Corniglia was our last stop on Day 1 in Cinque Terre. We waited quite a bit for the shuttle bus since we didn’t want to climb the stairs after a day of sightseeing in late-June heat. However, I think that meant it became the most charming, at least for me. All the day trippers had long since gone, the worst of the sun was gone, and we could enjoy the village for the peaceful little place it was. We wandered around and, of course, ate some delicious gelato to end our day!
Quick Little Corniglia History
Of all the villages in Cinque Terre, Corniglia sticks out a bit. It’s the only one inaccessible by ferry, and it sits quite high up on a hill at about 100 meters or 329 feet. It’s also the quietest of the villages, especially compared to the popular Riomaggiore and Monterosso al Mare.
You can trace its history all the way back to the Roman Age since the village name comes from the family who once owned it. If you want a bit of mystery, here’s a fun fact — while there are mentions of a castle between 1276-77, no one has been able to find any ruins or evidence!
Getting to Corniglia
So Corniglia is the only one of the five village that’s a bit of a pain to get to. Because Corniglia sits up on the hill like it does, it takes a few extra steps. Once you get out of the train station, either coming from Manarola or Vernazza, you have to wait for a small shuttle bus to come and pick you up. There are times listed, but they might as well not exist for how accurate they turned out to be!
The bus is also quite small, and it gets crowded easily. We had to wait for a second round because it was full. It looked like, to us at least, that there was only one of these buses running.
You could also climb up to the village through some stairs. But Corniglia was our third stop of the day, and we were hot and tired, so we skipped that haha.
You could also hike to Corniglia from both Vernazza and Manarola. I think the Manarola – Corniglia trail was closed when we went.
Where to Stay in Corniglia
I do think Corniglia could be the most “off the beaten path” village to stay in if you wanted to be in one of the five. Since it is so hard to get to, it’s not quite as popular. There are a few cute accommodations to choose from if you do want to stay here! Daa Maduneta’s rooms are all air conditioned, and nearly all rooms have views to the sea. Affittacamere Arbasia De Ma is brightly designed, and depending on when you arrive one of the staff can come get you!
You can also choose from different, locally owned Airbnbs. There’s this studio for 2-3 people owned by Stefania, who lives in Corniglia and is also a wine producer. You might also like this cute, two-level apartment owned by Cristiana, who was born and raised in Corniglia and also owns a bread and wine bar in town. If it’s your first time using Airbnb, sign up with this link to get some credit towards your first place.
22 of My Favorite Corniglia Photos
And now for the photos!
Have you been to Cinque Terre? Which are your favorite villages?