Located along the coastlines of the Italian Riviera, Cinque Terre is a picturesque region known for breathtaking views, hiking trails, and charming five villages. In this post, you’ll learn where to stay in Cinque Terre in each of the Cinque Terre towns.
Cinque Terre is an Italian coastal region that breathes beauty anywhere you go. Colorful houses sitting on verdant hills overlooking the turquoise sea may sound surreal, but it is also what makes Cinque Terre one of the best destinations in Italy.
I’ve had the opportunity to visit Cinque Terre many times over the last few years. Sometimes visiting Cinque Terre with kids, sometimes as a couple, and sometimes with friends. It’s a place I love to bring people back to over and over again because it never fails to disappoint! I mean, just look at these pictures!!
Several years ago, I took my drone out at 5:00 am and got this shot of Riomaggiore, where we were staying. It’s one of my favorite captures and you can actually see me on the top left if you zoom way way way way in!
The Cinque Terre region is a UNESCO world heritage site composed of five beautiful towns. The phrase itself, Cinque Terre, actually means “Five Lands.” Each Cinque Terre town, or land, is gorgeous and unique, each with its own local charm and appeal. The Cinque Terre food is also some of the best in Italy!
Apart from the Cinque Terre villages, there’s also the Cinque Terre national park, located in La Spezia and all on the Ligurian coast of Italy. The Cinque Terre national park also connects the five towns through its trails, supporting the region’s natural and agricultural scene.
If you want to explore Cinque Terre, you must first get to know the different Cinque Terre towns and plan the perfect itinerary. And if you’re looking for the best town to stay in Cinque Terre, good luck! It’s a tough decision, but I hope I’ve made your decision a little easier with this guide that explores each town and some good hotel and vacation rental apartments in each one.
What we'll be talking about
- The 5 Cinque Terre Villages
- Monterosso al Mare
- Where to Stay in Cinque Terre
- Where to stay in Cinque Terre – Monterosso al Mare
- Where to Stay in Cinque Terre – Vernazza
- Where to Stay in Cinque Terre – Corniglia
- Where to Stay in Cinque Terre – Manarola
- Where to Stay in Cinque Terre – Riomaggiore
- Where to Stay in Cinque Terre
The 5 Cinque Terre Villages
Wondering where to stay in Cinque Terre? These are the Cinque Terre villages that make up the entire region. These towns have different things to offer when it comes to experiences and Cinque Terre accommodation options. Here are the five Cinque Terre villages and what you can expect in your stay in each of them.
Monterosso al Mare
The largest of all five towns in Cinque Terre is Monterosso al mare. It is also the best town to bring your kids to, especially if you are looking for spectacular sea views and fun times on the beach. It’s important to note that Monterosso al mare is the only town with a white sandy beach.
Monterosso al mare has lots of both private and public sandy beaches. Fegina beach is located directly across from the train station and is accessible by car. It does get crowded fast during the summer, so try to find the right time to visit this sandy beach if you want to explore Monterosso al mare. Apart from Fegina beach, there are plenty of smaller and private beaches to explore, most of which are also within walking distance.
While the rest of the Cinque Terre towns are located uphill, Monterosso al mare has a flatter surface. This makes it easier for many tourists to visit and enjoy, especially those with mobility issues.
Also, since it is more accessible, more cars are on the road than in the rest of the town. You can easily bring a car to Monterosso al mare and enjoy your vacation. Leaving your vehicle and taking the train would be best if you want to explore the other Cinque Terre towns.
- Lots of sandy beaches and long stretches of coastlines
- Flatter than the other towns
- The beaches are hotspots among tourists, so they can be more crowded.
- More cars
Vernazza is a quaint, charming town in Cinque Terre. The town is booming with activities and plenty of fantastic places to dine and people-see. It is accessible via boat or train, making it a famous Cinque Terre town among tourists.
Unlike Monterosso al mare, there are no cars in Vernazza, making it the perfect spot for walking around town. Everything is almost within walking distance, so you can easily locate a cafe or restaurant just by exploring its small, narrow streets.
For beach-goers, Vernazza has a couple of small beaches. First, there’s a harbor with calm, clear waters. It is ideal for swimming, lounging around, and sunbathing. Or, take a 2-minute walk and find a stony beach behind the cliff.
