A customized day trip to Portovenere & the Cinque Terre for the discerning traveler seeking an authentic Italian experience on a small group tour with only the very best of English speaking driver-guides. Travel from the center of Florence to discover the colorful fishing town of Portovenere and adventure through the five Cinque Terre villages of this beautiful World Heritage. Visit Italy close up in a Mercedes minivans of up to 7 people.
Meet your private driver at 8:30am for the pleasant 2-hour drive from the center of Florence to begin your adventure in Portovenere as you travel through the five lands of the Cinque Terre, a landscape so unique that in 1998 it was listed as a UNESCO World Heritage site. A great way to discover this area is from the sea and it is recommend departing from the harbor to enjoy the ferry ride (additional cost) to Vernazza which is a great stop for lunch at a restaurant set up on the cliffs and looking out across the bay (at own expense). The ferry journey will take you past Riomaggiore and Manarola with great photo opportunities from the sea. Meet up with your driver and visit either Corniglia set up on the hill or enjoy a stroll around Riomaggiore or Manarola.You could continue on to the larger and busier town of Monterosso but please note it is not possible to stop in all the villages in one day and for this tour it is best to keep the day as flexible as possible and see where the journey takes you. In some places you may wish to consider using the train and if the weather and sea conditions are good, it is certainly recommended the local ferry. The five villages of the Cinque Terre include:Riomaggiore, an old village set in a small valley planted with vines and named after the brook (rio) which flows down to the beach in a deep winding gully. Manarola, a picturesque village with houses standing on a promontory stretching out to sea and a small harbor/creek for the boats enclosed by rock. The sides of the hills are planted with vines producing the sweet wine “Sciacchetrà”.Corniglia, the oldest village built around the XI century. Unlike the other villages, it is not directly adjacent to the sea and instead is set on top of a promontory surrounded by vineyards, terraces and olive groves; connected to the sea by 365 steps. Vernazza, with its proud fishing traditions, faces a little bay surrounded by cliffs and two ancient watch-towers and dominated by the church of Santa Margherita di Antiochia built in 1318 with its foundations in the sea. Monterosso, it is the largest of the villages. The center is old and interesting with its narrow lanes and colorful houses and the area is renowned for its many lemon trees, white wines, grapes, olives and olive oil. Wherever your journey takes you today, you will return back to Florence at around 6:30pm with wonderful memories of the Ligurian coast.With your own private driver, entirely at your disposal throughout the day, this tour is flexible and if there is anything in particular that you wish to see or do, please just ask.