Our plan for the day was to make our first attempt at walking the trail that connects all five villages. We decided to start by walking from Vernazza to Corniglia. It turns out this was a smart decision as this was the ONLY portion of the trail that is currently open. The other three stretches are under repair following the floods of 2011. The National Park now charges a €5 walking fee, and though I can't be certain, I'm assuming this is helping with the flood efforts.
We put on proper walking shoes (laugh all you like, but we were glad we did) and off we went. Up hill for 2km...stair by stair. It felt like the Grouse Grind. Though I have never attempted the Grind in 33 degree heat. As you'll see in the pictures, we were dripping. The stretch from Vernazza to Corniglia took us a little over an hour (with a lot of stops for breathtaking photo opportunities).
Saying goodbye to Vernazza and starting the ascent.
A look at the terraced hillside.
This helicopter was taking bags of rocks from the beach up to the hillside, presumably helping with some of the repairs.
A first glimpse of Corniglia.
As you can see from the photos, Corniglia was a very cute little town on the hill, but unfortunately doesn't have any beach access.
After exploring Corniglia, we jumped on the train to Monterosso al Mare to cool off. We had heard this was the location of the largest beach.
Tomorrow's post: Monterosso al Mare.