Day trip by car to Cinque Terre

Sep 2nd, 2012, 08:20 AM
  #1  
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Day trip by car to Cinque Terre

During our 4-week stay in Bologna, we would like to take a 3-day/2-night trip by car to Modena and Parma (to see the food museums and possibly the Ferrari Museum), to Busseto and environs (for the Verdi sights), and to Cinque Terre. This would be either the last weekend in September as a Sat.-Mon. trip or the first weekend in Oct. as a Fri.-Sun. trip. (I recognize that many of the food and Verdi sights are not open on Mondays and some not on Fridays, so we will have to plan accordingly.) Because many of the food and Verdi sights are not easily accessible by public transportation, our plan is to rent a car in Bologna for this excursion. My plan is to spend the two nights in Parma. I would like advice on the best way to do Cinque Terre as a day trip with a car – in particular, where best to leave the car before exploring by train, foot, or boat. Advice on the other portions of the trip are welcome as well.
judilie is offline  
Sep 2nd, 2012, 08:30 AM
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You can drive to Levanto, although I cannot speak of parking possibilities because we were there (by car) a very long time ago.
In itself it might be better as a two night trip.

I would consider day trips to Modena and Parma, and also Ravenna.
Michael is offline  
Sep 2nd, 2012, 08:54 AM
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Thanks, Michael.

I originally thought of doing Modena and Parma as day trips by train from Bologna, but, as I mentioned, many of the things we want to see are not easily accessible by public transportation.

We were in Ravenna many years ago. For other weekends, I'm considering going by train for day trips to Ferrara, Faenza, and possibly Florence, Venice, Pistoia, Mantua, or San Marino. We have been to Florence and Venice, but that was many years ago.
judilie is offline  
Sep 2nd, 2012, 09:29 AM
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We stayed 1 night at Garden Hotel in Levanto. They had a car park not too far from the hotel. We then took the hoho train south..Got off at the last stop in CT( Rio Maggiore). Walked along the via de amor to Manerola, got back on the train and returned to Levanto. The last time we got on the train at La Spezia,went to the northern town of Monte Rossa, got off, got on.skipped Corniglia (too amny steps) got off a Veranza, got off, got on got off at Manerola and walkd. Returned to Riomaggiore thentrain to L. a Spenzia. Either way was just fine but the first time it poured buckets. CT is not a vehicle friendly area!!! Google parking in CT and you amy get lucky. Any which way you will love this awesome place.
amer_can is offline  
Sep 2nd, 2012, 09:36 AM
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Any nice weekend around le Cinque Terre means tight parking, even in October. Levanto is a good suggestion, but you really need to aim to get there as early in the morning as you can. If it is raining, abandon the idea of seeing the coast.

I'm not sure what food "museums" you are talking about, but I think your trip is more ambitious than you realize if you want to see the Ferrari museum, the historic centers of Parma and Modena, plus Verdi sites -- and then le Cinque Terre too? And do food-related touristing as well?
aguamineral is offline  
Sep 2nd, 2012, 09:55 AM
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Thanks, amer-can and aguamineral. I recognize that the plan is ambitious. I will be a visiting fellow at the University of Bologna. Perhaps I will be able to take off two work days and make this a 4-day, 3-night trip. Another possibility is to also go some other time to Parma by train and see the sights in the central area. If it is raining, we will skip CT.

By "food museums" I am referring to the Museum of Parmigiano-Reggiano, the Museo del Prosciutto di Parma, the Museum of Felino Salame, the Tomato Museum (I haven't been able to get much information about this one), and Museo del Balsamico Tradizionale. Many of these appear to be open only on weekends.
judilie is offline  
Sep 2nd, 2012, 10:08 AM
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I got curious and looked up the tomato museum

http://www.museidelcibo.it/Ing/pomodoro.asp

I would have thought tomatoes were out of season in Emilia-Romagna by the end of September, but I'm not sure.
aguamineral is offline  
Sep 2nd, 2012, 10:41 AM
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It appears that the Tomato Museum is open Mar. 1 - Nov. 30, but only on Saturdays and Sundays.
judilie is offline  
Sep 2nd, 2012, 11:11 AM
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Tomatoes may be out of season but I do believe (if memory serves) that Oct. was/is mushroom season and we had our fill ar Tres Cantinas in Levanto.. Beyond yum!!! Also from the looks of green house establishments along the coast tomatoes, et al, grow year round..
amer_can is offline  
Sep 2nd, 2012, 12:38 PM
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I would be far more interested in visiting cheese, ham and balsamic vinegar producers to see how the product is made. We did visit a caseficio (Parmesan cheese maker) and acetaio (balsamic maker). They were out of town and required a car, but there are organized tours that can take you there. Check with Tourist Information in bologna or on line.
charnees is offline  
Sep 2nd, 2012, 05:55 PM
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The Ferrari Museum is not in Modena. It's in Maranello, about 20 kms. south of Modena. I don't know if you are required to purchase entry tickets in advance, but I wouldn't make the drive without them.

http://museo.ferrari.com/

If you want to tour the test track and factory (from a bus, no walking around, no photos), you need to book those reservations separate from the general entry ticket. You'd also have to schedule your day around the tour departure times.
Jean is online now  
Sep 2nd, 2012, 08:23 PM
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amer_can,

I'm not sure which area of "the coast" you are talking about, but greenhouses along the Ligurian coast grow basil, not tomatoes. Around le Cinque Terre, tomatoes are only very sparingly used in cooking, if at all, and almost never are served raw.

But your memory serves you right about autumn mushrooms in the mountainous le Cinque Terre. They are very good and plentiful in that location at that time of year.
aguamineral is offline  
Sep 2nd, 2012, 08:23 PM
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I have learned that Thurs., Oct. 4, is a holiday and the university will be closed. I think we can make this a 4-day, 3-night trip (only playing hooky on Fri., Oct.5, as I suspect many others will as well). I'm looking for a reasonably priced place to stay in or near Parma, either hotel or B&B. Suggestions welcomed. Might language be a problem at a B&B? My husband will have just finished two weeks of Italian language lessons, which may suffice for commumnicating as needed.
judilie is offline  

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