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  • gloria139

I climb a mountain, Cyn climbs two

Updated: Jun 21, 2022

This is the day that Cyn had looked forward to most since we started planning this trip to Italy last summer.

The five villages of Cinque Terra are linked by trails than run over the mountains. Her plan was to hike from Corniglia, in the middle (where we are staying) to Monterosso del Mer on the far north end. My plan was to get through the day alive and physically intact.

We headed out early in the morning and it was a perfect hiking day - sunny, 20C with a slight breeze. And the smell of flowers is always in the air in Cinque Terra:

The path almost immediately started going up. And up. And up. We climbed for about two hours. The views at the top were spectacular, even if the climb was arduous.

And then the path went down, and down, and down. One irregular stone step after another. By time we got to Vernassa, which was the middle village on our trek, my Fitbit was saying I had climbed 54 floors. It gave me a badge. My knee was toast. And I tapped out. But Cyn kept going.

Hot and sweaty, I had a pineapple and melon juice and a croissant at a small outdoor cafe to regain my strength.

Then I strolled the town for a bit before catching the train that runs between the village to Monterosso. Unlike Corniglia, which is high on the cliffs, Monterosso is a seaside beach town with sunbathers under umbrellas covering the shore.

I walked around and bought a hat. Then I made my way to the far south end of the village and got a table at an outdoor cafe. I had just finished ordering sparkling water, wine, and caprese salad when Cyn came walking down the road - exhausted but happy she had completed the hike. The second half of the walk had apparently been much more treacherous than the first. We had our salad and then some grilled fish, which looked better than it tasted - though the caprese salad was excellent.

Then we dipped our feet in the sea and Cyn also bought a hat. So now we are matchy matchy.

We caught the train to the other end of Cinque Terra and explored some stores in the village of Riomaggiore, which is set on a steep incline, then had wine at a small cafe called Vertical - most appropriate. After catching the train back to Corniglia, we had the best dinner of the trip at a beautiful restaurant called La Posada overlooking the sea. We started with stuffed mussels and anchovies. Then we had anchovy and tuna salad, which was delicious, and the pesto pasta which was even better.

We returned to our AirBNB to catch one more sunset in Cinque Terra. By the end of the day, I had climbed 72 FitBit floors. Cyn had climbed 134.

Tomorrow we are off to Verona!

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