Cinque Terre

Walks of the Cinque Terre and Portofino

8 days
from
£1,059
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Traveller ratings
4.6 / 5 from 14 reviews >
Moderate
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Trip code: 
TEH
Way to Travel:
Guided Group
Activity:
Coastal Walks
Min age:
16
Group size:
5–15

Walks on Italy's stunning Ligurian riviera

Located on a part of Italy's most beautiful coastline, nestled between the Cinque Terre and bay of Portofino, our base in the seaside town of Moneglia is a real treat for visitors.  On inspirational walks through hills, woodland and coastal villages we will discover why these areas have earned names such as the Gulf of the Poets. Many of the country’s most iconic trails are situated in the region of Liguria and this trip makes a great introduction to Italy with its ample opportunities for walking, relaxing and sampling delicious food and wine.

Highlights

  • Coastal and mountain paths
  • Beautiful Ligurian villages
  • Chic resort Portofino

Key information

  • 7 nights 3-star Hotel Piccolo, all rooms en suite
  • 8 days land only/ flight inclusive
  • 5 days centre-based walking; 1 free day
  • Low altitude throughout

What's included

  • All breakfasts, 2 lunches, 1 dinner, 1 wine tasting
  • All accommodation (see accommodation see)
  • All transport and listed activities
  • Tour leader throughout
  • Flights from London (if booking incl. flights)

What's not included

  • Travel insurance
  • Single accommodation (available on request - limited availability)
  • Visas or vaccinations

5

Terrain:

Low altitude; good paths

Day by day breakdown
Day 213.0km/8.0miles
Day 312.0km/7.0miles
Day 413.0km/8.0miles
Day 69.0km/5.0miles
Day 710.0km/6.0miles

Responsible Travel

At Exodus we believe in the power of Responsible Travel.

Every time we travel, we are part of a global movement that creates jobs, builds more sustainable societies, encourages cultural understanding and safeguards common natural and cultural heritage. To learn more about what Responsible Travel means to Exodus click here… 

Itinerary

London
to
London

Essential Info

Visas

Italy

No visa required for British passport holders.
Please note in Italy it is compulsory to carry ID with you at all times.

Vaccinations

Italy

There are no specific health risks.

Eating and Drinking

All breakfasts, 2 lunches, 1 dinner and 1 wine tasting is included.

Liguria is well-known for its delicious cuisine and classic regional dishes include pasta with pesto or walnut sauce, focaccia bread and of course plenty of seafood! With an abundance of fresh local produce and plenty of restaurants to try in Moneglia, food is a highlight of the trip. Vegetarians are well-catered for in Italy.

Weather

May departures can expect warm days, although rain is always possible. Nights may be rather cool. Early June is similar, with the days becoming progressively hotter and the evenings much warmer. Late June to August departures should expect very warm weather with temperatures over 30 degrees celsius. Late September and October are cooler and can be wetter, however visibility is better. We strongly recommend a fleece-lined jacket or warm sweater in May, September and October.

Is this trip for you?

Activity level: 3 (Moderate)
The walks on this trip are graded moderate. Although some walks will get your pulse racing we will also have plenty of time to rest, admire the views and on many days we can also enjoy swim breaks! Over the course of the week, the terrain and type of path will vary from manmade paved tracks and tarmac to forest trails. Some areas may be rocky underfoot with narrow, overgrown or exposed paths. Although the walks are not technically challenging, you do need to be steady on your feet. All walks take between 4 and 6 hours including lunch stops and require a moderate level of fitness. On a couple of days, there are sections with a considerable number of steps (more than 500), which make the walks unsuitable for those with knees problems.
Public transport can be subject to delays and some waiting at train stations should be expected.

You may find our Fitness Training Guide a useful reference: http://www.exodus.co.uk/assets/pdf/Exodus_WT_Fitness_Training_Guide.pdf

Accommodation

Hotels

Piccolo Hotel *** This family-run hotel is ideally located a few metres from the seafront, and the bars and restaurants of the pretty town. All rooms are en suite and facilities include an indoor pool, sun terrace and restaurant. A limited number of double rooms for sole use are available for a supplement.

