Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Saturday, May 15, 2010

This morning we got up early to head to the train station for our trip up north.  The people going on this trip were me, Dan, Nick, Devon, Pat, Amanda, Abby, Brandon, and Matt. We got to the Rome Termini station, grabbed a quick breakfast, had a vending machine steal 20 euros, and hopped on the train right as it was about to leave. The morning wasn't starting out so well. But on the up side, the train was really nice, and I was on my way to Cinque Terre. Cinque Terre is a series of 5 fishing villages in northern italy on the cliffs of the coast. On the way I read about Cinque Terre in a guide book, and then pretty much slept on and off for he rest of the four hour trip. The train goes right up along the coast so you can see the sea a lot of the way. We arrived at the La Spezia train station a little before lunch time and took a taxi up to our hotel. We stayed at the Hotel Nella which was actually a really nice, cute little hotel at the top of the hill. We checked in and dropped our stuff off and then caught a bus back to the train station. From there we took an 8 minute train ride to the first town, Riomaggiore. We were in a tunnel and then the tunnel stopped and we were looking straight down at the ocean. It was one of the greatest wow moments ever.

We got off the train and bought our day passes to ride the trains and get on the trails between towns. We found out because of the rain all the trails between the towns, except for the first one were closed. Bummer. So we looked through the first town and then headed for the Via Dell'Amore, the way of love, that takes you to the next town.

This walk was the most romantic thing ever. It really made me wish Caitlyn was there with me. People come here from all over and scratch their initials in a heart into locks of all different sizes and then lock them onto something along the path. "Locks of love." 

It was about a 20 minute walk to the next town, Manarola. This town was beautiful and my second favorite of the towns for the great view you can get looking down on the town.

From there we took a quick train ride to the third town, Corniglia. This town was way up off the water on a cliff and built into the hill. Here we split up, Devon, Nick, and Pat decided to climb up to the top of the mountain on the closed path in the rain. Not me. The rest of us hung out in the town for a little while they climbed.

We caught the train to the next town, Vernazza, which was my favorite town.

We got there at 6 and were starving but all the restaurants didn't open until 7, so we walked around the town for an hour before going to the most amazing restaurant I've ever eaten at in my life, Ristorante Belforte.

We ate up in this tower right at the edge of town overlooking the water. It was so pretty. We all decided we were gonna splurge and have the most amazing meal of our lives so most of us ordered 3-4 courses. The owner seated us and was a really nice guy. He brought us a pitcher of red wine and white wine and then we ordered. It was obviously a seafood restaurant but they had two non-seafood courses which obviously I got. For my first course I had really good spaghetti, and then for my second course I had a delicious T-bone steak and potatoes. Everybody else got seafood for the most part, a lot of pasta bruno, mussels, fish, and shrimp scampi. Dan talked me into trying a mussel, which I've never tried anything like it before, so it took some real forcing.  I reluctantly ate it and it was actually pretty good :) They serve you right at the table which was pretty cool

For dessert most of us got caramelized "strouberries" and ice cream. It was the best dessert I've ever had in my life. After all of that we got the check for 420 euros between the nine of us, (roughly $550), and the owner brought us a bottle of limoncello and gave us all a complimentary glass!

I spent the least since I didn't get seafood, 37 euros, and Dan spent the most at 70 euros. We spent three hours at the restaurant and it so worth it to get the real italian dinner experience. After that all the towns were empty and we headed back to the hotel to go to bed. We never made it to the fifth town, Monterosso, but were able to see it from Vernazza all lit up at night which was pretty cool.

1 comment:

  1. That locks of love thing is so cute!

    (I see I'm the only person to comment so far but I like reading it! Looking forward to reading the days I haven't already talked to you about :) I bet other people are reading it too, but you have to have an account to log in with to comment.)

    Love you Bud!