One of the things I loved most about Cinque Terre was the opportunity to capture some of the most breathtaking views I’ve seen! Cinque Terre is famous for its hikes and the spectacular views of the towns it brings and I was really excited about going on these to snap some pics and get close to nature.
ABOUT THE TRAILS
The most popular trails where you see most of the images tourists take are the ‘blue trails’. These are the ones that require the purchase of a Cinque Terre pass (the other ones are free) and are generally the shorter trails which run closest to the coast. Though for those who are interested in taking the blue trail, only half of it is currently open when we went (September 2015) as the other half was closed due to heavy rain a few years ago which created some landslides on the others. So at the moment, the open blue trails are Monterosso to Vernazza and Vernazza to Corniglia. The popular Via Del’Amore (Lover’s lane) which is the trail between Manarola & Riomaggiore is apparently scheduled to open later this year. However, don’t let the closed trails dishearten you because if you want to walk trails, there are still other ones (longer ones) that you could do and if you want to see the postcard view of the villages, you can still do this because you can still walk the start and end of each trail which is where you catch the picturesque views of the villages anyway.
THE MONTEROSSO TO VERNAZZA TRAIL
Of the two blue trails open, we had time to do one. We took the trail from Monterosso to Vernazza which is known to be the ‘most difficult’ of all blue trails but don’t be scared guys, it’s not bad at all! One of the things we debated about prior to doing the trail was which direction to go from as there is a lot of opinion for both options. For us, we started from Monterosso and thought this was probably the best option for us. Firstly, about 90% of the crowd doing the trail also started in the same direction, so it felt easier to take the path of the majority rather than trying to walk the opposite direction of everyone on a really narrow path. Also, at the start of the trail from Monterosso, there’s an extreme amount of stairs going upwards and we loved having to get them done at the start (though of course if you go the other direction you get to go down this monstrous amount of stairs). To top it all off, you get to see Vernazza as you approach it rather than having to turn around and look.
For those who love to capture beautiful landscapes, then as a one day itinerary I recommend doing the hike from Monterosso to Vernazza, spending the afternoon at Vernazza (make sure to visit also the start of the trail from Vernazza to Corniglia to capture Vernazza from behind + also drop by at Gelateria Vernazza – BEST fig ice-cream I’ve ever had!) and then walk the start of the hike again from Vernazza to capture the beautiful village as it quietens down at sunset. At this time of the night, you’ll have the trail completely to yourselves so it’s completely magical – but you might get lost looking for the right path too, as we did!
Photography: Thomas Debono & I