A limited number of double rooms for sole use are available for a supplement, please enquire for details.

Expert Blog Entries

  • Reviewed May 2017
    Ruth FLOWERS

    Steps galore!

    The villages of the Cinque Terre are remarkable, clinging to the cliff edge by magic. Reaching them along the coastal paths involves walking busy routes with LOTS of vertical steps. Achievable as long as the walk leader allows time for enough drink breaks and the fact that it is very easy to get caught behind a slower group so time to re-group is vital. The walk to Portofino was nice, quite a short day so a good break between visiting the Cinque Terre. Without the excellent train service serving this region this trip wouldn't work. An interesting tour with varied nationalities and personalities

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    The views of the Cinque from a boat

    What did you think of your group leader?

    A hasty leader and a little rude at times but knew the area well enough

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Be advised that the steps on the coastal path to the Cinque Terre villages are uneven and steep. Walking poles were essential for the descents. Take plenty of snacks and water
  • Reviewed October 2016
    Valerie Smith

    Cinque Terra

    Fantastic views. Great guide

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    The fact that I could manage all the walks

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Excellant
  • Reviewed October 2016
    Carolyn Finch

    Walks in the Cinque Terre and Portofino

    Fantastic holiday in a beautiful part of Italy with excellent food and wine and an entertaining group of fellow walkers. I enjoyed all the walks but especially those through the forests where we didn't meet another soul.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Watching a lightning storm whilst sheltering safely was exhilarating. I also loved visiting Lucca on the free day and cycling round the city wall on a hire bike.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    I thought Paul did a good job, given that he arrived in the resort at the same time as we did. He recommended and reserved some excellent restaurants for us; the food and wine was a definite highlight of the holiday. He also came up with an alternative "wet weather" walk when bad weather shut the Cinque Terre and that walk (including the storm) was another of my highlights.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    The walks are very steep in parts so a good fitness level is required. I'd done a couple of level 2/3 trips before and found this level 3 trip to be noticeably more difficult than those. Mind you, I was a lot fitter by the end of the week and the views definitely make the effort worthwhile. I went on this trip towards the end of the season. I think this was a good move because it meant the Cinque Terre paths and towns were not as busy as they would be in the summer.
  • Reviewed October 2016
    Joanna Jackson

    Walks of the Cinque Terre

    I had a good holiday because of the lovely people on the trip. The hotel was nice and clean. Restaurants that we went to were great with one exceptional-'Asserto'. It could have been very different. The organisation was pretty shambolic and we sort of muddled through. Many of the paths were shut and open ones were packed with other walkers.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    A concert in the 13c church

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Started badly but he grew on us. It seemed he had been catapulted into this trip.-didn't know the status of the paths or train times. Also he couldn't speak much Italian neither could Albert who was shadowing him and who also takes tours in Italy so obviously this was not a one off situation. I was amazed and appalled that tour leaders on Exodus holidays aren't fluent in the local language. Not their fault-you employed them but I would consider that a pre-requisite of a guide as well as knowledge of the walks.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    I probably would not recommend this tour to anyone and definitely will look at alternative operators for other European trips. I have been to Sri Lanka with Exodus and it was very good.
  • Reviewed October 2016
    Debby Horsman

    Walks of the Cinque Terra and Portofino

    We have done many Exodus walking holidays, usually Grade 3. This had the usual country paths and ups and downs but included the chance to see and swim in the sea every day and to travel on local trains. The base town was not too touristy so we could get a sense of real Italian life. A single centre in a family-run hotel made for a relaxed and comfortable time

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    The views from the cable car and as we descended into Positano were beautiful. Local people were friendly and some of the restaurant meals were superb (all were good). The wine tasting evening was outstanding.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Suzy's long experience as a leader really showed. She was knowledgeable, considerate and she made every effort to ensure that each of us had a good time. Although she was not Italian, her command of the language ensured that everything ran smoothly.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    We had excellent weather after the first day but some paths were quite steep and somewhat insecure in places after recent heavy rain. Walking poles were very useful both for stability and to ease pressure on our knees on long ascents/descents.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    After (I think) a total of 12 Exodus holidays we know we can trust your planning and staff but this really was a great choice for us. Back to the brochure....
  • Reviewed September 2016
    Kurt Mills

