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Hiking The Cinque Terre


Cinque Terre, which means five lands, is a stretch of five old villages that run along the Italian Riviera coastline. Each town has its own unique look and feel, but in all you will find colorful buildings, charming shops and great food. There are very few cars making train, boat and hiking the main ways to access the picturesque villages.

Hiking the full length of the five villages can be done in one day, although I wouldn’t recommend it. The full trail will take anywhere from 5-8 hours depending on how experienced of a hiker you are and how long you stop in each town. Instead, stay for a night or two in one of the towns and experience the culture, food and relaxing beauty of this region.

Monterosso to Vernazza

The most difficult section of the hike is from Monterosso to Vernazza. When I say difficult I mean difficult. There are 700 stairs and you will get tired. Give yourself ample time for the hike which can take about 2 hours. I highly recommend completing the most challenging hike first though, plus you will experience some amazing views to start your journey. The view of Vernazza just before you hike down to town is amazing and on many postcards.

Vernazza to Corniglia

Vernazza is a lovely town that is very picturesque. You’ll want to spend a little time taking in the beauty, amazing food and maybe even a stop at one of the bars in town before you hit leg two.

The hike from Vernazza to Corniglia is about 2 hours long, but not as difficult as leg one of the journey. You’ll see exotic plants and lush olive groves as well as spectacular views.

Corniglia to Manarola

The next leg hiking the Cinque Terre is relatively easy with views of the water and plenty of gardens. The trek from Corniglia to Manarola is a nice change of pace which takes about 1 hour and 15 minutes.

Manarola to Riomaggiore

Known as the “Villa’dellAmore” or “lovers lane” this is the the easiest portion of the cinque terre with flat paved paths and the famous kissing statue and tunnel. It takes about 30 minutes to walk and is a great romantic finish to a long Italian hike. Be sure to grab a bite to eat in Riomaggiore, you certainly earned it.

After a long day or two, depending on how you want to break it up, you can take the train back to whichever town you decided to stay at. Grab a glass and a bottle of wine and relax while looking at all the amazing photos you took. Hiking the Cinque Terre is something everyone should do once in their lifetime and you just checked it off the list.


Welcome to Jesse Takes The World, a travel blog geared towards the fun, exploring, adventurous traveler.

I’m Jesse and I started traveling the world in 2014. All it took was a trip to Mexico with a couple of friends and I was hooked. Ever since, I’ve been wandering the globe in search of adventure. Whether you need some advice on a short vacation from work or you’re wondering if you want to start traveling like a nomad stick around. These stories, pictures, and videos will inspire you to find adventure.


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