Cinque Terre was probably the stop in Italy I was most excited to see. Cinque Terre basically means "five lands," these villages on the coastline are so amazing.
We left to the train at about 6:30am, yikes I know! We had to take a train from Florence to Pisa, Pisa to La Spezia, then La Spezia to Rio Maggiore which is the first village of Cinque Terre. SO glad Jeremy is pretty good with directions & problem solving. When we arrived in Rio Maggiore we hiked the trail of love to Manarola. (20 min)
Such a beautiful view!
Once in Manarola we just relaxed & got some gelato.
As we were waiting for the ferry Jer & I went exploring. As you can see the village is on a hill so you have to climb a bunch or stairs to get to the houses at the top. I would love to come get lost here for a summer.
After about an hour we took the ferry to the last village Monterosso al mare. It is so spectacular with a cute little beach and adorable buildings.
We shopped around a bit and sat down for lunch. Unfortunately for me & Brianne we started to feel really sick :(
I was so bummed, but you know when you are not feeling well all you want is to lay in your bed. (I also always want my mom... I just haven't been able to let Jeremy fill her spot just yet..) I have the most sensitive stomach, it drives me crazy! So we are not sure if it was all the train rides or if I had caught a bug but I was out of business for a couple hours..
Jeremy kindly paid for me to lay on a $15 beach chair while he left to find me some medicine. Apparently this guy had intrigued him to also buy a speedo! I know this picture is traumatizing.
So the other boys wanting to get the true Euro experience snagged themselves some speedos as well. So funny!
SInce they didn't want to waste their lovely new suits they rented a slide paddle boat & had the time of their life. Seriously the dumbest things can entertain boys :)
This picture cracks me up. Since Vaughn is so large he had to stand in the back to keep it all balanced.
I'm so glad Brooke took all these pictures as I was not amused at the time.
This picture below may be one of my favorites. I just love all the different colored doors & vintage chic feel of the buildings.
We were sad to go, but Jeremy was anxious to start hiking to the next village.
So we said goodbye to Monterosso and headed to Vernassa which we had thought was about a 45 minute hike.
Above: view of Monterosso from the trail on our way out.
Below: Beach from the trail.
Well as we are getting tired on our vigorous hike we realized it was actually the 90 min hike not the 45 min. I'm pretty sure I would have opted out had I known it would take us almost 2 hours, but it ended up being pretty cool & scenic.
Of course Jeremy found plenty to keep himself entertained.
We came across a guy in the middle of a trail in a small hut making fresh lemonade! I'm sure it wasn't really tasty but when you are thirsty you will take what you can get!
I loved this door in the middle of the mountain which looked like it lead somewhere secret.
Just as we were starting to lose patience we finally saw a view of Vernasa. It was so breathtaking to see from up above.
Even though I actually despise hiking, it was really awesome experience especially when we finally reached our destination. Plus the company was swell :)
When we arrived in Vernassa we were starving so we sat by the water for dinner.
I wish we could have stayed longer to explore Vernassa & the other village we didn't get to stop at. Being sick & the 2 hour hike really cut into our day, so we had to head on the multiple trains back home. Not without incident though..
As we were all half asleep on the train an employee of some sort or other had a full on melt down when he saw Vaughn with his feet on the seat across from him. The guy was yelling at him in Italian & of course none of us had a clue what he was saying. I was so nervous because he looked like he might slap Vaughn but luckily nothing happened. Other Italians on the train were kind of outraged that the guy was so rude about it, so that made us feel better. Of course after that there kept being jokes about the train master because his anger was so bizarre! We defiantly did not put our feet up on the seats after that though! :)
Ah Cinque Terre.. I think if I could design a village/city it would look just like this:
Such a beautiful place. I hope to go back someday!
Next up Florence.