Thursday, July 6, 2017

Italy and Switzerland...Day 7: Hiking Levanto to Monterosso...

Wednesday arrived and we took an early train from Camogli to Levanto so that we could get an early start hiking from Levanto to Monterosso.  I had read about this hike online and we felt best with an early start since our train ride was about 45 minutes from Camogli.

We got off the train in Levanto and walked about 15 minutes to get to the start of the trail.  Instantly, we knew this hike was going to be busier than the hike the day prior.  We passed a group of Germans on the way and also many more people coming from Monterosso to Levanto.

Looking back at Levanto from the start of the hike

This was one of those hikes where it was either completely up hill or completely down hill.  There was not a flat section to be had.  

Being silly at the start of the hike

A small portion of the trail has some coastal views.  I did not feel like the views were amazing as the hike from Camogli to San Fruttuoso, but this hike did not have any chains to death grip onto either.

The trail is enclosed in trees for a large part of the hike, giving it that I am stuck in an oven feel on a hot day.

More trail views

Up we go!

Getting ready to start the hike down.  We ended up talking to this lady in the picture.  She and her husband were from Atlanta and staying in Cinque Terre and hiking to Levanto.  We saw a lot of Americans and Canadians doing this hike.

The best part of this hike is when you reach a point where you can see all five villages of Cinque Terre.  It was quite a site to see all five villages from a distance.

This was my favorite part of the entire hike.  You could make out all five villages.  It is hard to see Riomaggiore, the Southernmost village, but you could see it from the view point.  My favorite is Corniglia perched up on the hill without water access.

Enjoying our hike.  It was very humid on this day.  (tank)

The villages from a different view point

Ken checking out the view

Trail markers.  We were headed to Monterosso

The down hill portion of this trail was really not fun at all.  It seemed long and grueling.  After we saw the view point of the five villages, we were really kind of over it.  Out of all of the hikes we did, this was not our favorite.  They can't all be the best, right?

All over Italy we kept seeing signs that were announcing dogs.  Finally, we saw one with a husky.  If only I could have actually gotten to see the husky.

We had plans to have lunch in Monterosso or possibly one of the other villages upon arrival.  Once we got into Monterosso, we could not get out fast enough.  That place was packed.  It was just not our thing.  We grabbed a soda and decided to take a train back to Levanto for lunch since it was a lot less crowded.

We both loved these flowers outside of Monterosso

We got to Levanto and felt good about our decision.  I know people love Cinque Terre, but it was just not our thing.  I am sure I would like it in October or November when it is less crowded.  

Ken enjoying drinks and snacks in Levanto.  This place gave us little kabobs with peppers and pickles on them.  They were very good!  The funniest part about this place was when the waitress came up to us and was apologizing to us in German.  We spoke English back to her, which surprised her, but she did not speak any English.  I know little Italian but vino blanco is in my vocabulary.

We left Levanto and took the train to Santa Margherita, so that we could get to Portofino.  The train stop for Portofino is Santa Margherita, which is 3.5 miles away.  I guess we were not really thinking how far it was and decided to walk to Portofino.  Our light lunch of snacks started to wear off and we were both getting a little grumpy.  There was a moment where I considered turning around and going back to Santa Margherita, but we both really wanted to see Portofino.

Santa Margherita was also a beautiful coastal town, but we both still preferred Camogli.

We arrived in Portofino and it was just as I imagined it would be.  Bright colored buildings lined the street and yachts lined the harbor.  Seriously, there was one boat that was so big that it could not fit in the harbor.  I looked it up and it was 900,000 Euros per week to rent it.  Crazy.

Beautiful Portofino

You can see the tip (just the tip) of the mega yacht out in the water.  It was crazy huge.

The clouds started to roll in while we were there.  I would have loved to see it on a bright sunny day!

We left Portofino via the ferry and eventually made it back to Camogli.  We went out for our last Italian meal at a restaurant that overlooked the water.  It started drizzling for a bit and we listened to the rain on the roof of the awning.  This was the only small bit of rain we had the entire trip.  

We had wine, ate pasta, and followed up with some amazing dessert.  While we were eating, we listened to an American guy that was on some sort of meet up with a German lady and an older German lady that was some sort of match maker.  The American man started criticizing German culture and communism and a heated argument happened at the table.  The whole thing was awkward and the German ladies left and the man left solo.  Odd, very, very odd.  

Anyways, this concludes our time in Italy.  We absolutely loved our time there and would not hesitate to go back in the future.  

Up next, we go to our favorite place in the world, Lauterbrunnen, Switzerland!

No comments: