A complete guide of Manarola to discover the perfect panoramic spots and hidden treasures all from a local perspective.
Brief local guide of Cinque Terre: Manarola
In the XIII century, people coming from the village of Volastra (founded by Romans) came down to the coast to build a new center, useful against enemies coming from the sea. During the subsequent centuries, the village has been fortified, with the creation of a castle.
Nowadays we can admire part of its ruins, but some portions of its structure have been unified with the more recent houses on the cliff.
Main Things to See
The Church of San Lorenzo
It dates back to 1338 and it presents a gothic and baroque style. It is located on the highest point of the city center and from its square you can admire the roofs of the village from above.
The Marina and Punta Bonfiglio
As you may already know, arrived at the seafront (from the tunnel station on your left), you will find a very nice walking path that will allow you to admire the village and the sunset. Above Punta Bonfiglio, you will also find Nessun Dorma bar, which is a beautiful spot from which you can enjoy the view having a drink.
The Marina of Manarola constitutes also its beach. In fact, this village has not a proper seashore, but you can swim in the tiny harbor as locals always do. In any case, don’t worry, it’s safe even if it’s a bit deep and you can’t touch the bottom.
Belvedere Piazza Montale
This viewpoint is located on the left side of the village. At the end of the tunnel of the railway station, you have to go up the hill for about 3 minutes and then take the road on your right. You follow it for about 10 minutes, enjoying the view of the little colorful houses along narrow typical streets.
At the end of this path, you will find the little Piazza Montale, which will offer you a great view of the coast and the sea. People get there to admire the summer sunset in peace because it is not really crowded not being the main street.
Tips by a Local:
– The 10th of August, the night of San Lorenzo the entire village celebrates its patron and you will have the chance to enjoy fireworks from the marina.
– Furthermore, from December until January you will be able to admire the World’s biggest outdoor Nativity Scene. It is all made with recycled elements and it spreads all over one side of the valley.
– You can also visit Manarola’s cemetery, which is located above Punta Bonfiglio. It offers an even higher perspective of the front of the village.
– During the summertime pay attention to the jellyfishes, they frequently appear in the marina.
– One of Manarola’s best experiences is the tasting of Cinque Terre’s typical sweet wine: it is called “sciacchetrà” and it is produced all over the coast.