Besides the town’s innate charms, many people come to Vernazza for its hiking trails. It is located between two other Cinque Terre towns, Corniglia and Monterosso al mare, and they are connected by hiking trails. You could literally wake up in the morning and hit the picturesque hiking trails in a heartbeat.
- It is a beautiful picturesque town with diverse scenic spots. Tourists can go on day tours around the town, swim on the beach, or hit the hiking trails.
- Extremely Picturesque
- Limited beach options and accommodations are more expensive since it has become more popular among tourists.
If you want a more private vacation, away from the crowds and with a more local vibe, then Corniglia is the perfect town to stay in Cinque Terre. Corniglia is the smallest among Cinque Terre villages and is also the least accessible.
Corniglia is located high up on a hill. Cars can’t get here, although you can take a bus ride from the train station, which delivers right to Corniglia’s doorsteps. Unfortunately, the town has no ports, so taking a boat is out of the picture.
If you are up for some action, take the Lardinarina staircase, which is composed of 400 steps on the red brick staircase to reach the village. Sure, the climb can be quite a struggle, but the panoramic and incredible sea views should make it worth it.
Maybe just don’t ask my kids. I made them climb the stairs up and down to Corniglia. They were not thrilled about it, but they did it. I don’t think my legs have ever been in better shape than after my time in Cinque Terre! The whole place is like one giant stair master!
Corniglia sees lesser tourists compared to other towns. There are restaurants and cafes, but there’s no nightlife to speak of. Even so, you can find some beautiful hotels and bed and breakfasts with the most splendid sea views of Cinque Terre.
- High up on a hill
- Requires a bus ride or hike up 400+ stairs from the train station
- The Cinque Terre Ferry does not come here
- No beaches
- Beautiful narrow, and picturesque streets
- Corniglia has a local town vibe, yet it’s less crowded. It is the perfect Cinque Terre town for an intimate, private holiday.
- Its inaccessibility makes it challenging for people with mobility issues to reach and enjoy the town.
If you’re visiting Cinque Terre because you’ve seen a pretty photo on the internet, then it’s likely the beautiful town of Manarola. Colorful houses perched on a rocky hill facing the sea gives Manarola its own unique charm.
This Cinque Terre town is small, but it has plenty to offer. Boats dock at Manarola Port to transport guests in and out of Cinque Terre. But the harbor is clean and pristine, making it an excellent destination to swim and sunbathe. Apart from the port, there are also beautiful rocky beaches in this beautiful Cinque Terre village.
Manarola is bigger than Vernazza. It is alive with activity and nightlife. The town is peppered with several restaurants and bars to dine in and unwind. Wait until the sun sets to enjoy a truly spectacular view!
Like the other towns, Manarola is closed to car traffic, so you can freely and safely explore the city center on foot. You can drive through La Spezia and leave your car at a public parking space before entering the village entrance.
- It is a beautiful, picture-perfect village with a little bit of everything you’d want in your stay in Cinque Terre.
- Bigger than Vernazza
- Lots of restaurants
- The village’s central location is inaccessible by vehicle. You have to walk a couple of minutes to get there.
- Rocky Beaches
For me, Riomaggiore is the best town to stay in in Cinque Terre among the five villages. This picturesque village has lots of beautiful sea views, great restaurants and a lot of shops. There’s also a good amount of Cinque Terre hotels in Riomaggiore, which should give you more accommodation options.
Riomaggiore is lively, even at night. You can watch the gorgeous sunset from the harbor while enjoying a drink with your family and friends. The town center feels more alive than the other Cinque Terre towns, so if you’re looking to walk around and sight-see, then this is the best town for you.
During the day, you can explore the wider main streets. Pastel-colored houses on either side are a common sight, but they never fail to take your breath away. The only drawback is that you need to climb plenty of stairs to reach the upper levels of the city and enjoy an even panoramic view of the Ligurian coast. It’s good exercise for most people, but it can be quite a struggle for those who aren’t as physically fit.
- Riomaggiore is a lively town day in and day out. It has stunning sea views and lots of fantastic restaurants and bars.
- Great restaurants
- A wider main street, lined with hilltop houses on either side
- You’ll need to climb many stairs to reach the upper levels of the town. (avoid this by finding a rental at or close to ground level)
Where to Stay in Cinque Terre
Planning to visit Cinque Terre soon and want to figure out your Cinque Terre accommodations as early as now? I have visited Cinque Terre many times, and I can say that there are plenty of Cinque Terre hotels and vacation rentals to choose from, but they book up EARLY! So be sure to book as soon as possible. The size, quality, and price of your accommodation in Cinque Terre depend on where you choose to stay.
