Cinque Terre, also known as “The Five Lands”, is one of the most stunning vacation spots nestled on the northern coast of Italy. Having a more rugged appearance than other areas, Cinque Terre draws its tourists in by its unforgettable views of the Mediterranean and the scenic hiking trails between the five villages.
Unfortunately, I wasn’t able to visit all five while I was there, but I did spend my time in the largest village of the strip, Monterosso al Mare. Monterosso stands as one of the more touristy spots in Cinque Terre because it draws people in with its clear waters, endless cliffs and relaxing beaches.
Something I particularly enjoyed when I visited Monterosso were the encounters I had with the locals. On our first day there, we went to a local restaurant, which was situated right on the beach, and we spent the majority of our dinner with the owners who told us about how they came to Monterosso. This couple found it hilarious when I would attempt to say anything in Italian, so they ended up helping me with my pronunciations when I was ordering from the menu. Unfortunately, I don’t remember any specific restaurant names, but just ask around and you can’t go wrong.
After a particularly frightening drive up a very steep and narrow road, we finally arrived at our hotel, Hotel Porto Roca. Painted in white and decorated with blue fences and umbrellas, we were led to our rooms which had a perfect view of the ocean and rocky cliffs of the Monterosso landscape.
We, regretfully, didn’t have enough time to do the hike between all five villages, but we did have time to explore the various paths in Monterosso. These trails act as the perfect tour guide because while my family and I were walking along the hiking paths, we saw many different sights, such as hundred-year-old castles, detailed statues and vibrant local houses.
Also, make sure to hike in a bathing suit because if it gets too hot, you can climb down to the water below and take a swim.
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