Day 1: Arrive Monterosso
We recommend flying to Genoa or Pisa, which have good train connections to Monterosso. Florence is also an option.
Settle into your accommodation, step outside and breathe in the fresh, crisp air of the Mediterranean Sea. The hustle and bustle of the historic centre of Monterosso is captivating. Alternatively head to the wide sandy beach for the afternoon.
Overnight: Hotel Marina, Monterosso or Albergo Degli Amici, Monterosso
DAY 2: Soviore to Vernazza or Corniglia to Riomaggiore
Todays walk begins with a very steep section up an ancient cobbled path to Soviore. (If you wish to avoid this steep section you can take a taxi to Soviore from Monterosso) On arrival in Soviore you can either stop to visit the local Monastery or immediately begin your walk towards Vernazza. Follow a panoramic path that slightly descends to the Madonna di Reggio, a Sanctuary that is located on the hills behind the little town of Vernazza. From here continue walking on a stone path down to this pretty port full of coloured houses and fishing boats.
Alternatively you may choose to embark on the walk from Corniglia to Riomaggiore. Use your Cinque Terre Pass to take a train from Monterosso to Corniglia which is situated on top of a promontory and surrounded on three sides by vineyards and terraces. The fourth side descends steeply into the sea. From here you walk up the path towards Volastra and on towards Riomaggiore. Then take a train back to Monterosso.
Soviore to Vernazza Walk: 9km, 1111m Ascent/1118m Descent, 3 Hours
Corniglia to Riomaggiore Walk: 11km, 1003m Ascent/980m Descent, 3 Hours
Day 3: Walk from Bonassola to Deiva Marina
Today you walk through the hills of the Eastern Riviera between Bonassola, Framura and Deiva Marina. A short train journey brings you to Bonassola where your walk begins. Teh first section of the walk to Framura is particularly beautiful and rewards you with panoramic views over the northern Ligurian coast. Deiva Marina is a lovely little town with a wide sandy beach. Perfect for a swim before you catch the train back to Monterosso.
Walk: 11km, 890m Ascent/Descent, 4 Hour
Day 4: Walk from Monterosso to Levanto
Follow the coastline from Monterosso to the idyllic painter’s paradise of Levanto, located in the centre of a charming valley surrounded by green hills and blue sea. Along the way, pass the Promontory of Mesco, a lookout point where you can visit the ruins of the Chapel of Sant’ Antonio Semaforo. Return either by train or on foot by one of two trails.
Walk: 6.5km, 619m Ascent/611m Descent, 3 Hours
Day 5: Walk from Riomaggiore to Portovenere
This really is a superlative day of walking. Begin by taking the train to Riomaggiore and enjoying the relaxed (and very busy) lovers walk before the real walking begins. Leaving Riomaggiore you climb mule tracks through deciduous forests to enjoy panoramic views of the Gulf of La Spezia, known as the Gulf of Poets it's easy to appreciate why Shelly and Byron were so inspired by this magical coastline.
The views are tremendous as you continue south towards Portovenere. The day finishes with a steep descent (which can be avoided by bus) to the colourful houses and super yacht filled harbour in Portovenere.
Walk: 13km, 854m Ascent/858m Descent, 6 Hours
Overnight: Hotel Paradiso or Hotel Belvedere, Portovenere
Day 6: Circular walk on Palmaria Island
Take the ferry to Palmaria Island today for a wonderful days walking. Explore the coastline, discover the fascinating caves, visit the disused marble quarry and perhaps stumble across the fantastic variety of rare reptiles and marine birds.
Walk: 6.5km, 320m Ascent/Descent, 2.5 Hours
Day 7: Onward Travel
Regular buses connect Portovenere to La Spezia which has good train connections to Pisa, Genoa or Florence Airports or other destinations in Italy.
Why not extend your time in Italy with a few nights in Genoa, Pisa or Florence? We offer several short city extensions at hand picked hotels so you can explore these wonderful cities.
You will spend the first four nights at a charming family run 3 star hotel in the heart of Monterosso and two nights at a lovely 3 star seafront hotel in Portovenere. Depending on availability we use the following hotels.
Hotel Marina, Monterosso
This small and charming family run 3 star hotel is located on a narrow street in the historic centre of the old fishing village of Monterosso.
Hotel Amici, Monterosso
Hotel Degli Amici is a 3 star hotel located in the historical centre of Monterosso, in an extremely peaceful area, surrounded by vineyards and olive trees, just 150 meters from the sea.
Hotel Paradiso, Portovenere
This lovely small hotel is located right on seafront and the restaurant terraces have wonderful views of the Gulf of Portovenere and Palmaria Island.
Hotel Belvedere, Portovenere
With great views of the harbour Hotel Belvedere has been welcoming guests for over 40 years. The small but comfortable rooms all have fantastic views from their balconies and the hotel is perfect for experiencing the best of Portovenere.
Single rooms are available but attract a supplement.
This is a great holiday for solo walkers. If you are travelling solo the holiday is slightly more expensive as some costs are not shared.
