Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Cinque Terre October 7-10

Taylor had a four day weekend so I decided that we needed to go
somewhere. It was so hard to decide where to go! So many options! I
had finally decided on
Florence but then found out that tickets were already
sold out for the weekend to one of the famous museums. So I changed
our plans and Friday morning we headed to Cinque Terre by train. It was
AMAZING!! So beautiful. This is the kind of place you see in travel
magazines and we went here for a long weekend! There are five
towns that make up the Cinque Terre: from north to south-






We stayed in a hostel in Riomaggiore. We were in a small apt. That had
a bunk bed, two twins, and a queen, a small (gross) kitchenette, and
a bathroom.

Taylor has had a wide variety of hostel experiences when he traveled
Europe during college. I have had one hostel experience in Switzerland
and it was probably the nicest hostel out here.

Luckily, we had great room mates throughout the entire
weekend. The first night we met two Americans traveling separately
that were back packing through Europe. There were also two college
girls from
Estonia on school holiday. The next night we met two Irish
friends who were backpacking through Europe. Then the last night there
were two Canadian girls who were taking 5 weeks to tour around Europe.
It worked out great for us because we would leave early in the morning and
not come back till 9 or 10 pm. We would get home and talk to our new
room mates, sharing travel stories and tips, then go to bed. The only
problem we ran into was that Taylor and I were sleeping in twin beds
separated by a dresser so every night I would have to get up multiple
times to tell him to stop snoring! Also, the hostel was in an extremely
noisy locations. For some unknown reason they felt the need to ring the
town bell every hour on the hour!! And, oh by the way, at
7:00 am it rang
over 40 times. The first morning I stopped counting after 40 rings!!
Then the garbage truck would come and make all sorts of racket.
I would have worn my ear plugs but I was afraid I wouldn't be
able to hear Taylor snoring and then our room mates would
have to hear with him too! :) Even though the noise was annoying we only
paid about $170 for 3 nights so that was good.

On Friday, we arrived and toured around Riomaggiore where we stayed and
had a drink at this bar.

Yes, the one on the side of the cliff! We watched the sun set and then had dinner at a restaurant at the top of the town. See video below.

The next day we woke up early and began our hike through four of the towns. The walk from Riomaggiore to Manarola is called Via del'Amore or the Lover's Walk. It takes about 15-20 minutes. It is tradition to put a lock along the fence with your lover, so there are locks all along the path.

The trail from Manarola to Corniglia was closed so we had to take a 2.5 hour
detour which was AWESOME! My number one best experience of the trip.
We walked through two small villages, through grape vineyards, olive
trees, lemon trees, lime trees, and practically through people's backyards!!
It was beautiful! It was not crowded at all and the weather
was great! The trail was not marked well which made it sort of a
scavenger hunt.

Please excuse the director's instructions at the
beginning which were not able to be edited out.

The arrived in Corniglia just in time for lunch. We had a pizza picnic
at one of the piazzas where kids were playing soccer. We toured the
small sleepy town and then headed for Vernazza.

We decided to take the train to Monterosso and hang out at the beach while it was still warm.

It was pretty crowded, but we found a spot in the sand to rest. The
water was freezing but Taylor went for a quick swim. We stayed at the
beach until the sun went behind the mountain and then it got pretty
chilly. We did a quick change of clothes into our dinner outfit and
ate dinner in Monterrosso at a little restaraunt called L'alta Marea.
Mmmm... We trained it back to Riomaggiore and slept hard after our
full day of hiking.

Sunday morning we woke up early and caught the train to Vernazza. It
is only about a 4 min. ride between each town. We had breakfast by the
harbor and then did a tour of the town. When I say tour I mean that I
have Rick Steves's
Italy 2011 book and I'm dragging Taylor all around
the town reading to him about the interesting sites. I have loved
having his book! He gives us the history of the town, a do it yourself
walking tour, suggestions for places to stay and places to eat and all
sorts of little tips and advice.

Anyway, below is a spot right on the harbor where water
rushes up when a wave comes. See Taylor standing in the middle?

And now see the same spot filled with water?
Supposedly lots of tourists get drenched because
they are not paying attention. Luckily, Taylor was not one of them!

We then hiked from Vernazza to Monterosso since we skipped that part of the hike the previous day. We bought sandwhiches at a small deli and had lunch on the harbor.

Trail to Monterosso

I read that the beaches in Lavanto were really nice so we caught a
train to Levanto (which is just north of Monterosso.) It took about 5
minutes. We had an issue with the conductor because our tickets were not
valid, so it turned into a 25 Euro train ride when it should have been about 4.
I'll talk about our train adventures in a different post.

This beach had some great waves, so there were
lots of surfers that we got to watch!

We trained it back to Monterosso and had a glass of wine on their beach and went to eat in Manarola. We had a great weekend and took some amazing pictures. We also ate some great sea food which I will talk about in a different post!! Below are some more of my favorite pics.

Walking on the Via del'Amore at sunset.

This is where all the politicians running for office
have to put their campaign posters. This keeps down
on the clutter throughout the city streets.

Some amazing views.


Taylor in Riomaggiore.

Do you see all the terraces in the background? This
is where they have their wine vineyards, olive trees, etc.

Question: What are these rails throughout the
vineyards for??

Answer: For these little mono rail cars that people
could ride and to bring up the harvest.

View of Vernazza from the trail.

For more pictures from our trips, click on the link below.

1 comment:

  1. Gorgeous!! I'm so jealous!

    Did you and Tay place a lock on the Lover's Trail?? I sure hope so ;)