Where to Stay in Cinque Terre: 8 Best Areas & Towns

If you’re planning your visit and want to find out where to stay in Cinque Terre, this blog post will give you some great information on which towns of Cinque Terre are best for you!

Italy is a country featuring on most people’s bucket lists. Within that however, there is a huge range of choice in terms of where to visit, and where to stay – the decision is enough to give you a headache!

Research will of course help you make your final choice, and one area which is not only beautifully picturesque, but packed with things to see and do, is Cinque Terre. Beside Rome, Cinque Terre is one of our best favourite places in our Europe backpacking routes.

Deciding where to go is one thing, but you might be thinking of where to stay in Cinque Terre. Let’s check this out in a bit more detail, and help give you an overview on where you might like to base yourself.

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Located in the Liguria region of Italy you will find UNESCO World Heritage listed Cinque Terre. It is known locally as ‘five lands’ because it is made up of five small villages, and all have them have subtle differences.

For this reason, you need to know where to stay in Cinque Terre, in order to find the best village for you. The villages are: Riomaggiore,  Manarola, Corniglia, ​Vernazza, Monterosso.

The nearest airports to this region are Pisa, Genova or Firenze. Milan is around two hours away by train, so it’s not difficult to arrive here by any means. Walking is the main activity in this region, and some of the coastal trails are known as the best in Europe.

To walk around you need to purchase a pass, which is around 7.50 Euros currently – quite the bargain! These passes are available from any of the local information offices in the villages. And remember bring your best walking shoes to enjoy these beautiful sceneries.

💖 Best Area for first time visitorsVernazza
💎 Best guest house:La Polena Camere Vernazza
🏨 Best bed and breakfast:Agriturismo Costa di Campo
💰 Best budget hotel:Camere Fontanavecchia

📌 8 Best Towns to Stay in Cinque Terre, Italy

There are five best towns to stay in Cinque Terre: Monterosso, Riomaggiore, Manarola, Corniglia, Vernazza.

Where to Stay in Cinque Terre Map

To more detail on where to Stay in Cinque Terre, go to Google Map;

1. Monterosso al Mare, where to stay in Cinque Terre for best beaches

Where to Stay in Cinque Terre: Monterosso

In terms of knowing where to stay in Cinque Terre, you really need to know about the villages themselves and compare that to your personal interests. If you’re after a more resort-type holiday with sun, sand, and large hotels, then the largest of the five coastal villages, Monterosso is the best town for you to stay in.

Monterosso is separated into two parts including the Old Village and the modern village Fegina.

The old town of Monterosso is dominated by the ruins of the Fieschi castle, the walls of the ancient fortress, the 16th-century medieval tower of Aurora, typical narrow medieval alleyways, and multi-colored terraced houses. In the main square of the old town, you will find the church of San Giovanni Battista, which was built between 1244 and 1307 with a Ligurian Gothic style.

The San Francesco Church was built in the 17th century, contains many excellent works of art, including the Crucifixion by Van Dick. The church is also known as the Capuchin Monastery and the Convento dei Cappuccini e Chiesa di San Francesco. On the old town side, you also have the statue of San Benedetto d’ Assisi on the colle dei capuccini.

After a day of hiking the trails of the Cinque Terre National Park or on the beach, visit one of the many delightful restaurants in town such as Monterosso anchovies. Make sure to try a sweet white passito wine produced in the Cinque Terre region, Sciacchetrà.

The new part of town, Fegina, ranges along the coast from the San Cristoforo to Punta Mesco. You will find a cheerful seafront promenade and Fegina Beach. Fegina is dominated by the famous Il Gigante, the giant statue of Neptune, a 14-meter-high cool sculpture, a symbol of the village the symbol of Monterosso.

On the 3rd Saturday in May, the village celebrates the Lemon Festival and is decorated with lemons and you can taste torta al limone – the special lemon cake, lemon marmalade, limoncino, and lemon cream. In June, you have events like Corpus Domini and Sagra dell’acciuga fritta; On the 14th of August with fireworks over the sea for Festa della Madonna Assunta. On September, you have Festa del vino and Festival bandistico.

This is where you will find the largest choice of accommodation and tourist facilities, but it is also within easy reach on foot to the other four villages on the coast.

