The Cinque Terre is one of the most photogenic places in not just the Italian Riviera, but the whole of Italy. |
Picture postcard colourful houses clinging to the sides of stunning sheer cliffs give way to terraced olive groves and vineyards looking out over the sea that lead down quaint ports along the rugged coastline. It’s no wonder that the five towns (Manarola, Corniglia, Vernazza, Riomaggiore, and Monterosso al Mare) have been granted the status of a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
But tourists often miss out on some of the less well-known attractions of the area if they don’t visit with a local guide. Here are some of the best hidden gems you can look forward to seeing on Cinque Terre walking tours.
Hike from Manarola to Corniglia
This scenic trail leading from Manarola to Corgnilia promises a vast array of beautiful vineyards and agricultural fields. You’re sure to enjoy the panoramic views over the coast as you trek along the path on Cinque Terre walking tours while snapping a few excellent photos too!
Eat Authentic Gelato in the Harbour
When you wander through the harbour in Riomaggiore on Cinque Terre walking tours, take the time to stop for a scoop or two of gelato.
The pistachio and hazelnut flavours are especially creamy and delicious. What’s more, you can enjoy your cooling ice cream as you amble past the peaceful fishing boats in the hot sun.
Climb the Castello Doria Tower
The top of the Castello Doria tower in Vernazza features a 360 degree panoramic view of the port and the town. From this vantage point, you can even see Corniglia in the distance. The views here are some of the best along this part of the coastline.
Explore an Alleyway Labyrinth
The narrow streets of Vernazza are a joy to get lost in. Quaint houses line the labyrinth of alleyways around the town.
Thanks to a combination of their terracotta colour scheme, the luscious hanging house plants, and the staircases that riddle the streets, there is a distinctly Italian atmosphere to enjoy as you explore.
Delight in a Seafood Cone
Seafood cones are the local specialty of Cinque Terre. Walking tours can certainly work up an appetite, and what better way is there to refuel than by sampling authentic local cuisine?
The Il Bocconcino stall is well known for serving some of the freshest seafood cones around. You may have to queue, but the cone will be well worth the wait. Pairing your snack with a bottle of prosecco is highly recommended.
Watch the Sunset in Riomaggiore
At the end of the day, head past Bar Conchiglia and down the flight of stairs to your right. You can settle into a cosy spot close to the port to watch as the sky changes colour and the sun sets behind the cliffs and charmingly vivid houses.
These are just a few of the hidden gems to enjoy in these five jaw-droppingly beautiful towns in the Italian Riviera. As a final piece of advice, I would recommend using a reputable tour company when booking Cinque Terre walking tours. Having a local guide to introduce you to the history and culture will make your experience all the more magical.
Mauro Bramante is the Director of WalkAbout Florence, an independent business offering unforgettable Cinque Terre walking tours, Vintage Vespa tours, cooking classes and wine safaris. Wherever and whatever you want to explore Mauro's company promises excitement, adventure and above all, fun. If you're keen to experience the magic of Italy with the help of some passionate and knowledgeable tour guides, look no further than WalkAbout Florence for your next getaway.
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