Planing on visiting Europe, but does not know where to go? We might have something to help you with your decision. As one of the most beautiful country in Europe is considered Italy, but this is such a big area, so we chose the most beautiful and colorful European villages for you. This is a place to visit at least once in a lifetime ; it is a paradise for photographers and lovers of fishing villages. Keep reading to get to know the European colorful beauty which can offer you some stunning view from the top!
The dramatic scenery and laid-back lifestyle of Cinque Terre has made this small area a must-see, on par with Florence, Rome, and Venice. Our comprehensive guide will tell you how to get there — and have the best possible trip.
Cinque Terre means crystal clear waters, laid-back coastal towns, picturesque coastlines lined with colorful homes, amazing hikes and great food.It comprises five small towns (hence the name, which translates to “Five Lands”) on the western coast of Italy in the region of Liguria, just above Tuscany. Situated within a national park, it’s characterized by terraced agricultural land and colorful towns that appear to rise from the Mediterranean Sea. The area is home to some 4,000 inhabitants, but attracts 2.4 million tourists per year, many of whom arrive by cruise ships at one of two nearby ports. The principle attraction is the beautiful but rugged landscape.A visit here is to a simpler Italy, without chain stores and car smog. It’s simple fresh pesto pastas and creamy gelato scoops where days are spent sunbathing or eating.
There are 5 distinct villages in total that make up the ‘five lands’. From north to south, the towns are: Monterrosso al Mare, Vernazza, Corneglia, Manarola and Riomaggiore. Together, they compose the Cinque Terre region, a protected national park and UNESCO World Heritage Site
Monterosso al Mare is the largest town, made up of an Old Town, New Town, rocky beaches and long seaside boardwalk. Monterosso offers the most accommodation and has a resort vibe, so most visitors to Cinque Terre tend to stay here
Vernazza is my personal favorite. There’s one main street leading from the train station to the harbour. Here, the church is built on the water with a gorgeous waterfront piazza perfect for dinner, people watching and sunbathing. It has sandy beaches (albeit much smaller than Monterosso’s) and is also mostly flat, but most places to stay here require a lot of stair climbing.
Corniglia is built high above the ocean on steep cliffs. Don’t stay here if you have excessive luggage, as the train station arrives at the foot of the town’s entrance so you’ll need to climb 365 steep steps to reach the town center.
Manarola is a romantic, colorful town with a small harbor popular for swims and a large rock for daredevils to jump off of. For many Europeans, Manarola is the favorite pastel darling of the bunch.There’s no beach here—instead, people sunbathe on the rocks surrounding the marina and cliff dive from craggy outcroppings in the water. Stylish decor and top-notch customer service make La Torretta Lodge one of Manarola’s classiest acts—take advantage of their happy hour if you want to meet other guests.
Riomaggiore has one main street, a harbor, a distinctive rocky beach and half a dozen restaurants. It’s the southernmost village and closest to the main city of La Spezia. Aside from the dramatic seaside beauty, Riomaggiore maintains a grittier workday vibe
Things to do in Cinque Terre :
Go for a swim and enjoy the village’s iconic views
Unless you’ve been living under an Instagram-proof rock, odds are, you’ve seen the classic postcard snap of Riomaggiore. Because the village is so compact, this viewpoint is super simple to find. Just follow the signs towards the marina (or trail behind the mob of folks who are keen to see the same view). Don’t forget your swimsuit though – the swimming here is really nice when the water’s not too choppy, plus it’s a great place to laze about, people watch and enjoy the view.
Grab some fried seafood in a cone
You’ll see everyone strutting around with these. Follow your nose & your tastebuds will thank you. There are a lot of options around town but Il Pescato Cucinato and Tutti Fritti are popular favourites.
Eat Pansotti and Farinata
While anchovies are the primary dish along this part of the Italian coastline and you really should give them a try, there are two other tasty dishes that are particular to the Cinque Terre.
Pansotti are a type of ravioli stuffed with a mixture of soft cheese and greens, served with a walnut sauce. The most authentic version of this dish calls for a mix of wild greens known as prebuggiun foraged from the rocky slopes above the Mediterranean that can include borage, nettles, wild fennel, dandelion and even wild poppy. The traditional cheese used is called prescinsêua and is kind of like a creamy sharp ricotta. You will also likely find these triangle shaped ravioli stuffed with spinach and ricotta, which is almost as delicious.
For a snack look for Farinata, sold at focaccia and pizza stands. It is made from chickpea flour, water and oil, and traditionally baked on a special wide flat copper tray called a testo in a wood-burning oven. Farinata is served in triangle shaped slices and you can have it plain with just a sprinkle of salt and pepper or sometimes with wild herbs or capers and onions baked in.
Watch the sunset from the rocks
At the base of town, you’ll find a natural swimming pool (as previously mentioned) and besides being a perfect swim spot, it’s also a wonderful place to watch the sun dip down behind the mountains. Honestly, you might cry a little.
Go cliff jumping with the locals
Of course do this at your own risk!! Right by the harbour, during peak season, you’ll likely see a lot of young locals going for a swim (I swear they had their own private rock there) and many of them climbing up a nearby cliff and jumping into the water. As the blogging community’s token wuss, I didn’t dare attempt this, but my boyfriend did and it was one of the highlights of his trip.
If you’re staying for a few days, you might want to get to know some of the pretty little towns just beyond the Cinque Terre. Bonassola’s sandy beaches can be reached by train, or from Levanto via the old track along the sea that has since been converted into a walking path. Check out La Francesca, an eco-resort, if you decide to spend the night. Other nearby gems are Portofino, Santa Margherita Ligure, Chiavari, Camogli, Forte dei Marmi (their high-end Wednesday market is one of Italy’s best), and Lerici.