A visual diary of three days spent on a photography tour of Cinque Terre and the Gulf of Poets.
We just returned home from our latest foray along the Italian Riviera, with our eyes still filled with images from the beautiful locations we visited. We did a lot of photography, some strenuous hiking, we ate some delicious food and drank some fantastic wine.
Here are some of the highlights from the trip.
On Saturday morning, we met up in Monterosso with our guests, an internationally diverse group of people who had come from the US, Switzerland, and Turkey. After exploring the streets of the small town, we took the train to Corniglia, where we had a delicious lunch.
After a good gelato and a cup of espresso, we started our hike along the coast and among the woods, the olive groves and the vineyards, towards Vernazza. Everybody was so happy taking in the magnificent vistas that they soon forgot the many steps it takes to get to the highest point, before the descent back to the sea begins again.
Our trips are as much about photography as they are about the nature and the best culinary experiences. So, right after having reached Vernazza, we headed for a terrace perched above the cliffs, where we had organized a wine and food tasting. The specialties we were served were so enticing and the location so magical that we decided to skip the planned sunset shooting (the sky wasn’t promising much of a show anyway) and just enjoy the view, the balmy breeze, the food, the wine, and the pleasant conversation.
We had missed the sunset, but we couldn’t pass on the opportunity of photographing the view of Vernazza from high above the village at the blue hour, even if that meant a little bit more hiking up a steep path. After this last effort, we decided to reward ourselves with a seafood dinner in a quaint little restaurant right on the seafront.
On the Sunday, our designated meeting point was in the village of Riomaggiore. This has to be one of my favorite spots in the whole area. The marina of Riomaggiore is a so colorful, with the blue boats contrasting with the houses painted in warm colors all around the small harbor, that one has literally too many photographic opportunities, so I think it is important to study the place for a little while, in order to find the best compositions, rather than snapping away madly from the start.
After a quick lunch, we headed to Manarola, where we hiked for a bit among the vineyards and we said goodby to Cinque Terre from another terraced bar, right in front of the cliff-perched village.
The plan was then to move to Tellaro, in the Gulf of Poets, and shoot the sunset there, but the sky was not promising at all, so we headed to Portovenere instead, where we had another seafood dinner in a veranda on the shore.
On Monday morning, we got up early to shoot the sunrise in front of St. Peter’s church in Portovenere, then we headed to Tellaro and Lerici, where we had our last meal of the trip and said farewell and wished godspeed to the new and fabulous friends we had made in these three days.
What an amazing weekend this was! The locations are exceptional, the food and the wine among the best you can find in Italy, but most of all making new friends from many different parts of the world is priceless!
We can’t wait to repeat the experience again with some new guests in one of our upcoming tours of the Italian Riviera and the Cinque Terre.