Cinque Terre Luxury Yachting Guide

Perhaps the most ruggedly idyllic and unmistakably Italian section of the Riviera is the UNESCO-protected Cinque Terre. A colourful jumble of tiny houses teetering precariously on sandy cliffs, the five villages of Riomaggiore, Manarola, Corniglia, Vernazza, and Monterosso are an explorer’s dream.

Unique in character and design, each village of the Cinque Terre is a maze of crooked streets, tiny beaches and enchanting cafes just waiting to be discovered. Local cuisine is at its best and the awe-inspiring views you encounter as you gaze from one village to the next is an experience that can’t afford to be missed, whether from the heights of the sandy cliffs or the deck of your yacht.

Whether you choose to start from the northern or southern end of these coastal treasures, or if you decide to hike or sail the incredible coastline that stretches between them, you are guaranteed a viewing experience nothing short of spectacular. For those who prefer not to walk the scenic paths, the five villages are connected by train, just be careful not to miss the incredibly tiny stations that connect them.

Starting from the south, the closest village to the vibrant waterfront town of La Spezia is Riomaggiore, whose narrow streets and tall buildings march a crooked line up and away from the sea, enveloping visitors with an intoxicating sense of old-Italian charm.

The path that leads to the next town of Manarola is one of the Cinque Terre’s greatest joys, a breathtaking stretch of overhanging rocks, sweeping branches and flourishing undergrowth that creates a real feeling of escapism. Manarola is picturesque, pleasant and peaceful, blessed with a slightly more cosmopolitan feel than its neighbours. A delightful sprinkle of bars and restaurants overlook the sea, while down below weathered fishing boats in various pastel shades line the sun-filled piazza.

Corniglia is the quietest of the Cinque Terre and as the only village perched above sea level, quietly revels in its private hideaway. Sheltered high above the waves, this little gem can be reached by a challenging but invigorating walk up the 377 stairs from the train station, or for an easier path, by taking the bus.

Often considered the most captivating of all is the bright and bustling Vernazza, a unique collection of quaint shops and waterfront cafes huddled around a pocket-sized harbour. Filled with a jovial spirit and an elegantly casual atmosphere, Vernazza is the perfect place to enjoy a sumptuous lunch or to simply sit on a sunny bench and drink in the postcard-perfect views.

Monterosso al Mare
At the end of the Cinque Terre is the biggest and most modernized village, Monterosso al Mare. The only village that bares any resemblance to a resort town, Monterosso is where the finest hotels and prettiest beaches can be found. Characterized by its gorgeous seaside promenade, Monterosso is a myriad of uphill-winding streets lined with tempting gelato-parlours and intriguing trinket-strewn stalls simply perfect for an evening stroll.

Cinque Terre

Cinque Terre

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