Live Like A Local In An Apartment Or Villa
Don’t look for big international hotel chains here. Of course you can find some hotels in the Cinque Terre villages, mainly in Monterosso, but the number of rooms is limited. There is no space for new constructions or big buildings, which is good because the villages have already too many visitors. I am currently working on a list of recommended hotels in the Cinque Terre towns and in some other areas of the Italian Riviera as well.So if you like the hotel atmosphere, breakfast, a 24-hour reception or daily cleaning, I help you choose the best hotels in Cinque Terre for you.
Otherwise, I suggest staying in one of the privately rented rooms, apartments or villas. This way you can live like a local in the heart of the village or in the countryside with that cute Italian lady right next door. In addition, by renting a room, apartment or villa you can support a small local family business.
Most apartments have a well equipped kitchen, and all apartments and rooms have a private bathroom. Many of them have a terrace, rooftop terrace or balcony, so you can sit outside with a glass of Cinque Terre wine and enjoy the view of the sea, the green hills or the colourful houses. Villas have gardens and many of them have a swimming pool as well.
How Do Bookings Work
What will happen if you like an accommodation and you would like to book it? Once I confirm it with the rental agency or the accommodation owner, I will send you a booking form to fill in.
Some owners are very flexible and don’t ask for a deposit, but in most cases you have to pay them a prepayment or give credit card guarantee. Cancellation policies also vary.
Cinque Terre Where To Stay For Calm : Corniglia
Corniglia is the only Cinque Terre village with no access to the sea. Dont be afraid, it has plenty more to offer. Like for example the 377 steps to climb up to the village.
Those two features might already make you understand why Corniglia is the best town in Cinque Terre to stay if you need to relax.
You can feel it as well in the architecture which is slightly less grand than the other villages. The whole design of the streets are articulated around one main artery, which means if youre not on this main street, Via Feschi, you will not hear a sound, except maybe the marine breeze flowing through the ancient vineyards. You cant miss it when visiting.
Finally, Corniglia is located in the exact middle of the National Park, so it is visited a lot during the day, also thanks to St Peters church, a very special monument.
Pros & Cons of Staying in Corniglia
To find out more options in Corniglia, check out this guide!
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Budget: Controvento Al Mare
Riomaggiore isnt known for its budget-friendly accommodation options. But Controvento al Mare is a great place to stay in Cinque Terre.
While still a little pricey, the one-bedroom apartment is much cheaper than other options in Riomaggiore. You get excellent value for money too, with free wifi and lots of living space all with the hotel bonus of a 24-hour reception desk.
Controvento al Mare is only 300 meters from Riomaggiore Beach, so prepare yourself for a beach holiday of a lifetime.
Where To Stay In Cinque Terre: 5 Villages Bursting With Character
When deciding where to stay in Cinque Terre it is important to understand that each village has its own beauty and character.
Your home base will determine what activities are on your doorstep, what the nightlife will be like , and how much walking you will have to do .
In this guide, we have summarized the key points for each destination to make it quick and easy to find the one that best suits.
In this post:
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Don’t Look For Five Star Hotels Or Swimming Pools In The Cinque Terre
There is no 5 star hotel in the Cinque Terre and no luxury resorts. If you are looking for a high quality accommodation, choose one of the luxury apartments in the Cinque Terre or rent a villa or luxury villa in the area.Otherwise, you can stay in one of the 5 star hotels outside the Cinque Terre National Park, in Portovenere, Rapallo or Portofino.
Also, there are hardly any pools in the Cinque Terre villages. The Ligurian sea is wonderful, really no need for a pool here. But if you can’t imagineyour holiday without a swimming pool right by your house, there are a couple of hotels in Monterosso, and there are also some apartments and villas with pool available in the area, for example in La Spezia, Portovenere, Lerici, Sarzana or Portofino.
Cinque Terre hotels offer breakfast and some of them also serve half board. No breakfast or dinner is offerred in the apartments, but I think going to the local bar for your morning coffee and trying a different trattoria every evening is part of the fun.
Day 1 / Stop 2 Monterosso Levanto Trail
- Why its awesome: This trail stands out from its peers due to its tranquility and beauty!
- Cost: Free!
- Food nearby: Make sure to carry enough water for your hike, especially during summer! It may also be worth it to take an apple or orange with you. Youll find plenty of eateries in Levante we recommend Trattoria Antico Tannino!
Not one day in Cinque Terre should go by without a walk and this is the perfect trail to take out of Monterosso! It takes around two or three hours. The trail starts at the end of Fegina Beach and is well-marked throughout. The paths are a bit narrow but this is not a problem since there are fewer people here than on the other Cinque Terre trails!
