Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Iceland/France/Italy Day 17: Hike from Monterosso to Vernazza

May 15, 2011
Italy Day 17: Hike from Monterosso to Vernazza

The weather was quite different again today, a bit overcast and looked like it could rain a bit, but we ventured forwards without breaking our stride. We tried to go to Vernazza for breakfast but asked the wrong person at the train station if we were getting on the correct train. So we ended up stopping only in Monterosso and had to walk from there instead. That turned out to be ideal because it cleared up quickly and this gave us more time to spend in Vernazza which is probably my 2nd favourite village after Riomaggiore.

We started the walk and there were some very steep cliffs. They warned us some rocks could be slippery when wet and it had been a little rainy/wet earlier in the morning. But soon after we started the walk, the sun came out and it was glorious. We had some really great views of the water, and also we walked by the Lemoncello guy's fence!!!! So awesome!!! There is a guy on the Monterosso-Vernazza trail who has a little sales booth set up next to his lemon farm. He was there in 2007 and sold us Lemoncello and a fresh-squeezed lemon juice which were both FANTASTIC. He was such a character and I was hoping to see him but I guess he was staying in his house since it was still a bit wet outside.

After a couple of hours we got to Vernazza and the views were awesome. In Vernazza we found an Ice Cream gelato guy who was serving probably the smoothest gelato of the trip. It was sooooooooo good. We loved it so much we kept going back, we went about 4 times, getting new flavours each time and sharing them 4-ways. I tried a Canella (Cinnamon) and we also tried Pistache and Licorice!!! Licorice sounds weird but it tasted great.

For lunch we had Pizzas at the harbour with pesto and artichoke on them. We wandered in a few stores after lunch and I found some weird Pez flavours I wanted to try. We walked by a pasty store and I found some mini-pastries in there, cannolis and other tasty stuff. I got a few for our late-afternoon tea.

We headed back to Riomaggiore on the train and for dinner we had another homemade feast of Gnocchi, Homemade (from the store) Pesto, Buffala (fresh mozzarella) and Burrata. We got some Blood Orange juice which was very good but very tangy, so we mixed it with some Frizzante and that made for an excellent combo.

After all that eating we needed a walk in the evening to work down the food. I went for a coffee with Dad at Bar Centrale and we yapped there for a while, that was fun. We then headed back to the apartment to pack up for the next day and for some tea.

A cat trying to get into a restaurant
And of course, even in the most unlikely of all places, Riomaggiore... I run into someone I know! In 2007 it was Bex, this time it's Alex Kaldor! He was visiting the Cinque Terre very briefly on his way to some other cities in Italy and Europe before heading back to Israel. Small world, as usual :)
This cat was guarding something I think. He was pretty intense.
Walking along from Monterosso to Vernazza, looking back at Monterosso
Cliffs on the way to Vernazza
A cat along the way!
Getting closer to Vernazza
What a great walk!!
Looking forward to some lunch!
Almost there...
We're here! This is the place where Crystine almost lost her camera memory card a few years ago. This time, we ate Pizza there instead of saving memory cards!
View from our apartment, back in Riomaggiore
Laundry hanging to dry

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