We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

Cinque Terre, to do or not to do?

Level Contributor
9 posts
2 reviews
Cinque Terre, to do or not to do?

My family of 5 all adults will be in Florence for 8 days and my husband wants to make sure he gets to see some water. I have read up on Cinque Terre, and it looks amazing - we can do a day trip there from Florence, so it is doable. However, as I am doing my research, I am reading some say do not even go and that it is overrun my tourists. Any other suggestions for a day trip? We will be traveling at the end of September. Thank you in advance!

20 replies to this topic
Salt Lake City, Utah
Level Contributor
3,382 posts
24 reviews
1. Re: Cinque Terre, to do or not to do?

If you can time your visit when there are no cruise ships arriving that day, you should be ok. End of September it should be slowing down some. Kids are back in school and fewer people will be traveling.

CA
Level Contributor
11,456 posts
3 reviews
2. Re: Cinque Terre, to do or not to do?

From 9/30 to 10/17 there are only four days without at least one cruise ship in the La Spezia port. A Florence day trip would involve spending at least 7 hours on trains and going to and from stations.

Level Contributor
9 posts
2 reviews
3. Re: Cinque Terre, to do or not to do?

Thank you! Didn't even think about the ships coming in.

Level Contributor
9 posts
2 reviews
4. Re: Cinque Terre, to do or not to do?

Thank you, I was even thinking a private tour maybe so that we don't have to worry about the trains so much.

Nova Scotia
Destination Expert
for Nova Scotia
Level Contributor
14,341 posts
173 reviews
5. Re: Cinque Terre, to do or not to do?

There are some days without cruise ships in La Spezia in September. I agree to aim for the end of September. https:/…cruises-to-la-spezia-italy.html

Australia
Level Contributor
4,724 posts
62 reviews
6. Re: Cinque Terre, to do or not to do?

There is water visible here

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ponte_Vecchio

without leaving Florence.

Though there has been severe drought in Tuscany few seek the return of water to Florence as in 1966.

https://youtu.be/mSjMd5bJQ6o

CA
Level Contributor
11,456 posts
3 reviews
7. Re: Cinque Terre, to do or not to do?

First you pick one of the five villages, buy tickets for the train to there from Firenze Campo di Marte at 7:36am, arriving in La Spezia at 9:12. At 9:29 you hop on the local train, route as follows:

http://www.e656.net/orario/treno/21182.html

Getting back to Florence will take around 3 hours. It's usual to arrive at a train station 15 minutes before the train, and if getting there takes say another 15 minutes, that adds around 2 hours to the combined train times;

total maybe 7 hours. Leaving the hotel at around 7 and adding 7 hours that's 2PM; back to the hotel say at 7:30 to get cleaned up and dressed up for dinner, the result would be 5.5 hours of quality time in the CT.

Edited: 05 August 2018, 01:22
Salt Lake City, Utah
Level Contributor
3,382 posts
24 reviews
8. Re: Cinque Terre, to do or not to do?

People keep doing Cinque Terre as a day trip from Florence, and don’t get the point that there is nothing to see unless you spend some time there, do the hikes, stay for dinner, go for walks by the sea, etc.

The towns themselves are just pictoresques but dinky little fishing villages. What is the attraction of spending 7 hours in trains to se what? Some colorful houses?

Destination Expert
for Florence
Level Contributor
3,146 posts
6 reviews
9. Re: Cinque Terre, to do or not to do?

latrevisana

I agree wholeheartedly.

First, just because you can get there and back in 24 hours doesn't mean it makes a good "day trip". I'm reminded of the guy who won a round-trip, first-class ticket from the States to Rome. He loved the idea of flying first class. He had no interest in Rome. So he flew to Rome, spent a few hours there, and then flew back to the States. He is now known far and wide as "Rome-in-a-day-Ray". Rome is not a good day trip, especially when you're coming from North America.

Secondly, until Rick Steves started touting them, very few, if any, people thought of the Cinque Terre as a destination. We thought of them as a place to stop off at for a short break on a trip heading north or south along the Ligurian Coast. There are a whole lot more interesting and beautiful places on the Lugurian Coast -- and elsewhere in Italy.

Now they're one of the very worst tourist traps in Europe, and I've heard even Mr. Steves now considers them a bad place to go.

The Cinque Terre are not a good day trip, especially when you're coming from Florence.

Level Contributor
9 posts
2 reviews
10. Re: Cinque Terre, to do or not to do?

Thank you all for your input. I have not been to Italy and this is the reason for my question. Those that have been, can offer insight to the questions that we all ask. If a day trip doesn't make sense, then this maybe something that we forego this time around. We already have accommodations in Florence for our entire stay, so spending a night or two in another location doesn't sound logical.

Thanks Dennis and Francophool for that info. latrevisana you ask why would anyone want to do a day trip? To see some colorful dinky houses? I can't answer that question since I have never been there, so that is why I was asking my question. I am only as good as the info I read (such as "day trips" that are advertised) because I have yet to experience it first hand. I appreciate the break down Francophool.

Reply to: Cinque Terre, to do or not to do?
Get notified by e-mail when a reply is posted