Terre advice from other JW...
Denise Riesen from Schaumburg,
Although you can take the train and boat between towns, the
Cinque Terre is great for hiking between villages. My tip
is to hike from North to South (Monterrosa, Vernazza, Corniglia,
Manarola, then Riomaggiore). The hike from Monterossa to Vernazza
is long and tough, and requires sturdy shoes, and A LOT of
water (most of the hikes are not shaded), as is the hike from
Vernazza to Corniglia. We brought hiking sticks with us, that
were very useful, as some paths are narrow, and there is some
climbing -- we had people along the way wanting to buy them
from us! The hikes from Corniglia to Manarola, as well as
Manarola to Riomaggiore are shorter distances and less strenuous.
Although you can mix your hiking between towns with either
train or boat services, my recommendation is to be sure to
hike into Corniglia from Vernazza, as you will avoid having
to climb UP the 365 stairs into the town that you would otherwise
have to climb if you hiked the other direction, or took the
train or boat. We broke up our hiking through the Cinque Terre
into two days. The first day, we hiked from Monterrosa to
Vernazza, and took the boat back to Monterrosa. The second
day, we took the train to Vernazza (where we left off with
hiking) and hiked the rest of the towns the same day, and
took a train back from Riomaggiore to Monterrosa.
favorite town was Vernazza. We did not stay in Cinque Terre
-- we stayed in Devia Marina (two five-minute train stops
away from Cinque Terre) at Hotel Ristorante Clelia, Corso
Italia 23, tel: 0187-815827. Recommended!
If you are going to Cinque Terre, it's probably a good idea
to print off Denise's advice. It could come in very handy
when planning your hiking itinerary.
Sandra Burns from Courtenay,
There are no roads to connect the five glorious villages of
Cinque Terre. They are connected by thousand year old donkey
paths and small trains and are spectacular as they cling to
the cliffs above the Mediterranean. We walked there for a
week, using the self guided maps from Sherpa Walking Holidays
in the U.K.
According to The National Geographic Traveler Italy,' the
well-signed Via dell'Amore (Path of Love) between Manarolla
and Riomaggiore is the most famous hike and covers just 1
mile (1.6 km).