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Hiking Cinque Terre and the Amalfi Coast

Spectacular views, charming seaside towns, world-famous cuisine and a relaxing life style are just some of the features that make Italy’s Cinque Terre and Amalfi Coast two of the world’s most visited destinations. 
The Cinque Terre is known for its spectacular hiking paths that link the 5 towns. The Amalfi Coast equally offers stunning views, and it also has one of Italy’s largest concentration of gardens, villas and museums. This tour is designed for avid walkers and moderate hikers. Each day there will be a choice of two walks, ranging from        5 - 10 kms with ascents averaging 300m, led by experienced hiking guides.

Our home base for the first 5-nights is the family-run      Hotel Carla situated near the Ligurian coast in the town of Levanto - known as the hidden gem of the Italian Riviera, and considered the gateway of the Cinque Terre. 

On the Amalfi Coast we’ll stay at the Reginna Palace Hotel, set in a truly spectacular location overlooking the bay, right by the Maiori waterfront and city centre - a perfect base from which to explore the region.

Tour Highlights:

   • Exploring the 5 towns of the Cinque Terre by way of the famous spectacular walking paths
   • Full-day guided tour to Camogli, including a boat trip to San Fruttuoso Abbey and Portofino
   • Visit of Montepulciano with lunch
   • Excursion to Mount Vesuvius including lunch 
   • Guided visits of Amalfi and Ravello, with a visit of Villa Rufolo
   • The ancient Sentieri dei Limoni (Path of the Lemons)
   • Positano and the “Pathway of the Gods”

* Those participating on this walking tour must be able to complete up to 7 km of walking on varied terrain.

Itinerary / Excursions

We depart for Florence, via Paris.
We arrive in Florence we transfer to Levanto - our home base for the next 5 nights. This evening our experienced guides will present an orientation briefing on the walks offered during the tour.
For our first walk we take the local bus to San Giorgio, then walk to the charming village of Bonassola with wonderful vistas of the Mediterranean Sea and countryside.  We return by train to Levanto or extend by return walk to Levanto along the coastal track.
 We travel by train to some of the most picturesque towns of the Cinque Terre. We start with Corniglia, nestled in the middle of the five towns. Corniglia is perched on a promontory set away from the sea and is surrounded on three sides by vineyards and terraces. After exploring this charming town we follow the coastal path which offers spectacular views of Manarola and its harbour embedded under the cliffs. Then we continue on the Via dell’Amore (Lovers’ Path) to Riomaggiore - so named due to its characteristic tower homes built along the river. Here we enjoy some free time to stroll the narrow streets lined with beautiful pastel coloured buildings and tempting cafés. We return by train to Levanto.
Today’s excursion takes us along the Italian Riviera and Paradise Gulf - one of the Italian coastline’s most beautiful stretches. We travel by train to Camogli - a romantic seaside village which was once a seaport known as 'the city of a thousand sailing ships'. Then we take a boat trip to San Fruttuoso Bay with its secluded Abbey, and to the ancient and sophisticated town of Portofino. Enjoy some time here to visit the gardens of Castle Brown for the best views. We continue by foot to Santa Margherita and walk through the town with its basilica and palazzo gardens, before returning by train to Levanto.
Vernazza is perhaps the prettiest of the five Cinque Terre villages, with colourful houses winding down to its harbour protected by a rocky headland. Choose between two walks to get to Monterosso; either along the famous lower coastal path or on quieter paths in the hills. Both walks complete the final section of the coastal path which links the five villages. In Monterosso there will be plenty of time to explore the town and shop for local specialties.
We travel inland, stopping enroute in one of Tuscany’s loveliest hilltop towns, medieval Montepulciano. After our included lunch we will have some free time to discover the town’s elegant Renaissance palaces, ancient churches and squares with stunning views over the countryside covered by vineyards producing the famous “Vino Nobile”. We then continue to Castle Madama in the region of Lazio for an overnight.
On this scenic day we head to the Amalfi Coast. Enroute we will explore the slopes of famous Mount Vesuvius where, on a clear day, the views over the Bay of Naples are stunning. After our visit we will continue to our hotel in Maiori, for a 4-night stay.
This morning we visit the famous town of Amalfi, set below the steep cliffs of Italy’s southwest coast on the Tyrrhenian Sea. We will see the stunning Arab-Norman cathedral, the medieval shipyards (now an exhibition space) and enjoy some free time before returning to Maori for an afternoon at leisure.
A short transfer takes us to Amalfi where we begin our walk along the Valle delle Ferriere with its delightful views, lush vegetation and waterfalls. Then we continue by bus to the lovely town of Ravello, where we will enjoy a guided walking tour. The longer walk will start from Pogerola’s countryside offering fantastic views and will finish as well with the visit of Ravello and the splendid Villa Rufolo famous for it’s “hanging gardens” overlooking the Mediterranean Sea.
We travel by bus to Agerola where we’ll begin the spectacular walk to Positano along the route known as the “Pathway of the Gods”. The route offers breathtaking views over the Amalfi peninsula. Picturesque Positano is a nearly vertical town with houses built on terraces in Moorish style with balconies beneath arcades. The town was made popular by many artists and writers such as John Steinbeck.
 Today’s hike takes us along the “Sentiero dei Limoni” (Path of the Lemons) - one of the most popular walks on the Amalfi Coast since Roman times. This ancient route follows the coast, through terraced lemon groves and connects the two charming seaside towns of Maiori and Minori. There is spectacular scenery throughout the walk - truly a feast for the senses! This evening is our Farewell Dinner.
We fly home from Naples, via Paris.
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