I remember hearing about a place called Cinque Terre a few years back, not knowing what kind of place it was. But after learning about the five villages built into steep hillsides of the Italian Riviera, I knew it was a place worth visiting if I was ever in Northern Italy.
Well, this was the year! Traveling from Milan early in the morning, we arrived hours later at Porte Venere to take a boat up the coast. Passing four villages, we stopped at the fifth (Monterosso al Mare) to walk around and for lunch. Then we travelled back to the second village via train to walk along the Via dell'Amore.
The villages were not as extraordinary as I imagined, but I admit that I didn't have much time to fall in love with the place. The seafood and wine there were great and the colorful streets did have a lot of character. I know if only I had a day or two to soak my feet in those clear blue waters and to try all the other dishes on the menu, my feelings would be different. Even now, Cinque Terre already seems less ordinary than I first believed.
|Porte Venere, Church and beach of Monterosso Al Mare.|