Cinque Terre Hiking

Old May 28th, 2013, 04:44 PM
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Cinque Terre Hiking

We will be visiting Cinque Terre in August. We were planning on taking the train to Vernazza then hike the trail from Vernazza to Corniglia. We are looking for a leisurely hike with picturesque viewing. The trail is described as medium difficulty and level. Can someone describe what medium difficulty means and would be be better to start in Corniglia and hike to Vernazza. Most likely we will be there from late morning to early afternoon. Thanks in advance for any help ...
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Old May 28th, 2013, 04:54 PM
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There are a lot of steep steps up and down especially near the towns. Occasionally the trail can get very narrow but rarely does it feel scary. When I hiked this in 2007, I hiked from Riomaggiore to Vernazza in one day (many people hike all the way to Monterosso al Mare but I had done that final section the previous day); the section from Corniglia to Vernazza was the hardest out of the first four towns. I was in good shape but not an experienced hiker and I had little trouble with it.

Here's an example of what I mean by narrow:

http://www.portlandbridges.com/00,5D...que-terre.html

There are a lot of pictures from the trails there; I imagine they haven't changed much since 2007. It's not a given that every trail will be open in August; sometimes trails are closed due to slides. You'll find out when you arrive what's open.
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Old May 28th, 2013, 05:02 PM
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Old May 28th, 2013, 05:13 PM
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We hiked from Vernazza to Riomaggiore that took a few hours.

Most difficult part was leaving Vernazza climbing up a grade with very steep stairs as Andrew suggested.

The rest of the hike was not too difficult.

There was 12 of us and 7 made the whole hike.

The others took the train back to Riomaggiore. Two didn't hike at all and took the train from Vernazza. Three took the train from Corniglia.
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Old May 28th, 2013, 05:21 PM
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I hiked it all and the most difficult part for me was from Corniglia to Vernazzo, sheer drop offs, steep.
I was never so happy to be anywhere as in Vernazza at ground level. Did the whole hike over two days.
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Old May 28th, 2013, 05:30 PM
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We hiked the entire trail - Monterosso to Vernazza one day and Vernazza to Riomaggiore the following day. The path becomes increasingly easy as you hike from north to south. The path is not especially well maintained in a few places but is only difficult to navigate if it is raining. I would not call the paths level by any means. We had a bit of difficulty between Vernazza and Corniglia as the rocks on the path were somewhat slippery during a brief shower. The views are spectacular from a distance so the hike is definitely worth it.
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Old May 28th, 2013, 05:56 PM
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We hiked from Riomggiore to monterosso. From town 1 to town 2 is mainly flat. we found the hike from Town4(vernazza) to town 5 the hardest. We the took the boat back to riomaggiore(town 1). would recommend the boat as the views are great. If you have time take the train past Monterossa to Levanto - a very nice town on the water, a few minutes past monterossa on the train
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Old May 28th, 2013, 06:05 PM
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Going in September so this is helpful to me too.

Where do any of you like to stay?
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Old May 28th, 2013, 06:16 PM
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I've been to the Cinque Terre twice and have wound up staying in Levanto each time - not because it's so great but because of price and convenience. I wanted a place with WiFi and not up a bunch of stairs that wasn't outrageously expensive and each time I found such a place in Levanto, the town just north of Monterosso by train. Levanto is included in the hiking and train pass you purchase for the Cinque Terre, too; you can hike back from Levanto to Monterosso - I didn't, but it's several hours and probably much less busy on that trail than the others between the five villages.

Levanto is a nice town but it's more of a conventional beach town than the five villages that seem to be carved into the sides of the hills. Depending on the type of vacation you are on, it might be worth it to spend an extra $100/night to stay in one of the villages, but it wasn't to me (traveling solo).
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Old May 28th, 2013, 06:30 PM
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My DD and I hiked Vernazza to Corniglia a few years ago. It was a LOT of uphill stairs. If you search for it, there's a thread that combines a lot of Fodorites' tips on the CT.
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Old May 28th, 2013, 06:34 PM
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http://www.fodors.com/community/euro...s-comments.cfm
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Old May 30th, 2013, 07:44 PM
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If I was going again ,I'd stay in Levanto. Previousy stayed in Riomaggiore
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