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Monterosso al Mare, Cinque Terre: where to sleep, what to do ? - Blog Voyage - Découvrir Ensemble

Monterosso al Mare, Cinque Terre: where to sleep, what to do ?

Last update : 7 May 2024
We'd been dreaming of discovering the little village of Monterosso al Mare for a long time. What made us want to? The photos of Monterosso's sandy beach and harbor, with all its private beach umbrellas and deckchairs, particularly photogenic.

During our little road trip in Italy, we set off to discover Naples, the Cinque Terre and finally Florence. Our first stop in the Cinque Terre was the little village of Monterosso al Mare, and we weren’t disappointed!
In this article, discover our good addresses for sleeping and where to eat in Monterosso al Mare, things to do as well as information on hiking between Monterosso al Mare and Vernazza.

Visiting Monterosso al Mare, where to sleep?

Monterosso Rooms

If you’re looking for a good place to stay in Monterosso, we recommend you take a look at this apartment. Ideally located in Monterosso, the apartment is a 5-minute walk from the train station and the beach. The balcony offers a magnificent view of the sea and the beach at Monterosso al Mare. You’ll even see the famous orange beach umbrellas!

hotel monterosso al mare

What to do in Monterosso al Mare

As we’ve made clear in all our articles on the Cinque Terre, it’s important to bear in mind that the villages are particularly small, and you’ll have circumnavigated them in around 2 hours. Despite this, it’s a real pleasure to discover them, so you need to have a few good addresses to enrich the day spent there!

1. Downtown Monterosso al Mare

It’s important to know that the village of Monterosso al Mare is split into two distinct parts, separated by a rocky area, which juts out towards the sea. It’s important to know this, otherwise you’ll miss a whole part of the town!
When you arrive at Monterosso al Mare, you may be a little disappointed, as it doesn’t really resemble the villages of the Cinque Terre. It’s not built on high ground at all, on an elevated rocky base, and doesn’t give the impression of colorful facades you’d expect. It’s something of an exception among the 5 villages of the Cinque Terre.

And yet, in the heart of the Cinque Terre’s oldest village, you’ll find a charm rooted in the old and the traditional. We loved the atmosphere of the cobbled streets, the town center and the Fégina district.
In the heart of the town center, you’ll find a small market run by locals, small stores both touristy and more traditional, as well as numerous small restaurants.

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2 Monterosso al Mare beach

The large sandy beach at Monterosso al Mare is the only one in the Cinque Terre where you can swim peacefully and lounge on the beach. Indeed, in the other Cinque Terre villages, you can only take a dip in the harbor.⛱

The surprise on our arrival was to discover that almost the entire beach is privatized. So you’ll have to pay between €15 and €30 to reserve a space on the beach for the day, umbrellas and deckchairs included. That’s the price of tranquility on Italian beaches… There’s still a small “public” area where you can sneak in for a swim, but it’s pretty crowded with tourists who don’t want to pay (like us).

On the plus side, there’s a pleasant view of the beach from above, with its colorful, open umbrellas as far as the eye can see. A harmony of colors with the ultra-photogenic turquoise-blue water.

monterosso al mare monterosso al mare
 

3. San Giovanni Battista church in Monterosso al Mare

Built in the 1300s this Gothic-style parish church is particularly beautiful with its facade between white and black stones. It’s part of Monterosso’s history and well worth a visit. In 2011, the village was hit by massive flooding, which claimed the lives of several locals. Many buildings were affected, including the church of San Giovanni Battista. It is therefore regularly undergoing reconstruction to restore it to its former beauty.

4. Hiking between Monterosso al Mare and Vernazza

Numerous hikes link the villages of the Cinque Terre. A very simple color code represents the Cinque Terre hikes, and it’s not for their difficulty but for their gratuity.

Red sign = you’re on a 100% free hike.
Blue sign = you’re on a paid hike, unless you’ve already purchased the Cinque Terre Treno Card (the card for the train), which includes the hikes.

The hike between the two villages is therefore not free, but is included in the train card. This hike is well worth doing, and takes around 2 hours from one end to the other. You’ll discover some superb viewpoints! Small piece of advice, logical but important: do it outside the hot hours, rather in the morning. The hike has very little shade and is quite strenuous.

And then big advice! Hike in the direction of Vernazza > Monterosso, not the other way around.
We quickly realized that we’d set off in the “wrong” direction, as we passed other hikers heading in the opposite direction, all fresh and dapper.
In the direction we took (Monterosso > Vernazza), it’s a constant uphill climb, with “natural” steps that are not at all straight… Clémence, who’s afraid of heights, wasn’t exactly serene. Something to cheer you up during the Monterosso &gt hike; Vernazza: for almost 20 years, a Cinque Terre resident has been selling pressed orange juice for €2 right in the middle of the hike. This little grandpa, 100% purebred, will cheer you up before you set off again!

 

Visiting Monterosso al Mare, where to eat?

Slurp! Gelateria Artigianale

Enjoy a little gelato in Cinque Terre: Head to Gelateria Slurp! As the name suggests, you’re in for a treat! Ideal for an affordable sweet break, count €2.5 for a cone of 2 scoops of gelatooooo.

Il Frantoio

A nice, affordable address that lets you take away or eat in. As the restaurant is right next to the square, it’s ideal for a sunny picnic! You’ll find everything you need for a quick bite: focaccia, pizzas, etc., all paid for by weight! Count on less than €10 per person, very affordable for a lunch in Cinque Terre.

 

Visiting Monterosso al Mare, how to organize your trip well?

How to get to Monterosso al Mare?

To find the best mode of transport to your destination, we recommend you always look on the OMIO comparator. This will give you an overview of all available modes of transport.  You’ll be able to compare prices very easily.

How to find the best hotels to visit Monterosso al Mare and the Cinque Terre

In order to find the best hotels and benefit from the best conditions (security, cancellation…) we go almost exclusively through Booking.com for our trips. We recommend that you take a look at the available hotels before you leave. You can filter them according to their ratings. There are plenty of recent customer reviews, so there are no unpleasant surprises when you’re traveling!

Visit the other Cinque Terre villages

Riomaggiore – Manarola  – Corniglia – VernazzaMonterosso Al Mare

Thank you for reading

We hope the tips and good addresses on our travel blog will help you visit Monterosso al Mare

You can also follow our daily adventures on Instagram 🙂
Clem & Alex

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