Today's Everyday Fashion: Cinque Terre Travel Tips

 
Cinque Terre travel tips guide
 

If you only take away one tip from today's post let it be this: get yourself to Cinque Terre! It is, without a doubt, one of our favorite places we've ever visited. We added it to our itinerary on recommendation from friends who visited on their honeymoon, and I'm so glad we took their advice because it was paradise! Everyone's travel style is different but we found the small-town, authentic vibe hard to beat. It's easy to get around, gorgeous at every turn, peaceful and yet vibrant. Of all the places we traveled to in Italy (Venice, Cinque Terre, Amalfi Coast/Capri, Rome), this was by far our favorite.

Cinque Terre is located on the west coast of Italy, and is comprised of and translates to "five towns" or "the five lands." Each town is easily accessible by train and only takes a couple of minutes to get between each stop. Some of the towns have walking paths between them, but those take 1-2 hours and are considered "hiking" so the train or the ferry (more on that later) is definitely the way to go. (Note: "Lover's Lane" and several other walking paths are currently closed due to landslides.) You technically only need a couple of days to see all of Cinque Terre, but honestly, stay a week if you can! We stayed four nights and never wanted to leave. Here's an overview of the five towns:

Riomaggiore

Starting south and working our way up, you'll find Riomaggiore. This town is probably my favorite, for two reasons. It's the most colorful and vibrant, and you can easily climb down into the marina and sit on the rocks or swim, etc. I could stay there and soak it in for days, it's so beautiful!

Cinque Terre travel tips guide
Cinque Terre travel tips guide

Manarola

Next up is Manarola. It may as well be twin towns with Riomaggiore it looks so similar at first glance! (So naturally, it's my second favorite.) If you only have time for one town, go here, because there's a ramp up the next hill that gives you a killer view for photos, see below.

Cinque Terre travel tips guide
Cinque Terre travel tips guide
Cinque Terre travel tips guide

Corniglia

This town is quite different from the others. It's the only one of the five that the train doesn't drop you off right near the center of town and/or waterfront. In fact, it's a hike if you want to see it! Try to hop on the bus if you can (free if you purchase an all-day rail pass) otherwise it's quite the walk. And not nearly as many photo ops in this town because of the way it's situated on the hill.

 
Cinque Terre travel tips guide
 

Vernazza

Vernazza stands out thanks to the wide open marina and little beach area. And unlike the other towns so far, this one is pretty flat and easy to navigate. It's also ridiculously gorgeous with plenty of photo ops.

Cinque Terre travel tips guide
Cinque Terre travel tips guide
Cinque Terre travel tips guide

Monterosso

Monterosso is considerably larger than the other towns. The train station puts you right on the beach, in the "new" section of town. Old Monterosso is a bit of a walk south - the main attraction here is definitely the beach. This is also where we stayed, in an apartment in the new part of town. Partly why we loved Cinque Terre so much, is how fun it was staying off the beaten path in a local area!

Cinque Terre travel tips guide
Cinque Terre travel tips guide
 
Cinque Terre travel tips guide
 


Another attraction close by is Portovendere, which is not accessible by train, but is an easy 1.5 hour ferry ride from Monterosso. (See our photos from Portovendere here.) The ferry stops at all 5 towns, as well, so that's another way to get around within this region. If you're sticking with the train, consider buying an all-day pass (it's even better deal if you buy a couple days at a time). With it, you also get free Wifi at stations and free bus rides. 

As for food, Cinque Terre is known for it's pesto, anchovies, lemon farms and local wine so there's plenty of delicacies to add your bucket list. Mikyโ€™s in Monterosso is the top rated restaurant and everyone raves about it. We ate there one night, but my favorite meal was actually from the focaccia place (a counter you order at and "take away") located immediately next to the train stop. Sounds legit, I know, but unlike the big cities, in Cinque Terre you don't have to worry about getting foiled by less authentic food because absolutely everything is delicious! 

At the end of our trip we'll be sharing an "Italy Travel Guide" with general tips for things like etiquette, traveling between cities, etc. These are our Cinque Terre-specific recommendations. Do you have any tips for Cinque Terre that we missed?

Cinque Terre travel tips guide
 
Cinque Terre travel tips guide
 

Today's Everyday Fashion: Manarola, Riomaggiore

Manarola Cinque Terre fashion blog
 
Riomaggiore Cinque Terre fashion blog
Riomaggiore Cinque Terre
 
Manarola Cinque Terre fashion blog

It's only been a couple of weeks and I'm already wearing this kimono again! Of course, the first time it was dressed up for an event, and this time I'm wearing it casually. I didn't have this outfit planned before I packed it in my suitcase. I knew I'd pair the kimono and ivory sweater, but from there I let weather dictate whether it was with shorts or jeans, sandals or boots. If I appear to be completely loving life in these photos it's because where these photos were shot - Cinque Terre - is one of my absolute favorite places I've ever traveled to. Tune in tomorrow for more pictures and our travel tips for this area of Italy!

Kimono: Sole Society, $17 (similar, similar, similar, similar)
Top: TJ Maxx, $12 (similarsimilar)
Jeans: American Eagle, $40
Boots: Steve Madden c/o Shoebuy (same)
Purse: JCPenney c/o, $29 (similarsimilar, similar)
Earrings: My Stella & Dot
Sunglasses: Jessica Simpson c/o Ross, $10 (similar)
Approx. dates: Purse is 1 year ago. Boots are 6 months ago. Kimono, sweater, jeans are recent.

 
Riomaggiore Cinque Terre
Vernazza Cinque Terre
 
Riomaggiore Cinque Terre

Today's Everyday Fashion: Portovenere

Portovenere fashion blog
Portovenere
Portovenere fashion blog
Portovenere fashion blog
Portovenere fashion blog

During our second stop in Italy, we took a day trip to Portovenere. It's an area that's not accessible by train, so we jumped at the chance to take an easy ferry ride from where we were staying (Monterosso) and arrived in just over an hour. It was a sparkling, sunny day and we had lunch alfresco in the colorful marina, toured the Gothic-style San Pietro church with dazzling ocean views, and walked the village streets. This pink shirtdress from my closet, admittedly, does not get much wear at home (it's old) but for this trip it felt like the perfect balance between whimsy and practicality. It would've been an amazing day in any outfit but wearing a fun dress made it (and the photos we'll have forever) just a tiny bit more special. I shared some similar budget-friendly options below!

Dress: Ann Taylor, $45 (similar below)
Cardigan: H&M, $20 (similarsimilarsimilar)
Purse: Rebecca Minkoff c/o Stein Mart, $149 (samesame)
Hat: JCPenney c/o, $13
Sunglasses: Foster Grant, $15 (similar, similar, similar)
Shoes: Dolce Vita, old (similar
Earrings: Kate Spade outlet, $15 (same)
Approx. dates: Cardigan and shoes are 5 years ago. Dress is 3 years ago. Hat and purse are recent.

Shirt dresses on a budget
Portovenere fashion blog
Portovenere
 
Portovenere
 
Portovenere fashion blog
 
Portovenere
 
Portovenere
Portovenere fashion blog
Portovenere San Pietro church
Portovenere