Last weekend I traveled to Cinque Terre for a weekend of hiking, swimming, food and relaxation. After a pretty fun adventure, that's exactly what I found.
The house we stayed in was atop a hill, overlooking the Mediterranean and the seaside town of Vernazza in the distance. The house had an amazing deck facing northwest with one of the best views I have ever seen. After arriving on Friday night, we just sat on the deck, drank wine and enjoyed the stars. The view the next morning, however, blew my mind.
After a leisurely morning of ocean-watching, we hiked down to the town of Corniglia and began our hike along the Cinque Terre trail. Beautiful vistas and steep climbs were the dual themes of the trail, both of which I really enjoyed. We had lunch along the beach in Vernazza, where I was able to try some of the region's famously buttery foccaccia bread. We continued on to Montesorro where 4 of us broke off from the group and swam out to a rock of the coast. The rest of the day was spent sunbathing and people watching (tourists are entertaining, as are Italians). That night for dinner, we ate ate a restaurant called Ristorante al Carugio in Montesorro before returning by train to Corniglia and hiking back up the hill.
Sunday, I woke up at nine, put on a sweatshirt and just relaxed on the deck, talking international relations and class options while soaking in the horizon.
So what is Cinque Terre? It's beautiful. You should go.