- The real voyage of discovery consists not in seeking new lands but seeing with new eyes. Marcel Proust
Visit Cinque Terre, Italy
The Cinque Terre is a rugged portion of coast on the Italian Riviera. It is in the Liguria region of Italy, to the west of the city of La Spezia, and comprises five villages: Monterosso al Mare, Vernazza, Corniglia, Manarola, and Riomaggiore.
If you ever get tired of life, bypass the therapist and decamp immediately to Cinque Terre. Five crazily constructed fishing villages, set amid some of the most dramatic coastal scenery on the planet, these five ingeniously constructed fishing villages can bolster the most jaded of spirits. A Unesco World Heritage site since 1997, Cinque Terre isn't the undiscovered Eden it once was but, frankly, who cares? Sinuous paths traverse seemingly impregnable cliffsides, while a 19th-century railway line cut through a series of coastal tunnels ferries the footsore from village to village. Thankfully cars were banned a decade ago.
Why should you visit Cinque Terre?
It’s utterly charming
This is one of those places that pictures actually do justice to in the sense that Cinque Terre delivers on them and then some. Whether you are visiting Corniglia on the hilltop or Manarola’s picturesque village square you will constantly have to pinch yourself to make sure you’re not dreaming.
The people are super welcoming and friendly
Whether it’s asking for directions or stopping in for a quick limoncello there is always a local ready to chat, even with the language barrier. You’d be surprised how much people can communicate over the universal language of drinking wine and eating bruschetta.
Ligurian seafood will blow your mind
Like all of Italy the food is amazing, but when it comes to seafood the people of the Ligurian region knock it out of the park. It is straight from the sea to your plate and will knock your socks off, especially the anchovies which the area is known for.
All five towns are connected by the Sentiero Azzuro
The “Light Blue Trail” is a gorgeous way to walk from town to town along Cinque Terre’s cliffs. Plus, the path between Manarola and Riomaggiore is referred to as the “Love Walk,” which is the perfect place to pop the question or just make out for a bit.
Just about anywhere you stay will have breathtaking views
Whether it’s a four-star hotel like the Porto Roca or a small B&B run by a little old lady you will be satisfied. Even if your view is just of an adjacent building it will be the most charming thing you’ll ever see. And if you can’t find anyplace to stay in Cinque Terre you can always rest your head in nearby towns Levanto or La Spezia, which are only a quick train ride away.