Monterosso Fegina Beach is one of the best beaches in Cinque Terre, you can also find the family-friendly beach of Il Gigante on the right of Fegina beach, and a small pebble beach in Monterosso Old Town, Spiaggia Tragagia – the second-largest beach in Monterosso.

Monterosso al Mare is the best town to stay in Cinque Terre for the beach, families with kids, couples, and foodies.

Travel to Monterosso al Mare and how to get around:

The Monterosso al Mare village can be easily reached by train from Levanto and La Spezia. The local train station is also very well connected to the other Cinque Terre villages, Milan, Genoa, Turin, and Pisa.

As Monterosso is the westernmost of the group, you can pick it to easily visit Riomaggiore, Corniglia, Vernazza, and Manarola, and by foot or water boat.

You can take a flight from the nearby airport such as Rome, Genoa or Pisa or event Florence and Milan, and take a direct train to Monterosso al Mare. You can also travel by car but it’s not recommended as its lacks parking spaces.

Where to Stay in Monterosso al Mare:

Hotel Villa Adriana: Located within walking distance from Fegina Beach, Monterosso Old Town Beach, and Monterosso Station. This 3-star hotel provides classically furnished rooms, a Ligurian restaurant, a swimming pool, and free wifi. You can easily reach Vernazza and the other villages of the Cinque Terre on the local train line

Hotel Porto Roca:  An elegant villa offers a panoramic cliff-top location with stunning sea views, a 5-minute walk from Monterosso center. The Cinque Terre’s famous Blue Trail starts here. La Spezia Centrale Train Station and La Spezia Port is less than 15km away.

Hotel Marina: Located just a few steps from the beach, Hotel Marina offers accommodations in Monterosso al Mare, in the Cinque Terre National Park. The location is great, a short walk from all of the restaurants, the beach and not far from the train station. Levanto and La Spezia are in short drive away.

Locanda A Cà Du Gigante Located just a few steps from Il Gigante, within walking distance from Monterosso Train Station, and hour and half drive from the Pisa and Genoa airports.


Check out my virtual tour of the best places to stay in Cinque Terre in this video:

Where to stay in Cinque Terre: Best Areas to Stay in Cinque Terre, Italy

See more: Where to Stay in Venice

2. Riomaggiore, where to stay in Cinque Terre for amazing views

Where to Stay in Cinque Terre:  Riomaggiore

Riomaggiore is located just a few minutes by train from La Spezia, the most southern village of the Cinque Terre, a coast of Italian Riviera.

If you are visiting Cinque Terre to really take in the natural landscapes and get out into the fresh air, then Riomaggiore is the place for you. This is basically centrally located, so in either direction, you’re never too far away from somewhere beautiful and picturesque, with Manarola just two hours away on foot.

If you’re not so great on your feet, however, be warned that the trails around here are quite steep; if you are able to walk around to your heart’s content, however, be sure to head down to the small marina, and check out the amazing views.

The town climbs up along the ridges overlooking the sea and is filled with the typical stone houses with slate-roofs and colored façades.

From the Via dell’Amore, Lover’s Lane, a magnificent path is known for the romantic atmosphere and wonderful landscapes, connecting with Manarola in twenty by foot. The medieval Castle of Riomaggiore was built in 1260 by Marquis Turcotti, where you can enjoy magnificent views over the sea.

Nearby the castle, you can find the 16th century Chiesa della Compagnia (Oratorio dell’Assunta), and the Gothic Church of Saint John the Baptist, which was built by the Bishop of Luni in 1340. The 14th century Church of San Lorenzo with its beautiful rose window is also worth a visit.

Stroll around the main street in Riomaggiore, Via Colombo, with restaurants, cafes, souvenirs shops, the square Piazza Vignaioli, and charming harbor.

The town is home to the National Park Main Office. Sanctuary of Montenero provides wonderful views over the Island of Tino and Punta Mesco. It’s an hour’s steep uphill walk from Riomaggiore.

You can also check out the trail from Spiaggia di Fossola beach to old Nazi bunkers and a beautiful hilltop botanical garden. You can also Relax on Riomaggiore beach; Explore Canneto Beach (between Punta Castagna and Punta del Cavo) by boat, and Go wine tasting to taste local wine.

Riomaggiore is the best town to stay in Cinque Terre for young, nightlife, couples, foodies, busy feel, and easy access to La Spezia.

