Phew, well this blog post is about two months later than I had planned! London has well and truly swept me away these past few months: incredible trips to Amsterdam, Rome and Norway (blog posts to come), SATs, a new job for the new year, house hunting, writing moderations, report writing and planning the Year 6 Musical. I am officially in countdown mode though – just five more weeks (or 23.5 days) of teaching, and I will be on six blissful weeks of holidays. I’m going back to Easter half term today though, with our delightful trip to Italy…
I came to Europe with a small but succinct list of ‘non-negotiables’ – places that I had to visit before returning home. I was in no way limited to these places only, but I would work towards making them happen.
I have been lucky enough to visit two already, with a third planned for summer. Cinque Terre was one of them, and I was thrilled to spend five days in this gorgeous part of the world the week after Easter. The trip was planned over coffees in a quaint café in Warsaw, as we escaped the rain and entered many searches into Sky Scanner. Return flights to Genoa for £30 were quickly booked and dreams of sun, pasta and all of the limoncello followed.
We flew Stansted to Genoa and practically leapt off the plane – the sun was shining and we were in t-shirts! Getting to Cinque Terre via train was relatively simple, with the ticket machines all having an English option. Note, that you do need to catch a shuttle bus from Genoa airport to a main train station – it took us a little while to work this out, and we ended up sprinting from said bus to the platform after booking tickets before realising the extra step was needed. The whole journey included three trains and took about four hours in total (this is me guesstimating – it was all in my phone, which was lost on a mountain in Norway – a blog post in itself!).
We based ourselves in Riomaggiore, the most southern Cinque Terre village. We stayed in a very reasonable Airbnb that was along the main street and a short walk from the train station. Riomaggiore was the perfect base for exploring the region and gave us access to all of the walks, trains and boats needed to travel between the five towns.
After our first bowl of pasta (trofie and pesto for me – a dish the region is known for – and the first of many!), we settled in and prepared for our first day exploring the trails.