Let me show you where to stay in Cinque Terre in each of the five towns.
Where to stay in Cinque Terre – Monterosso al Mare
If you’re visiting Cinque Terre for the first time and plan to stay at Monterosso al mare, then this vacation villa comes highly recommended!
This homey rental villa is one of the best Cinque Terre accommodations in Monterosso al mare. It is conveniently located five meters away from the sea, which means you’ll get plenty of time in the ocean and under the sun.
The vacation house has been recently renovated and has modern amenities, such as speedy wifi, air conditioning, and a water heater. With a large living room, double rooms, beautiful bathrooms, and a terrace with splendid sea views, this accommodation is perfect for a family exploring Cinque Terre.
This is a highly-rated accommodation in Cinque Terre, Italy, featuring four beds, a full bathroom, a living room, a kitchen, and a dining area. This rental home overlooks the hills and the beach, giving you a spectacular view of the old town anywhere you look.
The vacation home is reachable by walking up the stairs, but it can also be accessed via a car or train. The host can arrange a taxi pickup from the train station and take you to the guest house. Almost everything is within easy walking distance, including Fegina Beach, several shops, and restaurants. With its strategic location and quality of accommodation, this vacation rental is indeed one of the best places to stay in Cinque Terre.
The 4-star Hotel Porto Roca is one of the best Cinque Terre hotels. This lovely hotel offers stunning views of the Ligurian coast. Its central location in Monterosso al mare allows you access to almost everything during your stay in this beautiful Cinque Terre village, including hiking trails, Cinque Terre’s national park, Monterosso beach, and Fegina beach.
This Cinque Terre hotel features sea view rooms, all equipped with TVs, free wifi, and old-fashioned decor. Buffet breakfast is available daily, and the restaurant serves authentic Ligurian cuisine. You can take a five-minute walk to reach the beach and soak up the sun. When you return to the hotel, you may opt for a relaxing massage or a dip in the hot tub.
The best way to get access to your own private beach during your stay in Cinque Terre is to book a room in Hotel Baia. This modern hotel is located near the train station and is within walking distance from the town center.
Hotel Baia’s modern rooms have free wifi, a TV, a fridge, a hairdryer, and an air conditioning unit – basically what you would expect from a decent-priced hotel room. Since it is located on the Monteresso waterfront, you can enjoy an intimate romantic getaway, despite Monterosso al mare becoming more touristy than the nearby towns.
Where to Stay in Cinque Terre – Vernazza
Wondering where to stay in Cinque Terre, particularly in Vernazza, as a couple? Well, MaDa Charm Apartment – Jacuzzi is one of your best options!
With your own private terrace, this apartment gives you the space you need to relax and unwind while admiring the beautiful sea views of Cinque Terre. This one-bedroom apartment sleeps two people, so it’s a great accommodation for couples and honeymooners.
It is well-equipped with modern amenities, such as free wifi, a smart TV, private bathrooms, and even a coffee machine. Of course, the jacuzzi with chromotherapy is the perfect way to chill and decompress after a long day of exploring Cinque Terre’s five villages.
One of the modern and luxury apartments in Vernazza is Fivestay Casa Gabriella. Its desirable location literally brings you close to the train station, beaches in Vernazza, and a couple of great restaurants in the village.
This Cinque Terre accommodation is well-furnished. With four bedrooms, it can house up to six people, perfect for families or groups of friends. The master bedroom gives you an incredible view of the Ligurian sea, while the other bedrooms face towards the village. The apartment is equipped with heating and air conditioning units, a TV, and provisions of linens and towels for your utmost comfort and convenience.
Where to stay in Cinque Terre, especially in Vernazza, that’s within walking distance of everything? Elisabetha Carro is an ideal accommodation for that!
Rooms Elisabetta Carro is a family-run Cinque Terre accommodation that’s located in the heart of Vernazza. You can walk towards everything you’ll need in your Cinque Terre holiday, whether you want to go to the beach, explore the old town and see the historic buildings, or chill at the harbor.
This pretty accommodation comes with stunning sea views and private terraces. The rooms have air conditioning, showers, and bidets. The rooms are simple yet modern, and they are all adequately furnished with all the essentials for a comfortable stay.
