Friday, December 17, 2021

Exploring Riomaggiore

Riomaggiore is another town that we have passed through on our hikes and occasionally stopped for a lunch at the harbor, but not really taken the time to explore.  We have the time today and we head there in the morning.  We walk up the street from the train station and the city starts to open up before us.

Heading up from the train station

Above the train station

Along the way up, we find a memorial to Lucio Battisti, an Italian singer, songwriter, and composer widely recognized for songs that defined the late 1960s and 1970s era of Italian songwriting.  Soon after the memorial, the path emerges on a small piazza overlooking the sea, with beautiful small paintings of local plants and birds on the concrete posts supporting the fence.  Looking up the coast, we see Monterosso in the distance.  Looking the other way, we view the Riomaggiore harbor breakwater and the hill leading south to Portovenere.

Lucio Battisti

Looking up and down the coast

Paintings on the path

We leave the sea, walking into the upper town and fine a great mural on a building overlooking the sea.

Continuing up the street

Painting on the walls

Views of the sea

Past the city hall, we reach the Church of San Giovanni Battista of Riomaggiore, built in 1340, and also guarded by a cat.

Church of San Giovanni

Inside and outside guardcat

Continuing past the church, the street narrows and descends toward via Columbo, back down into the city, connecting with via Columbo leading toward the harbor.

Winding back down

Via Columbo

We stop for lunch on via Columbo, a cone of fried calamari and a cone of fried anchovies.


The tunnel at the end of via Columbo passes under the train tracks emerges at the Riomaggiore harbor, full of boats, restaurants, and people.

At the harbor

Views of the coast and the city

Another tunnel leads through the hill above which we initially walked, passing from the harbor side of Riomaggiore to the train station and it has been decorated with incredible tile work that we admire as we walk through.

Tunnel art

At the train station, we get great views of the sea as a freight train rumbles through prior to our [passenger] train back to Monterosso.

View from the train platform

Train before ours

Meanwhile, back in Monterosso, the beach is shutting down for the day, folding the umbrellas, stacking the chairs, and securing the kayaks and boats.  It's getting close to dinner time!

Back in Monterosso

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