Smile #76 – Nice to Meet You, Cinque Terre, Italy! [Part II]

Nice to Meet You, Cinque Terre, Italy [Part II]!

The comfort of the bed diminished my plan to see the sunrise. There is always tomorrow. 🙂

Instead we woke up to Giovanni’s delicious breakfast!  He spoiled us with eggs, meats, frothiest cappuccinos, local favorite – focaccia, and very tasty banana smoothies.  Let me repeat that, banana smoothies!  Bananas and I have avoided each other for ages and here I am exclaiming how tasty it was.  🙂

Breakfast paired with this gorgeous view.  Just perfetto!  🙂

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Today’s schedule is quite eventful.  We planned on visiting Riomaggiore, Manarola and Corniglia…all before it started rains.  🙂

We made our way on the next train. Within minutes we arrived at Riomaggiore.  (So remind me again why did we hike all that way yesterday…. right, for the view.  🙂 )

Riomaggiore is very charming and colorful.  🙂  We toured the village and stopped at several local shops.

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We stumbled across Art’in Banchi, a small artisan shop that sells Italian pottery and unique gifts.  A beautiful intricate ring caught my attention immediately.  I couldn’t resist.  🙂

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We headed up to the highest point in town.  It offered the most gorgeous overlook of the town.  We also found a Castello!

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The view at the top of the castle is even better!

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La Via dell’Amore, also known as the Lover’s Walk, connects Riomaggiore to Manarola.

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Hiking the Lover’s Walk with my lover

The trail started off gentle, but don’t be fool!  After a nice paved section, the trail progressed into a very long and steep staircase.  Stairs that never ends.
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We felt pretty accomplished when we finally reached the top. 🙂  It also helps with views like this.

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And thanks to whoever left this mark behind, it made us smile despite all the sweat.  🙂

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Beside the coastal scenery, I found these gorgeous wildflowers.  What a beautiful pop of color next to the endless blue ocean.  🙂

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This hike reminded us just how out of shape we are.  We can safely say we have done our fair share of hiking for this trip.  We will be taking advantage of the train from now on.

We thought the going down part should be easy…WRONG!  The trail transitioned to muddy uneven pavement and shaky rocks.  It took all my concentration and steadiness not to fall flat on my face or slide down the hill.  Looking back, I wonder just how many steps we walked!  🙂

You can see Manarola from afar :)
Manarola tugged away in the cliffside  🙂

Nothing is more welcoming than gulps of cool, fresh water!  Bubble literally sweated through every inch of his shirt from the hike.  (It is quite talented..) This called for shopping time!  🙂  He got a new fancy Cinque Terre tee.

Manarola is so vibrant and full of life.  Tourists mingled with the locals at every corner.  There were kids running around the courtyard.

We joined others at the harbor. Ahh, the sea breeze.  🙂

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Comiglia has its own character.  Unlike its four neighbors, Comiglia is perched high above the sea.   I originally thought we could manage the hike up to Corniglia, but after our previous hike, we opted for the train/bus to take us to the central plaza instead.  🙂

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Those gathered in the plaza were all enjoying a nice cone of gelato.  We got jealous and headed on a search.  We found a place that served Miele di Corniglia, which is a honey based gelato.  Yum!!

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Tucked behind the shop is this little nook.  It is so adorable!  🙂

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We strolled along windy narrow streets until we reached the scenic terrace of Santa Maria.  It offered uninterrupted views of the entire coast of Cinque Terre.  Absolutely breathtaking!  🙂

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We attempted to find a perfect Corniglia postcard.  But as the humble child of the lands, glorious shots of Corniglia are not available here.  Do not fret, I picked up one in Monterosso instead.  🙂

Aside from the path to our guesthouse, we really haven’t seen much of Monterosso.  Shame on us!  We decided to explore the other side of town.  We were surprised to see how lively it was.  🙂

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I can’t believe our time here gone by so quick and it is time to say goodbye.  I never want to leave this place!  It is absolutely magical and forever it will hold a special place in our hearts.  🙂

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