Today we’re going to visit a little part of Italy, Sarzana & Cinque Terre, through the eyes of Jessica. She is living on Italian Riviera, a dream-place if you would ask me. It’s on a my list for a very long time and I can’t wait to get the change to visit that part of Italy!
1. Let’s get to know you better: where are you from and what are you doing now in Sarzana ?
Hello, my name is Jessica and I’m the travel writer behind Travel to be Alive. I’m from Italy, exactly from a small town called Sarzana situated between Pisa and the stunning Cinque Terre. I’ve grown up here and studied here and now I’m back after a 9-months trip around the world.
2. What do you like the most about Sarzana ?
Sarzana is a quiet and lovely place and what I love about it is that it is close both to the sea and to the mountains. There’s a beautiful city center filled with typical shops, narrow alleys and ancient churches. When the summer comes the city hosts plenty of different events, an interesting antiques market a many food festivals.
3. Let’s suppose a very good friend of yours will come visit Sarzana. Could you please make a 2 days program to include all the must see places?
Having 2 days to explore the area, here’s how I’d suggest a friend to use his time:
Start your tour on a warm summer morning, when less people are around. Walk through the alleys, go shopping in the typical shops around and visit the three main squares: Piazza Garibaldi, Piazza San Giorgio leaving Piazza Matteotti as your last one. Sit by the fountain or on a bench close by before heading to a “Pizzeria” (a place that serves pizzas) for lunch. Ask someone to give you directions to “Biagi” and refresh yourself with a lovely “gelato”, the best in town. In the afternoon, make your way to the “Cittadella” (citadel) and explore the fort. If you’re not tired yet, get to a more majestic fortress, Fortezza di Sarzanello, and visit it inside as well. Go back to the city center as it lights up for its night’s feast, hang out in the main squares and enjoy a drink at any of the bars around.
Take a train from Sarzana to the world-famous Cinque Terre and choose 3 of them. My suggestion would be to visit Monterosso (the last one coming from Sarzana), Vernazza and Manarola. Spend the morning in Monterosso, the only village of these five with a proper beach. Relax, walk on the beach and dive in the turquoise water. After a light lunch and a fruity gelato catch a train to Vernazza. Walk around the village, reach the harbor and immerse your feet in the water. As the sunset is approaching, take another train to Manarola and watch the colorful houses of the village with a pinkish background that makes everything more magic. Have an “aperitivo” or a dinner by the sea.
5. Could you give us some advice to be able to know more about what the locals prefer (pubs/bars where we should go, food we should try, activities to make)?
In Sarzana: try Biagi’s gelato and Pasticceria Francesco’s confectionery.
In Cinque Terre: try the salted anchovies in Monterosso and the wine of Cinque Terre.
I suggest you to visit Jessica’s blog for great destinations from all around the world. I you want to find more about Cinque Terre, I’ve found there this article with stunning photos!