Where to Stay in Riomaggiore:

Scorci Di Mare:  This guest house is a 14th-century building in the Cinque Terre National Park, just a few steps from Riomaggiore’s rocky coast, close to the La Spezia Centrale Train Station, Amedeo Lia Museum, Technical Naval Museum, and Saint George’s Castle. Riomaggiore Beach, Canneto Beach, and Corniglia Beach are popular beaches nearby. It’s an ideal place to stay for couples, and if you like hiking and cycling to the mountain.

Alla Marina Affittacamere: is set in a mid-13th-century building, situated right by Riomaggiore harbor, you can easily visit La Spezia and other Cinque Terre villages with Riomaggiore Train Station within walking distance from the property.

Cinqueterre Residence: a great location away from the main street of Riomaggiore. This hotel offers more privacy from the bustling main street which allowed us to open up the doors/windows and enjoy the view of the valley. Pisa International Airport, Genoa Cristoforo Colombo Airport, and Giuseppe Verdi Airport are less than 100km from the hotel.

Affittacamere Le Giare Located in the Cinque Terre National Park, within walking distance from Riomaggiore Train Station. it provides air conditioning room with a flat-screen TV, private bathroom, and free wifi. Within short distance from Riomaggiore beach and Monterosso Al Mare.


3. Manarola, where to stay in Cinque Terre for exploring nature

Where to Stay in Cinque Terre: Manarola

We mentioned Manarola, and this is the best place to stay if you really want to get away from it all and stay somewhere totally serene and quiet. Most visitors to Manarola are just passing through on foot, so you’re sure to enjoy the beach space and serenity of the landscapes. Art lovers will love this particular village too, with an interesting art gallery to while away a few hours in.

Manarola is one of the most romantic and charming of the Cinque Terre villages, with appealing small houses clinging to the cliff facing the sea, a tiny piazza with seafood restaurants. Everywhere is the scent of the rosemary, thyme, lemon trees, and the grapevines.

The main square, Piazza Papa Innocenzo IV, is home to the Oratorio dei Disciplinati, the Church of San Lorenzo, and the defense tower which was used as a post to watch for potential pirate raids.

The lower part of the village is a maze of charming alleyways and narrow cobbled streets with craft shops and eateries. Before heading to the harbor, look for the old watermill and Via Belvedere.

There is no beach in this town, but it offers the best deep-water swimming around, a good spot for snorlking. And Don’t forget the romantic path Via dell’Amore, which connects Manarola with Riomaggiore.

On the way on the way to Corniglia, to the north, you will find Punta Bonfiglio, a famous sunset spot. Manarola is the best town to stay in Cinque Terre for photographers, couples, hikers, and off-the-beaten-track travelers.

Make sure to try succulent seafood and the famous sweet Sciacchetrà wine. If you visit in August, you will see San Lorenzo Feast event.

Where to Stay in Manarola:

Affittacamere San Giorgio: is 211 m from the seafront, 25 minute by car from La Spezia. It is right in front of the train station, restaurants and stores literally just next to the building. It is perfect for a couple wanting something romantic. The view of the town and the sea is amazing, sitting on the patio. The apartment is secluded enough not to have all the tourists on your doorstep – so it is nice and quiet, but literally a 2-minute walk into the town. It is perfect – well equipped and very unique carved into the rock face

Ca’ D’Andrean: this great hotel is located on the main street of Manarola, on Cinque Terre Park, just 5 minutes walk away from the Manarola Train Station, a great place for couples. All air-conditioned rooms have a flat-screen TV, wooden furnishings, and a private bathroom with free toiletries and a hairdryer.

Hotel Marina Piccola: Located within 5-minute walk from Manarola Train Station, a 2-minute walk from Manarola’s rocky beaches. Maria Piccola features air-conditioned rooms with free WiFi access. It is characterized by the stone walls contrasting with the modern furnishings.


4. Corniglia, Where to Stay in Cinque Terre to Escape Crowds

Where to Stay in Cinque Terre: Corniglia

Moving onto Corniglia, this is the village which is at the highest elevation, and because of that the views are dramatic! There are two beaches that sit underneath the village, and these are ideal for chilling the hell out in the sun, whilst also being relatively sheltered by large rocks too. Again, Corniglia may not be the best of the villages if you have mobility problems.

