Day 54: 14th September
We left Menaggio fairly early…we had to drive the car back to Milan and then take a train from there to Monterosso via Genova. Everything went smoothly. Once we got to Milan Centrale Station, Bill and I also activated our Euro Rail Passes. We purchased them when we were still living in Singapore.
The train ride there was just under three hours and just after we left Genoa, I got my first glimpse of the Mediterranean…and all the sailboats. I love the ocean!:)
The Cinque Terre is a rugged portion of coast on the Italian Riviera. “The Five Lands” as it roughly translates to is composed of five villages: Monterosso al Mare, Vernazza, Corniglia, Manarola, and Riomaggiore.
Over the centuries, people have carefully built terraces on the rugged, steep landscape right up to the cliffs that overlook the sea. Part of its charm is the lack of any serious development..they’re just sleepy old villages. Paths, trains and boats connect the villages, and cars cannot reach them from the outside. The Cinque Terre area is a very popular tourist destination…as we found out when we got there. It was swarming with tourists even though we were told that the season was over!
We were staying in the first village of Monterosso Al Mare. We had to walk to our hotel, which would normally be fine in a small town but our hotel was right at the back of the town and also, right on top of a hill. Getting up there was quite the task!:) Happy to have made it, we went right back down for dinner. We found a nice restaurant by the water and ordered some of the local wine and of course…seafood! My ravioli was the best food I had eaten since we got to Europe. I know everyone else felt the same about their food too!
After dinner we had to climb right back up to our hotel. At least we were getting a good work out! 🙂