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Cinque Terre: which town for overnight mid-October???


Cinque Terre: which town for overnight mid-October???

Old Dec 25th, 2010, 01:51 PM
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Cinque Terre: which town for overnight mid-October???

We are 2 adults visiting the CT for 1 night mid-October...

would like opinions from those of you who have visited at that time of year....

which town is best for the overnight?
which towns are must sees?
we hope to at least be able to walk from Riomaggiore to Manarola and if trails not closed, to Corniglia.
want to be able to see Vernazza at least.... if boats running, will travel to see it that way or else use trains to go.

coming from Pisa by mid-afternoon and will have to leave by mid day to Firenze the next day

thank you!!
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Old Dec 25th, 2010, 02:32 PM
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It really doesn't matter where you stay or which towns you see. What matters is that you not book until you know that the weather is nice. I live on the Riviera and mid-October can see plenty of rain, and when it rains, most people find the views far less compelling. If it is sunny but very windy, the boats won't run.

The "trail" from Riomaggiore to Manarola is a concrete walkway, so it never closes.

In mid-October, le Cinque Terre is not so overrun with tourists that you need to spend the night to get the "magic" of being there. You could spare yourself a hotel switch and hauling your luggage up and down steep steps by visiting le Cinque Terre as a day trip from Pisa. You can stay to watch the sunset and still be back in time to Pisa for dinner.

Just check the internet for the weather the morning you plan to head out. If it's lousy weather on the coast, there are many other Tuscan towns reachable by train from Pisa that you can enjoy -- you can even get a head start on Firenze.
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Old Dec 25th, 2010, 03:19 PM
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I SO appreciate your reply!
This has been my source of conflict abt the overnight...the weather.

Do you (or others experienced w/ mid-October in CT) advise to just go directly from Pisa airport when we arrive fr the US directly to Florence and just do a daytrip to the CT one of the other days while in FLorence, if weather is good...
it seemed like a waste of time to head directly to Florence, since Pisa is 1 hr closer to the CT .
Do you (and others) advise to just visit as daytrip fr Florence (even though 2 1/2 hrs each way)???
We had thought to do the overnight upon arrival in Pisa since it was closer and cross our fingers abt weather...

with that add'l info, what do you all advise?????

I was going to book a hotel since I've already found SO many places booked (incredible as it seemed!) for October!
Do to the 1 night, this wd be nonrefundable, so would REALLY like to get advice!!!!

are we better off just taking earliest train fr Florence and stay late at CT for the day???
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Old Dec 25th, 2010, 05:11 PM
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Buon natale. IMO, if you are planning to travel to Amalfi Coast, which I read you are planning to do on another one of your posts, skip CT this time. It will chew up a day if you visit by train from Florence or 2 days if you do the overnight. You will see breathtaking views of Italy from the sea when you travel out to Capri and back from Capri. Just my 2 cents if you are only going to CT for a view and if there are other places you want to visit. Buon viaggio.
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Old Dec 25th, 2010, 05:39 PM
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Good advice above. That time of year I would adjust on the fly based on the weather. I would not do it as a day trip from Florence.
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Old Dec 25th, 2010, 06:31 PM
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may I suggest a wonderful place to stay in Vernazza--La Mala http://www.lamala.it/en/index.html
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Old Dec 26th, 2010, 04:09 AM
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It's hard to give advice since I don't know all your travel plans and I don't know why you are coming to Italy or want to see the Italian Riviera. Plus, I tend to give much different advice than many other people on Fodor's -- so bear that in mind.

First of all, the "unavailibility" you are seeing in hotels for next October is probably just because you are trying to book so far in advance using automatic online bookings.

I do think if your only experience of the Riviera turns out to be pouring rain it is likely to be a disappointment, and it can be quite annoying to be dragging luggage up steep flights of stairs in the hills in the wind and rain -- and that goes double if you are jet lagged. You cannot rule out the possibility of heavy rain for two days in a row in October on the Riviera, even though there is also the chance it being just gorgeous.

Personally, were it me, I would plan to land in Pisa and book a hotel in Pisa. I would visit the monuments of Pisa on my day of arrival. The next morning, if the weather in le Cinque Terre was nice (ask your hotel to look on the internet), I'd take my luggage to the Pisa train station, leave it there in the baggage deposit room, and go to le Cinque Terre for a walk and maybe a boat ride (and probably a good lunch of pesto and seafood). I'd leave after lunch, pass back through Pisa to retrieve my luggage, and head straight onto Florence.

If the weather was awful my second day in Italy, I'd skip le Cinque Terre and head right to Florence from Pisa.

However, if your main purpose in coming to Italy you want a vacation, as opposed to experiencing different parts of Italy, the advice that you may not need two seaside locations could be correct. The Italian Riviera and the Amalfi Coast are culturally very different, but most vacationers find that less important than relaxing in one spot with a very pretty water view.

But if for some reason YOU -- izzofan -- really want to see le Cinque Terre, and taste its food, you can't have that in the Amalfi Coast. If you are coming to satisfy a desire to get to know Italy, it's a different agenda.

I'm not encouraging to go to le Cinque Terre or saying it's "unmissable." (I live nearby and seldom go, since I like other parts of the Riviera much better.) What I'm saying is that if you want to make the extra effort to experience a certain part of Italy at the expense of an "efficient" itinerary or a vacation experience, then one area of Italy can't be substituted for another, even if they both have water or cliffs or olives. But if you are coming to Italy because you have heard that it is a fabulous place to enjoy as a vacation spot, and the less time you spend traveling and hauling around your luggage, the more it will feel like a vacation.

Have a great time planning and being in italy!
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Old Dec 26th, 2010, 12:05 PM
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thank you all for your advice!

agree w/ all of you abt the weather issue....
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Old Jan 9th, 2011, 05:41 PM
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We loved staying in Vernaza. Very small and intimate with some hotels and numerous restaurants right on the tiny fishing harbor. The trails between the towns are not intimidating and are a gourgeous combo of views back toward the picturesque towns, the sea and walks amidst hillside olive groves and vineyards. The rail system makes it exceedingly convenient to combine walks and return by train between any of the towns, from morning until well into the evening. In three days, we hiked most of the trails between the towns as well as some side trips to vantage points on hills, and to a couple of churches at towns higher up in the hills. Only got rained on once, our last day, a real swirling tempest as we walked down a steep path over the sea from a mountaintop monastery back to Vernaza. We got soaked and muddy, but that just gave us even more satisfaction to sit in a warm harborside cafe, consume a couple of pizzas and a bottle of wine.
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Old Jan 9th, 2011, 06:00 PM
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We loved Vernazza, also stayed at La Mala and it was wonderful, it was a splurge for us.

There is a train that run between the towns if for some reason the trails are closed you can still see them all that way.
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