Thursday, June 6, 2013

Italy 2013: Cinque Terre

Sunday we had another early rise as we ventured down to Florence to hop on our bus and headed to the Cinque Terre, the Italian Riviera. You have most likely seen photos of this glorious place on Pinterest. It is made up of five villages: Monterossa al Mare, Vernazza, Corniglia, Manarola, & Riomaggiore. Each village is unique and beautiful all of its own. 

We were dropped in Manarola to walk around the town with picturesque views from the start. Then we boarded the train to Corniglia where we enjoyed lunch (after hiking up 350 stairs). The intimate restaurant overlooked the sea and was complete with a delicious assortment of Italian seafood.

After lunch, we hiked from Corniglia to Vernazza. The terrain was slightly muddy due to the rain from the previous day, but it was great to work up a sweat and burn some calories in the sunshine. Once we arrived in Vernazza, I decided to take a dip in the Mediterranean Sea to cool off. And yes it was cool!

Next we trained it to Monterossa and downed a glass of vino to refresh from the hike & swim. In a rush to get to Riomaggiore, we sprinted back to the train station and hopped aboard. With all of the walking we could handle for the day complete, our entire group parked it at a bar overlooking the Mediterranean and enjoyed a few glasses of vino & antipasta. It was the perfect ending to a fabulous day.

The Cinque Terre is a must see in Italy. You could theoretically stay there for a week and hop from town to town. But at the very least, for a day, go see the beauty of "the five lands."

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