necessarily, you won’t be stranded without basic amenities either. Not all room rentals and hotels are open year round, but many are, and most will be by the end of March. The weather of course is impossible to predict, and the trails are only closed if they are considered too dangerous to hike — usually due to wet weather — so that all depends on whether it rains a lot or not when you’re here. Ferries are usually not yet running at this time of year, but trains run year-round.
Have a great trip!
Kiiri

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Esther A.

I love your blog info! Very helpful.
I will be in Manarola for two nights in April and I believe one of those days is a National Holiday – April 25th. Do you have any tips on what to do or can you recommend a day tour/hike for that day? The day before we are thinking of booking a sunset cruise. Any info & guidance will be greatly appreciated! Regards, Esther (from Miami, Florida)

Reply

Kiiri @ Italian Fix

Hi Esther,
Nothing shuts down in the Cinque Terre on national holidays — quite the opposite! Italians inland head to the coast en masse on long weekends, so holidays are busier than ever here. Get in touch with Marco Brizzi or Pall Forloney if you’re looking for a guided hike, and have fun!
Kiiri

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Liz Z.

Hello Bianca!

I LOVE your blog, it makes me so excited!!! My husband and I are planning a trip to Italy early August 2016. We plan to visit Cinque Terra for max 2 days. What we want from this trip is a beautiful white sand beach (swimming is a must!), a short hike and an awesome local spot to eat. I don’t think we will have time to visit all 5 villages. What village do you recommend we stay and start?

Best Regards from Texas!

Reply

Kiiri @ Italian Fix

Hi Liz,
Take a look at our blog posts, The Beginner’s Guide to the Cinque Terre, Restaurants in the Cinque Terre: The Definitive List, and Hiking Cinque Terre Trails: 21 Tips to Know Before You Go — you should find the answers to all your questions there. And don’t count on white sand beaches… All of the beaches here are rocky except for Monterosso’s and Vernazza’s, but I wouldn’t describe those as “white sand” either. At least the kind you expect to see in a place like the Caribbean.
Have a great trip!
Kiiri

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Kim | The Wanderlist

Hi!

We’re doing a mini North Italy roadtrip in August.
We’re flying into Pisa before heading to La Spazia where we’ll probably get a hotel for one or two nights. We’ll only have ONE full day to explore the five villages by train – is getting along the Cinque Terre and back doable this way?

Glad I found your website, it’s so helpful!

Reply

Kiiri @ Italian Fix

Hi Kim,
Yes, getting from La Spezia to all of the Cinque Terre villages by train is totally doable, and easy!
Kiiri

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Michelle S

Hi,

We are planning to go to Cinque Terre in April. Our plan is to go there from Pisa (we will be visiting the leaning tower first) then go to the villages in Cinque Terre. Our plan is to go round trip and exit/go back to Milan. Is it possible to do this just in 1 day? We will not be doing hiking probably just look around the villages and take some pictures.

Reply

Kiiri @ Italian Fix

Hi Michelle,
Seeing the tower in Pisa, seeing all five villages and then making it back to Milan in the same day is technically doable, but it would be very rushed and not a lot of fun, in my opinion. The trip to Milan alone will take three to four hours, and the trip to Pisa is an hour and a half from the Cinque Terre. I’d skip Pisa and just focus on the five towns.
Have fun!
Kiiri

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Pezman

Hi Bianca,

Thanks for sharing information here.

I will be staying in Volastra for a night and I am planning to walk from Volastra to Corniglia and then to Vernazza. I know that I have to take the trail 586 and 587 to get to Corniglia. But, I have no idea what the trail would be between Corniglia and Vernazza?

Of course I have the option to walk down 400 step to reach the blue trail but that is not the plan.

Thanks,

Reply

Kiiri @ Italian Fix

Hi Pezman,
Don’t worry too much about it. Just pop into a tourist information point when you’re here, and they’ll show you how to get where you need to go. You can ask them for a paper map of the trails too.
Kiiri

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Megan

Hi there! I just found this blog and wanted to get your opinion – a friend and I will be traveling around Italy at the end of March and we are planning a day trip to Cinque Terre on the 27th.. (I know, totally bummed that we don’t have more time!) Where would you suggest that we go? Are there a few of the five cities that you would recommend for a day trip? How do you think the weather will be at that time? Thanks so much!!

