Where To Stay In Cinque Terre Without A Car

Nestled along the Italian Riviera coastline, the pastel-colored villages of Cinque Terre make up one of Italy’s most picturesque destinations. But with its cliffside trails and lack of vehicles, exploring these five seaside towns without a car can seem daunting for some travelers.

If you’re short on time, here’s a quick answer to your question: The most convenient places to stay in Cinque Terre without a car are Riomaggiore, Vernazza, and Monterosso al Mare since these towns have the most accommodation options, as well as easy access to trains, ferries, and the Cinque Terre hiking trails.

In this complete guide, we’ll cover everything you need to know about getting around and finding the best places to stay in car-free Cinque Terre, including:

Getting Around Cinque Terre Without a Car

When visiting the picturesque region of Cinque Terre, it’s important to plan your transportation ahead of time, especially if you don’t have a car. Luckily, there are several convenient and efficient ways to get around the five charming fishing villages without the need for a vehicle.

Trains Connect the Villages and Beyond

One of the most popular and easiest ways to travel between the Cinque Terre villages is by train. The region is well-connected by a reliable and frequent train service that runs along the coast. Trains depart regularly from each village, making it convenient to hop from one village to another in just a few minutes.

The train system also extends beyond the Cinque Terre region, allowing visitors to explore nearby towns and cities.

The train journey itself is a treat, offering breathtaking views of the coastline and the colorful villages perched on the cliffs. Travelers can sit back, relax, and enjoy the scenic ride as they make their way through the picturesque Italian Riviera.

Ferries Offer Scenic Journeys Between Towns

If you’re looking for a more leisurely and scenic way to travel between the Cinque Terre villages, consider taking a ferry. Ferries operate between the towns of Monterosso, Vernazza, Corniglia, Manarola, and Riomaggiore, offering stunning views of the coastline from the sea.

The ferry service runs from spring to autumn, providing a unique and memorable experience for visitors. It’s a great way to appreciate the beauty of the villages from a different perspective while enjoying the refreshing sea breeze.

Hiking Trails Link the Towns for Active Travelers

For those who enjoy outdoor activities and want to explore the natural beauty of Cinque Terre, the hiking trails are a fantastic option. The region is known for its extensive network of trails that connect the five villages, offering breathtaking views and a chance to immerse yourself in the stunning coastal landscapes.

The most famous hiking trail is the Sentiero Azzurro, also known as the Blue Path, which stretches along the coast and provides access to all five villages. The trail offers varying difficulty levels, so whether you’re a casual walker or an experienced hiker, there’s a trail suitable for everyone.

It’s important to note that some sections of the hiking trails may be closed due to maintenance or weather conditions, so it’s always a good idea to check with the local authorities or visitor centers before embarking on a hike.

Where to Stay in Cinque Terre Without a Car

If you’re planning a trip to the picturesque region of Cinque Terre in Italy and don’t have a car, you may be wondering where the best places to stay are. Luckily, each of the five villages that make up Cinque Terre is easily accessible by train and foot, making it convenient for travelers relying on public transportation.

Here are the top options for accommodation in each village:


Riomaggiore is the southernmost village of Cinque Terre and is known for its charming colorful houses and narrow streets. It offers a range of accommodation options, from budget-friendly guesthouses to boutique hotels.

If you’re looking for a central location with easy access to the train station and the hiking trails, consider staying in Riomaggiore. The village also has a small harbor where you can take boat trips along the coast.


Manarola is often considered one of the most beautiful villages in Cinque Terre, with its iconic colorful buildings perched on the cliffs overlooking the sea. It is a popular choice for travelers looking for a romantic getaway or a peaceful retreat.

Manarola offers a variety of accommodation options, including cozy bed and breakfasts and family-run hotels. Don’t miss the opportunity to taste the local wine, as Manarola is known for its production of Sciacchetrà, a sweet dessert wine.


Corniglia is the only village in Cinque Terre that is not directly connected to the sea. It is located on top of a hill and offers breathtaking views of the surrounding vineyards and coastline. Staying in Corniglia provides a quieter and more secluded experience compared to the other villages.

There are a few guesthouses and apartments available for overnight stays, but keep in mind that Corniglia requires climbing a long flight of stairs to reach the village from the train station.


Vernazza is another popular village in Cinque Terre, known for its picturesque harbor and lively atmosphere. It has a wide range of accommodation options, including beachfront hotels and cozy guesthouses.

Vernazza is a great choice for those looking to enjoy the beach and indulge in the local seafood specialties. The village also has a beautiful hiking trail that leads to Monterosso al Mare, the next village in Cinque Terre.

Monterosso al Mare

Monterosso al Mare is the largest village in Cinque Terre and offers a more resort-like experience compared to the other villages. It has a long sandy beach, perfect for sunbathing and swimming. Monterosso al Mare has a variety of accommodation options, including luxury hotels and budget-friendly guesthouses.

The village is also known for its delicious local cuisine, so be sure to try some of the traditional Ligurian dishes during your stay.

Whichever village you choose to stay in, you’ll be surrounded by stunning natural beauty and have easy access to the hiking trails that connect the Cinque Terre villages. Be sure to book your accommodation in advance, especially during the peak tourist season, to secure the best options for your stay.

Tips for Visiting Cinque Terre Car-Free

If you’re planning a trip to the stunning coastal region of Cinque Terre in Italy and you don’t have a car, don’t worry! Cinque Terre is actually best explored on foot or by train, and there are plenty of tips to help you make the most of your car-free visit.

Purchase a Cinque Terre Card for Discounts

One of the first things you should do when visiting Cinque Terre without a car is to purchase a Cinque Terre Card. This card not only gives you unlimited access to the trains that connect the five villages, but it also provides discounts on hiking trails, museums, and even public restrooms.

It’s a great way to save money while exploring this beautiful region. You can find more information about the Cinque Terre Card on their official website here.

Stay Connected With a Portable WiFi Device

Staying connected while traveling is essential, especially if you don’t have a car. To ensure you have access to maps, train schedules, and important information, consider renting a portable WiFi device.

These devices are small and easy to carry around, allowing you to stay connected wherever you go in Cinque Terre. You can find reputable companies that offer portable WiFi rentals online or ask your accommodation for recommendations.

Pack Light and Be Prepared to Walk

Without a car, you’ll be relying on your own two feet to get around Cinque Terre. That’s why it’s important to pack light and be prepared for lots of walking. The villages are connected by scenic hiking trails, and exploring them on foot is one of the best ways to experience their beauty.

Make sure to wear comfortable shoes, carry a water bottle, and pack a small backpack to hold your essentials. Don’t forget to bring a camera to capture those memorable moments along the way!

By following these tips, you can have an amazing car-free experience in Cinque Terre. From discounted train rides to staying connected with portable WiFi, and being prepared for lots of walking, you’ll be able to fully immerse yourself in the charm and beauty of this picturesque coastal region.


Even without a car, the villages of the Cinque Terre offer endless beauty and adventure along Italy’s scenic coastline. With trains, ferries, and hiking trails connecting the towns, getting around is part of the experience.

By staying in one of the more centrally-located villages like Riomaggiore, Vernazza, or Monterosso al Mare, you’ll have walkable access to restaurants, attractions, and transportation options to neighboring towns and beyond.

Just remember to pack light, grab a Cinque Terre Card for deals, and get ready to unwind Italian-style as you take in the cliffside charm of these five jewels of Liguria.

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