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The Cinque Terre is the name given to five small villages at the very end of the Levante (Easter) side of the Ligurian Riviera. Cinque means “five”, terre means “lands”. The villages from north to south are:

  • Monterosso al Mare
  • Vernazza
  • Corniglia
  • Manarola
  • Riomaggiore

Levanto is the next town north of the Cinque Terre and is the doorway to the region. The landscape here is so special that in 1998 the area was listed as a world heritage site under the protection of Unesco. A nature park and a marine park have been created to preserve the environment.

The villages are small and old and are perched on the edge of steep hills that run down to the sea. All, except Corniglia, are close to the sea. Corniglia sits on a cliff maybe a thousand feet above the sea. Until the 1960’s, these villages were not accessible by road.

Try the famous white wine of the Cinque Terre as well as the “Sciacchetra” (a dessert wine ).