Corniglia is nestled on top of a 100m high rocky promontory, the quiet middle village, surrounded on three sides by vineyards and terrace and the Ligurian Sea on the other. It is the only one of the five villages without access from the sea.

To reach Corniglia from the train station, you have to hike up to 377 stairs Lardarina. The town is characterized by caruggi (narrow alleys) and colorful houses.

Start from Corniglia’s main square, the eighteenth-century Largo Taragio, which is home to some lovely café-restaurant and the Oratory of Santa Caterina, a memorial to the soldiers of World War I.

From Largo Taragio, you can visit the gothic Ligurian style, Church of San Pietro, and beautiful St Mary’s Terrace, where you can appreciate marvelous views of Riomaggiore, Manarola, Monterosso al Mare, and Vernazza.

For beach lovers, check out the quiet and charming Guvano beach is a popular place with nudists worldwide. A rocky cove, Corniglia Marina beach can be reached through some steep steps (Via alla Marina) from the main square. and Corniglia beach is near an abandoned tourist resort, Villaggio Europa.

Corniglia is the best town to stay in Cinque Terre for active travelers, adventurous travelers, budget options, and couples.

Where to Stay in Corniglia:

Corte Del Gallo: is located 0.6 mi from the center of Corniglia, a few steps from Corniglia Train Station. Corte Del Gallo features views over the garden, rooms with parquet floors, and elegant furnishings. 

Affittacamere Le Terrazze: has a beautiful terrace and garden where you can use the jacuzzi and sun chairs with a beautiful view. This is a large, spacious apartment in the heart of Corniglia. There are 2 big balconies, one with a view of the sea and the other just over the quaint cobbled streets

Arbanella: Arbanella is located in the center of Cornigla, so 30 seconds walk to the inner square and 5 min walk down the road and you are at the sea where you can swim. Great view from the window and the garden, which is ideal to have a drink watching sunset.


5. Vernazza, the most popular and crowded village in Cinque Terre

Where to Stay in Cinque Terre: Vernazza

Next, we have Vernazza, one of the beautiful villages in Italy. If you are a keen photographer, or landscapes are your thing, this is the village for you.

The harbor is the only actual working harbor amongst all of the five villages, and the castle which overlooks the village is fantastic for a visit. On a side note, if you love natural products, the villagers claim that their locally produced olive oil is some of the best you will find anywhere in the Med!

The Tower of the Doria Castle was built in the 15th century to protect the town from pirates. The Church of Santa Margherita d’Antiochia, was built in 1318, on the rocks overlooking the sea. Feast Santa Margherita di Antiochia in July where the town celebrates with fireworks and a festival.

Via Roma is the main street, which is filled with craft shops, wine bars, and cafes, and home to a tiny stone chapel, the Chapel of Santa Marta.

The Sanctuary of our Lady of Regio is 2km from the train station, about 1-hour walk uphill, and surrounded by centuries-old trees. You will find the Stations of the Cross on the path to this sanctuary.

There are two beaches in Vernazza including a small sandy beach near the harbor, and a new pebble beach which can be reached by walking through a rock-hewn passage.

Vernazza is good to visit all year round but the best time to visit Vernazza is from September to October, it’s quiet and cold in winter, crowded in summer, and in spring, the weather can be bad.

You can find small hotels, nice apartments, and romantic guesthouses in the center of the village with an incredible view over the main square and the vivid small harbor.

Best Places to stay in Cinque Terre in Vernazza:

Camere Fontanavecchia: Offering spacious rooms with free Wi-Fi, Camere Fontanavecchia is close to Vernazza Station and just 5 minutes’ walk from the beach. Train links run to La Spezia and along the Cinque Terre National Park. Great location, the accommodation is slightly up the hill from the train station which means this part of town is slightly quieter.

Cadè Ventu: Amazing location with an absolutely exceptional view, simple but clean, spacious room with modern bathroom, friendly staff. Great place to relax or hike. You are up in the mountains and can see San Bernadino, Corniglia, and Monterosso

Rina Rooms: is set in the very heart of Vernazza, Rina Rooms is about 150 m from Vernazza Train Station and less than 5 minutes walk from the small beach and the beautiful Ligurian Sea.


