Cinque Terre is a coastal hiker’s dream destination, as its picturesque hillside villages draped along the rugged Italian Riviera shoreline are laced with trekking trails. Here’s how to discover Cinque Terre and its eponymous national park on foot.
Via dell’Amore is a short—just over half a mile (one kilometer) in length—but beautiful route connecting Riomaggiore and Manarola. Famously cut to allow young lovers to meet between the villages—hence the romantic name—Via dell’Amore is one of Cinque Terre National Park’s top attractions.
Seen on maps as Sentiero No. 1, Sentiero Rosso is a long-distance path between Levanto and Portovenere, which loops through UNESCO World Heritage–listed Cinque Terre National Park. The route is relatively flat and is popular among experienced hikers, who aim to complete its roughly 25 miles (40 kilometers) in nine to 12 hours.
The 7.5-mile (12-kilometer) Sentiero Azzurro runs between Corniglia and Vernazza, and boasts some of Cinque Terre’s most impressive coastal scenery. Marked No. 2 on maps, this route is not particularly challenging but requires a fair level of fitness.
Sentiero No. 6d
Sentiero No. 6d attracts hikers in search of the authentic Cinque Terre experience—but without the challenging climbs. Linking the hilltop villages of Volastra and Corniglia, Sentiero No. 6d follows relatively flat terrain through fertile vineyards.
Sentiero No. 3
Experienced hikers looking to test their limits can embark on the Sentiero No. 3 route, which leads from the basilica of Sant’Abbondio in Como to Riomaggiore. The 1-mile (1.6-kilometer) route takes in serious hills and boasts plenty of scenic coastal overlooks.