Tuesday, October 4, 2016

Riomaggiore to Portovenere, continued

At the halfway point between Riomaggiore and Portovenere, we are at the top of a ridge, maybe another hundred to hundred-fifty meters (325-500 feet) higher than the Santuario, about 450 meters (1500 feet) above Riomaggiore.  The path enters a forest and we walk through the forest for a while.

 Walk through the forest

The path continues along the top of the ridge and we make good time toward the small town of Campiglia, which we quickly walk through (previously we've stopped for lunch here, but the small bar we enjoyed is now closed permanently).  We are making good time, with the goal of reaching Portovenere while the restaurants are still serving lunch.  As we pass through Campiglia, we can see La Spezia, across the bay on the left, and can soon see the Portovenere in the distance.

Approaching Campiglia

 La Spezia on the left, Mediterranean on the right

But, it's not long before we get into some serious rocky up and down segments, with the reward of views of Portovenere in the distance as we reach high points.

  Trail gets steep and rocky

Portovenere getting closer and closer

The trail joins the road for a ways and we pass a large marble quarry, with views of La Spezia on the other side of the road.  But, we quickly are back in the forest, heading toward the final stretch.

Marble quarry on one side

La Spezia on the other

We continue through the forest then emerge above Portovenere, with a final descent over loose rocks into the city.

 The final descent over loose rocks into Portovenere

Looking toward the Mediterranean and toward the harbor

And, as we finish up our descent, we view the trail signs showing our hike today.  We did the journey in 4 hours, one hour short of the suggested 5 hours, and just in time for lunch!

Trail guides in Portovenere

Jennifer takes the ferry from Monterosso and meets us for a special lunch in Portovenere. Octopus and potato salad and frito misto to start, followed by Pizza Mama Mia (mozerella, spiced salami, sausage), Pizza Portovenere (tuna and anchovies), and a bottle of Vino de la Casa Bianca, the house local white wine.

Sharing octopus/potato salad and frito misto

Pizzas Tuna/Anchovy and Mozarella/Spiced Salami/Sausage

 Vino Bianco de la Casa

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