Follow in the footsteps of shepherds and pilgrims, hikers and explorers on the trails surrounding Cinque Terre during your custom tailored Italy itinerary. The majestic turquoise water of the Mediterranean Sea splashes against the mixture of rugged terrain and sandy beaches. Vineyards, olive orchards, and citrus groves grow on precipitous terraces. Fishing boats wade in the natural harbors. Storybook castles and elegant churches decorate medieval towns. Indulge in the unique experience of the...
Val di Vara – Arrive in Genoa and Transfer to Charming Val di Vara
Medieval hamlets rise out of the brilliant emerald hills and woodlands of the Val di Vara. The historic route of Via Aurelia connected the coastline with Italy’s interior for hundreds of years, traversed by merchants and pilgrims alike. Your flight lands at Genoa’s Cristoforo Colombo Airport, where your private transfer greets you upon your arrival. You make your way south to the ancestral home of Niccolò Paganini, the famous Italian violinist and composer, in the commune of Carro. The lanes wind through the various homes without straight lines, surrounding the central church.
You find the aroma of pine and cypress lingering in the air. The bright homes rising atop the hill contrast the surrounding greenery and rolling knolls. Your driver points out the ancestral home of the Paganini, visible from the main piazza. The charm of the quiet village embodies the beauty of the surrounding trees and unique layout of the winding lanes, historically used to protect villagers from marauders or passing armies. An enticing smell compels you to enter a small trattoria, a traditional Italian eatery.
The scent of creamy olive oil blends with the aroma of wild herbs filling the dining room. A cool breeze sweeps across the cobblestone lanes. The local recipes offer an introduction into the culture of Liguria and the valley, with the cuisine an integral part of life and expression. The chef uses chestnut flour to make the gnocchi and dresses the typical dish in a sweet walnut sauce. Fat pappardelle noodles dance in a bowl with potatoes and green beans emanating the delectable, herbaceous scent of fresh pesto.
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Levanto – Transfer to Levanto and Enjoy the Beautiful Walk to Monterosso
Levanto – Start in Riomaggiore and Visit the Awaiting Towns of Cinque Terre
Levanto – Return to Riomaggiore to Walk the Trails Leading to Portovenere
Levanto – Trek to Corniglia for a Delicious Wine Tour and Cooking Class
Santa Margherita – Explore Coastal Villages en route to Santa Margherita
Santa Margherita – Discover Hidden San Fruttuoso and Stunning Camogli
Santa Margherita – Depart for Home
- Enjoy the outdoors and pristine air of Italy’s Mediterranean coastline while hiking over Punta Mesco to reach the town of Monterosso
- Savor a stroll along the terraced vineyards of the small town of Corniglia during a private wine tour followed by a tasting in a family-owned enoteca
- Discover the hidden abbey of San Fruttuoso, nestled in a tiny bay reachable only by boat or hiking trail
- Follow the Lover’s Trail connecting Riomaggiore and Manarola, the two most southerly towns of Cinque Terre
- Explore the tiny hamlets and villages surrounding Cinque Terre to discover the unspoiled culture and scenery of Liguria
- Visit the hometown of celebrated Italian composer and musician Niccolò Paganini, located in the stunning landscape of Val di Vara
Embrace the classical hiking trail connecting the five towns of Cinque Terra while stepping beyond the narrow cobbled lanes along the coastline for a grander, all-encompassing expedition during your 8-day Italy tour. The adventure begins with your arrival at Genoa’s international airport. Your private transfer greets you and escorts you south to the verdant hills of Val di Vara. Spend the remainder of the day wandering the hamlets amongst the trees to find the famous composer Paganini’s childhood home and extravagant castles before dinner.
The next day, you travel to the seaside town of Levanto. Take a moment to settle into the comforts of your gorgeous hotel before setting out onto the trail crossing over Punta Mesco. Enjoy the beautiful landscape and marvelous vista leading you to the famous town of Monterosso. Enjoy the beauty of the streets and beach before returning to Levanto for the evening. Travel by train to the town of Riomaggiore in the morning. Wander the lanes and enjoy the views over the natural harbor at your preferred pace. Continue along the Lover’s Trail to reach Manarola.
Visit the towns of Corniglia and Vernazza to enjoy the coastal views and quiet culture. Then, you return to Riomaggiore by train to follow the trail south to Portovenere. Discover the commune of Campiglia Marittima and beauty of Portovenere. Venture to the small town of Corniglia of Cinque Terre once more and visit the vineyards and wine bars of the town. Partake in a fabulous cooking class offering insight into the treasured flavors of Ligurian cuisine. Afterward, your private transfer escorts your luggage to your hotel in Santa Margherita.
You set out with your guide along the trails leading to the quiet seaside town by way of Bonassola, Framura, Costa, and Moneglia. Take your time enjoying the village life before settling in Santa Margherita. Next, you discover the secluded abbey of San Fruttuoso. Explore the interior of the 11th-century structure and lounge on the soft sand. Take a boat to the town of Camogli around the Gulf of Poets. On the final day, your private transfer greets you at the hotel and escorts you back to Genoa’s Cristoforo Colombo Airport for your flight home.
Consider browsing our other Italy itineraries for more ideas and inspiration in creating your dream Italy vacation.
$2,195 per person (excluding international flights)
- In-country transportation
- Some or all activities and tours
- Expert trip planning
- 24x7 support during your trip
Your final trip cost will vary based on your selected accommodations, activities, meals, and other trip elements that you opt to include.
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