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    • Day 29


      May 24, 2022 in Italy ⋅ ⛅ 68 °F

      This is the smallest of the 5 towns, and the only one with no access to the sea.

      I could spend a few days in each town just exploring every nook and cranny!

      Unlike its coastal neighbors, Corniglia is not directly accessible by the sea but can be reached by climbing a series of steps or taking a shuttle bus. This seclusion adds to its quaint allure, as it remains the quietest and least crowded of the Cinque Terre villages. The village's narrow streets, lined with colorful buildings, lead to breathtaking viewpoints that showcase the beauty of the Ligurian coastline. With its relaxed atmosphere, Corniglia is an ideal place to savor authentic Italian cuisine in local trattorias, sample regional wines, and immerse oneself in the traditional way of life.Read more

    • Corniglia 🇮🇹 🍷

      June 11, 2022 in Italy ⋅ ☀️ 22 °C

      Got up bright & early this morning at 6am and became adventurous! Walked from Vernazza to the spectacularly cute 🥰 town of Corniglia. Coniglia is the only town of the five that is perched high on a cliff with no sea 🌊 access. This makes it extremely unique and different to all of the other towns!

      It was not as challenging as the walk yesterday but just as stunning & spectacular with the views and the beautiful little alleyways that meandered throughout the town! It was also wonderful because I was the only person on the track for the entire hour walk. It was as if I was the only person in the world! A truly unique experience in this UNESCO protected National Park region.

      Enjoy 😊
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    • Day 21

      Cinque Terre

      March 2 in Italy ⋅ ⛅ 14 °C

      Endlich wieder am Meer :-)
      Cinque Terre sind 5 kleine Dörfer an der Küste, die durch Wanderwege oder eine Zugstrecke miteinander verbunden sind. Wir sind von Vernazza nach Corniglia gewandert. Eine super schöne Strecke an der Felsküste entlang. Unser letzter Stop in Italien.Read more

    • Day 29

      Azure Trail to Corniglia

      May 24, 2022 in Italy ⋅ ☁️ 68 °F

      My watch totaled 83 stories on this hike.

      The accordion player on the way in to Corniglia was a nice touch, as was the juice bar part way through.

      As usual, Éowyn found a stick.

      The Azure Trail, also known as Sentiero Azzurro, is a renowned hiking trail that winds along the stunning coastline of the Cinque Terre region in Italy. This picturesque trail connects the five colorful villages of Monterosso al Mare, Vernazza, Corniglia, Manarola, and Riomaggiore, offering breathtaking views of the azure waters of the Ligurian Sea. The trail takes hikers through terraced vineyards, olive groves, and charming coastal villages, showcasing the natural beauty and cultural heritage of the region. Along the way, visitors can explore hidden coves, take in panoramic vistas, and immerse themselves in the unique atmosphere of each village. The Azure Trail is not only a feast for the eyes but also a journey that allows travelers to appreciate the rugged coastline and experience the charm of the Cinque Terre in all its glory.Read more

    • Day 26

      Vernazza Dinner

      May 21, 2022 in Italy ⋅ 🌙 66 °F

      Vernazza in the Cinque Terre is everything you want Italy to be!

      Vernazza is a small, charming village located in the Italian region of Liguria, along the coast of the Mediterranean Sea. Known for its picturesque harbor, colorful houses, and narrow streets, Vernazza is one of the most popular tourist destinations in the area. The village has a rich history, dating back to the Roman era, and has survived many natural disasters, including floods and landslides. Visitors can explore the town's medieval castle, historic churches, and quaint shops, and enjoy traditional Italian cuisine in one of the many local restaurants. One of the main attractions of Vernazza is its stunning coastline, where visitors can swim, sunbathe, or take a boat tour to discover the hidden coves and beaches nearby.Read more

    • Oh Fuck! 🥺😢😩🤬

      June 9, 2022 in Italy ⋅ ☀️ 24 °C

      So, I’m sitting here at 10pm looking out to sea 🌊 at what should be Paradise and blissful but this afternoon has been the first challenge of negativity of my trip!