6. La Spezia, a central base to explore iconic cities

La Spezia, a central base to explore iconic cities

La Spezia is an ideal base if you want to explore the region that includes Florence, Genoa, and Pisa, three culturally iconic towns. It has a population of around 90,000 and is located on the border of the provinces of Liguria and Tuscany. It is a friendly place and its fish and vegetable markets each morning is a place to see the locals ‘’in action.’’

It is a seaport, and you can take day trips to fishing villages as well as Palmaria Island. Likewise, the train services provide easy access to other places in Cinque Terre. Within the town itself, check out the Basilica of Santa Maria Assunta, the Castle of San Giorgio, and its Archaeological Museum. Even the modern bridge, Ponte de Thaon de Revel, is impressive.

The Waterfront and Public Gardens with the harbor of Porto Mirabello start with the beautiful white bridge Ponte Thaon di Revel. The Passeggiata Costantino Morin, lined with palm trees, with great views of the harbor. Nearby, La Spezia’s Public Gardens are good for the children’s playground.

The castle of San Giorgio is one of the major landmarks in La Spezia, was constructed in the 13th century by Nicolo Fieschi. The castle is home to an archaeological museum that shows exciting objects from this part of Italy from the Bronze Age.

Via Prione is the main pedestrian street with a wide selection of restaurants, cafes, and bars, and shops that sell Italian clothing and shoes. Piazza Cavour (Piazza del Mercato) is the market square, the morning market for fruits and vegetables. You can also find the weekly street market on Viale Garibaldi. Other places to shop are Le Terrazze and Shopping 5Terre Outlet Village.

You have museums like Maritime Museum (Naval Technical Museum), an important naval museum in Italy; Amedeo Lia Art Museum displays collections dating back from the 13th to 18th centuries. Be sure to visit the Chiesa di Nostra Signora della Neve (the Church of our Lady of the Snow) with its beautiful façade.

There are some festivals each year in this village, you have Fiera di San Giuseppe in March, and Palio del Golfo in August.

Accommodations are quite affordable includes hotels and villas with seasonal pools and hostels as well, around the station and in the old town.

Stay in La Spezia if You want a central base to explore iconic cities; Accommodation choices will fit your budget; You like the idea of trips out to sea.

Best places to stay in La Spezia:

Maeli Rooms This guest house is located in La Spezia, 3km from Saint George’s Castle; offers an on-site restaurant, a bar, and free wifi. Close to La Spezia Port, Technical Naval Museum, Le Terrazze Shopping Centre, and Amedeo Lia Museum.

Via Chiodo Luxury Rooms This guesthouse is built in 1900, offers air-conditioned accommodation, close to La Spezia Cruise Terminal, Le Terrazze Shopping Centre, La Spezia Central Train Station, Pisa International Airport.

I Colori di Mag This bed and breakfast offers classic-style air-conditioned rooms in La Spezia, within a short stroll from the bus stop with links to the city centre. La Spezia port and the Maritime Museum can be reached in a short ride. The Cinque Terre National Park and Portovenere are easily reached by boat


7. Levanto, a good town for beaches and nightlife

This seaside resort is 50 miles east of Genoa on the Italian Riviera. It is little more than a large village, but it does have good transport connections with the rest of the region. The setting is lovely with the green valley of pine, olives, and vineyards and the sea that attracts divers, surfers, and those who just want to relax.

It was the sandy beach that first attracted tourism and the infrastructure today includes bars and clubs as well as some excellent restaurants. It is alive at night and therefore attracts anyone who wants to party. The shopping is good with the covered market selling fresh produce six days a week.

The highlights of Levanto are the Sant’ Andrea Church, the Oratorio di San Giacomo, and the medieval castle and tower. There is a good choice of 3 and 4-star hotels in Levanto, as well as B&Bs.

The 13th-century Church of Sant Andrea is a Ligurian Gothic-style church that has white and dark green strips facade and a white marble rose window.

If you start the hike uphill head to Monterosso, you can find a nice historical area. The castle was built in the 11th century by the Malaspina family, former a prison, now a private residence. The Clock Tower was built in 1265. You can also find the remains of the medieval city walls.

Piazza del Popolo is a pretty square near the sea, with a medieval loggia from 1405; it was unique in all of Liguria when it was constructed.

