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Le Cinque Terre trails Up-to-date advice needed.

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Old Aug 9, 13, 7:46 am
  #1
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Le Cinque Terre trails Up-to-date advice needed.

In mid-September my mother-in-law is coming over from the States to visit us in Italy.

We're driving down from our place in the Piedmont Alps and staying in Rapallo for a night. On the first day we plan to 'do' Portofino, SML and possibly San Fruttuoso; and on the second day we're taking the train down to Le Cinque Terre (an area which I've never visited).

We'll be taking the 10am train from Rapallo arriving in one of Le Cinque Terre at around 11am; and we have to take a train back leaving at around 3pm the same day so we'll have around 4 hours in the area. We had hoped to arrive at the station in one village, walk to the next, have a nice lunch and then make our way to the station for our return journey.

My mother-in-law is 75 and in reasonably good health, but she's not a hill walker, and I wish to avoid putting her through having to do prolonged steep hill climbs (or lots of steps).

The ideal would of course to have been to do the 'via dell'amore' but this is closed until next year (I believe). I was therefore thinking of doing Corniglia to Vernazza, but it looks like the trail might be a little too demanding for my mother-in-law. (Also, I don't know if we'll have to walk up a number of steps from the station to get to the start of the trail.)

I read in La Stampa earlier this week that the easy trail from Manarola to Corniglia should be re-opening this week, and was looking at doing this but from what I have read, although the trail is easy, we would still have to walk up the steps to the village if we wanted to have lunch there (although I guess we could always take the 12:29 train back to Manarola or even walk back to Corniglia for a well deserved lunch). Another alternative could be to take the train from Rapallo to Corniglia so my partner and the dog could walk to Vernazza, whilst I take the mother-in-law to Vernazza on the 11:28 train and wait for them there.

Would any FT'er have the local knowledge or the villages and trails to be able to comment or offer any other ideas that might work? As you see, at this point I'm flexible and willing to consider any itinerary that could be suitable.

Many thanks,

Up In The Air
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Old Aug 10, 13, 2:43 am
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We'll be in Cinque Terre in mid September as well. It appears that some of the trails are closed, and that some will be re-opening. Check out the recent reviews on Trip Advisor.

Rather than doing the trails with your mother-in-law, you might consider doing the ferry between towns.

There are some good recent descriptions of the trails here as well.

bert
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Old Aug 10, 13, 3:36 am
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Originally Posted by bertsirkin View Post
We'll be in Cinque Terre in mid September as well. It appears that some of the trails are closed, and that some will be re-opening. Check out the recent reviews on Trip Advisor.

Rather than doing the trails with your mother-in-law, you might consider doing the ferry between towns.

There are some good recent descriptions of the trails here as well.

bert
Hi Many thanks for your reply. I am indeed considering the idea of taking the ferry, but this would exclude Corniglia, as the ferry doesn't stop there (as far as I know).

I checked with Mr Google this morning, but still haven't found any confirmation that the easy Manarola - Corniglia trail has re-opened.
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Old Aug 10, 13, 7:41 am
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Cinque Terre Trails

Actually, easy is relative. I've done all of the trails quite a while ago, before the mud slide, and before via d'amore was closed. I was running marathons at the time. Other than via d'amore, to the best of my memory, these were up and down, hilly trails, non-paved, stepping over downed trees, rocks, etc. It's a significant undertaking for someone in shape. I don't think I'd consider taking a 75 year old who is "not a hill walker" on these trails. There is also a train that goest to each town, that might be time effective.
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Old Aug 15, 13, 3:32 am
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Originally Posted by Up In The Air View Post
I read in La Stampa earlier this week that the easy trail from Manarola to Corniglia should be re-opening this week, and was looking at doing this but from what I have read, although the trail is easy, we would still have to walk up the steps to the village if we wanted to have lunch there (although I guess we could always take the 12:29 train back to Manarola or even walk back to Corniglia for a well deserved lunch). Another alternative could be to take the train from Rapallo to Corniglia so my partner and the dog could walk to Vernazza, whilst I take the mother-in-law to Vernazza on the 11:28 train and wait for them there.

Would any FT'er have the local knowledge or the villages and trails to be able to comment or offer any other ideas that might work? As you see, at this point I'm flexible and willing to consider any itinerary that could be suitable.

Many thanks,

Up In The Air
If you just want to walk the trail and the Manarolo-Corniglia trial is indeed open again, then I'd recommend getting off the train at Corniglia and walking the trail to Manarolo. This means you wouldn't actually get into the town of Corniglia but you'd avoid walking up the stairs as well because the train station in Corniglia is at the base of the stairs.

Honestly, with such a short time and the choice of trails so limited by the closures I'd get off the train in Monterroso, walk to the boat dock and take the ferry between the towns. You'll see much more than you can see from the train and you can get off and on the ferry as you see fit to visit each town (except for Corniglia).
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Old Aug 15, 13, 3:05 pm
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Originally Posted by travelinmanS View Post
If you just want to walk the trail and the Manarolo-Corniglia trial is indeed open again, then I'd recommend getting off the train at Corniglia and walking the trail to Manarolo. This means you wouldn't actually get into the town of Corniglia but you'd avoid walking up the stairs as well because the train station in Corniglia is at the base of the stairs.

Honestly, with such a short time and the choice of trails so limited by the closures I'd get off the train in Monterroso, walk to the boat dock and take the ferry between the towns. You'll see much more than you can see from the train and you can get off and on the ferry as you see fit to visit each town (except for Corniglia).
Thank you very much for your advice travelinmanS. I telephoned the info. office at Corniglia station the other day. I was told that the Corniglia - Manarola trail failed an inspection the other day, and the next estimate for its reopening is 'sometime in September'. I'll 'phone again the day before I visit there just to check (and in the unlikely event of it having reopened I'll follow your advice and do Corniglia to Manarola (avoiding the steps). Failing that I'll certainly take the train to one of them and take the boat to another. (I've already checked with the ferry operator and they allow dogs on board.)

Thanks you again,

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