La Spezia Cinque Terre
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by Glam Properties Management
The Cinque Terre offer suggestive itineraries in the midst of paths overlooking the sea (such as the Via dell'amore), quality gastronomic specialties, culture (the Via dei santuari is an example). All immersed in a harsh, wild and rich in animal and plant biodiversity nature. A park to discover.
Our trek begins in Riomaggiore, of the five villages closest to La Spezia, and winds up to Vernazza overlooking the sea between valleys, dry stone walls, cultivated terraces, patches of vegetation and cliffs. The route, called in the initial stretch Via dell'amore and well indicated by the Italian Alpine Club (CAI) with the blue and white trail marker n.2, starts at the foot of the staircase that climbs from the station and crosses the railway. A paved road equipped with railings rises slightly on a slope on the rocky shore, until it reaches a stone staircase leading to the station of Manarola. Here you enter a pedestrian tunnel from which you exit in the center of the small village perched overlooking the sea. Thus ends the Via dell'amore after 20 minutes of walking from Riomaggiore.
Now the path goes back uphill gaining the cemetery, flanks it on the right in a panoramic view of the town and continues halfway up the steps, keeping the mule track characteristics intact. After 25-30 minutes, beyond a fountain and a bridge, you will find the seat of an abandoned railway; our route fits right on this old track and always leads signposted to Corniglia station. Continue further along the railway until you meet the brick staircase that goes up to the church of Lardarina, the district of Corniglia. From the churchyard an alley goes down to the center of Corniglia and to the panoramic hillock dominating the coast and the itinerary traveled.
Returning on our path to Lardarina, at the churchyard we take the high alley to its left and we leave the village. The paved and stepped mule track crosses olive groves and terraces that are lost towards the mountain in a harmonious play of shades and leaps. The sea disappears from sight leaving us momentarily immersed in a hilly landscape; then faithful to the characteristic of the place it reappears at the foot of the ravines. Near an area equipped with tables and benches, there is a path that goes down to the beach of Gùvano with a vertical drop of 100 meters. The Cai track instead continues uphill through a valley, on the top of which the Sanctuary of San Bernardino clearly stands out.
We are near Prevo (208 meters), a small group of houses clinging to the hillside; a flight of steps leads us into a gallery that goes beyond the houses of the village. A fairly steep descent begins on the edge of cliffs overlooking the sea. The excursion is charged here with intense emotional tones.
Vernazza is announced below with its tower, the inlet of the marina, the steps carved into the rock, the old stone houses gathered around the square and the alleys. A last and steep flight of steps descends between the farmhouses to the center of the village, where we can savor the magic of these timeless places up close, and maybe even, in the true sense of the word, some typical dishes.