Tarun and Yogita's Travel Blog

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Thursday, November 02, 2006

Cinque Terre, Oct. 24-27, 2006

Cinque Terre, five villages (English translation), is a National Park in Italy. We wanted to visit a non-touristy lesser known place after visiting the busy favorite tourist destinations. Rick Steves ranks Cinque Terre just after Venice and Florence and even before Rome. We decided to skip Florence and visit Cinque Terre instead. It was truly a pleasant surprise in a cute little village with friendly people and nice Italian Riviera. We reached there in the night at a very small train station at Monterosso (one of the five) and as soon as we started walking into the town we knew we were along side the sea. With the sound of the tides we got to see people fishing in the night with big nets, probably they were professional fishermen. A couple came along and saw us with backpacks and offered room to stay. The price was good and the room surprisingly came along in an apartment all to us. We grabbed the room and crashed into our beds.

Strolling into the town we realized the beauty of this town. Everyone seem to know each other and stopped for a little chat along the way, anybody could walk in to a restaurant even if they don’t want to eat and a nice elderly gentleman stands on the street to just chat whole day. However, this place was also full of tourists. We saw many Rick Steves’ and knew why. We even hiked into another town called Vernazza through the park. It was a tough hike with mostly stairs but the place that it leaded into was all worth it. Vernazza is even smaller than Monterosso and has no cars and is probably touristier. Due to lack of time we could not visit the other three which are equally or even more beautiful.

We both loved Cinque Terre and even though people drool over Florence (as the best place in Italy) we were glad we chose Cinque Terre.


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