Pros and cons of visiting Cinque Terre by Car. A complete guide to parking spots, costs, and the best way to visit the riviera:
What’s Important to Know
The centers of the villages are entirely pedestrian. It means that if you come by car you will have to leave it along the road or in the dedicated areas. It is not cheap and you will probably have to walk a bit. I suggest this solution if you have kids or if you are coming during low season.
As I will explain later, some parking areas offer shuttle services. In any case be aware that from June to September it’s not easy to find a free spot, be prepared!
Parking in Cinque Terre: Riomaggiore
Riomaggiore is the first village coming from La Spezia and it is located 12 km from the city center. It does not offer a lot of parking spots, the only lot dedicated is managed by the National Park and there is a shuttle that gets you to the village. It closes at 10 pm. As an alternative, the majority of people parks along the road because it is free. Even thought I suggest you to be careful about parking that way: there are a lot of portions in which it’s not allowed. The other car park, located just before the beginning of the pedestrian area, does not offer a lot of places and some of it are reserved for residents.
Costs in Riomaggiore are about 3 €/h – 20 € daily ticket.
Parking in Cinque Terre: Manarola
It is 14 km from La Spezia and it offers more parking spots than Riomaggiore. It is the second village following the SP370 road. After the signs for Riomaggiore, you just have to continue to go on until you find a roundabout with the indication for Manarola. Going down to the village, you will find a parking area quite big together with spots along the road. Pay attention to the signs on the street and remember that parking lots with the yellow line are the ones reserved for residents. Before the start of the ZTL area (also reserved for residents), you will find another little square with other lots. The cost is about 2,50 €/h.
Parking in Cinque Terre: Corniglia
The third village of the Cinque Terre is 25 km from La Spezia. The road to get there is the same of the previous villages, but after Manarola it becomes a bit steep and narrow, for this reason, to get to Corniglia, Vernazza and Monterosso people often do an alternative path. To get there from SP370, after Manarola you continue uphill, passing over Groppo and Volastra. Then you will find signs to get down to the village, but pay attention to the road. There are no specific parking areas, but you can park along the road although it does not include many spots.
Parking in Cinque Terre: Vernazza
It is the fourth village and to get there you just have to follow the same indications as for Corniglia, but then there will be a crossroad: turn left to Corniglia or turn right to get to Vernazza. Also in this case the street is really steep and narrow, so pay attention if you are not used to it. Before going check if the road is open. Since the flood of 2011 there are often landslides and it is temporarily closed in some periods. The parking area is located 1 km before the village. It is guarded and it offers a shuttle service to get to the center of Vernazza. The costs are cheaper compared to the other villages: 2€/h – 15 € daily ticket. Do not go any further this parking because you will find only reserved lots for residents.
Parking in Cinque Terre: Monterosso
Last but not least, Monterosso is porbably the best village to park in all Cinque Terre.
The fifth village is 35 km away from La Spezia. You will have to pass Vernazza and then follow the signs for Monterosso uphill. The alternative itinerary to get there from A12 (from Genoa), which I suggest if you have to go just to Monterosso or Vernazza, it’s following the indications for “Carrodano” and then Levanto. After arriving in Levanto you will find the signs for Monterosso. This itinerary is less narrow and steep. Monterosso offers different parking solutions:
Parking Fegina (along the coast): 2 €/h 15 € daily ticket. It offers about 300 lots.
Parking Loreto: 2 €/h, 18 € daily. It offers about 100 lots.
Arriving at the village you will find signs for both areas.
Tips by a Local:
– It’s not easy to park in Cinque Terre but also to drive! If you are not used to narrow streets, be aware that during high season people park along the road constricting it considerably.
– Riomaggiore and Corniglia have the worst parking areas, I suggest you to park in Levanto, Monterosso or Manarola to have more chances to find a spot.
– The road for Corniglia is very steep, I suggest you to get there by train or bus.
Ok, now are you wondering about which are the pros?
The highway to get there has a stunning seaview! If you are uncertain about what public transport is suited for you, maybe you can think about pros and cons.