Hi guys it’s Melvin again! Today we are going to explore one of the most adorable area in Italy: the picturesque Cinque Terre. This journal is still a part from this summer holiday trip (check out my last posts about Chefchaouen and Florence.)

Cinque Terre, as the name says (Cinque=Five, Terre=Lands), are made of five villages built on the hillsides of Italian Riviera coast: Monterosso al Mare, Vernazza, Corniglia, Manarola, and Riomaggiore. They are pretty close to each other and it only takes around 20 minutes by train to travel between them. There’s even a walking trail that you can take if you want to be more adventurous and take a hike (we didn’t. Because #lazy)

I did a bit of research to find out which of the five towns I wanted to visit. As we didn’t have so many days to spend, obviously I wanted to visit the prettiest ones. Well, for starters, they are all charming. In each town you’ll find similar pastel colored buildings (that look so picturesque against the summer blue sky), narrow winding cobblestone streets, delicious pesto pasta/pizza (they’re so famous for their pesto), and also the best sunset view ever.

You can get to Cinque Terre by taking a train from any cities, with the destination to La Spezia. From there you’ll change train and it will only take you 15 minutes to reach the first village, Riomaggiore.

Riomaggiore, the first village, is one of the five that I consider to base at. It’s the second biggest town and it has many wonderful restaurant, cafe and hotel options. It is also the most perfect spot to swim as they have the beautiful rocky beaches where you can swim and spend your day soaking in the sun.

The second town of the train stop is Manarola, a quieter town with not as many restaurants and cafes as the previous Riomaggiore. This is also the oldest town of all five. If you’re looking for that perfect postcard photo of Cinque Terre like you see on most travel websites, this is where you can take it.

Next would be Corniglia, the smallest village of the five. Getting down here is pretty hard as there are a lot of steep terrains, so this is the only village that we didn’t miss.

The fourth stop is Vernazza, almost every visitors’ favorite, because it’s the prettiest. I remember this place from Nicoline’s old editorial in Harper’s Bazaar from years back; it’s pretty surreal to see the whole town in front of me.

The last town is Monterosso, the biggest and. most commercialized town, which boasts the most restaurants, cafes, shops and resort hotels; therefore attract the largest crowds of all. Monterosso is built on a more flat terrain so it will require less hikes than its sisters. It’s the last part of the day so we only hang out at the beach.

That’s all for now, I hope the photos will inspire you to visit this colorful towns the next time you’re planning to visit Europe. Just a few more tips: be prepared to totally chill and unwind in Cinque Terre; as the towns are meant to be enjoyed slowly and quietly. This city will take away all your stress from the busy Milan/Florence/any cities you visited earlier, so grab a gelato/pizza/coffee and enjoy your day!

Til the next journal!

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