Witness a romantic sunset in Riomaggiore
Sip and swirl local wine in Manarola
Climb to the pretty square of Corniglia
Dine on fresh mussels and limoncello in Vernazza
Party and splurge on sandals in Monterosso
The grace of the Cinque Terre with its colorful houses spilling over the cliffside has long been a draw for superyacht charters. Exploring the Cinque Terre is an adventure brimming with blooming flowers, endless steps, and melt in the mouth seafood. The five villages that make up the Cinque Terre each have their own special highlight – offering pint sized harbours, honeyed figs growing on the hillside, and sweet wine tasting perched high up in the hills.
Because of the tight tangled roads, the sheer ravines dropping to the sea, and the single lane traffic – the UNESCO wonder of Italy is best explored out on open water. These are our highlights for sailing the stunning Cinque Terre.
The largest of the famous five, the waters of Riomaggiore are arguably one of the most romantic spots to watch the sunset. At dusk, in the golden glow of the last night, the pastel colored houses seem to shine atop the silver cliffs making for a spectacular site.
Yet, you don’t need to wait until the end of day to fall in love with Riomaggiore, you can wander the botanical garden at the top of the town, kayak around the craggy cliffs, and dine on fresh conger eel spaghetti on the tiny rustic jetty of La Lanterna restaurant.
The second smallest village in the Cinque Terre; Manarola is a smidge of paradise – composing a portrait of paint box houses, beautiful views, and vineyards that hang heavy waiting to be plucked and crushed into the local wine. Hiking along the vineyards trail is a must for outlandish ocean views, and a well-deserved hour of sipping and swirling in the summer bar of Punto Bonfiglio.
You need to be fit to climb the steps to Corniglia, but the pretty little square is worth the climb to sit and do nothing with the locals. There isn’t much in the way of tourist activity in cool Corniglia, but the walkway between this village and Vernazza is a must for wandering through pungent groves of olives, bright notes of orange blossom, and earthy rosemary.
Crowned as one of the most charming of the five villages, Vernazza is a series of steeped streets and the place to indulge in the sweetest and most succulent seafood.
Gambero Rosso is the spot to pull up a seat and gorge on mussels straight from the underwater pantry of the Ligurian sea. Wash it down with a glass or two of fresh limoncello before strolling around the old castle and church perched above the town.
Finish your exploration of the Cinque Terre in magical Monterosso – the only village to boast a stretch of sandy beach perfect for a cooling dip in the Italian sun. Monterosso seems to have a more resort like feel, meaning that those who like late nights nursing aperol spritzes will find their crowd in the hole in the wall joints of this lively village.
For those looking to splurge on Italian goods to take back home, you will find buttery soft sandals and luscious white linens to take back home.
Words by: Jodie Oakes