In the eastern part of the Ligurian Riviera (the Riviera di Levante) lies a place of great charm. 

Not just one place, but five different villages with common features and therefore grouped under one name: the Cinque Terre.

The Cinque terre, 5 villages to visit. In the Riviera di Levante lies a place every year among the most popular destinations in northern Italy for many Italian and foreign tourists. A strip of land with a particular and unique flavour that will amaze you.

The Cinque Terre are located in the easternmost part of the Riviera di Levante, a 350 km territory covering four provinces (Savona, Imperia, Genoa and La Spezia). 

Discover Riomaggiore, Manarola, Corniglia, Vernazza and Monterosso with us and take the opportunity to experience an unforgettable adventure.

The Cinque Terre, Riomaggiore

Riomaggiore is the easternmost locality of the Cinque Terre. The first records date back to 1252, when the inhabitants of the district of Carpena swore loyalty to the Republic of Genoa. 

From that moment on and for the whole of the following century, the population decided to descend towards the sea and therefore to build this village. The Genoese with Riomaggiore thus had a safer access to the sea and the possibility to develop fast and secure trade. 

This village is characterised by its two- or three-storey houses with the typical Ligurian colours that you will also find in the places we will talk about in a little while.

Worth seeing: 

  • Neo-Gothic style church dedicated to Saint John the Baptist (from 1340)
  • The Castle of Riomaggiore
  • The Oratory of Santa Maria Assunta containing a beautiful 15th century triptych.
  • The Via dell’Amore (the Road of Love), a path famous for its beautiful views, which leads from Riomaggiore to Manarola.
  • The parish church of San Lorenzo. A building from 1338 with a rose-shaped window from the 9th century.

Manarola, a medieval village to discover

Manarola is a hamlet of Riomaggiore. It is a medieval village founded in the 12th century and its name probably derives from the ancient “Magna roea“, i.e. the mill wheel in the village.

It is a real urban jewel, perhaps the most picturesque village of the Cinque Terre, recognisable by its colourful tower-houses perched on the caruggi (alleys) and the main street. Practically the whole village develops along this main street, which to the visitor’s eye may seem like a miniature construction. A main street and many alleys developed on a promontory and leading upwards to the main square of this picturesque village of medieval origin.

The most important monument in Manarola is definitely worth a visit: the Church of San Lorenzo, with three naves and built in 1338 by the inhabitants of Manarola and Volastra.

Corniglia, a village looking inland

Of the five towns in the Cinque Terre, Corniglia is the only one that is not in contact with the sea, but on a rocky promontory. It is characterised by low and wide houses, as is usual in the hinterland, thus demonstrating its propensity towards the interior rather than the sea.

Worth seeing: 

  • The Gothic-Genovese style church of San Pietro. Built around 1350 on the remains of an earlier building, it has a rose window that embellishes the façade, which also bears a bas-relief depicting a deer, the town’s emblem.
  • The Oratory of the Disciplinati with a breathtaking view of the sea 
  • Largo Taragio, the true heart of Corniglia.

Vernazza, the most evocative of the Cinque Terre

The history of Vernazza is also told through the remains of the ancient medieval fortifications dating back to the 11th century, which still include what was once a castle and a cylindrical tower. A very suggestive village, whose first evidence dates back to 1080, it is characterised by its houses separated by a single central street with steep stairways (arpaie) at right angles.

Sights: Santa Margherita di Antiochia, a 12th-century Romanesque-Genovese church in which it is possible to recognise both a Medieval and a Renaissance part.

Monterosso al Mare, the largest village

Monterosso al Mare is the largest village in the Cinque Terre and the first one we have evidence of, in chronological order (1056). To prevent attacks from the sea, fortifications were built in the Middle Ages, the remains of which are still visible in the old village. 

Worth seeing: 

The church of San Giovanni Battista, in front of which stood the palace of the Podestà, of which only traces remain.

The Fieschi Castle

-The monastery with the church of San Francesco that preserves paintings of great artistic value, such as the paintings of Van Dick

Villa Montale. The residence where the famous author Eugenio Montale stayed.

Riviera di Levante. An adventure in a kayak

Explore the waters of the Riviera di Levante with a kayaking adventure.

Start in Monterosso and proceed along the coast of the Cinque Terre. 

An experience recommended for everyone, even those who have never been in a kayak before.

You will cross the Protected Marine Area of the Cinque Terre with an expert guide and, passing through hidden coves and rugged cliffs, you will admire the pastel colours of the Cinque Terre villages that your gaze will encounter.

You will see not only breathtaking landscapes, but also a natural environment to be discovered, where you can spot unusual sea birds and even dolphins!If you decide to enjoy this adventure in the evening to watch the sunset, you will then take a break on one of the beaches to sip a glass of wine and watch the sun disappear behind the horizon.

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