Reply

Kiiri @ Italian Fix

Hi Megan,
You can see all five villages in a day trip, you don’t have to choose just one. You could even hike them all in a day, but taking the train from one to the other takes mere minutes.
Hope that helps!
Kiiri

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F

Hi Gina,

I’m not the most in shape – is it possible to get those beautiful views without the hikes and by simply riding the train from town to town and walking through them?

-Fran

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Kiiri @ Italian Fix

Hi there,
The train tracks run almost entirely through tunnels here, so there’s nothing to see by traveling that way. A great way to get a good view of the whole area is by taking the ferry, so there is that option, and there is now a bus service called Explora 5 Terre too which runs along the roads high up in the hills and gives you a whole other perspective on the place. But keep in mind that these are towns built into the sides of cliffs and up steep inclines. If you have mobility issues of any kind, I would think twice about coming, or stick to just Monterosso.

Reply

litea

Hello there,

My husband and I are traveling to Cinque Terre at the end of April. We have only one day to do this trip then we are hoping to head to Venice.
Are there any cheap accommodation options around this area?
Also, what would be your suggestion for getting to Venice from Cinque terre?

Love your Blog! such a great help.

Thanks! 🙂

Reply

Kiiri @ Italian Fix

Hi there,
There’s a hostel in Manarola and one in Corniglia, and they rent private rooms as well for cheap at both. We’re talking super basic here, but inexpensive. You can have a look too on AirBnb — lots of people are starting to rent there too now, and you can find some good deals.
Venice from the Cinque Terre is a huge pain. There’s no direct train line, so you’ll find yourself having to switch trains three or even four times and the trip takes around seven hours.
Have a great time!
Kiiri

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Catherine

Hi Bianca!

Thanks for all of this info! It is super helpful! I am plannign on coming to Cinque Terre for one day/night in June and wondered what village would be the best to try to stay in over night. We are looking to do one medium hike (possibl y the two hour one mentioned) and also get down to the water, find a good meal and watch a nice sunset. Any suggestions for 24 whole hours in what seems to be a magic land? THanks so much!!

Reply

Kiiri @ Italian Fix

Hi Catherine,
Check out our blog post, A Beginner’s Guide to the Cinque Terre. You should find the answers to your questions there.
Have fun!
Kiiri

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michelle

Ciao! We are planning a day trip from Florence in mid-April and would appreciate your advice. Will more shops be open on Sunday than Monday? I’ve read that many places are closed on Mondays throughout Italy.
Thanks so much for helping us decide the best day to go!

Reply

Kiiri @ Italian Fix

Hi Michelle,
By mid-April, most shops will be open every day. Once the high-season has begun in the Cinque Terre, nothing closes, not even on Sundays.
Hope that helps!
Kiiri

Reply

Jas103

Hi Kiiri,

I am amazed by the valuable information you’ve put with Bianca to this blog, thanks for it!
We are coming by car from a long way, taking the road:Milan- Genova- CT.
We’ll be staying 3 night in CT and would like to park our car somewhere safe and then take the train to Vernazza.
Which parking lot would you recommend in Levanto or Monterosso for long term?
Thank you!

Reply

Kiiri @ Italian Fix

Hi there!
You can park the car in Monterosso or Vernazza (ie. right in the Cinque Terre proper), but it will cost a bit more per day to do that, and space is limited. Levanto, which you mentioned, and La Spezia, are good alternatives. The parking lot in La Spezia is covered and has 24-hour surveillance, so if safety is your main concern, park there.
Have a great trip!
Kiiri

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Yvonne

Ciao Bianca,

such a lovely & interesting website 🙂
We, David & Yvonne, want to spent our short honeymoon in Italy. Just 6 days end of may.
Last year we already visited Florence & Rom. Now we are thinking about:

Option 1: Flight to Pisa – Lucca/Sienna – Cinque Terre
Option 2: Flight to Napoli – Amalfi Coast (Positano/Sorrento) – Capri
Option 3: Apulien

🙂 Maybe you can help 🙂

Many many thanks in advance & sunny greetings from Germany
Yvonne

Reply

Kiiri @ Italian Fix

Hi Yvonne,
Any of those would make for a great trip. Consider that Amalfi is like a fancier version of the Cinque Terre, so if you’re looking for a more down-to-earth experience, the first option might suit you better, and vice versa if you’re looking for something more luxe. Puglia is a great choice if you want to get a little more off the beaten path — it’s a less polished, more laid back part of Italy, with amazing food!
Have fun!
Kiiri

