Sunday, September 23, 2007

Cinque terre

Looking at old photographs again. The Cinque terre in Italy was so yesterday. We were there last Spring. It rained a little but after walking the 7 miles we became hot and had to shed some of our clothing. It is a truly beautiful area of Italy, five villages clinging precariously against a very rocky and jagged coastline. There is a trail that link all 5 villages and it is 7 miles long, takes a day to walk it. One can lolly gag in each village, hang out, talk to other Americans, have a bit to eat, taste some local wine or have a coffee. The trail is a UNESCO world heritage site. The hillside is being terraced for growing grapes, lemons, fruits and vegetables. This is the view from our window, we weren't actually staying in a hotel, it's someones apartment, we found it on Rick Steves guide book, email them to secure a reservation and told them when we'll be arriving. Someone was there waiting for us to hand us the key. It cost us 46 euros a night for the 2 of us, a great deal. We came from Rome and I went online to check Trenitalia schedule and email back telling them our eta. This place is for the very fit, we had to haul our luggage up a very very steep hill to get to the apartment at the top. We stayed in Manarola, most of Rick Steves' readers stay in Vernazza because that is where he stays when he is in town and it is supposed to be the prettiest of all 5 villages and it is. We met a lot of Americans there and chatted with them. We met this lovely girl from Seattle who was traveling with her mother, she was going to get married, so she and her mother decided to travel together one last time. How sweet. Some of the trails there were pretty tough, we struggled, the rocks were jagged and slippery because of the rain. Some were pretty easy. The view was spectacular. We went to Nice in France after visiting the Cinque terre, we missed our connection and ended up stuck in Genoa for 5 hours. We arrived in Nice, France at 8 pm. The amazing thing is, we were on an Italian train and it just rolled right into Nice, France. We stopped at Ventimiglia, the last Italian town before France for a little while for some kind of immigration check. This part of Italy is so beautiful, there are very beautiful villages on this coast and one day I hope to return to see them all. It is so amazing, I watched the Rick Steves' shows on the Cinque terre and the next thing I know, I'm there. As Rick Steves like to say, keep on traveling.

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