Friday 24th May 2019
Corniglia, Italy (walk from Vernazza to Monterosso)
Up late today, had breakfast (boiled eggs, a roll and yogurt and coffee) then we walked down to the railway station at Corniglia down the 300 odd steps. Today was quite warm and fine. We joined the throngs on the train and went one stop to Vernazza, a town with a very pretty port and a lovely church, bigger than where we are staying in Corniglia. We have a hike to do, up up and away from the town, very steep with many steps away from the coast into the terraced farms that have been there for hundreds of years, twisting turning up then on the flat for a while then after about two and a half hours down to Monterosso del Mare, where we finally came down again. We had a refreshing beer in a bar then walked to the railway station and caught the train back to Corniglia, had an ice cream then back to our beautiful little room above the narrow street where visitors walk past during the day, but this town is pretty uncrowded in the morning and the evening, certainly less crowded than Vernazza and Monterosso where we were today. Had dinner at one of the many restaurants Cecio (Lynn had fried mixed fish, David had spaghetti bolognese) in this gorgeous village. View of the sunset over the mountains was very nice. Walked home, then to bed.
Saturday 25th May 2019
Corniglia, Italy (walk from Monterosso to Levanto)
Up earlier so that we could get a start on our walk today which was a deal longer than yesterday, and we take longer than they suggest anyway, had breakfast in our room, boiled eggs, yogurt, coffee and a bread roll. We set off down the stairs to Corniglia Railway Station and caught the train to Monterosso - the day was fine and mild. When we arrived in Monterosso (only two stops away) we went the wrong way for a few minutes then walked up out of the town and ended up high above the sea, which was calm and windless. We walked along tracks that were not as well formed as yesterday’s walk , but there were not nearly as many people walking either so it made it much easier. At one point we saw a sleek black snake just exiting the track after a loud person had passed by. Today we were heading towards Levanto, which is quite a large town on the sea without, in our opinion, much character. When we reached the end of our walk, it was quite a hike back to the railway station and it was about 4:30 pm, so we were glad to get back to Corniglia and the shuttle bus (to avoid the steps). Waited about 25 minutes for our turn on the bus and got back to our room about 5:00pm, had an ice cream and an aperitif, then went to dinner at (reputedly, the best restaurant in town) A Cantina de Mananan, where we had a delicious dinner (we shared anchovies in lemon, David had poached sea bream, Lynn had ravioli with walnut sauce) then a brief stroll back to our room then to bed around 10:30pm. Quite an exhausting day in all, the walks are very steep and lots of steps and very uneven ground, but all have beautiful views.
Sunday 26th May 2019
Corniglia, Italy (visit to Riomaggiore)
Today was showery when we woke up, but last night, we had decided that we wouldn’t do a long walk today as the one on the itinerary didn’t sound as interesting but was quite long and involved a bus as well as the train. After breakfast (fried eggs, yoghurt, coffee, bread rolls), it was not as wet, so we caught the train to Riomaggiore, two stops away and walked down to the port for a look and enjoyed the atmosphere there. We then walked up through the town, looking in shops and taking photos. We sat in a square and had lunch then walked up further to the old castle, after which we walked all the way back down to the train and went back to Corniglia. We walked up the 300 odd steps to the town, had an ice cream, then walked around the town checking out the shops (there aren’t many as this is a very small town), back to the room for an aperitif. We enjoyed dinner at La Lanterna restaurant for dinner tonight (shared salted anchovies, David had grilled fish, Lynn fried mixed seafood). Weather has stayed overcast most of the day, but hardly any rain except for early morning and some brief light drizzle.