Monday, 20 August 2012

Cinqueterra in Colour

There is no lack of colour here, be it the bright red poppies, the viridian green waters, or the cheerful splashes of yellow in the lemons, umbrellas, and building walls.

Cinqueterra means 5 villages in Italian, and is a UNESCO protected site. We took a long, scenic bus ride to get there - passing numerous terrace vineyards and houses that seem so inaccessible you wonder how those people ever get around. Thin, steep silver rails run up the mountain, with a "train" consisting of 2 tiny seats for older people to get to the top. 

The villages cannot be accessed by bus as the roads are too small and complicated, so we were dropped off a distance away and walked most of the way, then took a local train. The train trudged along at an unsettling angle, but at least it tilted away from the sea so it didn't seem like we were going to fall off the cliff.

Prior to the train ride, we had a long walk along the Lover's path, enjoying the cool breeze and spectacular view of the cliffs and clear turquoise sea. Lovers tied locks or scarfs (or even tissue paper) or scribbled graffiti along the way to declare their everlasting love, while random people scribbled random things like I like potatoes and I like turtles in charcoal and pen.

We went to Riomaggiore and enjoyed a delicious spinach ricotta quiche by the beach with black gravelly sand. We then took a train to the next village Manarola, where we had our gelato fix and admired the numerous colourful paintings on the doors. 

This might just have been my favourite stop in Italy, for all its colour-saturated cheer only makes one want to sit there and soak in the atmosphere for ages.

Photos taken with Canon Ixus 105

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