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Cinque Terre: Hike, Bike & Kayak

Italy, Europe

Cinque Terre: Hike, Bike & Kayak

Hiking·
Biking·
Kayaking
·
Start: Levanto
·
End: Santa Margherita

Walk into a world that's a play of colourful houses and blue sea as you amble between the cliff top

Activity
LocationItaly, Europe
Duration8 days
Start / EndLevanto / Santa Margherita
Tour operatorIntrepid Travel

Italy, Europe

Cinque Terre: Hike, Bike & Kayak

Hiking·
Biking·
Kayaking·
8 days·Intrepid Travel
Start: Levanto
·
End: Santa Margherita

Description

When entering this region of Italy, things can seem a little surreal. The houses are painted in vivid multi-coloured shades, the sea is brighter than the sky and the sun rains down so heavily that everything seems a little technicoloured – welcome to the Cinque Terre. Describing it as a gem of Italy is totally correct, but to be more specific, it would have to be an opal – a play of colours, ma...

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Itinerary

Day 1Levanto
Arrive in Levanto, centrally located on the Ligurian coast. Please make your own way to the hotel. No activities are planned for today until tonight's group meeting, so you can arrive at any time. In this meeting, your leader will give you a briefing on what lies ahead. In the evening you can take a relaxed stroll through the town to take in the atmosphere of this seaside location, and perhaps head out to dinner with your new travel companions.
Day 2Levanto / Monterosso (Hiking & Biking)
Today you will embark on your first walk, which takes you along the coast from Levanto to Monterosso, the first of the five villages of the Cinque Terre. The first part of the walk leads you through the old town centre of Levanto, past the stunning cathedral and up to its castle. It then continues up to Punta Mesco, the most notable promontory in the region. Just short of this point, take a small detour to the ruins of an 11th-century hermitage and the nearby ruins of the lighthouse. Here you can enjoy marvellous views of the rugged coastline and find a nice spot to stop for a short break and picnic lunch. Then follow the fairly steep path down into Monterosso – a colourful village with blue, red and yellow houses that cluster along the beachfront. Take your time to explore this interesting little town before taking the local train back to Levanto. In the afternoon explore the coast in a different way: Get on bikes and ride along the old coastal railway line to Framura, now turned into a beautiful cycling path. The scenery is stunning and the ride virtually flat. Perhaps enjoy an aperitivo in a great spot overlooking the sea, before returning to Levanto.
Day 3Levanto (Hiking)
A short train ride brings you to Riomaggiore, the southernmost of the five villages. Here you will start the most famous of all walks in the area: the classic coastal walk that links the five villages. Begin with a short stroll through Riomaggiore and along a short stretch of the ‘Via dell’Amore’. Next is a beautiful but strenuous trail through the vineyards (train ride optional). This takes you to Manarola, an attractive little village with steep multi-coloured houses overlooking a rocky port. From Manarola, make your way up through a stunning terraced landscape to the village of Volastra, then continue your walk along one of the most beautiful trails in the area. Through terraced vineyards and the occasional bit of forest, you approach Corniglia, perched on a ridge overlooking the sea. Next is the little hamlet of Prevo, walking through terraced vineyards and the occasional citrus grove. Enjoy some of the best views in the region as you approach Vernazza, which is dominated by its old fortress. Follow the contours of the hillside on a narrow track that leads you up and down, before a fairly steep descent takes you into the village itself. After a day of walking, perhaps wind down with a drink in Vernazza, on the wonderful town square at the harbour, resplendent with its brightly painted boats. In the late afternoon you will take the train back to Levanto.
Day 4Riomaggiore / Portovenere / Levanto (Hiking)