    Great Week

    This was a great holiday. Well planned out. The walks were varied - and all with beautiful views. In the evenings, Suzy took us to some great restaurants. On the walk to Portofino we stopped off at a restaurant in the hills where the tomatoes for the caprese salad were plucked off the vine next to the restaurant - fantastic. The hotel was nice, and very close to the beach. The wine tasting, with somebody who was passionate about the wines of the region, was fascinating.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Walking down into Portofino.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Suzy was great. Was knowledgeable about the region. Everything was well organised and when changes needed to be made at the last minute she was able to figure out alternate arrangements quickly.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    The walks varied in difficulty, with the first day definitely the hardest. There were some very steep extended descents - poles definitely came in handy on that first day, as well as when we descended from Montallegro to Chiavari. The walks in the Cinque Terre were great, although there was not a lot of time in the villages themselves. However, you can easily use the free day to spend more time in them, as well as in Portovenere - the boat trip out is recommended. Food is expensive - especially the restaurants we went to in the evenings, so be prepared... Also, just a note that the trip notes mention the Via Dell'Amore. Unfortunately, this has been closed since 2011 as a result of a landslide, and doesn't appear to be reopening anytime soon because of bickering over who will pay to repair it, so we did not get to do it. This was not a major loss since all the other walking was great, but something that Exodus might want to change in the trip notes.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    Just do it - and then plan to spend another week in the area afterwards like we did - you will not want to leave.
  • Reviewed May 2016
    Martin Rollason

    Cinque Terre and Portofino

    An excellent holiday. Good walking and great locations visited on the Ligurian coast. Ample time allowed to explore the various villages visited. Good food - especially at the "Gourmet Evenings".

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Visiting Portofino. The views on the walk into the village were wonderful and the village itself lived up to its reputation.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Very good - he interacted well with the group and kept us informed of the plans for the following day.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Budget for a couple of expensive meals - the gourmet evenings. Lunches at the villages are good value if you buy slices of pizza, focaccia etc from take away shops.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    Quite an expensive holiday, with most meals having to be paid for separately. However well worth the cost
  • Reviewed September 2015
    Lynn Roulstone

    Fantastic holiday

    A wonderful way to spend a week, walking the beautiful Ligurian coast, visiting the Cinque Terre villages and Portofino. The walks are well planned stopping at great places to eat lunch (Lots of good places in Moneglia to pick up a delicious slice of focaccia). Moneglia was a very pleasant town with a great atmosphere, ideal for strolling round on a warm evening. The hotel was very pleasant, and I liked the breakfasts, though fans of a Full English will be disappointed.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Looking across to the village of Volastra while walking from Riomaggiore to Corneglia, the blueness of the sea, the wooded paths of the Portofino perninsula.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Emily was great, well organised, patient and funny. We'd never done this sort of holiday before and she completely put us at our ease.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    The walks were a bit tougher than I expected, I hadn't factored in the gradient or the heat. Certainly make sure to take a pair of good walking shoes, I very nearly didn't.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    I wasn't sure whether I'd like going on an organised group holiday, but I loved it, and will certainly be looking to do another one next year.
  • Reviewed August 2015
    Phil Watson

    Beautiful scenery and rewarding walks

    A very pleasant week exploring the coastal walks. Emily, our guide, was very well prepared and flexed the week to suit recent feedback, weather and the needs of the group members. Due to the hot weather, several of the walks were strenuous in places, but always rewarded us with spectacular views.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Walking through the steep sided vineyards on the way to Corneglia on our last day, with the sea sparkling below, pinching the odd grape and blackberry along the path.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Good humoured, well prepared and very tall :-)

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Walking boots with ankle support and then flipflops as soon as you finish the walk!

