One of the greatest things that make tourists visit Riomaggiore and unite all the villages of Cinque Terre is the architecture as well as their landscapes. Riomaggiore architecture has a great variety of multi-colored architecture and it is probably the most bright village among all the five ones of Cinque Terre. The small part of land over filled with the colored houses and so the narrow streets don’t suggest enough space for transport.Walking them while Riomaggiore hiking is a kind of time travel that fascinates and stays in the heart forever, because barely anything has changed there for many years.
It looks like a local part of heaven existing by its own time. Although the village seems to be frozen, there still live people. The population of the village is about 1600 people (click for actual information). Their main deals are fishing and viniculture.
The fisherman’s district is a kind of local landmark. From its tiny and rocky port, one can watch fishermen set out on their brightly painted boats and depar for another catch.
In this picturesque rocky bay there is a beach. But very few people swim there, as it’s not the thing people go there for. Besides it is not convenient. There are no changing rooms, toilet or shower, and the shores are rocky because of the location which is in the bay. In a word the beach is an acquired taste.
But there are other things to see and admire while Riomaggiore hiking. And the village fully satisfies all the entertainment needs of the hikers and tourists. There are good places to eat delicious seafood and taste exquisite wines and the diving center, which is located near the railway station.
The Castle of Riomaggiore
The castle was made as a defensive fortification. Now it is a half-ruined fortress walls and two round towers. The castle is open and anyone can visit it. Behind there are benches and panoramic piazza that shows sights of the Blue trail and the coast.
Сhurch of San Giovanni Battista
The Basilica is located in the upper part of Riomaggiore’s historic centre. After a small landfall, the сhurch was completely restored in 1870 – 1871. But the spirit of antiquity is still preserved in its naves and domed bell tower. In the Church of San Giovanni Battista there is a wooden crucifix, a mechanical organ, old paintings. One of them is made in honor of John the Baptist.
Сhurch of Santa Maria Assunta
This is a traditional Italian Church. It is situated in the heart of the village on its main street – Christopher Columbus. It contains a triptych depicting Jesus, the virgin and Saints John the Baptist and Domenico. Also inside you will find a wooden statue of Madonna.
The Sanctuary of Montenero
The oldest sanctuary of Riomaggiore, any local resident can tell how to get there. The path to the temple, is located on a hill, runs along the coast and ancient buildings.
The temple is situated in such a way, that it offers a panoramic view from Cape Mesco to the island of Tino.
Riomaggiore is also a place where the Love path starts. This is the main tourist attraction in the village and one of the best Riomaggiore hiking trails. The path brings a lot of money to the national park of Cinque Terre. But mainly they are spend on repairing and supplying itself, because of the situation with autumn rains and landslides.
A footpath leads to the nearby village of Manarola. In ancient times, these two villages feuded a because of the spring with clean water, which was in Riomaggiore. And there is a legend about it that explains the path name. Once the tragically love story happen. The young man from Manarola and a girl from Riomaggiore fell in love with each other. But the girl’s family did not like this guy. So the lovers decided to run away. But when the pair met in the middle between the two villages, they accidentally stumbled. In each other’s embrace the loving couple fell from the cliff into the water. The next day the body of the girl swam up to the shore of Manarola. And the guy’s body appeared at the shore of Riomaggiore. This tragic incident were perceives by the inhabitants of both villages as a heaven sign. And they decided that the war should be stopped.
Now the way there is a “bench for two”, where you can just chill and admire the seascapes or take photos.