Riomaggiore is the southern most village of Cinque Terre (“five lands”) and is the closest when traveling north from La Spezia. We briefly stopped by Riomaggiore the first day to start our “hike” on Via dell’Amore but decided to come back a second morning to spend time in the marina and hang out on the rocks with the fishermen. I couldn’t resist coming back to take way too many photos of the pretty boats docked in the marina. We even saw a group of locals catch a baby shark!
You can learn more about getting around Cinque Terre and hiking the trails here.
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If you are going to hike between Monterosso and Vernazza you pobabrly want jogging shoes / hiking boots. I’m not sure what flat canvas shoes are. The path is lots and lots and lots of stairs and in some parts it can be very narrow (especially when people are passing in the opposite direction) / uneven ground and not always is there a fence to stop you from falling. Carrying a shoulder bag is personal preference really. If you don’t have much in it it won’t make much of a difference. It would get annoying if you have lots in there. I saw some crazy, crazy people carrying their entire pack for the trip on their back. Like they were walking to their hotel/hostel via the path. Also this may be me rambling but I think you will have a better time if you are comfortable than if you worry about whether you look like a tourist. I understand where you are coming from, I used to think things like that too. But now, I think if anyone *really* takes note of you and what you are wearing (or cares for that matter) they can pobabrly tell where you are from generally anyway. So relax and enjoy the awesome views. Cinque Terre is fabulous.