      Let’s get the obvious out of the way first… Vernazza is, as you can see from the photos, truly beautiful. The proprietors and business owners; not so much!

      So, we arrive at picturesque and postcard pretty Vernazza… Everything should be perfect, just like the brochures say it should…

      Here is my experience…

      Off the train and I am so hot 🥵 that I could almost blow smoke rings out of my arse!

      Look carefully they said, there is only one street they said, you will find your accommodation, they said… it’s so easy, they said. So, off we schlepp but we just couldn’t find our accommodation. And there are tourists spatially unaware everywhere!

      Already having more than wonderful experiences with beautiful, honest, caring and considerate Italians in Rapallo (and most other Italian cities and towns) I thought the best thing we could do would be to simply ask if I could tap into the Wi-Fi at a bar or shop so that I could phone 📞 my accommodation provider.

      The first bar I went into point blank rudely turned me away, being told there is no way I would be able to use their Wi-Fi… I informed Richard and said we probably need to go back to the station to ask tourist information ℹ️, after all, that’s what they are there for. To GIVE tourist information!? So off we went… Through the hordes of tourists! Rudely walking past & through you as you attempt to navigate your way up the main road/pass with heavy bags. 😫

      Finally get up to the station to speak to the man in charge of tourism information ℹ️ … Clearly not a position he should be holding down. It seemed to be putting him out and to be the most inconvenient & biggest effort for him and he couldn’t possibly afford to even give us a shred of politeness and care considering our dilemma. ‘Informing’ us, there is only one street, it shouldn’t be hard to find…!?!?🤪😡

      Eventuality, after reluctance, he decided that he would call my accommodation provider. ‘Informing’ me (as he is paid to do) that my accommodation provider would meet me at the pharmacy on the main street. Sounded like a reasonable plan to me… So off we went…

      On arriving at said Pharmacy I walked in and politely asked the pharmacist if he was aware I was to meet my supplier in his shop. He threw his hands in the air without skipping a beat and said he knew nothing about that & he was “…just the pharmacist!” And walked off! Rude! Arrogant man! Plain. Simple. Rude! 😤

      Finally my host did show up and took me up 40 extremely narrow & dangerously steep steps to my room. (I dare not even photograph those steps because, not only would my own Mother pass out with fright for the safety of her only son, but these shiny/slippery steps break all kinds of OH&S protocols & rules.) Remember also, I was already as hot 🥵 as a lobster 🦞 in a boiling pot, had to lug a 17kg bag up said 40 narrow steps and had been treated like shit already by a handful of “tourism providers” (…I use the term loosely!)

      Open the door, relief 😮‍💨…it looked good. She said she was in a hurry and quickly showed me the basics. I asked for the wifi password and she informed me it is not working at the moment! I politely (again) explained to her it’s a shame & inconvenient because it is my only access to the outside world. She shrugged her shoulders and left…☹️😠😣

      It took me 20 minutes to try and work out how to lock and unlock the door. Richard may have a different story here, but regardless, it was an extremely anxiety producing for me and I was at breaking point by now! After much twisting and turning of the key I finally worked out how intricate force and ‘safe-like’ precision must be applied at a certain angle carefully for it to be opened 😩

      By this stage both Richard and I were in dire need of some water. This should’ve been an extremely simple task but we were greeted by a very gruff & unreasonable convenience store owner who refused to take card payment and insisted on cash 💷 only. In this post Covid world it is completely unreasonable to insist on such a thing. I tried to keep cool but, as you can imagine I was hurting inside. What an arrogant bitch she was. As you may imagine I was at the stage that I felt like telling her to stick her water where the sun don’t shine but I needed it more than I needed air at that point! 🤦‍♂️🤦‍♂️🤦‍♂️ This entire ‘shit show’ reminds me of my experiences in Paris. This sheer arrogance, self entitlement and dismissive nature of the residents who rely on us to exist simply turns me off! 👎🏻

      I composed myself the best I could and reminded myself where I was, how lucky I am and decided to go for a swim. I felt instantly better as I frolicked in the water. Yes! I did use the word frolicking because I need to have some sense of positivity within this blog…😉💪🏻

