Hiking remote paths of the Italian seacoast | Cinque Terre Day 2 - Framura, Bonassola and Levanto

8:19 a.m. on March 7, 2020 (EST)
Angelina @Walking Nature World
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In this trip report of Cinque Terre we got from the town Moneglia to Levanto in Italy.

Watch the full video here: 

That day we woke up really early at 5am. As we did promised to ourselves to try the new schedule in order to escape the extreme heat hours. We didn't even had any breakfast - just ate some nuts and one peach. It isn’t what we like to do to start the day on an empty stomach but this was the sacrifice we had to do.

The night was very quiet, we just heard some wild boar noises from a far but they didn't came close to us. The plain wood helped a lot to even out the surface and we slept really well.

So when we wrapped everything up which still took around 1 hour we were finally out on the trail.

It was good not having the direct sunlight and walk in a cooler temperature at least for a little while. It wasn't for very long unfortunately and after an hour or so we started to feel the heat again and started to sweat again.

All the first part of the trail getting down to Deiva Marina was quite easy and enjoyable without any exciting views but going through quite dense forests.

When we got there we decided to cheat a little bit and go around the first mountain in order to be able to do the next one where we saw more viewpoints and potentially good views. So we went through the village Colle taking very easy flat route along the river. We still faced the uphill at the end of it and it was inevitable in order to get to the town Framura that was at the coast. But this uphill was lower and easier than the one we skipped.

There was a sign telling us the direction we needed to take but we didn't believe it at first because the trail seemed to be neglected and nobody was hiking it really. There were quite a lot of fallen trees, spiky plants growing on the trail, branches, spider webs and we even saw a snake there. But as we progressed further into the forest the trail started to become wider and in a better state. It was going through heavily shadowed forest and we even noticed some old bricks on the path that were forming the old route probably.

The hunger began to take over us and all we were thinking of at that point was finding a place to eat our breakfast. We were hesitating still whether this style of early hiking suits us or not as we knew how important for us was having the meal first thing in the morning and we simply weren't used to it.

When we got out to the village Framura a very unusual view opened to our eyes.  The village was situated on a different levels on a very hard terrain with lots of colorful little houses and the people were working on their little vineyard fields probably taking advantage of the fresh morning. The sea was looking very dark from above with a big dark cloud laying over it.

We got through lots of footsteps in order to get to the local food shop where we bought some fruit, ice cream and focaccia in a style of pizza Margarita. Then we got down a little more to the seaside where we decided to stop on the rocks. There were quite a lot of boats parked on the land and it was probably a popular starting point for sailing.

 We ate our leftovers of cous cous from the last night together with this pizza Margarita focaccia bread. And the bread seemed to us very oily, the oil was almost dropping down from it. The cheese and tomato sauce was nice but the fat base was ruining it all. It seemed like it was cooked on a frying pan with a butter but that was a secret of this particular shop. We noticed that overall in the small shops we didn't like the local food as it was too fatty to our taste. But in the supermarkets surprisingly it was tasting better.

So we rested there for an hour or so and got out to continue hiking. We saw a lot of bicycles parked at this place and then there was a renting spot as well. On the information board we learnt that there was passing a cycling route going through several villages that was open to the pedestrians as well. But it was stated that it was going through the tunnel for the mist part just getting out on some viewpoints. So it wasn't really of a much interest to us even though it was definitely much easier and quicker to do this way. But we like to be outside all the time and don't enjoy being in the tunnels at all.

So we chose another trail to take instead that was going to be more challenging but potentially more interesting as well. We went up first on the car road and then got out on the little rocky path. It was quite nice as it was going mostly through the shadowed forest and quite close to the seaside so we got to enjoy a fresh sea breeze on our faces. It was a first time when we had at least a bit of wind cooling the body. Sometimes the path was giving the beautiful views over the rocky cliffs and turquoise sea waters. There was quite a bit of uphill still to get over but overall it wasn't difficult at all.

The dark clouds started to appear at the sky and we heard a bit of a far away thunder and a few drops of rain came down at us. But it was still not very probable that it would rain heavily. We learnt it by spending several days here that the dark clouds doesn't mean it's going to rain at all.

So this way at around 14pm we got to the town Bonassola where we planned to get initially but looking around for the potential camp spot we could really see anything. Everywhere were just the houses, different private property etc. As well as the terrain continued to be very steep and mountainous. So considering all of that we made our mind to move to the neighbor village Levanto where we saw there were some campsites to stay. They were still quite expensive but at least we could rest a bit there as well as take a shower and wash the clothes as we felt extremely sticky and dirty after 2 crazy hot days. We knew there was a train going from village to village along the coast so we took advantage of it.

After just 5 minutes we were at the town Levanto as it was just one stop of the train. We went straight to the supermarket and then to the beach in hope to have a swim in the sea.

The town was very similar to the previous one with lots of colorful houses on the hills and seemed very touristic with plenty shops on the streets and many foreign languages that we heard around.

So we got to the beach and had our snack there. Then we wanted to take a swim but couldn't really find any cold showers to rinse the salty sea water. There wasn't any around and we saw that most of the beach area was occupied by changing cabins and chaise lounges that were circled by the gates and were obviously for pay. We were not happy about it at all and compared to Spain where most if not all the beaches were public - that was a very disappointing fact. But maybe that was all because of how popular these places are, we hoped that not every beach would be like that. So we quit the idea of taking a swim and headed straight to the campsite.

We knew that it’s going to cost around 26 euros per night checking it by Internet but of course we didn't know how crowded it will be. They gave us a a tiny pitch at the gate close to the road and face to face with other people on a rocky ground and we definitely rejected it. Because we knew that we won’t get any good sleep there.

 So we continued through the town to the further away campsite, fortunately there was one, and it was somewhat better. But for us the most important thing was the location - it was closer to the forest, more spacious and with less people.  With that we already were satisfied. There we finally had the very long shower, washed our dirty things and were out to rest. We didn't have much time already as we lost some at the other campsite and we got there only at 18 pm but still tried to rest as much as possible. So we were getting ready for another long and hot day at Cinque Terre.

Have you ever hiked the Italian seacoast? What trail did you take?

12:04 p.m. on March 9, 2020 (EDT)
ppine
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4,133 forum posts

Great place. One of my favorites in all of Europe.  Don't be afraid to sneak into town for some local food and wine.  It is really good and cheap. 

11:05 a.m. on March 10, 2020 (EDT)
Angelina @Walking Nature World
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ppine said:

Great place. One of my favorites in all of Europe.  Don't be afraid to sneak into town for some local food and wine.  It is really good and cheap. 

Yes, this place has a special charm, not really wild but to explore little historical towns it is wonderful. 

June 7, 2020
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