Vernazza, Cinque Terre, Liguria, Italy  

Vernazza, Cinque Terre, Liguria, Italy

Perched on the rugged cliffs of the Italian Riviera, Vernazza is one of the five villages of the Cinque Terre area of northwestern Italy. Here, ancient buildings stand along the coastline of the Ligurian Sea, and life is filled with the hustle and bustle of the fishing industry. Vernazza got its name from the indigenous wine, "vernaccia," meaning "local" or "ours." One of the best-known monuments in the area is the medieval Doria Castle, built as a defensive fortress to protect the village from frequent pirate attacks. Thanks to the construction of the Genoa–La Spezia rail line in the 19th century, the village became more accessible by land. The car-free cobblestone streets are ideal for walking around. While here, you might want to visit the Chapel of Santa Marta and the Sanctuary of Madonna di Reggio. Vernazza is sometimes described as the pearl of the Cinque Terre with its natural port, colorful houses, and green terraces overlooking a sparkling sea.

© Roberto Moiola/Sysaworld/Getty Images

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