      Richard and I met at seven, as arranged, and looked for a suitable place for dinner… Every single restaurant was discovered to be way overpriced, knowing the captive audience they have. Regardless, we chose one that looked nice; up on a platform overlooking the main street. We ordered the shared seafood platter… It consisted of 5 SMALL PLATES: rubbery octopus, two different kinds of anchovies: one fried and one boiled 🤮🤮 some paste that resembled fish roe dip mixed with grated carrot and some morsels of boiled fish which was passable. Oh! Hang on, I forgot to mention the bag of stale bread that was thrown…yes…THROWN upon our table as we sat down… I’m not exaggerating, it was stale and it was tasteless! Robyn, do you recall the gorgeous bread bag I shared with you and Mike in Lucca?We experienced how wonderful real ‘bread 🥖 in the bag’ should be! 👎🏻 Second course of AVERAGE pasta with what tasted like store bought jar pesto mixed through it 👎🏻 Not a patch on the last couple of nights. Not even fucking close! 🙄😡

      Just when I thought it couldn’t get any worse there was a huge thunder clap & lightning ⛈ very, very frightening…🫤 and some rain began to fall. Everyone ran for cover, even though it was really just a passing summer shower. Once again Robyn, you will recall our rain experience in Florence? Where we were able to put up our umbrella and enjoy the moment… We weren’t even given that option in this case. I would’ve happily put up the umbrella and waited the 10 minutes until it passed. ☔️We were ushered into their less than adequate indoor seating space resembling a spare room at grandmas which was also as hot as hell! I kindly asked if the air conditioning could be put on & the owner only saw fit to open the door slightly. 😭 Tight ass! 🤯

      By this stage I had an absolute gut full of the whole afternoon and night. The service was crap 💩😩particularly when compared with last night. To try & compose we went and got a gelati which was also average compared to what we had in Rapallo. 🥺

      Everything was closed by 9 pm! Richard decided to go up to his room but I sat on a bench by the beautiful waters edge to compose myself and practise some mindfulness to alleviate the burning disappointment that had been generated deep within me… 😢

      I suppose, essentially I am just sad and disappointed more than anything else because I had built-up the Cinque Terre so much in my mind & from watching you tube, research & reading that it just wasn’t living up to any of the hype and well below expectations 😥 I have a feeling that the shop owners and proprietors in Vernazza think the immense beauty of the location & landscape will overshadow their arrogance & self entitlement. Newsflash: it doesn’t! 😖 😥

      Anyway, I feel better for getting it off my chest but you probably won’t even get to read this in real time until I am (hopefully) feeling better… because it seems we won’t have phone 📱 access until we leave! 🫤

      Think it’s important to demonstrate that not every day can be good, even in ‘paradise’. And, may I say this afternoon was about as fucked up as it can get! 😢😠😡

      I remain positive and hopeful that things will turn around tomorrow… but once again, you may not know until this leg of trip is over because Richard and I both don’t have wifi in our apartment and none of the restaurants will let us use it…🤨🤯🙄

      I don’t quite understand why these places that rely solely on tourism need to be such cunts to the tourists! 🙄🤷🏻‍♂️🤷🏻‍♂️🤷🏻‍♂️Especially after the Pandemic 😷 You’d think they’d be bending over backwards to offer exceptional customer service rather than treat us like nuisances!

      As I said, let us hope that tomorrow is another day and a better day… Fingers crossed that this is one bad afternoon and that is all it is…🙏
      Also, I hope Richard forgives me for my grumpy and irritable attitude…🥺🥺🥺

      PS: this is an update to the above… I have woken up early at 5 am because the ‘double’ bed that was advertised is two beds; shabbily pushed together that have moved apart in the night… The bed is as hard as the floor and the air-conditioner sounds like an aeroplane ✈️ taking off! Oh! And the bracelet I purchased at the market yesterday had broken and fallen off in the bed. 🙁🤦‍♂️💩

      I am going to have to practice calling on my inner strength & summoning my positivity and resilience deep deep deep from within today. Mindfulness will hopefully save me as it often does. I can’t let this experience sour the rest of my trip because there are so many more wonderful things still ahead of me! As the little red caboose said, I think I can, I think I can!🤞🤞🤞🙏

      PS: Enjoy the pictures… As you can see it is a beautiful location. But as the old saying goes: not all that glitters is gold. 🙅🏻‍♂️😢😢
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    • Monterosso: We ❤️ You!