Begin your day with a short train ride back to the tiny village of Riomaggiore. Embark on a walk that leads you to Portovenere at the very end of the peninsula. Today’s trail is the most challenging of the Ligurian walks; it's also perhaps the most rewarding. First you will walk up a rather steep flight of stairs, then along an undulating track to reach the sanctuary of the Madonna di Montenero (those who wish to opt out of this climb can catch a bus instead). After stopping at the sanctuary for a short break, continue your walk to Campiglia. Continuing uphill you will follow the contours of the coastal cliffs, passing terraced vineyards and enjoying wonderful views of the coastline. Pass the abandoned village of Lemmen and walk high on the ridge through vineyards and pine forest. Finally descend to the little village of Campiglia, where you can stop for lunch and some refreshments. Then continue towards Portovenere and enjoy even more spectacular coastal views. When you arrive at the 16th-century castle above the village, you might be able to catch a glimpse of the white marble peaks of the Apuan Alps before you descend a long staircase that takes you to St Peter’s Point and then into the heart of the village. After some free time to relax in Portovenere, return by boat to your base in Levanto – a lovely way to see the coast from the water.
Day 5Levanto / Santa Margherita
Today is a free day. You have the options to walk the so-called Wild-West-Walk. The first part of your walk follows the beach, then heads into the foothills and down to the charming seaside village of Bonassola (a good place for a morning coffee stop). Then stroll through the seaside hills towards the small village of Framura, a collection of ancient hamlets on a hillside, distinctive due to its red rocks. From Costa, the largest hamlet, a level path contours around the hills and offers you splendid views out to sea. You can opt to either continue your walk to the resort of Deiva Marina, or walk back down to the coast to take a swim, before catching the train. Travel to the small town of Moneglia, where you will have time to wander around and explore, before travelling on to Santa Margherita.
Day 6Portofino Peninsula / Santa Margerita (Hiking & Kayaking)
Today you’ll see the best of the Portofino Peninsula. First take a short walk through the historical centre of Santa Margherita Ligure, where you can also do some shopping for your picnic lunch. Then start a walk into the hills and enjoy beautiful views across the bay. By late morning you will reach Portofino, one of the most typical Ligurian seaside villages and a popular resort for jet setters. Explore this charming village and take the scenic walk to the church, castle and lighthouse, where you can look back on the inlet of Portofino (the name of which translates into 'fine harbour'). After lunch time get ready for a great paddling adventure. In a small inlet near Portofino we will outfit everyone with paddles and offer some basic kayaking instruction (if needed!). Then we go for a unique experience: Kayaking along the stunning headland of Portofino. Upon arrival perhaps enjoy a relaxed aperitivo on the beach, go for a swim or explore the village before returning to Santa Margherita.
Day 7Santa Margherita
Today you can decide to relax in Santa Margherita, stroll through its beautiful town centre or enjoy its beach. Alternatively take the train to Camogli or even Genova, to explore this stunning city. Or opt to join in for a walk across the beautiful hills of the Portofino Peninsula. From the small hamlet of Ruta you can walk along some splendid fin-de-siècle villas towards the highest point of the Peninsula, Monte Portofino. You will then have several longer and shorter options to reach the Abbey of San Fruttuoso, an 11th-century marvel set in a secluded cove and reachable only by boat or on foot. All walks bring you through a verdant forested landscape with amazing views across the Gulf of Tigullio and the Golfo Paradiso. Upon arrival there is the option to visit the abbey or perhaps go for a swim. Then take a boat to Camogli, a chance to admire the beautiful coastline from the sea. In Camogli, take your time to wander around the colourful historic centre and enjoy a relaxed drink or grab a gelato on one of its many terraces.
Day 8Santa Margherita
Your trip comes to an end after breakfast. Santa Margherita is well connected by train to other cities in Italy, with regular trains to Genoa, Milan, Florence and Pisa. If you'd like to book additional nights in Santa Margherita, please enquire when you book this trip.

More info

Last modified (date)

26 Nov 2018

Trip title

Cinque Terre: Hike, Bike & Kayak

Trip code

ZGXT

Validity

Validity: 01 Jan 2019 to 31 Dec 2019

Introduction

When entering this region of Italy, things can seem a little surreal. The houses are painted in vivid multi-coloured shades, the sea is brighter than the sky and the sun rains down so heavily that everything seems a little technicoloured – welcome to the Cinque Terre. Describing it as a gem of Italy is totally correct, but to be more specific, it would have to be an opal – a play of colours, mainl... Read more

