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Cinque Terre in early September?

post #1 of 11
Thread Starter 
Yes, no, good, bad, crowded, dull? Anyone been? I was pushing for Portugal, but Girlfriend is weary and wants to go to Cinque Terre. We plan on flying into Genoa (cheap ticks), taking a train to 5Terre, and possibly going to Florence for a day or two as well.

Is 5Terre good, or just one of those forgotten by time and therefore preserved ready-made tourist spots? Any suggestions?
post #2 of 11
The Cinque Terre are beautiful - not sure how much you're planning to spend thee but I wouldn't do more than 2 or 3 days. Portofino / Santa Margherita is closeby so I'd do that as well. Not too far from Lucca which is awesome and obviously as you noted Florence.
post #3 of 11
I found Camogli & Santa Margherita Ligure beautiful and peaceful, with good food and wine.
post #4 of 11
Thread Starter 
Did ya'll rent cars to make these tours, or did you ride the trains? Our initial thought was that renting a car would be a pain.
post #5 of 11
You're better off with a car although you'll have no use for it once you're at your destination, whether in the Cinque Terre or in Lucca, Portofino, Firenze, etc...
post #6 of 11
Quote:
Originally Posted by gdl203 View Post
The Cinque Terre are beautiful - not sure how much you're planning to spend thee but I wouldn't do more than 2 or 3 days. Portofino / Santa Margherita is closeby so I'd do that as well. Not too far from Lucca which is awesome and obviously as you noted Florence.

+1. I have no idea what the weather's like in September, though. May want to research that.
post #7 of 11
I was there in September about three years back. Not overly crowded but a lot of tourists nevertheless.

Weather was the exception to the rule. We were there for two days and some sort of a stormwave hit Italy exactly then. Right after Cinque Terre the temperatures returned to the normal 25+ degrees celsius level. It's warm but not awfully hot as usually in July / August.

Hiking between villages is essential but it's handy to take trains between them too. The westernmost village has a beach. You may want to investigate staying in for La Spezia for example (as we did) because accommodation is quite expensive and scarce in the Cinque Terre villages. The train works well from La Spezia and gets you there in 10-15 minutes. Depends on your budget of course.

The train from La Spezia to Pisa is about an hour, and from there it was probably one hour more to Florence. Lucca is there in between. And may I recommend Bologna as well. Because train works out so cheap and saves you from driving on Italian motorways, I'd definitely recommend taking trains between cities. We rented a car for a couple of days in Tuscany and had more near misses on road than all of my other life combined.

The Cinque Terre area is beautiful and lives up to its reputation. Have fun.
post #8 of 11
Thread Starter 
So much to see and do, so little time. Our plan now is to fly into Venice, spend a night or two, take a train to Florence, spend two nights, then spend our last couple days in Cinque Terre before taking a train to Genoa to fly out (flying out of and into Florence is very expensive at the moment). I'm a bit worried about hitting the right combination of relaxing vs. rushed. This will be my first time in Italy, so it's tempting to schedule too many towns. I think seein Venice and Florence are priorities, but we need at least one or two days to just spend at the beach doing nothing. The weather in Cinque Terre in September should be warm enough to swim. Thanks for the help, all. It's useful to try to learn from others' experiences.
post #9 of 11
I wouldn't have high expectations as far as the beach is concerned. It's very small and the area is more cliffs than sand (that's the whole charm of the place)
post #10 of 11
I had planned to go to Cinque Terre this May as part of my 'jaunt' also taking in Rome, Florence, Siena and Milan. But I hear that some trails are closed due to previous flooding etc. Anyone been recently please? Should I give it a miss this time and go elsewhere please?
post #11 of 11
We went last May, and the trail was closed between two of the towns, but we hiked (more strolled, for Americans) along the trail between a couple of the towns, as far as we could.

We loved it, but I was with my young family, so we have much different priorities than many. Quiet and simple, but with great food and wine.

We had our pick of a lot of private apartments we saw on VRBO, and loved the small, simple place we rented in Corniglia. I would recommend staying at least two nights so you're not rushing around traveling all the time. This was only the second trip I have ever been on without having a car, which was a big leap, but it turned out to be very easy, cheap, and a big relief to just hop on the trains. And the trains between the 5 villages are quick and easy, and like $3 or something. Great food, a lot of tourists, but not overwhelming, not crowded in May, and probably not in Sept., and very nice and charming. Do it!

David
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