Besure to check 6km bike path Levanto – Bonassola – Framura. Bonassola is a beautiful village with a wonderful beach, located just a few kilometers west of Levanto.

Stay in Levanto if You are looking for a sandy beach; Good nightlife is important to you; You want a place where there is plenty to explore.

Where to stay in Levanto:

Affittacamere LevantoMare Located within a 15-minute drive from the Cinque Terre National Park, this accommodation offers rooms with a flat-screen TV, a private bathroom, private parking, and free wifi. It’s 36km from Portofino, 18km from La Spezia, and 66km from Genoa Cristoforo Colombo Airport. Beaches nearby are Levanto Beach and Spiaggia Valle Santa.

Affittacamere Sapore di Mare Located just within a few steps of Levanto Beach, this accommodation offers air-conditioned rooms with a fully equipped private bathroom.

B&B Vignola Located within a short ride from Levanto Train Station with direct links to the Cinque Terre UNESCO Heritage Site. The Levanto-Monterosso footpath passes near this property for hiking along the Cinque Terre.


8. Portovenere, a medieval fishing village

Portovenere, an old fishing village

Such is the quality of this old fishing village that it has been recognized by UNESCO as a World Heritage site. Its beautiful harbor has colorful housing while the narrow streets winding up its hills lead to a castle at the summit. Everyone should always have their camera ready when in Portovenere on the ‘’Gulf of Poets.’’

You can take a ferry along the rocky coastline. One of the things to look out for is Byron’s Cave where the British poet used to swim. There are also a few small islands such as Tinetto, Tino, and Palmaria.

The Church of San Pietro was built in 1277 in Genovese Gothic style and the magnificent Doria castle and military fortress, which was first built in 1161 and was significantly reconstructed in 1458.

Resort style hotels with pools are found in Portovenere but you have other choices as well; B&Bs, apartments, hostels, and villas. 

Stay in Portovenere if You want a good choice of accommodation; History and culture are personal interests; Day trips to sea appeal to you.

Where to stay in Portovenere:

La Calata This guest house offers air-conditioned rooms with sea views, a wardrobe, a flat-screen TV, a private bathroom, and free wifi. It’s 14km from La Spezia, 28km from Corvara, 60km from Pisa International Airport. Attractions nearby are Technical Naval Museum, Saint George’s Castle, Amedeo Lia Museum, and Le Terrazze Shopping Centre.

Torre Porto Venere This guest house is in a 16th-century tower, in Portovenere, within a short stroll from the beginning of the 5 Terre National Park, and 30 minute drive from the Gulf of Poets. Beaches nearby are Spiaggia del Persico, Spiaggia del Cantun, Baia Blu Beach, Venere Azzurra Beach, and Eco del Mare Beach.

L’Ancora Set on the seafront in Portovenere, with a view of both the Porto Venere Regional Park and the Ligurian Sea, 12 km from La Spezia, and 35 minutes from Cinque Terre UNESCO Heritage Site.


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Where to Stay in Cinque Terre Without A Car?

It’s easier to stay in the Cinque Terre without a car, as there is very limited parking and the villages are pedestrianized (although there is some parking at each village). Instead, it’s best to get around using the trains and ferries that connect the villages or enjoy some of the beautiful hiking trails.

This means that you don’t need to pick where to stay based on the fact that you don’t have a car – it is easy to travel from village to village without one.

Where to Stay in Cinque Terre With A Car?

If you do bring a car to the Cinque Terre, it’s best to stay in Corniglia or Monterosso, as it’s possible to drive through some areas of these villages. There is parking available at the other village entrances from which you can walk into the main village as well.

The cheapest village to park in is Corniglia, at €10 per car per day. Monterosso is more expensive at €25 per car per day, but there is a car park in both the old town and the new town, so you can park closer to your accommodation.

You should avoid driving to Vernazza altogether, as the roads have been badly damaged by floods and the drive is treacherous – it’s best to visit this village via public transport or on foot.

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As you can see, where to stay in Cinque Terre is really a personal deal. The villages all have something subtly different about them, and that makes them suitable for different interests and needs.

Perhaps the most notable point is that some are easier to reach than others, in terms of the landscape, so this is something you need to take into account if you have mobility issues, with Corniglia and Riomaggiore being a little more difficult to reach.

Wherever you stay however, you’re sure to fill up that camera memory card with some breath-taking views!

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