What is Cinque Terre?

Apr 22nd, 1999, 02:44 PM
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What is Cinque Terre?

We are leaving for Italy soon and are visiting Rome, Florence, Venice and the Italian and French Riviera. We have never heard of Cinque Terre but have seen it mentioned in this forum. Please explain.
Thanks much.
Apr 22nd, 1999, 03:00 PM
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This sounds like a "lieu-dit", a place too small to be considered as a town, and possible not even a single house. Literaly it means "five lands" -and it writes "cinq terre". I couldn't find anything more on it. Where have you seen that ?
Apr 22nd, 1999, 03:41 PM
D. Spiegel
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The Cinque Terre is indeed five small towns linked together by walking paths and trains. I'll do the best I can to describe without my travel journal. Rick Steves put this area on the map with his travel video series on PBS. Most people hike from one town to the next, offering an energetic walk with breathtaking views. The towns themselves are a bit sleepy, and what Rick calls "through the back door" of traveling in Italy. I've been in this area, staying one hour north by train in Santa Margherita. I highly recommend this on your agenda if you have the time to devote. No museums, gourmet restaurants, just a chance to relax and enjoy. Both the Italian and French Rivieras were on my itinerary on my last trip, and I far more enjoyed the Italian Riviera.
Apr 22nd, 1999, 04:07 PM
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The five fishing villages just northwest of La Spezia are Riomaggiore, Manarola, Corniglia, Vernazza and Monterosso al Mare. Corniglia is the only one not at the water's edge and offers the best view of the strip. The easiest to reach by car is Riomaggiore. The largest is Monterosso, with better restaurants and also a favorite with sandy-beach fans. Vernazza is the most charming. All five villages are served by train, though most trains between La Spezia and Levanto stop only at Riomaggiore and Monterosso. Daytrippers with a car may park either in Riomaggiore or Monterosso. After hiking the 12 km "Blue Trail" (the lower one) the train may be used to return to the car. Road and train access is relatively recent, meaning that Cinque Terre still maintains some of its old days character. Tourists are mainly Americans (Rick Steves "invention" <g> & Frommer's follow up). The few Italian visitors usually arrive by private boat.

Apr 22nd, 1999, 06:29 PM
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My daughter and two friends (all in their 20's) spent 8 weeks last summer backpacking across Europe. (Mainly riding trains, buses with only a backpack). They spent 5 or 6 days in Cinque Terre and declare it to be their favorite spot. They rented a little apartment for those days and hiked to other towns. They said I must go there one day...last Sunday I saw a Rick Steves' TV show on the Cinque Terre on PBS...it's lovely and quaint -looking.
Apr 22nd, 1999, 08:35 PM
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Get there before it is ruined. It is slowly but surely becoming a crowded tourist hot spot. Like many of Steves' recommendations, it is never going to be as good as it was yesterday. You should go to the library and see what it looked like in the 60's. Even so, it is still nice, but to go this year.

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