Vernazza is a WOW!
Vernazza is one of the five seaside Italian towns known as the Cinque Terre. This area is known for its colorful houses, steep but breathtaking cliffs, vineyards and exquisite ocean views. Vernazza is also known for its unique local seafood specialties.
Some say that Vernazza is the most scenic village of the Cinque Terre, and it’s possible. Natural views are ubiquitous, but there are also some old ruined structures that add to the town’s charm. One is the round tower perched atop the rocks at the end of the town’s small finger-like peninsula. This is part of the remains of Genoese fortifications from a war with Pisa back in the 1100s.
One of the great things about Vernazza is that it’s a pretty unspoiled village. By that I mean there are few large man-made structures that obscure the natural beauty of the surrounding area. One can however see a few buildings of note. One is the Church of Santa Margherita d’Antiochia which dates back to 1318. It’s located in Vernazza’s main piazza or square, the Piazza Marconi. Another is the 15th-century Doria Castle. This was built to help protect the village from pirates.
Just a short walk from Vernazza’s town center is a small beach.
If you’re really up for a walk, you could try hiking to the Sanctuary of Our Lady of Reggio (Santuario di Nostra Signora di Reggio). The upward trail takes about an hour to reach the sanctuary and is dotted with the Stations of the Cross where technically you can also rest. The top of the climb is worth it in order to get amazing views of the surrounding vineyards, Vernazza itself and the northwestern Italian coast.
The town was made a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1997.
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