Manarola Village Manarola Village

Manarola (Cinque Terre)

Manarola is one of the most romantic and spectacular of the Cinque Terre villages.
The Cinque Terre is a string of five fishing villages perched high on the Italian Riviera which until recently were linked only by mule tracks and accessible only by rail or water. The Cinque Terre were added to UNESCO's World Heritage List in 1997 and are today a National Park and Protected Marine Area with the aim of protecting this great cultural heritage and natural environment.
The easy vineyard walk of Manarola is attached to the train station by a 200-yard tunnel; it was built on a high rock 70 meters above sea level. The village is all ups and downs, with steep narrow alleys carrugi, leading to the sea. It features picturesque multicoloured houses facing the sea and a tiny piazza with seafood restaurants. On the west end, there can be found a wild little harbor and and as most of the hamlets found in Cinque Terre, there are vineyards everywhere.
Along the main road the boats are pulled onto dry land every time the sea is rough. There are no real beach in Manarola, instead the village has some of the best deep-water swimming around. A ladder up the rocks and a shower are provided for those who love a little adventure some swimming.
The church of Manarola is a must-see. It was built in Gothic style by the Maestri Antelami in 1338, the year of construction is indicated on a cornerstone in the facade. The church is dedicated to the Nativity of the Virgin Mary, known as well as church of Saint Lawrence, patron of the village. Today it serves as a religious and community meeting place, but in more ancient times, the bell tower was used as a post to watch for potential pirate raids. From there you can admire the panoramic views of the Manarola village.
Another interesting attraction of Manarola is a pyramid in white cement whose peak can be seen rising between the taller houses and is a trigonometric ship signal. The town square - Piazza Capellini - was built in 2004 and offers the residents and their visitors a place where kids can hang out and a little quiet - particularly for those who live close to the train station. It's decorated with mosaics of the local fish and is a great place where you can eat and relax.
No visit to this tiny harbor is complete without doing the Manarola Vineyard Walk. It eventually leads you to the trail that takes you to the next town - Corniglia.
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