Style

Original

Themes

Active Adventures,Explorer,Walking & Trekking

Transport

Train,Boat,Public bus,On foot,Bicycle,Kayak

Physical Rating

3

Physical preparation

You’re in for an active trip! Whilst previous experience isn’t essential for getting involved, a decent level of fitness will help you get the most out of this tour, as you will be doing some kayaking, cycling and a fair amount of walking. Some of the walks involve steep hills and steps that you'll need to be able to climb, although sometimes there are easier, alternative routes you can take. Dail... Read more

Joining point

Hotel Europa

Joining point description

The Europa Hotel is an Art Nouveau building located in the historical center of Levanto, a hundred meters from the sea and the departure of the main footpaths connecting with the Cinque Terre. The hotel offers a garden, terrace, safety deposit box, wifi, air conditioning and has a restaurant on site.

Joining point instructions

Pisa, Genoa and Milan Airports all serve the coastal region of the Cinque Terre. From Pisa Airport you can travel to Levanto via Pisa main station and La Spezia (departs hourly). From Genoa Airport you can walk to Genoa Sestri Ponente train station (about 10 minutes) and then travel by train directly to Levanto (departs hourly). Milan Malpensa, Milan Linate and Milan Bergamo Airports all have publ... Read more

Finish point

Hotel Tigullio

Finish point description

The hotel is located in the centre of Santa Margherita Ligure on a tree-lined avenue a short distance from the sea. The bus and railways stations are five minutes walk away. In the rooms you'll find comforts such as free wi-fi connection, TV, air conditioning, fridge and a safety box.

Finish point instructions

If you are making your own way to the airport the hotel will be able to help book you an airport shuttle or taxi or advise on trains to Milan, Genoa, Pisa or Florence. Please ask at reception. Pre booked departure transfer to the airport: If you have pre booked a departure transfer, you will be collected from your hotel 2 hours prior to your flight. Please reconfirm your departure transfers with ... Read more

Group leader

All Intrepid group trips in Europe are accompanied by one of our local European group leaders. ’Local’ in this context means a leader who lives in Europe. The aim of the group leader is to take the hassle out of your travels and to help you have the best trip possible. Intrepid endeavours to provide the services of an experienced leader however, due to the seasonality of travel, rare situations ma... Read more

Safety

Many national governments provide a regularly updated advice service on safety issues involved with international travel. We recommend that you check your government's advice for their latest travel information before departure and ensure that your travel insurance covers you for all areas your itinerary covers. Please refer to our website's safety page for links to major travel advisories and upd... Read more

Visas

Visas are the responsibility of the individual traveller. Entry requirements can change at any time, so it's important that you check for the latest information. Please visit the relevant consular website of the country or countries you’re visiting for detailed and up-to-date visa information specific to your nationality. Your consultant will also be happy to point you in the right direction with ... Read more

Why we love it

Dazzling cliff-side houses and an impossible coastal location make Cinque Terre one of the world's most romantic destinations

Is this trip right for you

This multi-activity trip requires a good level of fitness and health for the hiking, biking and kayaking. Many of the walks involve steep hills and steps that you'll need to be able to climb. Walking times vary between three and six hours a day, but the rewards are worth every step. Please note that recent landslides have ruined many paths along the Cinque Terre coastal route. As maintenance is be... Read more

Health

All Intrepid travellers need to be in good physical health in order to participate fully on this trip. When selecting your trip please make sure you have read through the itinerary carefully and assess your ability to cope with our style of travel. Please note that if, in the opinion of our group leader or local guide, any traveller is unable to complete the itinerary without undue risk to themsel... Read more

Food and dietary requirements

While travelling with us you'll experience the vast array of wonderful food available in the world. Your group leader will be able to suggest restaurants to try during your trip. To give you maximum flexibility in deciding where, what and with whom to eat, generally not all meals are included in the trip price. This also gives you more budgeting flexibility. As a rule our groups tend to eat togeth... Read more

Money matters

CURRENCY The Euro (EUR) is the official currency in the following destinations: Andorra, Austria, Belgium, Cyprus, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Ireland, Italy, Kosovo, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Montenegro, the Netherlands, Portugal, Slovakia, Slovenia and Spain. All other European countries still have their own national currencies. CASH The most convenient and cheapest w... Read more

