Friday, December 8, 2023

Wandering Around Vernazza

After hiking to Vernazza, we stroll around the village, wandering through the narrow streets on both sides of the main square, receiving the reward of occasional glimpses across the rooftops of the city and into the sea.

Streets of Vernazza

Views of the sea

Views across the roofs

We walk up above Vernazza, starting on the trail to Corniglia, to get the spectacular view of the village from above,

Looking back at Vernazza

We then descend back into the Vernazza to explore the area behind the main square, opposite the sea.

Vernazza away from the sea

Map of Vernazza

Walking back over to the main street, Via Visconti, we find that today is market day in Vernazza and the street is lined with stalls and shoppers, featuring food for here, food to go, clothing, housewares, and just about anything anyone might want.

Market day in Vernazza

Continuing along Via Visxonti to the harbor, we pick a spot and have our lunch, anchovy pizza (with olives, capers, and tomato sauce) and a speck and brie panini.

At the harbor

Settling in for lunch

Pizza, panini

Another great Cinque Terre village and experience!

Tuesday, December 5, 2023

Hiking to Vernazza, Cinque Terre

Our first village-to-village hike in Cinque Terre heads over to Vernazza, the next town south along the Mediterranean from Monterosso.  We start on a path around the hill at the edge of the village, then proceed up up to the National Park trail booth, where we pay for a day's hiking on the trails (many of our hikes are over trails with no charge, but the popular lower trails between some of the villages require a payment to the National Park).

Around the hill, looking back at Monterosso

Proceed up and along the trail

We are rewarded with occastional glimpses back at Monterosso, growing steadily smaller as we continue.

Monterosso in the distance

The trail proceeds straight along the ridge overlooking the Mediterranean and, soon, we round the corner and start to get glimpses of Vernazza in the distance.  The trail has quite a few people hiking and we hear that earlier in the summer, some of the trails were made one way to ease the congestion.

The trail continues

Fabulous view of the sea

Magically, we turn the corner and Vernazza appears

But, we're not done with the trail yet, we have more fairly-level hiking along the ridge, then the descent into Vernazza.


Vernazza grows closer

We're almost there!

The trail leads into the narrow streets of Vernazza and we descend into the city.

Streets of Vernazza

Friday, December 1, 2023

Wandering Around Monterosso al Mare

We stroll around Monterosso, admiring the views and a few of the churches, first popping into a small and delightful church that we spot because it is next to one of our favorite focaccia shops.

Small chapel

Closer to our hotel, we find another beautiful church, Oratorio di Santa Croce o dei Bianchi, built in 1198 on the ruins of a 5th century church and, actually, the church from which the previous night's procession originated.

Oratorio di Santa Croce o dei Bianchi

Continuing our stroll through town, we pass a few reminders that it is now time to pick the grapes (we'll see a lot more of this when we hike through the vinegards over the next few days).

To be filled with grapes

We walk up a bit to the Buranco agriturismo, making wine only 200 meters (650 feet) from the beach,  we wander in, and admire the beautiful grounds.

Buranco winery

Back in town, it's panini for lunch 

Streets of Monterosso


And, as a small storm passes over us, the sea and beach change color and textures to offer beautiful views of the changing weather

Small storm passing through

We have spent another great day with a little hiking, a little exploring, a little dining, and a lot of relaxation!