The views of the Cinque Terre towns, as well as the glimpses of the islands of Palmaria, Tino, and Tinetto, are worth the effort! At parts of the trail, youll walk on top of sheer cliffs so youll see more of the open sea than the Cinque Terre shoreline. On the clearest days, you may even see Portofino and the Maritime Alps!
At about 980 feet above sea level, theres a sign pointing to San Antonio del Mesce, an ancient church thats further. It offers splendid views if youre willing to take the trip! Casa Lovara is another landmark that you can visit. It occupies a slopeside position, surrounded by terraced fields!
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How Long To Spend In Cinque Terre
You can spend as little or as long as you want to spend in Cinque Terre! If you only have one day, it is totally possible to visit Cinque Terre on a day trip from either Genoa area or the Tuscany region. It will be a long day, but it can be done. Just make sure to choose which villages are of high priority to you and then spend the most time in those places.
There are so many things to do in Cinque Terre, and you should narrow down exactly what you want to do before deciding how long you want to spend.
If you are looking to spend a few days, we recommend spending 2 nights and 3 days minimum to really experience what Cinque Terre has to offer. If you are visiting the Ligurian Coast as part of our 10 Day Italy Itinerary, then we recommend at least 1-2 nights, depending on your priorities elsewhere in Italy.
We absolutely love the Ligurian Coast and could easily spend a week seeing all this part of Italy has to offer. However, due to the popularity of the area and the higher cost of Cinque Terre accommodations, if you can spend 2 nights, we highly recommend it!
So there you have it! There are so many places to stay in Cinque Terre and we know you will find a village that speaks to you! From affordable apartments to luxury villas, these Cinque Terre accommodations will provide you with tons of options so you can plan your trip with ease. We cant wait to hear your thoughts on visiting Cinque Terre and the Ligurian Coast. It is one of our favorite spots in the world!
Camping In Cinque Terre
Unfortunately it’s not possible to camp in the Cinque Terre. You won’t find any campsites in the five villages and free camping is strictly forbidden in the Cinque Terre National Park.However, don’t get disappointed, as there are several great campsites close to the Cinque Terre, along the Ligurian coast, only a short train ride away. Levanto, for example, is only 5 minutes away by train from Monterosso al Mare, and you can find more campsites there. Here are a few tips: Camping degli Ulivi or Valdeiva in Deiva Marina, Villaggio Smeraldo in Moneglia, Camping Albero d’Oro, Camping 5 Terre or Acqua Dolce in Levanto, Mare Monti in Sestri Levante.If you are planning to camp here during the busy summer months, make sure you book well in advance as these campsites often fill up quickly.
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Doubles Twins Sofa Beds
Most places have European standard size double beds. Very few twin beds. So if you are looking for a place with twin beds, please let me know if you insist on twins, or if a double bed could also work. You will have a much wider selection with doubles.
If 4 of you are travelling together, you could have an apartment with a double bedroom and a living room with a double sofa bed. That’s the cheaper option. There are apartments available with two seperate bedrooms, but those are more expensive of course. For bigger families and groups of friends a large apartment or villa could be the ideal solution.
Luxury: El Nin Apartmentin Vernazza
If you are looking for the best luxury accommodation in Cinque Terre, El Nin Apartment ticks this box. The two-bedroom apartment is minutes away from Vernazza Beach and has fantastic sea views from its terrace. With an ATM and mini-market on-site and all the amenities you need, El Nin Apartment has the best conveniences. If you want a luxury base to explore Vernazza, this is the accommodation for you.
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Best Cinque Terre Hotels With Sea View
This is a selection of the very best Cinque Terre hotels and accommodations with the best sea views. All these hotels have already been mentioned above, but I thought it might be easier for you to have the most beautiful places with the best views listed in one place.
All these accommodations have excellent customer ratings and those postcard-views that will make your holiday in Cinque Terre even more memorable. If you have the budget, then dont look any further these are the absolute best places with a view to stay in Cinque Terre:
Monterosso Al Mare The Best Beaches In Cinque Terre
Located in the northern part of the area, this town is the fifth train stop from La Spezia. Your journey will take just over 20 minutes. Monterosso Al Mare is an ideal choice for you if you want to stay somewhere near the beaches, they are all situated within a walking distance. Monterosso Al Mare is actually the largest out of the five villages and the gateway for the Cinque Terre National Park.
The two main beaches that youll find in Monterosso Al Mare are the Fegina beach which is a great spot for families and the other one carries the same name as the village. This little town alone could rival the Amalfi Coast! Whether you relax on the sand or bring some local pastry and have a picnic, this town is great if you love some good old beach fun. Cinque Terre, Monterosso Al Mare has the most beautiful statue of all time.