What to take

PACKING On this trip you must pack as lightly as possible because you will be expected to carry your own bag and although you won't be required to walk long distances with your luggage (max 30 minutes), we strongly recommend keeping the weight under 10kg / 22lb. Most travellers carry their luggage in a backpack, although an overnight bag with a shoulder strap would suffice if you travel lightly. S... Read more

Climate and seasonal

HOT WEATHER Summer temperatures can reach up to 40 degrees Celsius, which can be uncomfortable for those not used to the heat. Conversely, shoulder and off season can bring a variety of weather, from strong winds and even snow at higher altitudes to pleasant and warm spring days. Please consider the time of the year you wish to travel and your suitability to that season.

A couple of rules

Everyone has the right to feel safe when they travel. We don’t tolerate any form of violence (verbal or physical) or sexual harassment, either between customers or involving our leaders, partners or local people. Sexual relationships between a tour leader and a customer are strictly forbidden. Use or possession of illegal drugs will not be tolerated on our trips. If you choose to consume alcohol... Read more

Feedback

After your travels, we want to hear from you! We rely on your feedback. We read it carefully. Feedback helps us understand what we are doing well and what we could be doing better. It allows us to make improvements for future travellers. http://www.intrepidtravel.com/feedback/

Emergency contact

While we always endeavour to provide the best possible holiday experience, due to the nature of travel and the areas we visit sometimes things can and do go wrong. Should any issue occur while you are on your trip, it is imperative that you discuss this with your group leader or our local representative straight away so that they can do their best to rectify the problem and save any potential nega... Read more

Responsible travel

We believe strongly in low impact or rather positive impact tourism. Broadly speaking this means that we try to minimise the negative aspects of tourism on the local cultures and environments that we visit and highlight the positive aspects. Please visit our website for further details and suggestions on how you can be a responsible traveller. http://www.intrepidtravel.com/ourtrips/rt/responsible... Read more

The Intrepid Foundation

Help us change thousands of lives by creating meaningful work and supporting skills training in communities around the world. The Intrepid Foundation is the not-for-profit for Intrepid Group. We work with local organisations around the world to improve the livelihoods of vulnerable individuals and communities through sustainable travel experiences. With our travellers’ help, we’ve contributed mo... Read more

Accommodation notes

OCCASIONAL ALTERNATIVE ACCOMMODATION The style of accommodation indicated in the day-to-day itinerary is a guideline. On rare occasions, alternative arrangements may need to be made due to the lack of availability of rooms in our usual accommodation. A similar standard of accommodation will be used in these instances. TWIN SHARE BASIS Accommodation on this trip is on a twin share basis (unless no... Read more

Transport notes

TRANSPORT IN EUROPE Half the fun of travel is the travelling itself, that's why we like to travel the local way – whether that means mingling with commuters on a train in Spain, cycling past a historic chateau in France, or encountering the world's most extravagant public transport system on the Moscow Metro. In Europe, you are guaranteed to travel by genuine local public transport wherever possib... Read more

Travel insurance

Travel insurance is compulsory for all our trips. We require that, at a minimum, you are covered for medical expenses including emergency repatriation. We strongly recommend that the policy also covers personal liability, cancellation, curtailment and loss of luggage and personal effects. When travelling on a trip, you won't be permitted to join the group until evidence of travel insurance and th... Read more

Your fellow travellers

As you travel on a group trip you will be exposed to all the pleasures and maybe some of the frustrations of travelling in a group. Your fellow travellers will probably come from all corners of the world and likely a range of age groups too. We ask you to be understanding of the various needs and preferences of your group - patience with your fellow travellers is sometimes required for the benefit... Read more

Itinerary disclaimer

Occasionally our itineraries are updated during the year to incorporate improvements stemming from past travellers' comments and our own research. The information given in this itinerary may be slightly different to that in the brochure. It's very important that you print and review a final copy of your Essential Trip Information a couple of days prior to travel, in case there have been changes th... Read more

Accommodation

Hotel (7 nights)
8days
€1,655per person
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May 12
Levanto
May 19
Santa Margherita
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Levanto
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Santa Margherita
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Levanto
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Santa Margherita
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Levanto
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Santa Margherita
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