Club Cavallo is the world of those who love elegance, class, the most precious places and here we discover one of the most fascinating places in Italy: the Cinque Terre (Çinque Tære in Liguria) that are part of the list of World Heritage Sites Unesco since 1997 and are a jagged and marvelous stretch of coast of the Eastern Ligurian Riviera (riviera spezzina) located in the territory of the province of La Spezia between Punta Mesco and Punta di Montenero, in which there are five villages or, as it was said in ancient times , lands, ancient fishing villages.
Each of these villages is characterized by colorful houses and vineyards clinging to the steep terraces built on the coast.
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The ports are crowded with fishing boats and in typical restaurants you can try the seafood specialties, as well as the famous Ligurian condiment: pesto. The Sentiero Azzurro, a hiking path that stretches along the coast, connects the Cinque Terre with each other and offers splendid views of the sea.
Here are the five villages that are part of it.
Monterosso al Mare, the largest village
Monterosso al Mare is the largest village of the Cinque Terre and also the first documented (1056). Composed of two settlements, the old village and Fegina, the most tourist part, Monterosso al Mare boasts important monuments, including the fourteenth-century church of San Giovanni Battista, in front of which stood the medieval Palazzo del Podestà, of which some traces remain. Of great importance, on the Cappuccini hill, the Fieschi castle and the monastery whose church dedicated to St. Francis, contains priceless works of art, including paintings attributed to Van Dick, Cambiaso, Piola and Guido Reni.
In Fegina there are Villa Montale, where the Nobel Prize for Literature stayed, and the Giant, an imposing statue in reinforced concrete built at the beginning of the twentieth century which originally had a shell-shaped terrace on its shoulders.
Vernazza, the most evocative of the Cinque Terre.
Considered by many as the most evocative of the Cinque Terre, Vernazza is documented for the first time in 1080. The remarkable economic and social level reached by the village in the Middle Ages is still evidenced by the urban conformation and by the presence of architectural elements of great value, such as lodges, churches, houses-towers and arcades. The village is dominated by the remains of the “castrum”, a series of medieval fortifications dating back to the eleventh century, with a castle and a cylindrical tower. The inhabited area consists of houses separated by a single central street and, perpendicularly, by steep steps called “harpies”.
The most important historical monument is Santa Margherita di Antiochia, a Romanesque-Genoese style church, whose construction dates back to the 13th century, and in which a medieval and a Renaissance body can be recognized.
Corniglia, the only village of the Cinque Terre not in contact with the sea
Corniglia, the only village in the Cinque Terre not in contact with the sea, rises above a rocky promontory. Its houses, low and wide, look more like those of the hinterland than the typical coastal dwellings, testifying that the traditional vocation of the country has always been more directed to the land than to the coast.
The most important monument of the village is the Church of San Pietro, gothic-Genoese style, built around 1350 on the ruins of a previous building. Its facade, embellished with a marble rose window, is enriched by many decorations, including a bas-relief depicting a deer, the emblem of the village. Also interesting are the Oratorio dei Disciplinati, dating back to the eighteenth century and which offers a breathtaking view of the sea, and the wide Taragio, the small main square of Corniglia, the real beating heart of the village.
Manarola, an urban jewel
Fraction of Riomaggiore, Manarola is an urban jewel, rich as it is of the typical tower-houses, of Genoese style. Founded during the twelfth century, the village probably derives its name from an ancient “magna roea”, a large mill wheel present in the village. The first evidence of the village, dating back to the thirteenth century, are related to the events of the Fieschi, while in the sixteenth century there is news of its strenuous resistance to pirate raids. The main monument of the village is the church of San Lorenzo, whose construction dates back to 1338 by the inhabitants of Manarola and Volastra, as the plaque on the façade recalls. The plan has three naves, while the façade is embellished with a rosette of twelve columns. Important also the bell tower detached from the main body of the church probably because, originally, had defensive tasks.
Riomaggiore, first news in the year 1251
The first news of Riomaggiore is only in 1251, when the inhabitants of the district of Carpena, scattered halfway up, swore loyalty to the Republic of Genoa. Between the thirteenth and fourteenth centuries the inhabitants of these settlements decided to go down to the sea and give life to the country. A shift that was favored by the consolidation of the Genoese domain that allowed a more peaceful access to the sea on which to develop fast and safe businesses. Riomaggiore boasts monuments of great interest, including St. John the Baptist, a church built in 1340 with three naves with the central one double compared to the side (like the other churches of the Cinque Terre), and the Oratory of Santa Maria Assunta which houses a triptych fifteenth century and a wooden statue of the fourteenth century depicting the Madonna. Also important is the Castle that dominates the historic center.
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