How to get to Cinque Terre

The Cinque Terre is a succession of perched on the Ligurian cliffs of , overlooking sapphire seas, lush vineyards and groves of lemon trees. The only sound of traffic is of footsteps and the scrape of boats being hauled up into the streets, and the villages are filled with picture perfect piazzas and pastel coloured buildings – Cinque Terre is a slice of paradise! Getting to Cinque Terre isn’t difficult – your options are by plane, car or train.

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How to get to Cinque Terre
Cinque Terre and nearest airports

How to get to Cinque Terre by plane

The to Cinque Terre are Pisa, Genoa or Milan. In terms of which have the best rail lines, choose either Pisa or – you’ll be able to get into Cinque Terre almost directly, whereas the airport in is located further away from rail connections.

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How to get to Cinque Terre
Cinque Terre by rail

How to get to Cinque Terre by rail

This is the best (and only!) option to really experience the five towns that make up Cinque Terre. There are rail connections from , Milan, Venice, and Florence to La Spezia, the main connecting station to the Cinque Terre line. Visit Trenitalia to find out your best route. You’ll need to input your starting point and the name of one of the five villages – , Riomaggiore, Corniglia, or Monterosso – to map your route.

Getting to Cinque Terre
The black sands of Monterosso (Pic from

How to get to Cinque Terre by car

Driving to Cinque Terre is possible but not advisable, but the road twists and turns and can be a challenging drive for the less experienced. If you are coming in from Genoa, go south on the A-12 route on the autostrada, towards Livorno. From Pisa, go north instead of the same A-12 route. Take the Carrodano-Levanto exit and follow the signs.

Most people take the train to Cinque Terre; those who drive usually leave their car at Levanto, then change for the train. If you do decide to drive to Cinque Terre, be aware that vehicles are not allowed beyond the villages entrances. There are designated (approximately €20 per day) but these can be located almost 1km away from the village centres, which entails a steep walk – though mini bus shuttles are available in some .

How to get to Cinque Terre
The Blue Trail (Pic from

The best way to experience the Cinque Terre is via the approach by train. Once there, by all means purchase the Cinque Terre Card, which allows you unlimited rides on the Cinque Terre line for 1, 3 or a week’s stay, but do at least one of the many beautiful hikes that criss-cross the region. The beauty of Cinque Terre is best seen by foot. Happy trails!

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  1. Valorie says:

    I’ve always wanted to go to Cinque Terre… Someday!

    1. I hope you make it there someday Valerie! By plane or rail or car… but preferably train! 🙂

  2. We took the train from Florence when we were there – then loved it so much we ended up staying the night! Fortunately met two very nice American girls who split their rented apartment with us for the night as all the hotels were booked up. 🙂

  3. Peggy says:

    I have taken the train (in July) from cinque terre to nice and it was hot crowded and a lot of tunnels! Is it possible to rent a car from maybe, Levante to ventamiglia? Would this be a better trip? I feel like I missed so much on the train.

    1. I took the train from Rome to CT and it was a fabulous journey through Tuscany – the journey from CT to Nice doesn’t sound quite as picturesque! I’m sure you can rent a car – the question is where would be the best place to pick up/drop off. I also personally don’t like driving in Italy as I’m used to right hand drive.

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