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Self-Guided Walking : Europe

Italy: Genoa & the Cinque Terre

Moderate Terrain with Challenging Sections: 2-4 Miles Daily

Italy: Genoa & The Cinque Terre

Find out why the Italian Riviera has beguiled travelers for centuries. This unique itinerary takes you to the acclaimed Cinque Terre National Park and beyond to discover windswept Mediterranean landscapes with endless coastal views. Starting on Genoa’s historic waterfront—a UNESCO World Heritage site—you’ll head south along the Ligurian Coast. Explore Sestri Levante, once a tranquil fishing village. Travel to the terraced vineyards of Corniglia (Cinque Terre’s most rural village), the seaside cliffs of Vernazza, and lively Portofino. You’ll enjoy invigorating walks and, thanks to the extensive rail system and ferries lacing the entire region, tremendous flexibility in setting your own schedule. At the end of the day, savor the freshest seafood and local pesto before relaxing at comfortable hotels with access to the Riviera’s iconic, colorful villages.


Tour Highlights:
  • Follow age-old paths through cork-oak forests along the sea, passing into citrus and olive groves on your way from Manarola to Vernazza.
  • Learn to make the region’s most acclaimed specialty—pesto—during a hands-on cooking class with a local chef.
  • Stay in a four-star castle in the ancient port town of Sestri Levante, overlooking two beautiful gulfs: the Bay of Silence and the Bay of Fables.
  • Take advantage of the Cinque Terre’s extensive train and ferry system to tweak and modify your itinerary at will.
Tour Only

7 days, 6 nights

FROM $2,598 USD

per person, double occupancy



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Why Walk With Us

  • Choose from 19 handcrafted Self-Guided Walking itineraries for 2017
  • Trust our expertise with 38+ years in active travel.
  • 24/7 support from a local representative.
  • Generous inclusions: luggage transfers, all breakfasts, some lunches and dinners.
  • Your departure is always guaranteed.
  • Detailed maps and easy-to-follow route notes ensure that you’ll easily find your way.
  • Past guests and referrals always save.

Itinerary & Accommodations

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Day 1

Arrival in Genoa

After settling in at your centrally located hotel, take time to discover Genoa’s magnificent medieval cathedral, Renaissance palaces, and restaurants.

Accommodation: Hotel Bristol Palace, Genoa

An elegant turn-of-the-century palazzo in the center of Genoa, the Hotel Bristol Palace is perfectly situated for travelers hoping to make the most of Genoa’s Old Town. Having undergone a recent renovation, this four-star accommodation combines classic white-marble elegance and countless modern amenities, including free Wi-Fi, a fitness center, and an excellent concierge.

Day 2

Gulf of Paradise

Explore the Natural Park of Portofino, climbing to the tiny hamlet of San Rocco for stunning coastal views, and then descending through lush gardens and elegant villas to your seaside lunch spot at Punta Chiappa. This afternoon, visit the charming fishing port of Camogli before returning to Genoa by train.

Accommodation: Hotel Bristol Palace, Genoa

An elegant turn-of-the-century palazzo in the center of Genoa, the Hotel Bristol Palace is perfectly situated for travelers hoping to make the most of Genoa’s Old Town. Having undergone a recent renovation, this four-star accommodation combines classic white-marble elegance and countless modern amenities, including free Wi-Fi, a fitness center, and an excellent concierge.

Day 3

Punta Manara. Sestri Levante exploration

Today’s walk follows an old mule track from the ancient Roman port of Sestri Levante to Punta Manara, providing gorgeous views of the evocatively named Bay of Silence and Bay of Fables. Afterwards, stroll Sestri Levante’s waterfront promenade overlooking the Portofino Peninsula, or swim and rest on the beach. This evening, enjoy a pesto-making class before dinner at a local restaurant.

Accommodation: Grand Hotel dei Castelli, Sestri Levante

In a privileged location on the Peninsula of Sestri Levante above the ancient town walls, this four-star castle hotel with extensive grounds and manicured gardens overlooks the entire coast. Light-filled and spacious, guestrooms have classic furnishings and polished wood floors. A grand entry, public lounges, and solarium terrace evoke 1920s glamour and style, while a private elevator descends to the town center, promenade, and marina. A private swimming area includes a seawater enclosure with beach lounges and bar, with an outlet onto the natural rocky shore.

Day 4

Santa Margherita-Nozarego-Portofino loop

From the coastal resort of Santa Margherita Ligure, today’s walk ascends gently along an old pilgrims’ trail to Nozarego. Break for a snack at a restored mill, then descend towards Portofino, enjoying splendid perspectives on the picturesque pastel-colored houses of this small fishing village turned luxury yacht harbor.

