Cinque Terre,  Local Guides

Corniglia: A Complete Guide by a Local

The complete short guide to Corniglia, the smallest of Cinque Terre, but full of local beauties.

History

Its origins date back to the Romans and during the medieval era, it has been organized in manors as the other villages. During the Maritime Republics, Genoa controlled the entire coast. Visiting the village some ruins of a tower can be noticed, it was built for defense purposes.

Main things to see

Corniglia has not a harbor and it stands 100 meters above sea level. So the main way to get to the city center is to climb around 300 steps or take a shuttle bus. It has just one main road, Via Fieschi and everything revolves around it.

Church of San Pietro

It dates back to the 14th century and it’s located in the main square of the village. It presents some gothic elements as the other churches around Cinque Terre. On its façade, there is a Carrara white marble rose window.

S. Maria Terrace

You can get to this viewpoint just following the main road. It is a perfect spot to admire the sea from above, but also sunsets!

Oratory of Disciplinati di Santa Caterina

In the little square of Largo Taragio. It’s located in this 18th century Oratory. Its peculiarity is that the ceiling above the altar is painted to look like the sky.

Beaches

If you want to swim in Corniglia beautiful sea you will have to hike a bit…but I promise will be rewarded.

  • Marina of Corniglia: it’s the easiest to reach and you can get there if from the city center. You take the stairs to go down to the tiny bay in the direction of Vernazza. It is not too big and it does not offer a beach made of sand but the water is amazing.
  • Guvano Beach: from the railway station you will notice signs to get there. You will also have to pass over a tunnel (5euros) long about 15 minutes, that was part of the ancient railroad La Spezia-Genova. It is pretty famous because it was considered a hippie’s beach during the ’80s.
  • Spiaggione of Corniglia: it’s is located near to the train station and it’s often crowded. But pay attention, it is often not accessible due to the tide or landslides.

Tips by a Local:

– If you want to swim I suggest you the Marina, it’s tiny but beautiful.

– Corniglia offers different panoramic spots on the sea, to find them out just get lost along the narrow colorful streets.

– The hiking trail SVA02 Manarola – Corniglia is one of the easiest and offers stunning views of the coast and the sea. It is temporarily closed (January 2020) but I really suggest it. Check out the openness!

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