Saturday, January 12, 2013

Italy: Cinque Terre

I absolutely fell in love with Cinque Terre when I visited with my family in 2005.  I vaguely remember spending the flight back to the USA figuring out a plan so I could move there for the summer.  Needless to say, I was pretty obsessed.  Once we decided on Italy as our destination for this trip with Cam's family, we knew we needed to spend a day in Cinque Terre.  It was my favorite stop on this trip, and I think everyone else loved it, too.  It was nice and quiet since it's the off season.  We all got major workouts in, climbing up to our hotel which was near the top of Manarola.  (But the view was 100% worth the climb!) The weather honestly couldn't have been more perfect.  It was too warm for our jackets, and the sun felt glorious.  I think I'd forgotten what sun feels like. As far as what we did: there's not much to do in Cinque Terre besides wander around and marvel that what you're looking at is really in front of you and is not just a picture you're looking at.  There are five little cities: Riomaggiore, Manarola, Corniglia, Vernazza, and Monterosso.  In the summer you can walk the trails between the cities, but the trails were closed for us since it was the off season, so we had to rely on the trains that run between the cities every hour or so.  We visited Manarola, Vernazza, and Monterosso all together on friday; Cameron, Brendan, and I went to Riomaggiore in the evening for a great dinner while Greg and Kathy generously kept an eye on sleeping Andy.  Saturday morning was one of my favorite moments of the whole trip.  Greg, Cameron, Andy, and I got some incredible cream-filled pastries and then walked near the water and on the path that curves around the north side of Manarola.  It was perfect.  I've decided Manarola is definitely my favorite of the five.  Now, a bunch of pictures, all out of order because they're from three people's cameras: 
Manarola. Stunning, right?
Adorable Andy on the train ride from Florence.
The view from our room.
Andy got to play on the beach in Monterosso.  He loved throwing the sand so much, he was pretty devastated to leave.
Morning view from our room. 
Manarola in the morning

Monterosso's Beach
Andy loved the playground at the beach in Monterosso.
Vernazza.  You can see Monterosso off in the distance.
We stopped by this amazing (and cheap!) pizza place in La Spezia  twice: both on our way into Cinque Terre and out of it, too.  It really was that good.  Here we are with our sweet waiter. 


  1. It's BEAUTIFUL! I can't believe a place like that exists in real life. Thank you, thank you, thank you for sharing!!!!!!!!!

  2. That looks amazing! When I plan my Italy vacation I will definitely be calling you! I still can't believe how grown up Andy is looking, I can't wait to see him (and of course, you)!

  3. It is making me sad seeing Cameron today and not seeing you and Andy! I really miss you guys! These pictures are beautiful.

  4. oh my I remember how much we loved this! I'm jealous that you got to go back! Too bad you didnt have another romantic boatride in the moonlight with two italian strangers :)