Travel: Cinque Terre, Italy

Jenna Kutcher 

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June 5, 2015


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We only had one full day there (two nights) and so we strategized and saved the big hike for the full day. The best part about this time of year is that the sun sets rather late, so we still got to enjoy two afternoons on the beach but each of us agreed that if we could re-plan our trip, we would have stayed at least one (if not two) more nights to really soak in all of Cinque Terre. This would be the perfect place to celebrate an anniversary or enjoy a honeymoon and I am already trying to convince Drew to go with me next year on our annual getaway! The best part about this stop is that there really aren’t any major tourist draws, so you actually feel like you are part of their community. I ate the best focaccia bread of my life, enjoyed a few drinks on the beach, soaked in some sunrays, and then we ate dinner on the boardwalk. The hike was amazing, probably the highlight of my entire trip. We walked over 13 miles that day and it wasn’t exactly a flat walk but it was worth every minute. The views throughout the hike were crazy, the people we met while adventuring were so fun to chat with, and it was such a cool way to see the different villages and check out more of Cinque Terre! We could have kept hiking but we wanted to get back and enjoy one last bit of beach before heading to France! You guys, if you have any sort of chance, get to Cinque Terre. You absolutely will not regret it!

Things we did:

  • Enjoy drinks on the beach the moment we arrived
  • Walk through the whole village of Monterosso
  • Hike from Monterosso to Vernazza to Corniglia
  • Ate incredible pasta in Corniglia, still thinking about that pesto
  • Spend the evenings on the beach, we closed the beach down one night
  • Devoured a giant bowl of seafood cous cous, yum
  • Had our first eggs and bacon on the trip
  • Took the train back from Corniglia to Monterosso


Tips and Tricks:

–       We loved staying in Monterosso because that’s the only village of the five with a beach, our place was two blocks from the water!

–       The hike was one of my favorite parts from the entire trip, we left early in the morning and took our time in the villages we visited.

–       You used to be able to hike to all five but a flood washed out the trail to the last two villages, there are routes not on the water that can be taken, however, after our long hike, we were good with only going to Corniglia.

–        Wear sunscreen on your hike.

–        I legit ate the best bread I have ever had in my life at a place called Foccacia Antonia in Monterosso, go there and get the cheesy bread!

–        Bring toilet paper or kleenex along on the hike, some of the bathroom stops are not actual toilets, don’t say I didn’t warn you.

–         Talk to people on the trail while hiking, we met some amazing people while adventuring, it was so fun and made the uphills a little more bearable.

–         You can get a ferry pass that will take you from each village by boat! We wanted to do this but had already bought our train pass. When I got back next time, I’ll totally do the ferry so I can see each village from the water!

–        Stay here for as long as you seriously can. This was all of our favorite stops along the way, we had only wished we had saved an extra day or two to spend more time enjoying the beach and the sites of the colorful villages. I could seriously spend a week here alone!

–        Just go here. Okay? You may have never heard of it but it’s amazing, it’s calling your name.

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  1. Julie says:

    Ok, you convinced me! It’s stunning!

  2. These pictures make my heart hurt for Italy!!

    I LOVE Cinque Terre and am so glad you got to experience it. When I studied abroad a few years ago I went one day with family that was visiting (just as a day trip from Florence) and loved it so much that I insisted some friends come back with me another weekend! I feel so lucky to have gotten to go twice in just a few short weeks and totally agree with you that I wish I had been able to stay longer, I loved it there. It’s one of the most breathtaking places I have ever seen. Both the views and the hike which was way harder than I expected! We were there just a few months after that mudslide so all the “easy” trails were closed and we had to basically hike all the way up the mountain, over and then straight down. We were legit rock climbing at some points and it took a good five hours but I remember at one point we were climbing on this mountain, walking through a random person’s lemon orchard, looking out over a little vineyard, with the ocean in the background. It’s one of those moments I will treasure forever.

    I don’t know that any pictures will ever do this place justice, but yours are the closest I have seen! Great work Jenna!!

    xo Mary-Katherine

    PS: Sorry for the super long comment, eek!!

  3. amanda says:

    Love it! You’re pictures are gorgeous! My husband and I are planning a trip from Nice/Cannes (not sure where we will be staying yet) to Cinque Terre this summer. Is there a B&B/hotel you would recommend there? Also…Nice vs Cannes…thoughts?

  4. Carrie Lemaster says:

    Jenna, where did you stay?, and do you knowcwhatvthe weather is like here in February?

  5. Carrie says:

    CInque Terre is by far one of my most favorite places! I spent days there when we first moved to Europe and was simply smitten! I love seeing your pictures of the similar spots! Did you by chance find the “secret beach”?! We ended up hiking all five towns in one day, I would love to go back and experience the beaches a bit more 😉 Love love love these!

  6. Irene says:

    Hi Jenna,
    I would love to know where you stayed. We intend to visit Italy in 2019.


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A small town Minnesota photographer, podcaster, educator and puppy rescuer, my happiest days are spent behind my computer screen sharing my secrets with the world. I'm glad you're here.

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