The trip to Cinque Terre is a must for every international student in Milan.
Why? Take a look at the video and read our tips!
Everybody wants to visit Cinque Terre and so did Javi – the director of the video – with his friends, a group of erasmus students in Milan.
With his help, we would like to give you some tips and useful info about this beautiful place included as a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1997.
First thing to know, Cinque Terre is not just one place, it’s an area of five lands (the name “Cinque Terre” actually means “five lands”), five villages really close. It takes between three and twenty minutes by train to travel between them. And, if you like hiking, there are also walking trails to connect them all.
The five lands of Cinque Terre:
Following Javi’s trip – and video – from South to North, the five villages are:
This village is composed by three or four floor tower houses of different colours. It has one main street, a rocky beach, a harbor, a castle, a church and a lot of restaurants. It is the closest to the main city of La Spezia.
Manarola (minute 1:40):
Manarola is probably the most photographed of the Cinque Terre and you should definitely go there to take a picture too! A very famous way to reach Manarola from Riomaggiore was walking through the via dell’Amore (the “way of Love”). Unfortunatelly, in 2012 a rockslide caused this trail to be closed for repairs. In 2015 only a small part of it were opened again.
Corniglia (minute 2:17):
It is the smallest village of Cinque Terre and it’s also the only one not directly adjacent to the sea. In fact, it is located on the top of one promontory where you can admire all the four other villages. To reach the top you have to climb the Lardarina, a long brick flight of steps. How many? Some says 365 like the days of the year, some other says 377 or 382… In any case, leave your heels at home!
Vernazza (minute 3:10):
Vernazza is considered one of the most beautiful villages of Italy. It is a one-street town with a church built on the water. Here you can find a castle and the remains of the old wall that protected against pirates. All the small streets lead to a gorgeous waterfront square. A beach was carved out by the floods in 2011 and here is where our friends in the video went swimming.
Monterosso al mare:
Even if it’s not in the video, it worths a visit. It is the westernmost of the Cinque Terre and it’s also the most populated. It is the right place to relax and go swimming because it has the largest sand beaches of the zone. For this reason, during the summer season, it is full of tourists. The sea is not the only thing you will find in Monterosso: a castle, a medieval church and the whole old town have the same charm of the other Cinque Terre.
Where to sleep in Cinque Terre
The last place you see in the video is La Spezia, the capital city of the province of La Spezia and it’s where Javi and his friends booked an apartment for the night. They found a supercheap solution on Airbnb (174 Euro for 11 people).
If you are not registered on Airbnb yet, you can CLICK HERE to have 30 EURO to spend on your first trip!
If you prefer to sleep in one of the Cinque Terre and book a hotel, a hostel or a B&B you will find the best prices HERE.
Monterosso is for sure the one with more accommodation offers and with the fanciest hotels but you can choose to stay in the village you prefer, they are all wonderful and really close.
How to get to Cinque Terre
You can reach every village of Cinque Terre by train. From Milan to La Spezia it takes 3 hours more or less and prices vary between 21 and 49 Euro (one way), depending on the kind of train you choose.
If you want to know the best prices, book in a few minutes and get your ticket by email, use Trainline. It’s very easy and useful.
Moving from a village to another costs a few euros and there is also a “Cinque Terre card” you can do in La Spezia: pay 16 Euro and take all the trains you want in one day (until midnight). If you want to walk a bit and you have more than one day to visit all the villages, maybe it’s not so convenient.
You can take a low-cost bus from Milan to La Spezia with FlixBus. It takes almost 4 hour and the price is 27 Euro rountrip but it can be cheaper if you book in advance.
If you want to go by car, our suggestion is to leave it in Levanto (North) or La Spezia (South) because it’s really hard to find parking and many streets are closed to traffic. When you are there, use the train to move around the five villages.
Last but not least, if you liked the video, subscribe to Javi’s channel on YouTube!