Right near Fegina beach, there is a huge rock carving of the Neptune God, which is also known as The Giant, who looks as if he is actually holding the cliffs above him. An amazing spot to take some artsy pictures at sunset!
During your stay in Cinque Terre the train its going to be your best friend, even though you want to settle in one of the towns, at a hotel, you should take advantage of the fact that they are really close and take day trips.
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Best Town In Cinque Terre To Stay Without The Crowds : Levanto
If youre looking for which town to stay in Cinque Terre to avoid crowdedness, Levanto is for you!
Levanto is the northern gateway to the Cinque Terre National Park. Although its the most populated village of the area, its not the most touristic, so youll most probably avoid the crowds there. This is a relative statement as the whole of Cinque Terre is very much visited, so you might stumble across one or two tourists while youre there.
There are many choices of accommodation, and availability is pretty good if you book in advance.
The sea front is quite classical in term of sun vacation resort, you might not get the enchanting idea you have made yourself of Cinque Terre. But dont worry, youre only minutes away from the high cliffs and wild nature of the National Park.
Trekking paths start directly there, which make Levanto a good option for people without a car.
Pros & Cons of Staying in Levanto
Best Budget Hotel: Agriturismo La Collina Verde
Cheap, but very charming. Your budget is safe in this place. However availability is scarce so be sure to book early on!
Agroturismo La Collina Verde is a classical old farm, and is a new way of visiting a place, really taking part on the lives of the owners.
Not for everybody, but why not try it if you never did?
Definitely the best place to stay to visit Cinque Terre on a budget in Levanto!
Not sure to choose Levanto as your home for your Cinque Terre trip? These 15 hotel reviews will convince you!
Corniglia: The Quietest Village In The Cinque Terre
Corniglia Village, Cinque Terre Italy
While parts of the Cinque Terre can be overwhelming, Corniglia is like a little oasis of calm. Set back from the sea, it occupies an elevated location which means it gets stunning panoramic views.
The maze-like streets are lined with beautiful and historic buildings, while the calm atmosphere allows its authenticity to shine through. Perhaps best of all? Youll only share it with a few other tourists.
Corniglia Cinque Terre Italien
Whats the catch, you may ask? Well, Corniglias peacefulness requires some sacrifice. You see, from the train station its found at the top of 350 steps not an easy climb, but oh so worth it if you can do it. The lactic acid is nothing compared to enjoying the beauty of this rustic and authentic village and getting a taste of what traditional life is like along the Cinque Terre.
Best accommodation in Corniglia
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Which Village To Stay In
I will be spending only one night in Cinque Terra. Which village would you suggest? Any inns or B& Bs that you would recommend? I am driving from Florence via Pisa. I thought I could leave the rental car at the train station, take the train in then tour around the harbor by boat, spend the night then go back and pick up the car. Any suggestions?
Any of the villages would be fine, but have look at maps and train & boat schedules to choose your options. You can reach CT villages by boats from places like Lerici which may be more convenient for car access and parking – both of which are a bit tricky in the CT villages. The boat trip will give you great views. If you pick the right place you can go one way by boat & the other by train if time is short. I’d suggest walking part of the CAI 2 path between the villages in the morning after your hotel stay, and catching the train back to the village where you stayed . Vernazza is the one village not to miss, and Monterosso has the most accomodation choices – do book ahead as it’s a popular & busy area. Be aware that Corniglia village is about 350 steps above the local station.
There’s no such thing as “tour around the harbour by boat” – only one of the villages has a true harbour. You just go by boat from one village to the next.
How To Pick The Right Village For You
The main planning challenge for the Cinque Terre, once you’ve worked out how many days you can have or afford, is the question of where to stay. Each of the five villages have their own charms as well as accommodation for most budgets, so there’s really no wrong choice however, we know that some of you with a certain travel style will probably prefer one over another. Some are better for hikes, some are better for beach days, some have a bit of a younger vibe – we’ve covered the pros / cons within each village specific section below.
As youre likely aware, overtourism is absolutely an issue in the Cinque Terre, but each village is transformed once all day-trippers and tour groups have departed. This is an added benefit of basing yourself here rather than visiting for the day, and it also allows you to contribute in a more sustainable manner to the local economy.
If you’re here for a couple of nights, we recommend picking a hotel or apartment in just one village then exploring by train and on foot. There is the potential to split your stay across two villages if you’re planning a longer visit, however it really isnt essential.
We chose to do three nights in Monterosso al Mare followed by three in Riomaggiore and, if you wish to do similar, then you need to try and align check-out/in times and luggage storage, which may be more hassle than it’s worth in high season, especially as most places dont allow check-in until 3-4 pm.
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