Manarola Cinque Terre – Attractions Manarola
Cinque Terre Manarola
Manarola is after Corniglia the second smallest village of the Cinque Terre. It belongs to the municipality of the neighboring Riomaggiore.
The picturesque village is situated on a promontory on the sea. The valley is very narrow, so the houses of Manarola were built stepped close together.
In Manarola begins the Cinque Terre lovers walk "Via dell amore" which leads along the rocky coast to the neighboring village Riomaggiore.
The village Manarola is one of the most popular attractions in the Cinque Terre National Park.
In addition many hikers are passing from the neighboring village Corniglia to Manarola.
In the past the inhabitants of Manarola lived from wine growing and fishing - today the main source of income is tourism.
Thanks to the Manarola train station "stazione Manarola" today the village is easy to reach.
The main street "Via Belvedere" passes through the pretty village and ends at a terrace with a panoramic view above the sea and the small rocky beach of Manarola.
The harbor is very small, so many fishing boats are stored in the middle of the main road, where passing pedestrians have to squeeze.The way to the pier was carved in rock. The small port of Manarola is located between two rocky outcrops.
Manarola Italy: history
Manarola has its origins in medieval times like all the other villages of the Cinque Terre.
Manarola was founded from the emigrated population from Val di Vara and the Roman colonization of Volastra towards the sea to use its resources.
The name Manarola derives from the Latin "Manium arula", which means "Small Temple dedicated to Mani", but the etymology is still uncertain.
Manarola train station
The train station of Manarola "Manarola stazione" is located slightly above the east of the center from Manarola and can be reached by a short pedestrian tunnel.
The Cinque Terre lovers walk (lovers' lane from Manarola to Riomaggiore) begins close to the train station.
You can reach Manarola by train from Genoa, Sestri Levante, Levanto and Pisa.
By train you can move quick and economically between the 5 villages of Cinque Terre.
Here you will find more information about the Cinque Terre train
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The beach of Manarola is not advisable for a holiday at the seaside.
There is lack of space – so the houses of Manarola have only little space and the coast is very steep.
You can reach the sea is only by a rock-hewn way.
There is a small rocky beach in the Bay of Manarola below the center of the village.
In addition there is another sea access made of concrete below of the rock on which is located the cemetery of Manarola.
If you are looking for a beach in the Cinque Terre, then we can recommend Levanto or Monterosso al Mare.
In the category Liguria beaches you can find more insider tips to find the most beautiful beaches of Liguria.
Cinque Terre hiking: Manarola to Riomaggiore, Corniglia to Manarola
The famous blue trail "sentiero azzurro" connects the five villages of the Cinque Terre.
The Cinque Terre lovers walk (also called “Cinque Terre lovers' lane” or “via dell'amore”) is one of the most popular trails of the national park.
From Manarola you can take the footpath along the coast to the neighboring village Riomaggiore (east of Manarola) or to Corniglia (west of Manarola).
Here you can find our recommendations and photos of the Cinque Terre hiking tours:
Manarola attractions - things to do in Manarola
What to do in Manarola ? Here you can find the most popular attractions of Manarola, which you should see during your visit:
Manarola Cinque Terre: Saint Lawrence church “San Lorenzo”
San Lorenzo is the patron saint of Manarola. In his honor was built the parish church of San Lorenzo on the church square above the village.
In 1338 the Church of San Lorenzo "Parrocchiale di San Lorenzo" was built in the Gothic style.
Nearby you can find the oratorio "Oratorio dei Disciplinati" from the 15th century.
The interior of the church is divided into three naves. When you are entering there is on the left the baptistery made of marble with the emblem of the Republic of Genoa and the words "Comunitas Manarolae".
The pointed arch portal is decorated with a bas-relief representing the martyrdom of Saint Lawrence, while the rose window (from Matteo and Pietro da Campilio, the same artists that have embellished the churches of Corniglia and Monterosso) it is adorned by twelve little columns.
The XIV century squared bell tower was an ancient defensive building.
The inside of the Curch is baroque with a beautiful drawing on the main altar with Madonna with Child, Saint Lawrence and Saint Catherine.
On the aisle, a second triptych coming from the church of Volastra with Saint Lawrence, Saint Dominic and Saint John the Baptist.
Manarola castle „Bastion“
The castle "Castello di Manarola" was built as a protection against the Saracen pirates. In the last decades it was transformed in private homes.
However the Bastion is still recognizable by its rounded stone structure. You can see the town gate in the street “Via del Baluardo”.
Italy Manarola: Christmas crib „Presepe“
Each year during the Christmas season (December - January) there will be presented a lighted Christmas crib on the hills of Manarola.
It is the largest Christmas crib in the world!
The crib is made of more than 300 handmade figures in life-size which are illuminated from about 15,000 lights.
The crib was designed by Mario Andreoli who presented his work of art after 30 years of work the first time on Christmas Day in the year 2007.
The “Presepe of Manarola” was entered into the Guinness Book of Records.
In 2008 there was added a particular photovoltaic system to produce electricity in an environmentally friendly way.
The most beautiful villages in Italy: Manarola
Manarola is together with Vernazza, Noli, Final Borgo Varese Ligure and Campo Ligure part of the union “I Borghi più belli d'Italia” - the most beautiful villages in Italy.
There are accepted only villages with medieval fortifications which are interesting for tourists and it should be car-free area.
In our opinion one of the most beautiful hotels in the Cinque Terre is the Porto Roca Monterosso which is located directly on the coast and offers a wonderful panoramic terrace overlooking the sea.
From the hotel you can reach Monterosso beach by a short walk.
In front of the Hotel Porto Roca Monterosso passes the blue hiking trail Monterosso Vernazza.
Thus, this hotel is the perfect starting point for a Cinque Terre hiking tour.
Moreover you can find here many other Cinque Terre Hotels selected by us, where the location, service and price will match:
Cinque Terre attractions
Here you can find many other information about the Cinque Terre attractions: