The Day Train from Genoa

OK, let’s say you’re in Italy.  The spectacular Cinque Terre and its charming seaside villages beckon.  But you don’t have the budget to stay on the coast for several days.  What to do?

One great (and frankly underused) option is to stay relatively cheaply in Genoa, and take day trips east by Trenitalia train.  There are a variety of good lodging options within walking distance of both Genoa train stations.  The Genoa Piazza Principe station is walking distance to the great new aquarium and other port attractions, and just a 45 minute train ride to the various Cinque Terre villages.  The trains are quite nice and run on a regular schedule that means you can escape for 8 hours or more before you have to catch your return train, allowing you to sample a different village each day.

Let’s take an example.  With eight trains a day, you can leave Genoa Principe as early at 5:30 or so in the AM, and return as late as 10:30PM.  That’s a pretty perfect day. The 65km trip only takes about an hour and a quarter and is direct…no transfers, and no hassles.

The trip is actually quite scenic, just grab a seat on the ocean side, and you’ll have intermittent views of charming villages the entire way.  In fact, many of the towns you pass by, like Rapallo, might bear a closer look if you have the time.

And what does it all cost?  The trip each way ranges from 13 to 24 dollars depending on the time of day, a bargain if you’re asking us.  And you can make your plans at the last-minute, because tickets are available at kiosks located at Genoa Piazza Principe even late into the night.

So go ahead, take in the Cinque Terre at your own pace, visiting each of the villages of Monterosso, Vernazza, Corniglia, Manarola and Riomaggiore in turn, and do it all at Genoa prices!


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