Cinque Terre trail: Vernazza to Corniglia
Cinque Terre hiking trail Vernazza - Corniglia
The Cinque Terre trail from Vernazza to Corniglia is one of the most beautiful hiking trails in the Cinque Terre National Park.
The stage Vernazza - Corniglia is the second part of the famous blue trail No.2 which begins in the medieval Vernazza.
From Vernazza the path passes along the coast and on the characteristic hills where even today olives and wine are cultivated.
On this hiking tour you will be rewarded with scenic panoramic views of Vernazza and Corniglia.
You will also explore the numerous attractions of the romantic village Corniglia.
In October 2011 the hiking trail from Vernazza to Corniglia was partially destroyed from the Cinque Terre storm and the path was closed for a long time.
Information about the Cinque Terre path:
Route: VERNAZZA - CORNIGLIA
Length: 3.45 Km
Walking time: 1 hour 30 minutes
Altitude: 207 m
Height difference: approx. 150 m
Level of difficulty: medium
Charges: yes in high season
In September 2014 all the necessary repairs could be completed - now the trail is open again.
Cinque Terre trail: start in Vernazza
The Cinque Terre footpath Vernazza Corniglia starts in the village Vernazza in the middle of the pedestrian zone which leads from the train station "stazione Vernazza"down to the port.
The Cinque Terre hiking trail starts at the red arrow "sentiero per Corniglia" in the opposite of the narrow lane where the footpath Monterosso – Vernazza ends.
First you will walk through the charming narrow streets of Vernazza, passing closely to small houses and lovingly decorated gardens.
Cinque Terre Hotels
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:
Panorama of Vernazza
We climb up the first stairs and already after a few minutes we can see a stunning panoramic view over the whole bay of Vernazza.
If you are hiking from Vernazza to Corniglia in the morning, then you have perfect light conditions for spectacular photos of Vernazza - the most beautiful village of the Cinque Terre.
From here you can also see the beach of Vernazza (left from the tower), which in 2011was formed during the Cinque Terre storm. Before there was no beach, instead just a rocky cliff.
Cinque Terre Card: Admission Cinque Terre paths + train
When you follow the Cinque Terre trail on the hill you will reach a "checkpoint" - in the high season the Cinque Terre paths are not free of charges.
If you buy a day pass of the so-called "Cinque Terre Card", then you can use all Cinque Terre hiking trails.
In addition the same card can be used as Cinque Terre train card. So you can also use the regional Cinque Terre train (2nd class) between Levanto and La Spezia.
Here you can find further information to the Cinque Terre Trains
Vernazza - Corniglia: The countryside on the way to Corniglia
The path leads up between characteristic cactus called "Fichi di India".
The next direction sign indicates “50 minutes to Corniglia”, but you would have to be a very ambitious hiking expert. If you take some pictures and enjoy the pretty countryside, then it will take a little bit more time.
After a curve we get a view of the railway tunnel below of us, where the Cinque Terre trains are passing to connect all the five villages.
Along the trail you can see the reconstruction works, which has been done after the Cinque Terre storm in 2011. Afterwards they tried to use nets and build stone walls to protect the way from new rock falls and landslides.
Then we come through numerous olive groves that give us some shade. Between the olive trees you can see during harvest time numerous nets to collect the falling ripe olives.
Cinque Terre hiking trail: Panorama of Corniglia
After that you will get a panoramic view of Corniglia, which is located on a rock about 100 meters above the sea.
A direction sign indicates 25 minutes to Corniglia and the next village Manarola could be reached from here in 1 hour and 15 minutes.
View of the Sanctuary of San Bernardino
Before of us is still Corniglia, but when we turn around, we can see at the top of the hill a small village called San Bernardino with the Sanctuary of "Nostra Signora delle Grazie".
More information about this you can find in the chapter Corniglia.
We are reaching Corniglia
Now it goes downhill and we reach the second "checkpoint" – this means we have reached the end of the Cinque Terre hiking trail Vernazza - Corniglia.
Now follow the direction signs to Manarola, because the following trail to Manarola passes in the center of Corniglia.
Even before the village you will notice that the vegetation changes - from now on we are walking surrounded by vineyards.
Around Corniglia we can find a variety of dry stone walls, which were built by hand and without concrete to create for agriculture flat terraces in the hills.
Now we reach the center of Corniglia and we discover several old olive oil presses that adorn the lovely gardens.
There is also a bus station, if you want to go to the train station "stazione Corniglia" or the beach of Corniglia "Spiaggia" (instead of walking down the long stair "Lardarina" with 383 steps ).
At the parish church "Parrocchia di San Pietro" we take the main road "Via Fieschi" towards the sea.
The pedestrian zone runs through the pretty center of Corniglia, where you can find small shops, wine bars and restaurants “trattorias”.
We are passing at the war memorial and the “Oratorio Santa Caterina” befind of it - until we arrive at the end of the road at the famous viewpoint of Corniglia called "Belvedere" .
Santa Maria Corniglia: Panorama
From the observation deck "Santa Maria" we enjoy a view of the steep coast of the Cinque Terre. From here you can also see the small bay of Corniglia, which is used to dock the fishing boats.
On the beach you can still see the retaining walls which have been built for the old railway line - but today the railway passes in a tunnel below of Corniglia.
Corniglia: further Cinque Terre paths
If you still have power, you can continue to hike in the Cinque Terre national park to the next village Manarola:
- Footpath Corniglia to Manarola
Corniglia train station: return journey by train
If you have walked enough, you can stop the Cinque Terre hiking trail at the train station "stazione Corniglia " to take the Cinque Terre train.
So you can reach quick and easy all the villages of the Cinque Terre.
Cinque Terre hiking
Here you can find the most beautiful Cinque Terre hiking trails:
- Monterosso to Vernazza
- Vernazza to Corniglia
- Corniglia to Manarola (via Volastra)
- Manarola to Riomaggiore - Cinque Terre lovers walk "Via dell Amore"