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Sarah

Hi Bianca,

Thank you for your site. My boyfriend and I are planning our first trip to Europe from 9/2-9/10-his first trip out of the country-and are flying into Paris where we are planning on staying the first two days. We have to fly out of Paris as well, so we were planning on returning to Paris by 9/8 to be able to rest and continue enjoying Paris before we fly out the morning of 9/10. We have Sunday morning-Thursday morning to play around with and experience something different than city life. I really have always wanted to visit the Mediterranean and love the ocean. I want to have some beach time and swimming for sure on our trip as well as time to relax and enjoy our time-basically just eat and soak up the sun and culture. We were thinking about trying to go to Nice for one or two nights and then to Cinque Terre for two or three nights, but do not know if this really makes sense, as we would then need to fly out of Pisa it seems to make it back to Paris in the time that we want. We do not want to feel terribly rushed and I fear that going to all these places may be too much and inevitably stress out and make our experience less enjoyable. I wonder if you have been to Nice, if you could recommend that, and if so if you could recommend making that part of the plan, or the whole plan outside Paris- or if in your experience we should forego Nice altogether and just go to Cinque Terre? We are so back and forth and cannot seem to make a decision. Part of me thinks that we should just make this an exclusively French trip, but with the idea of being able to experience more than one country in my head, it is hard to let that go.

I appreciate any advice that you may be able to offer up at all that could help us narrow down our vacation plan and dreams!
Indecisively yours,

Sarah

Reply

Kiiri @ Italian Fix

Hi Sarah,
We’re big fans here of not trying to pack too much into a small frame of time, and generally recommend spending two or ideally three nights in any one destination. I would choose either Nice or the Cinque Terre and commit to really getting to know the place and enjoying it con calma as they say here in Italy. Consider too that taking the train from Nice to the Cinque Terre would eat up one of your days — a lot of time will be wasted traveling from one place to another.
In bocca al lupo!
Kiiri

Reply

Sohini bhattacharya

Dear Bianca,

We are a family of 3 (11 year old daughter) attending a family wedding in Tuscany this June and spending about 10 days in the region. We will be staying in a house in Lucca throughout. We wanted to make Cinque Terre a part of that – do you think two days and one night will get us to at least some parts of this beautiful area? If yes what two or three villages are must-see? Thanks in advance for your response,

Warmly

Sohini

Reply

Kiiri @ Italian Fix

Hi Sohini,
What a lovely place for a wedding! And I love Lucca — such a charming little town. A couple of days in the Cinque Terre is definitely enough to see all five towns and to get a good feel for the place.
Have a great time!
Kiiri

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John

Hi, I’m bringing the family to Genoa for a couple of days before getting on our first cruise (yikes!)….but what to do….we will have 1 whole spare day – do we do the Portofino peninsula or the Cinque Terre….

Is it better to do by Train or by Boat or a combination…..or are there good private tours?….

Any help very gratefully recieved….

Thanks!

Reply

Kiiri @ Italian Fix

Hi John,
Really either one is a great day trip from Genova. Portofino is tiny and doable in an afternoon. You can walk out to the lighthouse and Castello Brown and do some shopping, but most of the draw is just sitting and having lunch while gazing out at the giant yachts docked in the marina. I would choose this option if you want to feel fancy for a day and you’d prefer taking it easy as opposed to walking a lot. You would take the train from Genova to Santa Margherita Ligure and then you could take the ferry to Portofino.
There’s more to cover in the Cinque Terre, and there will be more walking and climbing here. This is a good choice if you want to have a more active day, and aren’t interested in fancy. Again, take the train from Genova, get off at Monterosso, and then take the ferry from there to the other towns.
Have a great trip!
Kiiri

Reply

Sarah

Hi Bianca,
My friend and I are doing a 3 week European tour, unfortunately we will only be subscribing to the one-day in the Cinque Terre itinerary. We won’t be able to leave Milan until around 5pm getting us into the region no earlier than 8. From everything I’ve read on your blog and the amazing pictures from some of the links I have found on here we would love to stay in Riomaggiore, I do know that it’s a smaller village and that Italian customs aren’t suited to the 24/7 timeframe that we operate on stateside (jealous of that tbh). Just wondering if a later check in like that would even be possible in Riomaggiore of if we should look to some of the larger towns (La Spezia, Monterosso)

Thanks so much,
Sarah

Reply

Kiiri @ Italian Fix

Hi Sarah,
You’re right, many places don’t allow for late check-ins, but some do, even in Riomaggiore. I would get in contact with places you like and ask. If you can’t find anything, then have a look in Monterosso, where they have some more conventional hotels.
Have a great trip!
Kiiri

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Tania

Hi Bianca
We will be in the port of Genoa on the 2 June 2016 which I believe is a public holiday. We are a group of 4 wanting to see cinque terra. Can you tell me the best way to see it all in a day. I believe you can catch a train from the train station near the Genoa port and there are ferries too. If possible would love a step by step guide to do it ourselves or if there is a reasonably priced tour. Thanks Tania

Reply

Kiiri @ Italian Fix

Hi Tania,
There’s no ferry all the way from Genova, so you’ll have to hop on a train to Monterosso. You can then take the ferry from there to see the rest of the towns (besides Corniglia, which doesn’t have a port, so you’ll have to train it there too). Check out train schedules at trenitalia.com.
Have a great trip!
Kiiri

Reply

Hannah

Hello,
I am excited to be traveling by train to Italy with my 2 daughters (6 & 3) this summer. We will stay in Genoa for the night (they are pesto nuts!) and then I would like to show them the Cinque Terre. I thought the best way to do this might be to take the little ferry along the coast from one end to the other, making one or two stops. I would so appreciate your thoughts on this. We would probably stay in Pisa next on our way to Lago Trasimeno….
many thanks, Hannah

Reply

Kiiri @ Italian Fix

Hi Hannah,
I have a two-year-old, and she loves taking the ferry from town to town. Really, what kid doesn’t love a boat ride? So I think that’s a great way to see the villages. And I hear your girls on the pesto — I could eat it every day (and often do)!
Have fun!
Kiiri

Reply

Rajini

Hi Bianco,
Love your blog.

My partner and I are planning to visit Cinque Terre mid Sept for 1.5 days (training it from Pisa). What village would you recommend? I’d def like to do the trek that give us the view of the sea and colourful buildings. So gorge! Any suggestion would be really helpful 🙂

Reply

Kiiri @ Italian Fix

Hi Rajini,
Check out our Beginner’s Guide to the Cinque Terre post for the lowdown on the towns, and have a great trip!
Kiiri

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yaerim

Dear Bianco,

Ciao!!
I was googling about Cinque terre and found your beautiful and informative your blog.
I really love it!!

I just bought flight ticket yesterday to go to Italy.
So excited to go there. It will be my very first time to go there.
I will be landed in Oct 2nd at Rome and look around Rome for 2 days and going to Cinque terre for staying one night! (for looking 5 village, I want to use hop on and off ferry I guess, if you have any better Idea, feel free to let me know)
And head to Milan on 5th.
But I have no idea how to make a route.
If you can help me, it will be really really helpful.

Thank you.
BR
Yaerim (Rim)

Reply

Kiiri @ Italian Fix

Hi Yaerim,
Sounds like you have a great trip planned, and it’ll be your first time in Italy — how exciting! The best resource for figuring out how to move around by train is trenitalia.com, within the Cinque Terre and between there and Milan. Just remember to type in each individual town name, not “Cinque Terre.”
Have a great trip!
Kiiri

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Lora

Thanks so much for this article!
My trip plan has me staying in La Spezia for 2 nights in
September and now I know exactly what I want to do! I love hiking, and now I plan to spend my one full day hiking between the villages!

Reply

Kiiri @ Italian Fix

Wonderful, Lora! Have a great time!

Reply

Lena Loizides

First of all your blog is beuatiful and informative!!
We will be staying for 4 nights in Milan and we would love to scehdule a day trip to Chinque Terre and Portofino. We will travel by train to La Spezia or St Margherita Ligure depending on the intenary we will follow. Is it possible to combine both in one day? If yes which way is the best to do it?

Many thanks

Reply

Kiiri @ Italian Fix

Hi Lena,
Honestly trying to do both Portofino and the Cinque Terre in a single day is pushing it. You’ll find yourselves rushing through it all instead of actually enjoying each individual place. I wouldn’t recommend it. If you’re going to be in Milan for four nights and are determined to see both, consider doing a day trip to the Cinque Terre one day, and to Portofino another day.
Hope that helps!
Kiiri

Reply

lena

First of all your blog is beuatiful and informative!!
We will be staying for 4 nights in Milan and we would love to scehdule a day trip to Chinque Terre and Portofino. We will travel by train to La Spezia or St Margherita Ligure depending on the intenary we will follow. Is it possible to combine both in one day? If yes which way is the best to do it?