The delicious Italian food and wine available locally is undoubtedly a highlight of this holiday. The price of your holiday includes breakfast each morning. Lunch and dinner are not included so you are free to choose from the available options.
When required your bags will be transferred from your hotel and moved onto your next overnight accommodation. We ask you to limit your luggage to one bag of up to 20kg per person.
Your information pack has a detailed equipment list which includes standard walking gear such as good walking boots or shoes, waterproofs, comfortable walking clothes, warm and waterproof clothes and a day pack.
This holiday is graded easy to moderate because although the daily walks are relatively short the terrain is very hilly and summer temperatures can be high.
The walks follow ancient footpaths and mule tracks. Many are made up of steep stone staircases and some are literally cut into the cliff so if heights aren’t your thing this may not be the best trip for you.
You will be following way marked trails for many of your walks and we supply very detailed route notes and maps so navigation is generally easy.
***Hydrogeological instability in the Cinque Terre region can at times cause the closure of certain sections of the trails. Before embarking on your daily walk please check with your accommodation and also if possible with go to the Cinque Terre National Park website.
Getting to Monterosso
Genoa or Pisa Airports are the most convenient although Florence is also a possibility. Regular trains (1h20, 2h30 and 3h30 respectively) connect the airports to Monterosso, normally connecting in La Spezia. Visit www.trenitalia.it for times, prices and booking. Tickets can be purchased on arrival or online prior to departure. Our pre-departure information pack has detailed public transport information so you will have no problem reaching the Cinque Terre.
Travel from Portovenere
Buses run every 30 minutes (15 minutes in peak season) from Portovenere to La Spezia and take about 40 minutes and cost 1.90€ single. Alternatively a taxi costs about 40€. From La Spezia trains connect to Pisa, Genoa or Florence Airports as well as other destinations in Italy. Visit www.trenitalia.it for times, prices and booking.
Travelling by Car
Much of the Cinque Terre is closed to non residential traffic. There are two guarded car parks in Monterosso where you can leave your car for the duration of your trip.
Travel in the Cinque Terre
The excellent local train service connects all the villages and is what you will use to access many of the walks. It is cheap, frequent and easy. Another pleasant alternative is to use the local ferry services to travel between villages.
We are often asked the following questions and we hope that you will find the answers useful. Don't hesitate to contact one of our Italy specialists if you have any further queries.
Are the walking trails open again following the flooding of October 2011?
There are still a few trails closed as a result of this flooding. However we have adapted our walking itineraries and on the walks that we include the trails are all open. Fortunately there are lots of choices! However due to the fact that this area can at times suffer from hydrogeological instability, it is always advisable that before setting out for your daily walk you check with your accommodations about possible trail closures and if possible also the Cinque Terre National Park website.
How fit do I need to be?
This walking holiday is graded easy to moderate and involves between three and seven hours of walking each day. Some of the paths are very steep so you should be in pretty good shape to get the most from this holiday.
All of the walks can be shortened by using public transport and all walks are optional so you can always take a day or two off if you wish.
When is the best time of year?
Spring in the Cinque Terre is sublime! April, May and June are absolutely lovely and the wild flowers are at their best. September & October are also lovely as the vineayards change to a pallet of reds and golds and the coast has that lazy late summer feeling.
July and August can be very hot so you will have to start early to miss the heat of the day, although the towns and villages are buzzing which is great.
How far in advance do I need to book?
We suggest you book as soon as your plans are finalised as this area is extremely popular. You will find up to date availability on our website and we will always try and accommodate your plans so just ask.
What personal equipment do I need?
You will need good walking shoes/boots, comfortable walking clothes, waterproof jacket and trousers, a daypack and hats/gloves etc.
Which is the best airport?
Pisa and Genoa are both equally convenient and are connected to Monterosso by frequent trains. Florence is also a possibility but the transfer time is a little longer.
This walking holiday is available from the March to October. You can start your holiday on any date in the season. To make a provisional reservation select "Book" for the itinerary you are interested in.
The price does increase in high season (Easter & May - September).
Option prices will be displayed as part of the booking process.
Because every holiday we book is bespoke, availability changes from day to day and our booking process works as follows:
- You provisionally book the tour you are interested in for your preferred dates and pay a 20% deposit online or by phone.
- We confirm availability and book all your accommodation and options and send final confirmation as soon as everything is confirmed (max 5 working days).
- If we are unable to accommodate you on your confirmed dates/tour or an alternative of your choice your deposit is fully refunded.
||Trails of the Cinque Terre
||6 Nights & 7 Days
- 6 nights accommodation including breakfast
- Luggage transfer from Monterosso to Portovenere
- 48 Hour Cinque Terre Park Card (train pass)
- 24-hour telephone assistance
- Detailed route notes and maps
- All lunches and dinners
- Flights and public transportation
- Travel insurance
- Admissions and entrance fees
- Personal expenses such as lunch, dinner, snacks, wine tasting, drinks, phone calls, etc.
- Any item that has not been specifically mentioned in the program
- Additional nights before, during or after the programme.
- Single room supplements
- Extensions in Pisa or Genoa