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This blog article will focus on my stay in Cinque Terre, but you should know that during this stay I also continued my journey by visiting Pisa and then Florence and the heart of Tuscany. The budget that I am going to communicate to you is therefore for the whole of my week-long trip and not only for Cinque Terre.
I'm not going to do an article on all the ways to come to Cinque Terre, or all the ways to visit Cinque Terre and the surrounding area. You can find all this on the internet by simply typing "stay at Cinque Terre". Rather, my goal is to share with you my stay, my experience as a young 21 year old student who worked during the summer and then put her money aside to do what she likes to do the most: beautiful trips.
Budget for the road trip from Cinque Terre to Florence via Pisa (Saturday to Saturday, accommodation, transport, meals, activities included): about 600€ to 700€.
I made this trip with my boyfriend in October 2020. Our goal was to have comfort but without overdoing it, so as not to exceed our budget. I would like to point out that each student manages his money as he wishes and puts the amount he wants in, we all have different expectations and budgets. We are not, for example, big fans of hostels, we prefer to have our privacy and be in Airbnb. We almost never go to hotels because the prices are too often too expensive for us. Moreover the Airbnb allows us to have our own kitchen and to avoid going to eat outside every day, it would be too expensive. I will present you throughout the article the main expenses of our stay, without going into details because you will surely not have the exact same lifestyle as us.
| How to get there and how to get around?
We decided to come to Liguria and then to Tuscany by car, from Marseille where we are staying. In time of COVID-19 this alternative seemed to us to be the safest if we had to return earlier than planned for X or Y reason. So we rented a small Peugeot 108 from UCAR in Allauch, for 8 days, and with 1600km included we paid 328€ for two or 164€ per person. This seemed to us to be a very good deal compared to the market prices. Of course we have to add to this the petrol, about 60€ per person and also the tolls 54€ per person in total for our complete road trip.
After several searches, we decided to stay in La Spezia. Why ? Quite simply because it is the largest city in the vicinity of the Cinque Terre. Housing in Levanto was mostly more expensive. So we had to find a place where we could park our car for free and for this reason we couldn't stay in one of the villages of the Cinque Terre because all the parking are relatively expensive.
The best option was therefore La Spezia. We found an AirBnb strategically located 5min walk from the train station where we took the train to go to the different villages of the Cinque Terre. We loved this Airbnb which was the biggest and most beautiful one we had ever had.
We paid 207€ for two for 4 nights, that is to say approximately 25€ the night per person, which is largely worth the blow for the immense apartment which we had, very well located. We also found a free parking at 3min walking distance from our accommodation.
You will find the link of the Airbnb by clicking here .
MY ITINERARY TO CINQUE TERRE
| Train to get there
To get to each village we took the train to La Spezia Central, the trip costs 4€ no matter which way you go.
Let me explain: if you decide to travel from La Spezia to Monterosso (22 min trip) it will cost you the same price as going to Riomaggiore (8 min trip). Likewise, if you do Monterosso al mare - Corniglia you will pay another 4 euros. We had a ticket control by agents at the Manarola train station so be sure to pay for your tickets.
The train is in my opinion the best solution and the quickest way to get to each village.
It is the largest of the 5 villages, and in my opinion, the one that is least worth it if you come at a time when you can no longer swim because the village itself is not so atypical. It is nevertheless pleasant to walk along the first part of the village (the one where you arrive by train) by the sea, then to go to the main street of the second part of the village to discover some restaurants and stores.
In summer it must be a nice place to swim and much more lively. It takes 22 min to reach Monterosso by train from La Spezia.
This village is the only one perched on a hill by the sea. We can't access directly to the sea from this one but it allows us to gain height and to admire an incredible panorama on the sea. I had a crush on this village which is the smallest of all, but which offers us very beautiful points of view.
Take the main street indicated at the entrance by the sign "centro" and you will arrive first on a typical narrow street, then on a nice square welcoming its visitors to eat or refresh themselves and finally finish this street by a viewpoint overlooking on one side the hills dressed with vineyards and the village of Monterosso al Mare, and on the other side, the hilly coast that reveals the sumptuous village of Manarola.
One of the most beautiful villages in my opinion. I really liked this village, very atypical and with a thousand and one colors. What I liked the most was the fact that I could get lost in the alleys, go up steps, go back down, and discover each time different points of view, whether it was on the sea, on the village by the sea or on the village going down in the valley.
We climbed up to the castle, which offers us a magnificent view of the village and the entire coast. Then we walked towards the interior of the valley, in height with a magnificent view on all the village which goes down in the valley.
Manarola is quite similar to Riomaggiore, this village has a main street, in which you will find various restaurants, clothing and food stores. You will also find a beautiful marina. If you take the path along the bay in front of the village you can have a beautiful view of the village and take your best Instagram pictures. I also advise you to go up to the top of the village to discover a beautiful panorama of Corniglia and the sea.
I really liked Vernazza, which has a charm different from the other villages thanks to its church located at the edge of the marina, or its small beach and its castle overlooking the whole. When we arrived we immediately wanted to go to the hill in front of us to admire the village from above and from the front. To do this you just have to go into a narrow street where the entrance is located on the left when you arrive on the main square, then you will take some height and pass between the vineyards to finally arrive at the ideal photoshoot spot.
Once the photos were taken, we went back down to have an ice cream that we went to eat at the castle to enjoy the sunset over the sea. The entrance to the castle costs 1.5€ (the view is worth more than the castle itself in my opinion).
Each village has hotels or rooms to sleep in, they all have restaurants, and local stores. You have the possibility to swim in all the villages in summer except Corniglia being situated more in the heights.
I really enjoyed visiting these villages which I think are worth a visit even in October. You may not always have good weather, but when the sun is shining it is almost possible to walk around in summer dress.
PS : Remember to work on your cardio before coming because if you want to visit them in detail you have to climb a few km of stairs !
From Pisa to Florence: all you need to know about Tuscany