      June 10, 2022 in Italy ⋅ ☀️ 25 °C

      Let me start off by being extremely positive today! Richard and I woke up, had breakfast and headed off to Monterosso! What an absolutely amazing, enthralling, challenging and beautiful walk it was! We both found it challenging and I was proud that Richard kept pushing on and he was equally proud he did because the end result was everything I had heard about the Cinque Terre and more! More beautiful in scenery, landscape and spaciousness but more importantly, the people were everything I remember Italians to be: friendly, welcoming, kind, generous and innately humorous… What an absolutely beautiful town it was. And how different the inhabitants were! You could feel a difference in the air. Hard to describe but it reminded me of Mykonos with its beautiful alleyways, sloped spaces, hundreds of cute little restaurants and WELCOMING smiles! Thank you Monterosso you have restored my heart and soul and love of Italy! 💚🤍❤️

      On returning to Vernazza I had dread in my heart… All I am going to say is this: I actually think even the locals don’t want to be here (obviously not, but seems like it!) I concede that I made a mistake in booking into this town for our specific requirements in a holiday destination. Had I chosen Monterosso things may have started off differently. Who knows? 🤷🏻‍♂️🤷🏻‍♂️🤷🏻‍♂️ We live & learn. It is what it is!

      My morning started off by heading up to the information counter at the station where I was greeted with the same nonchalant attitude as yesterday. Thankfully a wonderfully beautiful couple from Canada heard my questions and spent 20 minutes telling me all about the walks, the best way to proceed, tips, hints and everything any other tourism bureau would and should offer. It was wonderful and informative and said results for the success to follow. I’m not speaking without experience; I also worked in tourism and if I’d have been as wet & unhelpful as the staff in V I wouldn’t have lasted a week!

      It took about 2 1/2 hours on very steep cliff tops and steps. But, I loved every single minute of it! I feel exhilarated and accomplished. Was just such a magical and beautiful day! Restoration of my faith in humanity! 💪🏻💪🏻💪🏻

      I desperately tried to convince Richard to stay in Monterosso for dinner but understandably he was plum ‘tuckered out’ and wanted to head back to that place which I shall not speak of in name, just as “V”!

      So, please enjoy the wonderful images of the spectacular walk along the path from the place we’re staying at to Monterosso! I’m sure you’ll agree they are out of this world!

      As soon as we arrived at the end of the walk there was an instant opportunity to dive straight into the crystal blue sparkling water. I could not resist or get in there quick enough. I just took everything off except my jocks and went straight in. It was like nothing you can imagine after a 2 1/2 hour hike! I felt instantly refreshed. We had lunch atop a magnificent cliff top and then spent the afternoon wandering around looking at the most picturesque of towns. Just so Stunning 🤩😍✊🏻🥰

      A friendly local business owner informed us of a bar where we would be able to get reception and Wi-Fi which was also a relief because I could inform my parents that everything was okay. I love them very much and it was distressing to know they were worried. It was such a relief to be offered the use of connection by this bar in town. I thanked them from the bottom of my heart! Incidentally, I had actually started to embrace the fact that I was completely void of technology. I hope to transfer some of this behaviour in my life when I return home 🏡 and asked Richard to keep me in check if I stray! We are FAR too invested in technology these days and I feel I need to start living in the moment more back in Australia 🇦🇺

      On arriving back to V I headed straight for the water for another swim. Interestingly the swimming harbour was full of seaweed and rocks which was symbolic of my experience here. Enough of that! I think you get the idea now! 👍🏻😉🙃😂

      Richard and I had the most delicious pizza for dinner back in V and was served by the most gorgeous of Italian men who actually made the pizza 🍕 lovingly in his oven. He was as sexy as they come! No photo unfortunately lol 😂 Sorry Mummy! 🤣 Both Richard & I were equally disappointed for us (but happy 😊 for him) when he showed us photos of his cute daughter 🫤🤩😉😉😉

