This is the type of place people aggressively “pin” on Pinterest. This is the type of place people see in photographs and say, “I have to go here before I die.” Cinque Terre, the Liguria coastal cities of Italy, are one of the most unique, beautiful, and compelling areas of the world. It’s no wonder that they are a UNESCO World Heritage site and an Italian National Park. Before I married my wife she would constantly tell me that we need to go to Italy. She needed to see Venice. So, when I finally told my wallet to go fuck itself a few years ago I made sure to visit one of the five cities along the coast.
We drove in from Rome that day. Through the long stretch of the Italian west coast and Tuscan farmlands we reached Pisa. Shit, we had to see that Leaning Tower. We saw it. Took a few selfies. Bounced out. Back on the road.
After reaching Spezia (the closest port town to Cinque Terre) we traveled through the mountains and around to Manarola. If you’re planning on driving up to Manarola let me explain how this works. Park your car at the top of the very steep hill and walk your luggage down to your keep. After reaching our room and cleaning ourselves up we headed down with all of our gear to eat right on the edge of the town at Ristorante Marina Piccola. It was one of the best meals I had during my week long Italian adventure. It was Liguarian pasta with pesto and potatoes. Straight fire! We also had some great white wine made right there in Manarola that was delicious, and that's coming from someone who occasionally drinks wine just so his wife has company. I drink whiskey for those wondering.
Afterwards we walked back into the city and grabbed a cheap bottle of wine from a small wine shop. It was called Cinque Terre 5, and I think it was made by the small shop we bought it at. Even though the sunset, blue hour, and the food was phenomenal the hike back to our place was exhausting as fuck. I remember it being well over a hundred steps up. Anyway, we made it back and opened the large window in our room to look out while opening our bottle of wine to listen to the sea, and I see lightning off into the distance. Shit! So, we left an open bottle of wine and walked back down to the spot. Point of the story is... we did a shit ton of walking.