Wednesday, June 5, 2013

A Roller Coaster Vineyard Ride

The Cinque Terre is well-known for its wonderful hiking paths between the five cities.  However, when we attempted to take one of the paths from Manarola, we discovered it was closed.  After locating the information office, we were informed that only one of the sections was open - between Vernazza and Monterosso.

Trains run frequently between the cities, and our Eurail pass lets us just hop on, so we caught the train to Vernazza and found the trail.  It turns out that this is the most strenuous of the paths - by a lot.  Some of the others are nice paved level paths along the water, which is what I had in mind.  This path, however, was not.  Instead of a leisurely stroll, we got quite the workout.  However, there were some great photo opportunities.

Me among the grapevines. (this is at the very beginning of the trek, before we knew what we were in for):
The city of Vernazza (I love the colorful umbrellas):
The ocean - so lovely!
And finally, a view of the rollercoaster vineyard ride:
These tracks were everywhere on the hills in the Cinque Terre.  We didn't see any actively in use, but a picture of what the vehicle that uses this track would look like can be found here.  Pretty neat!

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