Accommodation: Grand Hotel dei Castelli, Sestri Levante

In a privileged location on the Peninsula of Sestri Levante above the ancient town walls, this four-star castle hotel with extensive grounds and manicured gardens overlooks the entire coast. Light-filled and spacious, guestrooms have classic furnishings and polished wood floors. A grand entry, public lounges, and solarium terrace evoke 1920s glamour and style, while a private elevator descends to the town center, promenade, and marina. A private swimming area includes a seawater enclosure with beach lounges and bar, with an outlet onto the natural rocky shore.

Day 5

Levanto to Monterosso al Mare

Take your choice of walks today from medieval Levanto, on the border of Cinque Terre National Park: climb to Punta Mesco for amazing bird’s-eye views of all five Cinque-Terre villages, or follow Levanto’s seafront promenade to one of the area’s best beaches. Afterwards, transfer by train to charming Manarola.

Accommodation: Da Baranin B&B, Manarola

In the heart of Manarola—the second-smallest of the five Cinque Terre towns, and probably the oldest—this family-run bed and breakfast consists of a main building with a garden and stunning terrace overlooking the vineyards and sea. Nestled amongst the pastel-colored buildings and medieval church, accommodations are either simple guestrooms or studio-style apartments with white tile floors and comfortable basic furnishings. You are welcomed like family and breakfast on the private terrace always includes homemade baked goods. (The simplest accommodation on this tour, Da Baranin was chosen for its quiet and charming location within the Cinque Terre and away from the majority of the crowds).

Day 6

Vernazza to Corniglia

Walk through the heart of Cinque Terre National Park, climbing from the picturesque port of Vernazza to less-visited Corniglia, perched on a high promontory amidst terraced vineyards. Afterwards, consider an optional train ride to Riomaggiore, the Cinque Terre’s southernmost town, with its houses pitched steeply on the rocks above its harbors.

Accommodation: Da Baranin B&B, Manarola

In the heart of Manarola—the second-smallest of the five Cinque Terre towns, and probably the oldest—this family-run bed and breakfast consists of a main building with a garden and stunning terrace overlooking the vineyards and sea. Nestled amongst the pastel-colored buildings and medieval church, accommodations are either simple guestrooms or studio-style apartments with white tile floors and comfortable basic furnishings. You are welcomed like family and breakfast on the private terrace always includes homemade baked goods. (The simplest accommodation on this tour, Da Baranin was chosen for its quiet and charming location within the Cinque Terre and away from the majority of the crowds).

Day 7

Departure from La Spezia

After breakfast, transfer to La Spezia’s train station for onward travels.

Download Full Itinerary
Download Full Itinerary
Day 1

Arrival in Genoa

After settling in at your centrally located hotel, take time to discover Genoa’s magnificent medieval cathedral, Renaissance palaces, and restaurants.

Accommodation: Hotel Bristol Palace, Genoa

An elegant turn-of-the-century palazzo in the center of Genoa, the Hotel Bristol Palace is perfectly situated for travelers hoping to make the most of Genoa’s Old Town. Having undergone a recent renovation, this four-star accommodation combines classic white-marble elegance and countless modern amenities, including free Wi-Fi, a fitness center, and an excellent concierge.

Day 2

Gulf of Paradise

Explore the Natural Park of Portofino, climbing to the tiny hamlet of San Rocco for stunning coastal views, and then descending through lush gardens and elegant villas to your seaside lunch spot at Punta Chiappa. This afternoon, visit the charming fishing port of Camogli before returning to Genoa by train.

Accommodation: Hotel Bristol Palace, Genoa

An elegant turn-of-the-century palazzo in the center of Genoa, the Hotel Bristol Palace is perfectly situated for travelers hoping to make the most of Genoa’s Old Town. Having undergone a recent renovation, this four-star accommodation combines classic white-marble elegance and countless modern amenities, including free Wi-Fi, a fitness center, and an excellent concierge.

Day 3

Punta Manara. Sestri Levante exploration

Today’s walk follows an old mule track from the ancient Roman port of Sestri Levante to Punta Manara, providing gorgeous views of the evocatively named Bay of Silence and Bay of Fables. Afterwards, stroll Sestri Levante’s waterfront promenade overlooking the Portofino Peninsula, or swim and rest on the beach. This evening, enjoy a pesto-making class before dinner at a local restaurant.

Accommodation: Grand Hotel dei Castelli, Sestri Levante

In a privileged location on the Peninsula of Sestri Levante above the ancient town walls, this four-star castle hotel with extensive grounds and manicured gardens overlooks the entire coast. Light-filled and spacious, guestrooms have classic furnishings and polished wood floors. A grand entry, public lounges, and solarium terrace evoke 1920s glamour and style, while a private elevator descends to the town center, promenade, and marina. A private swimming area includes a seawater enclosure with beach lounges and bar, with an outlet onto the natural rocky shore.