La Torretta dei Merli with Views is a beautiful Cinque Terre hotel equipped with modern amenities like laundry facilities, free wifi, a kitchen, air conditioning in rooms, a fridge, a washer, and a dryer. The balcony overlooks the gorgeous town of Vernazza, with views of the promontory, harbor, and the old town.
La Torretta dei Merli With Views provides fun and comfortable accommodation during your stay in Cinque Terre. Apart from the furnished rooms, you could also avail of concierge services, airport shuttle, and babysitting services for an additional charge.
Where to Stay in Cinque Terre – Corniglia
Stay in the heart of Corniglia and enjoy a relaxing Italian vacation in this stunning and homey penthouse. This penthouse is part of the recently renovated apartment building located in the center of Cinque Terre’s quietest village.
This one-bedroom, one-bathroom vacation rental is perfect for couples or small families. It has a spacious living room, a gorgeously-appointed master bedroom, and a balcony that overlooks the entire Taragio square.
It is also desirable location-wise, as you’re only a stone’s throw away from the best cafes and small restaurants in town. Indeed, this is one of the best hotels or vacation rentals in Corniglia.
If you’re exploring Cinque Terre with Corniglia as your base town, then the Lady Bug’s Nest is an excellent accommodation to consider. Located in a peaceful, quiet area, Lady Bug’s Nest is your home away from home during your stay in Cinque Terre.
This brand-new vacation rental is a house ideal for couples and small families visiting Cinque Terre. It is well-furnished with a queen-sized bed, a new kitchen with modern appliances, and a flat-screen TV and washing machine.
Near this vacation rental are some quaint shops, cafes, and restaurants you can visit to dine and unwind. With stunning views of the sea and the clustered villages, friendly staff, and excellent service, this vacation home is undoubtedly one of the best places to stay in Cinque Terre, Italy.
This 2-star hotel’s location in Corniglia makes it one of the most popular hotels to stay in Cinque Terre. Corniglia and Guvano beaches are less than a kilometer away, while Vernazza is just within walking distance. The town center of Corniglia is just 350 meters away from the hotel.
Featuring modern rooms decked with beautiful and modern furnishings, this Cinque Terre hotel ensures that you’ll have the most pleasant stay. Rooms have fridges, air conditioning units, safety deposit boxes, and bidets in private bathrooms.
You can order a wide range of breakfasts, such as vegan and Italian style breakfast, served on the sundeck so you can enjoy the sweeping views of the village at the same time.
Daa Maduneta is also a popular hotel in Corniglia, featuring gorgeous rooms with spectacular ocean views! Located only 30 meters away from the historic center and with various cafes and restaurants nearby, this hotel provides excellent accommodation to tourists looking for a pleasurable stay in Cinque Terre.
Some rooms have a private terrace that offers mesmerizing ocean views. All rooms are well-kept and equipped with modern conveniences, such as a flat-screen TV, coffeemaker, free wifi, extra towels, and more. The outdoors comes with a picnic area and garden, which are perfect for relaxing after a long day of exploring the five towns of Cinque Terre.
Since the hotel is located at the heart of Cinque Terre National park, you may purchase the Cinque Terre card from the hotel so you can enjoy the park’s services without the long queue.
Where to Stay in Cinque Terre – Manarola
This four-story vacation house in Manarola has two bedrooms and can sleep six people, which is ideal for families and groups of friends. There are two bathrooms, both equipped with a shower and bidets. The first-floor bedroom has two single beds, while the second room bedroom has a king-sized bed. The best part of the house is the roof terrace, where you can chill and relax while admiring the beautiful views of Cinque Terre.
Casa Bella Vista sits on top of a hill, but most of the town’s establishments are still accessible on foot. You’ll find a few restaurants, cafes, a small supermarket, and a pharmacy within walking distance. La Spezia is only a ten-minute train ride, while other beautiful towns like Portovenere are reachable by boat.
This two-bedroom apartment is conveniently located so that you can enjoy the enthralling views wherever you look, whether you want to see the beautiful town, the olive groves, and hills, or the clear pristine waters on the sea.
The apartment has a Wi-Fi connection, satellite/cable TV, a heater, and an air conditioning system. From here, you can easily explore the town and head off to the shops, bars, and restaurants. Or, you could explore the Marine Protected Area, Church of San Lorenzo, and Fossola Beach, which are all nearby.