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    The food was great- especially if you enjoy seafood, gelato and focaccia! The family run Piccolo Hotel was a little gem, a minute from the beach, with very good breakfast and lots of good restaurants close by.
  • Reviewed June 2015
    Alan Fletcher

    Cinque Terre and Portofino Walks

    Walking along the calming coastline and resorts of Ligurian sea.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Walking along the vineyards between the Cinque Terre villages overlooking great coastline scenery.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Warm welcoming chap who integrated the group well. Organised all the transport, restaurants and events with no fuss. Eric was able to cater for those who did not wish to walk or who had injuries.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    There are some steep climbs and descents on a couple of days.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    The order the walks are in have the hardest on the first two days. It would be better to rearrange the order so the hardest is not the first walk undertaken.

Dates & Prices

An overview of flight options

Exodus is committed to making joining our tours as easy as possible, wherever you live. We generally only block book seats from London, but this certainly does not mean that you need to fly from there. Depending on the route and airlines available, there will usually be various options available for those who want to fly from their local airport.

This page aims to provide a useful overview of the options available to our clients. However, the best flight arrangements should be tailored to your personal requirements, so please contact our Sales team for expert advice.

 

What kind of options do I have ?

1. We can book for you: Flights from anywhere in the world - not via London  

Depending on the route, this may be direct or via an overseas hub like Amsterdam, the Middle East or elsewhere. On short haul routes there may be direct flights with low cost airlines, charter flights or scheduled airlines. Exodus can book most, but not all, of these for you. The most appropriate airline may be different to that which we use for the group flight from London, but many people now travel on different airlines and meet up with their fellow passengers at the destination.

Pros Cons
  • May be the most direct route
  • Often the extra fare compared to the London flight is minimal.
  • As you will be in the hands a single airline for your entire journey, the airline will be responsible for your bags and your connections.
  • You may not be able to join the group transfers. However, we can usually arrange private transfers, or book your flights to try and coincide with the group transfers. See notes on transfer arrangements below.

 

2. We can book for you: Connecting flights from your local airport to London

Exodus can book connecting flights to London so you can join the group flight there. Connecting times will be followed according to airline advice, or as requested by clients. There are two types of fares we can use for this option: a 'through-fare' or a 'published fare'.
 
a) A 'through-fare' is where you will be in the main airline's care throughout. You change planes, but your bags are checked all the way through to your final destination. 

b) A 'published fare' ticket is completely seperate from your onward ticket from London. It is usually cheaper than a through-fare but will need to be paid for and issued as soon as it is booked. This can be a problem if your tour has not yet reached minimum numbers. On 'published fares' neither airline is aware that you have connecting flights, so Exodus is responsible for timing your connection, not the airlines involved. The tickets are also usually non changeable and non refundable.

Pros Cons
  • Depending on the fare type, Exodus or the airline is responsible for flight connections.
  • Through fare tickets can be expensive.
  • On a published fare, tickets must be issued immediately; tickets on published fares can be very difficult to change if onward flight times change; bags are not checked though to your final destination.
  • Published fares are non-refundable.

 

3. Booking some or all of the flights yourself

You can also book connecting air travel yourself, either to London, or all the way to the start point. There may be certain airlines or routes we don't have access to, so this is always an option. However, if you make your own travel arrangements you become liable for any delays, cancellations or missed connections, and Exodus is not required to offer refunds if you have trouble reaching the start of your trip.

Pros Cons
  • You might find cheaper fares, or routes not available to Exodus.
  • You are responsible for any delays or missed connections, and the cost of the tour is not protected should you miss your flight be cancelled.

 

 Notes on transfer arrangements

Sometimes it is possible to travel on a different airline to the group flight from London. Where this is the case, we need to think about ensuring you meet up with the group with minimum extra cost and hassle.

  • On certain trips, it is easy to arrive on a different flight and still meet the group at the hotel with time in hand. We can usually arrange private transfers (at extra cost) or offer advice on taking a taxi to the start hotel.
  • On other trips (especially in Europe), the transfer meets the group flight and then travels some distance to the first night's accommodation. Where this is the case, our Sales team will try to arrange flights that arrive before (and depart after) the group. However, we do have to make it clear in your final documentation that if your flights are delayed, the transfer cannot wait for you. While Exodus or our local operators will do what we can to help you reach the start point of the tour, any additional costs must be paid by the client. 

 

Next steps? 

Call our Sales team on: 0203 733 0698

Email your query: [email protected]

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