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Sofia

My friends and I are planning to visit Cinque Terre for one night in the third week of October. We will be taking the train from Milan. We will probably have big luggages since we will be visiting other countries in Europe. Please advise on an accommodation that has a lift or no stairs in any of the villages. We are thinking of staying in vernazza. But will consider other villages if need be. Thank you

Reply

Kiiri @ Italian Fix

Hi Sofia,
Yikes… This is really not the place to come if you want to avoid steps or are looking for elevators. Your best bet is to book somewhere in Monterosso, which is the flattest of the towns and is the most likely to have hotels with elevators. But be sure to ask about this before you book — it’s not a given by any means that any place will have a lift here.
In bocca al lupo!
Kiiri

Reply

Sasha

I am planning to visit Cinque Terre for one night in the third week of October. Should I be concerned about the weather? If we are looking to enjoy the beach at Monterroso, what hostel do you suggest we stay in?

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Kiiri @ Italian Fix

Hi Sasha,
October can be hit and miss for weather. Last year people were swimming all the way up until Halloween. In 2011, there was serious flooding here that devastated Vernazza and Monterosso both. So you just can’t know this far in advance.
As for hostels, the official ones are in Manarola and Corniglia, but the towns are all so close to one another that taking the train from there to the beach in Monterosso takes about ten minutes. Monterosso tends to have the most expensive accommodations (along with Vernazza), so if you’re looking to save, I’d check first in Riomaggiore, Manarola and Corniglia.
Have a great trip!
Kiiri

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Neekan A

Ciao!

My family and I unfortunately have not been able to reserve a tour since we arrive in Cinque Terre at noon and staying for only one night.

We are staying in Monterroso and would like to see Manarola, Vernazza and Riomaggiore.

Do you think it’s possible to see all of that in one day?
If so what is the itinerary you suggest?

Reply

Kiiri @ Italian Fix

Hi Neekan,
Yes, you can absolutely see all five towns in a single afternoon — it takes just minutes to get from one to the other by train. The order is up to you, but if the ferries are still running you could head in one direction by boat and come back to Monterosso at the end of the day by train. (Just keep in mind that Corniglia has no port and so the ferries don’t stop there.)
Have fun!
Kiiri

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Tim

Hi there….Great website. Best on the area I have seen. My wife and I are going to Cinque Terre next week for the day. I was thinking walking from Monterrosso to Vernazza, then catching the train to Corniglia and then Manarola for lunch at Nessun Dorma. Then Train back to Monterrosso. How does that sound. Can we leave a car for the day AT Monterrosso ?

Reply

Vu Hoang Linh

Ciao,
Thanks for your great website! Got a lot of information from your website
I will go to visit Cinque Terre next summer,I have 4 nights in Genoa and plan to have day trip to Cinque Terre. Do you think it’s enough to spend just 1 day there? I would love to spend at least 1 or 2 night there but we have kid and it is not easy when travel alot with a kid. I take train to Genoa from Geneva (need to transit at Milan), it take me 6-7 hours, and 4 days later fly from Genoa to Paris. Do you have any recommendation for us to spend 1 day in Cinque Terre? I’ve read your 1 day in CT but would love to have more advise from you before I make the booking in Genoa.

Thanks again and hope to hear from you!!!

Reply

nb

hi
we are coming from uk in july and intending to visit venice then florence then pisa and one or two villages of cinque tierre. maximum 4 night stay in total. thiking to stay for a day or 1.5 day in venice n then go to florence stay at night roam next day in florence n then leave for pisa. stay at pisa for a night and then see leaning tower of pisa n via train go to cinque tierre. roam around cinque tierre the next day n take flight back to venice from there . we dont know italian and we dont wanna drive and afraid of getting lost. so will prefer direct trains or plane . however we are not sure is my travel plan good enough. want to have gandola ride in venice and leaning tower of pisa and florence one or two main sightseeing and then conque tierre main first town riomeggiroe ( wrong spellings sorry) to take some picture walk in a village enjoy some sunshine at beach.

Reply

Joanna

Hi,
I’m planning to visit Cinque Terre in April, just for two nights. What is the weather by that time? What are your recommendations?

Reply

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