Monday 26 May 2008

Corniglia - San Bernardino - Vernazza

Since we weren't too excited about the path we chose on the day before, M. and I were hoping for a bit less crowded hike from Corniglia to Vernazza.

Once again we started our day in Levanto, from where we took a train to Corniglia. This time it took us a bit longer then expected. The train was packed and there literally wasn't enough place to squeeze ourselves in. We weren't the only ones with such a problem and some of the people were getting really pissed. I felt sorry for the railroad workers, because most of the anger was directed their way.

After a while another train showed up and everything was well again. Although it was an InterCity train, we didn't have to pay for the ride (Cinque Terre Train Card normally doesn't cover first class trains and fast trains, but this was a special occasion). The train even made a few extra stops.

Once we got off the train at the Corniglia train station, we first had to make a climb to the town (it sits high on a hill above the station). Our Cinque Terre Train Card also included a mini bus ride from the station to Corniglia.
Despite that, we didn't feel like waiting for the bus. Fifteen minutes and some huffin' and puffin' later we arrived to the town just at the same time as the bus from the train station.

We checked out the town with its spectacular views and bought some goat cheese for the way.

After that we were on our way further uphill. With every step the view of Vernazza kept getting better and better.
Our aim for the day was getting to the town of Vernazza but first we decided to make a stop at the little village of San Bernardino. It is situated roughly half way between Corniglia and Vernazza, but a bit higher up on the top of one of the surrounding hills. We followed the paths 7/b and 7/d to S. Bernardino and number 7 from there to Vernazza.

We walked slowly and stopped quite often to take photos. Despite that it took us only 1 hour and 10 minutes to reach San Bernardino and 1 hour and a half to get from there to Vernazza.

We took time for a light meal when in S. Bernardino. Sitting on a bench next to the church and enjoying some prosciutto crudo with formaggio caprino (that's Italian for salted raw ham and goat cheese) we bought before. Delicious!

After finishing our meal, we made a stop at a cafe just around the corner. We ordered two glasses of local white wine and got some potato chips and olives with it. It all went together real well and was an excellent alternative to our missing dessert.

While sitting in front of the cafe, we noticed they also offer accommodation, but we didn't inquire about the price.

The following descent to Vernazza once again offered spectacular views calling for many photo stops.
When finally in Vernazza we thought of climbing the tower overlooking the town. We found out there is an entrance fee and decided to rather just cool off by the see and watch waves splashing on the rocks. After all it was hard to expect the tower view would top what we saw earlier.

A train ride back to Levanto and a 10 minute walk to Acqua Dolce camping was all it was left for us to do this day. We had more hiking planned for the next day, so it was soon time to call it a day and turn in for the night.

If you liked this post and are interested in more information on our trip, please click on this link or on the Cinque Terre label in the right frame.


Travel-PB 28 May 2008 at 11:03  

Thanks. I'm glad you like them. Unfortunately they still don't do justice to the place.
Cinque Terre is truly a place to put on your to-visit list!

Anonymous,  29 May 2008 at 23:47  

I'm going to Cinque Terre on Saturday and it was interesting to read your comments, I'm a bit worried about the crowds, and you didn't make me feel any more confident... However, it must be beautiful and living in Florence has already made me used to the tourist crowds - well, I still dislike them but maybe on my own holidays I feel more sympathetic to tourists... Hardly! ;)

Also, going to stay in AcquaDolce.

Thanks for the hints and I'm looking forward to your next trip.

Travel-PB 30 May 2008 at 10:11  

I think holidays around the 1st of May had quite an effect on the tourist crowds.
We noticed that on the day of our departure (4th of May) the place was much less crowded. I hope you won't have too many problems, summer holidays haven't started just yet.

I'd be very interested to know how it went...

jjs 20 April 2010 at 17:43  

perfect , perfect , perfect .

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