Vernazza is one of the five beautiful villages of Cinque Terre in Italy. This village was once one of the main harbors along the coast of Italy to protect the locals from pirates. Today, Vernazza is one of the most popular villages in Cinque Terre with its beautiful environment and various attractions.
This village offers beautiful views, delicious food, fun experiences and much more. Down below you can read more about Vernazz, things to do during your stay, and useful information before you visit.
Things to do in Vernazza
Vernazza is a beautiful village with several things to both see and do. There’s everything from pesto cooking classes and wine tasting to beautiful photo spots and historic buildings to check out.
Visit church Santa Margherita d’Antiochia
Church of Santa Margherita d’Antiochia is one of the most famous buildings in Vernazza. It’s a church with architecture dating back to the 18th and 19th centuries, however, many people believe that the church is much older than that. Most people say that the church dates back to the 12th century.
It’s a beautiful church located down by the harbor in Vernazza and is a must to visit if you like to see historical and religious buildings during your travels.
Go wine tasting
If you like wine then you must go wine tasting in Vernazza. There are a few wine tastings experiences to choose from, but I recommend the “tasting room in Vernazza” which can be booked through AirBnB experiences.
During this experience you can taste various local wines and delicacies, as well as learning a bit more about the village and Cinque Terre. It’s no doubt one of the best experiences in Vernazza.
Relax at the beach
Vernazza is home to some of the most beautiful beaches in Cinque Terre.
The beach in Vernazza by the harbor is a lovely place if you want to go swimming or relaxing in the sun during summer. It’s open to the public and here you’ll not find any sunbeds or umbrellas for rent.
It’s also a pretty small beach, so make sure to go early to find a spot during high season.
There’s another beach located on the other side of Vernazza – towards Corniglia. This beach is bigger but just as popular as the beach at the harbor.
You’ll not find any sunbeds or umbrellas for rent at this beach either, so you have to bring it yourself. You can reach this beach via the cave that you’ll find along the main street in the village.
See Vernazza from the sea
A calm and sunny day in Vernazza, it can be nice to hop on a boat and see the villages from the sea.
There are several boat trips that you can book departing from the village of Riomaggiore which is located three train stations away. Through AirBnB Experiences you can book several boat trips that will show you all the villages of Cinque Terre from the sea.
Explore Castello Doria
This is the oldest surviving fortresses in Cinque Terre dating back to the 11th century. Today you can explore the ruins of the fortress and a well-preserved watchtower.
To reach the tower, you must go up the narrow and steep stairs from the harbor. From the top of the fortress you have a beautiful view of the sea, as well as the village. It costs 2 euro to visit the fortress.
Learn how to make pesto
If you enjoy cooking food, then I can recommend taking a pesto cooking class. There’s an experience that’s called “pesto making with wine tasting” that you can book through AirBnB.
At this class you can learn how to make pesto from scratch and also get to taste several delicious local wines during the experience.
One thing I love to do in Vernazza is to visit all the small stores and go shopping for Italian souvenirs. There are many delicious products to buy, including; limoncello, pesto, olives, and olive oil.
In the various shops you will find several nice souvenirs that you can buy for yourself or as gifts for your loved ones.
Hiking to and from Vernazza
Cinque Terre is renowned for its good hiking trails that offer beautiful views of both the sea and villages. There are hiking trails between all the villages of Cinque Terre, and from Vernazza you can walk to both Monterosso al Mare and Corniglia.
Both hikes are good with beautiful surroundings and nice views. Hiking is no doubt one of the best things to do in Vernazza and should be experienced at least once during your stay in Cinque Terre.
If you don’t have the energy to hike back and forth to Vernazza, you can always hop on the train back to the village.
- Il Gambero Rosso Vernazza – Delicious fish and seafood
- Ristorante Bar La Torre – Nice restaurant with a beautiful view of Vernazza and the sea
- Bruschettae – Simple and delicious sandwiches
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Travel to Vernazza
Many people think it’s difficult to travel to Cinque Terre, but it’s actually quite easy. You can take the flight to Rome, Genoa or Pisa. From these cities there are direct trains to Vernazza and the other villages in Cinque Terre.
If you do not have the opportunity to travel to any of the cities mentioned above, you can also travel to Florence and Milan. From these cities you can take the train to either Pisa or Genoa and then change train to Cinque Terre.
If you’re traveling by train through Europe, you just take the train to one of the cities mentioned above and then take the train to Cinque Terre.
However, if you prefer to travel by car down to Italy, I can tell you that the roads are excellent through Europe. I have myself gone on a road trip down to Italy, and I must say that it’s a lovely experience where you get to see much along the way.
The only downside of driving to Cinque Terre is the lack of parking spaces.
Best time to visit Vernazza
The best time to travel to Vernazza is between September and October. During these months it’s still warm but less tourists comparing to high season.
In winter it’s very quiet in the village and quite cold. In summer there are too many tourists visiting and during spring you can have bad luck with the weather.
However, this village is beautiful to visit all year round. But September and October are definitely the best months to travel to Vernazza.
There are also several nice apartments with great views that you can book through AirBnB. If you book via the link below you’ll get 40 euro in discount on your first booking.
More about Vernazza in Cinque Terre
The village dates back to 1080 when it was called Castrum Vernatio. Vernazza had a fort and was one of the most important harbors along the coast. It was from here that ships left Italy to protect the village and its population from pirates.
Today, Vernazza is a historic and beautiful village with over 2 million visitors each year. It’s known for its colorful houses, beautiful scenery, good hiking trails and delicious local wines.
Vernazza is one of the five unique villages of Cinque Terre – which today is a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
How to get around
In Vernazza you get around by foot since cars and other vehicles are not allowed.
If you drive to Vernazza by car then you have to park in the parking lot that’s located about 10-15 minutes away by foot. The parking costs 2 euro per hour.
Map of Vernazza
Below you have a map of Vernazza in Italy. On the map you can see some of the attractions including Vernazza Beach, Ristorante Bar La Torre, and Chiesa di Santa Margherita di Antiochia.
Do you have more questions about Vernazza in Cinque Terre? Leave a comment below!