Day 4

Santa Margherita-Nozarego-Portofino loop

From the coastal resort of Santa Margherita Ligure, today’s walk ascends gently along an old pilgrims’ trail to Nozarego. Break for a snack at a restored mill, then descend towards Portofino, enjoying splendid perspectives on the picturesque pastel-colored houses of this small fishing village turned luxury yacht harbor.

Accommodation: Grand Hotel dei Castelli, Sestri Levante

In a privileged location on the Peninsula of Sestri Levante above the ancient town walls, this four-star castle hotel with extensive grounds and manicured gardens overlooks the entire coast. Light-filled and spacious, guestrooms have classic furnishings and polished wood floors. A grand entry, public lounges, and solarium terrace evoke 1920s glamour and style, while a private elevator descends to the town center, promenade, and marina. A private swimming area includes a seawater enclosure with beach lounges and bar, with an outlet onto the natural rocky shore.

Day 5

Levanto to Monterosso al Mare

Take your choice of walks today from medieval Levanto, on the border of Cinque Terre National Park: climb to Punta Mesco for amazing bird’s-eye views of all five Cinque-Terre villages, or follow Levanto’s seafront promenade to one of the area’s best beaches. Afterwards, transfer by train to charming Manarola.

Accommodation: Da Baranin B&B, Manarola

In the heart of Manarola—the second-smallest of the five Cinque Terre towns, and probably the oldest—this family-run bed and breakfast consists of a main building with a garden and stunning terrace overlooking the vineyards and sea. Nestled amongst the pastel-colored buildings and medieval church, accommodations are either simple guestrooms or studio-style apartments with white tile floors and comfortable basic furnishings. You are welcomed like family and breakfast on the private terrace always includes homemade baked goods. (The simplest accommodation on this tour, Da Baranin was chosen for its quiet and charming location within the Cinque Terre and away from the majority of the crowds).

Day 6

Vernazza to Corniglia

Walk through the heart of Cinque Terre National Park, climbing from the picturesque port of Vernazza to less-visited Corniglia, perched on a high promontory amidst terraced vineyards. Afterwards, consider an optional train ride to Riomaggiore, the Cinque Terre’s southernmost town, with its houses pitched steeply on the rocks above its harbors.

Accommodation: Da Baranin B&B, Manarola

In the heart of Manarola—the second-smallest of the five Cinque Terre towns, and probably the oldest—this family-run bed and breakfast consists of a main building with a garden and stunning terrace overlooking the vineyards and sea. Nestled amongst the pastel-colored buildings and medieval church, accommodations are either simple guestrooms or studio-style apartments with white tile floors and comfortable basic furnishings. You are welcomed like family and breakfast on the private terrace always includes homemade baked goods. (The simplest accommodation on this tour, Da Baranin was chosen for its quiet and charming location within the Cinque Terre and away from the majority of the crowds).

Day 7

Departure from La Spezia

After breakfast, transfer to La Spezia’s train station for onward travels.

Download Full Itinerary

Dates & Prices

Seasonal Tour Pricing

2017 Dates Number of Travelers
2 3 4 5 6 Single Supplement
Solo Surcharge
Sep 1 - Oct 31 $2,598 $2,498 $2,498 $2,498 $2,398 $815 $615
This tour is available daily, on request, from April 1 through June 30 and September 1 through October 31, 2017. Please note that the tiered tour price is based on a guarantee of a specified number of guests—should your group decrease in size, we reserve the right to alter the per person price if necessary as reflected in the Tour Price table. Please also note that the tour price includes one departure transfer from Manarola to La Spezia on Day 7 of the tour. If traveling in a group of two or more with separate departure times, additional charges will apply for multiple transfers. All prices are per person, based on double occupancy.

Seasonal Tour Pricing

2018 Dates Number of Travelers
2 3 4 5 6 Single Supplement
Solo Surcharge
Apr 1 - Jun 30 $2,598 $2,498 $2,498 $2,498 $2,398 $525 $600
Sep 1 - Oct 31 $2,598 $2,498 $2,498 $2,498 $2,398 $525 $600
This tour is available daily, on request, from April 1 through June 30, and September 1 through October 31, 2018. Please note that the tiered tour price is based on a guarantee of a specified number of guests—should your group decrease in size, we reserve the right to alter the per person price if necessary as reflected in the Tour Price table. Please also note that the tour price includes one departure transfer from Manarola to La Spezia on Day 7 of the tour. If traveling in a group of two or more with separate departure times, additional charges will apply for multiple transfers. All prices are per person, based on double occupancy.

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