July 10, 2010

Another chance to catch up.  After our first day and hike in Cinque Terra, we all decided to hike to the three towns south of Vernazza. The plan was to hike down, take the boat back, and have a celebration dinner at one of the restaurants up on the top of the rock outcrops.   

 

We attempted to gather a bit earlier this time; not an easy task with this crew  : - )   It was still hot.  A few of us waited for the others, watching the activities around town.  Fishermen preparing for the day, markets opening and the beginning of the tourist crowds.  Finally we started off.  The first part of this trip was not as easy as some of us hoped, but the views were fantastic.  The first stop on the way was Corniglia.  The trail headed up, on rock stairs in many places, and wandered along the sea side.  After much sweating, mainly from the humidity and heat, we reached the town. Here we stopped and had beers and shared an amazing pesto lasagna, as well as pizza.  That was a meal to remember!  Cooled and refreshed for the rest of the tripAfter looking around, we passed through, dropping down to sea level to the train station and tracks along an amazing zig-zagging staircase of brick.  Fortunately, we were heading down …

 

Once at sea level, the trail/path was flat to the town of Monterolla.  Afetr that, we headed  off towards Riomaggiore, a town that looks similar in layout to Vernazza with an outcrop of rock forming a small harbor.  This is a very pretty spot, but since we missed the boat, so to speak, the day before, we anxiously inquired about the schedule and whereabouts.  We bought tickets and headed around the rocks to a small canopy to wait.  Sure enough, the boat soon appeared.  We, and others, queued up, ready to board, when the plank leading to the boat was promptly withdrawn with terse Italian yelled back to shore!  Evidently, this was the wrong boat.  No worries, though.  A short wait and another boat appeared and soon we were quickly riding back to Vernazza, enjoying the view and the cool sea breeze.

 

After cleaning up, Kari and I headed to the market for a bottle of wine, which we all gathered for on the jetty.  That’s a nice perk of Italy, where there are no “open container” or “drinking in public” attitudes.  No one gives it a second thought.  The opening was a bit of a surprise, with a loud POP!  We hadn’t realized it was a bottle of sparkling red wine, however, it tasted fine, especially with the setting sun and views of town.  When the time for our dinner reservations came up, we walked up to the restaurant on top of the rocks.  We enjoyed a wonderful meal, laughing and talking with our good friends.  After dinner, we decided to have a walk about the piazza below, and found, to Beth and Kari’s delight, a dance had been set up for all.  We all danced to pop music with a large drunk crowd, champagne spraying around, and people of all ages enjoying the night.  Beth decided it was all for her birthday celebration, but I still think it is too early! :- )  After a long day, we all headed to bed to sleep well.

Bill and Beth
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Waiting in the morning before the hike south.

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A fisherman getting his boat ready.

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The local market in Vernazza. There is a COOP too.

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This bakery was outside our window.  The smell every morning was a great beginning.

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Keeping an eye on the harbor.

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Hiking out, looking back at the back side of Vernazza.

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Steep steps up....

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A friend guards a gate at a home along the trail.

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Wild figs growing next to the trail.

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Approaching Corniglia.

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Self portrait.

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Lunch in Monterossa.

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A little bit of pesto lasagna ...

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On the trail to the final town, Riomaggiore.

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In sight!

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Small boats in Riomaggiore.

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Couples place locks on the rails to confirm their commitment to one another.  The locks are everywhere.

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Waiting for the right boat, the local kids were swimming and playing on the dock.

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Coming in ...

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... and the ride back.  Easier than hiking!

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Having some wine on the jetty before dinner.  The "Sisters" Kari and Beth.

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... and this guy! :-)

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The view of the sunset off the jetty.

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Kari at dinner.

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And the dancing afterwards.

 


Comments

W C
07/14/2010 09:32

No wonder the "Vesps" is in storage. No way it could do all those stairs!!


Comments are closed.