While climbing the stairs could be steep and is common in all the towns of Cinque Terre, this vacation rental guarantees you the best views and an amazing stay in Cinque Terre.
If you want to know where to stay in Cinque Terre in Manarola with the best accommodation, then that would probably be Hotel Marina Piccola. While a tad bit more expensive than vacation homes and apartments, this Cinque Terre hotel provides amazing amenities and accommodations.
The rooms are tastefully decorated and are equipped with a free wifi connection, flat-screen TV, and a safety deposit box. The private bathrooms all have free toiletries and hairdryers you can use. Your accommodation also comes with a free breakfast buffet. Some rooms have entrancing views of the Ligurian coast.
Another excellent accommodation option is the boutique hotel, Ca’ D’Andrean. It is situated at the very heart of Manarola, so everything in your stay is easily accessible by foot. There are a few restaurants and cafes nearby, while a few of the best beaches are around two to four kilometers away from the hotel.
This lovely hotel features sleek and modern rooms. There’s a garden, fireplace, and bar, too, which make the perfect setting for unwinding after a long day of exploring Cinque Terre. The rooms are quite spacious and air-conditioned, and most of them have a terrace. Plus, you can order an Italian breakfast composed of cappuccino, bread, butter, and jam and have it served in the garden under the lemon trees.
Where to Stay in Cinque Terre – Riomaggiore
If you’re exploring Riomaggiorre and all the other best towns in the region, then Arancio Apartment is a wonderful place to stay in Cinque Terre. This is a small apartment that sleeps two people.
The room has the basic amenities you would expect for a vacation rental, such as a heating and air conditioning unit, wireless internet, extra linens and towels, and bathroom toiletries. The balcony is the best place to enjoy your morning cup while admiring the beautiful views of the city and ocean.
But what makes this apartment ideal to stay in Cinque Terre, particularly in Riomaggiore, is its location. You are literally a couple of steps away from the beach, hiking trails, and the village center. It is lively during the day, and it gets calm and peaceful at night.
Casa Dena is an excellent rental apartment with four beds and can sleep five to six guests. Chic and modern, Casa Dena sports beautiful furnishings. It has spacious a spacious living room, kitchen, and dining area. The apartment has modern appliances such as a washing machine, fridge, oven, and coffee maker. Luxury linens are provided, as well as a supply of bathroom toiletries.
Casa Dena’s most appealing portion is its beautiful terrace, where you can chill and relax. From the terrace, you’ll see sweeping views of the town and the sea. End the day is to sipping some wine and admiring Cinque Terre’s beauty as the sun goes down.
Hotel Del Sole is one of the top-rated hotels in Riomaggiore. It is located in the city, but it is also near the beach. Some of the best attractions, like the Church of San Giovanni Battista, Guardiola Tower, and Fossola Beach, are only a couple of minutes away on foot from the hotel.
The double rooms are spacious, the walls are insulated, and the bathrooms are neat and clean. Your accommodation comes with a free breakfast. At sundown, you can head over to the bar and enjoy some drinks while you relax.
This is a lovely 3-star hotel located within the national park. Location-wise, the hotel brings you closer to the town’s scenic wonders and natural beauty. You can also travel to the region’s historic buildings by car, such as the Church of Nostra Signora della Salute (9-minute drive) and the Castle of Riomaggiore (24-minute drive).
The rooms are big, comfortable, and well-furnished. The balconies afford you stunning views of the Ligurian coast. The rooms come with free wifi connection and flat-screen TVs, and the bathrooms have bidets and rainfall showers.
There’s also a coffee shop, garden, and restaurant on-site for your comfort and convenience.
Where to Stay in Cinque Terre
Cinque Terre is undoubtedly one of Italy’s most charming and beautiful regions. Its natural beauty, local and intimate feel, and the dashing views of the ocean truly make a memorable Italian holiday.
If you’d like a livelier vibe and interact with locals and fellow tourists, the best towns for you are Riomaggiore and Monterosso al Mare. But if you came to Cinque Terre to relax and chill, or perhaps spend more intimate moments with your partner, then the least crowded and quietest village of Corgnilia. Each town has its unique charm and vibe, and if you’ve got plenty of time, it’s best to explore them individually.
There are plenty of Cinque Terre hotels and vacation rentals to choose from in each town, so you’ll never run out of options.
Which Cinque Terre town would you explore first?