Sentiero Azzurro | Cinque Terre, Italy, 2004

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Vernazza

Distance :  7.5 miles (12 km)

Avg.Time :  3 – 4 hours (not including obligatory food & wine intervals).

Start / Finish :

Season :

  • All year.
  • Tip: In my opinion the best time to visit the Cinque Terre is in winter. The temperature is neither too hot nor too cold, no crowds and lower prices.

Maps / Info :

  • No maps necessary. Simply follow the coastline.
  • The trail passes through five villages: Riomaggiore, Manarola, Corniglia, Vernazza and Monterosso al Mare.
  • Bring a water bottle, sunscreen, a good appetite and a hat.

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Route / Conditions :

  • Well marked from start to finish (often with blue blazes), this easy to follow route hugs the Cinque Terre coastline. Although there is some climbing and descending involved, overall the route is far from strenuous and the biggest challenge you will most likely face, is resisting the temptation to stretch a mellow 12km hike into a multi-day culinary adventure.

Sleeping :

  • Seaside accommodation is available at both trailhead villages. I rented an apartment in Riomaggiore and enjoyed it so much I ended up staying for ten days.

Overview :

  • The Sientiero Azzurro is a jaw dropping meets mouth-watering fusion of  natural and culinary elements. Fantastically scenic from start to finish, I highly recommend extended stops in Manarola and Vernazza. This is one of those hikes where time seems to fly by. Before you know it, most of the day has passed , and you have become part of the furniture at a seaside cafe, taking in a gorgeous Mediterranean sunset pondering life’s conundrums over one too many red wines.

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