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How to reach the Cinque Terre

The Cinque Terre is situated on the northeastern coast of Italy. It is a mountain terrain, that is why, if you have decided to go by car, we would insistently recommend to leave it at a parking lot in La Spezia and to take a train then.

Comparison of a train with a car from the principal towns of Italy to the Cinque Terre (viz to La Spezia):

From where

By train

By car

Milan (Milano)

Travel time: 3 h.
Cost: €20
Departure: approximately every hour.

Travel time: 2 h.
Cost: €20 toll road +
petrol per 200 km / 125 miles.

Rome (Roma)

Travel time: 3-4 h.
Cost: €40-50
Departure: approximately every hour.

Travel time: 4 h.
Cost: €30 toll road +
petrol per 425 km / 265 miles.

Venice (Venezia)

Travel time: 4.30-6 h. (with interchanges)
Cost: €40-50
Departure: more often than once per hour.

Travel time: 3 h.
Cost: €30 toll road +
petrol per 360 km / 220 miles.


Travel time: 4.30-5 h. (with interchanges)
Cost: €30-40
Departure: approximately every hour.

Travel time: 3 h.
Cost: €25 toll road +
petrol per 330 km / 200 miles.

Genoa (Genova)

Travel time: 1-2 h.
Cost: €7-10
Departure: very often.

Travel time: 1 h.
Cost: €10 toll road +
petrol per 100 km / 60 miles.

Florence (Firenze)

Travel time: 2 h.
Cost: €12-18
Departure: approximately every hour.

Travel time: 1 h. 30 min.
Cost: €12 toll road +
petrol per 150 km / 100 miles.


Travel time: 40 min. - 1 h.
Cost: €6-10
Departure: very often.

Travel time: 50 min.
Cost: €8 toll road +
petrol per 80 km / 50 miles.

Monaco / Nice

Travel time: 5-6 h. (with interchanges)
Cost: €20-30
Departure: approximately every hour.
More detail in the note below.

Travel time: 3 h.
Cost: €40 toll road +
petrol per 280 km / 175 miles.

* Useful links:
Trenitalia (train schedule, remember that prices for regional trains are only displayed for the next seven days, use the Italian city names, see above);
Google Maps;
Calculation of toll roads cost (if you have chosen a car).

* Useful to know:
- If you need to buy a ticket from France to Italy, for example from Nice to Monterosso, you then have to choose Nice - Vintimille train on the website SNFC and then Ventimiglia - Monterosso train on the website Trenitalia (link above).
- Trenitalia train schedules change twice a year: in the first week of June and the first of December. The Regional trains (less expensive) are added to the website approximately two weeks before the timetable change (pushing the less expert tourists to buy the most expensive tickets). In the transition to summer time new trains are usually added, with no significant change.
- Train ticket can be bought even five minutes before departure (ticket office or machine) for any type of train. Spots are always available, don't hurry up to book in advance. Rail Pass (unique ticket for European tourists) in Italy is much more expensive than regular tickets, it is not recommended to buy it.
- Trains in Italy are divided into three types:
1. Regionali (without places reservation).
2. Intercity (a bit more expensive, with places reservation).
3. Eurostar/Freccia (the fastest and the most comfortable trains, their cost is much higher, but booking in advance is usually cheaper for long distances).
- Highways (autostrade) in Italy are paid.
- To travel by car is cheaper, if at least three of you are travelling together.

* Useful applications for smartphones: to book the train tickets and check the schedule, we suggest you search the applications titled: treno, Italian train, ProntoTreno (official Trenitalia app).

In La Spezia you will have plenty of variants to reach Riomaggiore, Manarola, Corniglia, Vernazza and Monterosso. Read the page "Means of travel" for further details.

Where to leave luggage?
Luggage storage facility is located on the railway station in La Spezia, the first 5 hours cost 1 euro each, further price is halved.
Another one in Riomaggiore doesn't work anymore.

More details:

icon black trainBy train to the Cinque Terre

There are railway stations in all of the Cinque Terre’s towns, and the road between them is laid in the tunnels, that is why it is the fastest and the most convenient kind of transport in this region. Depending your itinerary, you should take La Spezia as the reference point.
The train tickets can be bought even five minutes before departure. If the ticket with seat reservation (not available on regional trains), the earlier you buy it, the cheaper it will cost you. Attention! If it is a ticket without reservation (departure time is not indicated), you can take any train of this type, but you should validate your ticket in the automatic machine before taking the train.
The train prices and schedule can be found on Trenitalia website. A plenty of applications has been created for smartphones (you will find them searching by keywords: Italian train, treno, ProntoTreno), where you can see not only the schedule, but also the realtime location of the train and how many minutes of delay it has.

More details about travelling by train in the Cinque Terre Park are written on the page "Travel Means"

black car iconBy car to the Cinque Terre

As the villages are situated on the rocky cliffs, it is extremely difficult to get there by car. The road is rather narrow and has a plenty of weaving turns. That is why we recommend to leave the car in La Spezia (there are a plenty of parking lots), in Levanto or Monterosso (here it is usually more difficult to find a lot). In addition, the towns’ centers are completely closed for cars.

If you still do not want to leave the car in La Spezia, use the Google Map (on the left) for your route planning. The Cinque Terre’s towns list in accordance with increasing road complexity: Monterosso, Riomaggiore, Manarola, Vernazza, Corniglia.

Attention: in the Cinque Terre Park and the nearest roads YOU WILL NOT FIND ANY PETROL STATION, so provide yourself with petrol beforehand. Almost all the inhabitants use methane, so even in an emergency situation it will be unreal to find a liter of petrol.

The best parking lots of La Spezia are indicated on the second map. The green marks indicate the free ones. The rightmost parking lot is the biggest one and is served by a free bus.

If you are interested to park in the villages of the Cinque Terre: there is big parking lot right by the sea in Monterosso (12-15 euros a day), but in the summer time is not easy to find a space. In Riomaggiore you will find another paid parking lot, it costs about 20 euros a day.
You can also rent a car. For more information visit this website: Budget, Hertz, Sixt, Avis.

icon black airplaneBy airplane to the Cinque Terre

The nearest airport to La Spezia is the C. Colombo International Airport in Genoa (112 km / 70 miles) and Galileo Galilei International Airport in Pisa (84 km / 50 miles). There are many trains departing from Pisa and Genoa to La Spezia. You can fly to Milan Airport as well. It is a bit further, but it will not be a problem to take just the first train.
One Travel is one of the most famous sellers of the cheapest tickets in Europe. Use search on their website and you will find the best tickets offers (the nearest directions: Pisa, Genoa, Parma, Milano, Bologna)!
P.S. It is better to book a ticket on the airline website having found a cheap flight, but it is not always real.

What is the best way to move along the Cinque Terre Park?

On foot, by car, by bus, by boat, by train? Read about it on a special page of our website.