      Richard has headed to bed… It is 11 pm and I have taken the Cinque Terre express back to Monterroso for one last lemon spritz in this beautiful little village! It is magnificent! I love it love Love Love love! 🍋🍋🍋❤️❤️❤️Everything I know and love about Italy 🇮🇹 is contained herewith 🥰🥰🥰👍🏻👍🏻👍🏻

      As I enjoy my Lemoncello Spritz please enjoy magnificent wonderments of our day of hiking 🥾 and delighting. Viva Italiano! 💚🤍❤️
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    • Day 28

      Santuario di Nostra Signora di Reggio

      May 23, 2022 in Italy ⋅ ⛅ 63 °F

      We took a very curvy bus ride up into the hills to the sanctuary above Vernazza. The early people that settled here first settled high up in the mountains for protection and farmed on terraces. Each of the Cinque Terre villages has a sanctuary high above that was one of the first things built.

      We were the only people there and it was lovely and peaceful. We then wound our way back down on foot to Vernazza. We saw a lot of homes tucked away in the hills, and some cars that we still can't quite figure out how they managed to get there.
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    • Day 7

      Grande Finale

      April 13 in Italy ⋅ ☁️ 11 °C

      As for the grande Finale Kai and I will write the following post together: brace yourselves
      Even though we went to bed early yesterday, we slept in again. After breakfast we noticed a huge, somewhat obscene and grotesque misspelling in the former blog-post which has been duly removed after a short mental breakdown and a trmendous amount of embarassement on Lisas part. Great start of the day!
      We took the train to Corniglia and walked up to the village from the train station, where we debated as to which path would lead us to Volastra.
      Lisa set the pace to our hike by racing up the rather steep slope. We stopped counting the „fellow civilians“ after 40+ (after 15 minutes) and covered 350 vertical meters within a half hour. Drenched in sweat, we collapsed at the top and fortified our position our position with a selfie. A flat stretch through forests and vineyards followed, accompanied by discussions on the lack of magic in today‘s world, evil gnomes and bears ( Lisa is still traumatized by Mordu [see ‚Brave‘] ) and the ether of the universe. Upon arriving in Volastra, our brave heroes turned in at the local focacceria to still their stomachs. A steep descent down to Manarola ensued, where Lisa‘s right knee almost disociated from the Lisa Leg complex.

      We stopped for a drink and were greatly overcharged in a colorful indian bistro with italian staff and a goof balcony with a nice view. We fled from the tourists crowding the town‘s main street by taking any flight of stairs which led in the right direction. Back on the path to Riomaggiore we started playing „nationality guess“, it wasnt that difficult though because most of them were either american or french. The climb was easy for us because we‘re „schwizer Berggeisse“ but the others were struggeling like hell. We wanted to go back with the boat but the waves were too big so we had to take the train one more time. Back in Monterosso, Kai had the most exotic ice cream of the week - 3 scoops of extra dark chocolate, whereas Lisa opted for boring old Pistacchio, Chocolate and Maracuja. At the hotel we started writing the blog in the afternoon sunshine, but ended up dancing to 2000s Pop songs. A Nonna opened her window to applaud us from across the street. After the sun disappeared, our night began…

      Stay tuned for our late night post!
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    • Day 22

      Cinque Terre

      October 22 in Italy

      Wow, was für ein Tag 😊😎
      Schön und teilweise (trotz Nebensaison) sehr voll..
      Wirklich sehenswert die 5 Dörfer. Etliche Höhenmeter Wanderung mit herrlichen Ausblicken. Teilweise sehr schöne Stimmung und Atmosphäre in den Dörfern - aber auch teilweise etwas zu touristisch und voll für mich...
      Aber ich weiß jetzt, warum so viele Instagramer hier her kommen 😎
      Tipp von mir: Anreise nach Levanto oder LaSpezia und dann mit dem Tagesticket den Zug benutzen und die 5 Dörfer angucken.
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