Corniglia information index:
- What to see
- Where to sleep
- Where to eat and restaurants
- Traditional holidays
- How to get there
- Weather forecast
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Corniglia is the central village of the Cinque Terre, located on a rocky spur between Vernazza, of which it belongs administratively and Manarola. Surrounded by terraces planted with vines, it is the only seaside village in the Cinque Terre that does not have direct access to the sea, high on the top of a promontory of about ninety meters.
Probably of Roman origins, Corniglia is named after a family that owned the territory at the time, the Gens Cornelia. It was famous in ancient times for its wine, as evidenced by some amphorae found in Pompeii, on which the name of "Cornelia" was present. The medieval writer Boccaccio also remembers Corniglia for this reason in his Decameron.
In medieval times it was part of the territories of the counts of Lavagna, the lords of Carpena and Luni, until it passed to Nicolò Fieschi in 1254 and then definitively to Genoa in 1276. Evidence of that era can be found in the main alley, Via Fieschi, and in the small square that opens in the middle of the alley, Largo Taragio, where the oratory of Santa Caterina stand. Nearby we find a tower, a ruin of an ancient defensive building of the sixteenth century.
What to see
The village therefore develops along a main street from the church of San Pietro to the terrace of Santa Maria, where there was a small church that fell into the sea in the mid-nineteenth century. On the right you can see the Marina di Corniglia below, reachable by a staircase that starts from Largo Taragio, where there is a small port with a pier attached to the steep promontory of the Tre Croci.
The church of San Pietro is a splendid example of Gothic-Ligurian architecture of the fourteenth century, later remodeled with baroque features inside. On June 29 the patron saint is celebrated with a procession that goes from the church to the terrace of Santa Maria and tastes the typical dish of Corniglia, the rice cake. Instead on September 8 the sanctuary of San Bernardino is celebrated, dedicated to Our Lady of Grace, from which you can enjoy a unique panorama.
Do you want to know everything about monuments of Corniglia?
Where to sleep
You are plenty of choice for your stay in Corniglia. The tourist facilities are almost all in the village itself, mainly rooms and bed and breakfasts. The choice of farmhouses is limited, while there are no hotels in Corniglia.
Where to eat and restaurants
There are many ideas for lunch, dinner or a snack in Corniglia. From restaurants, trattorias, inns in Corniglia, where to stop for a while and take it easy, to the bars, wine bars, focaccerie, pizza by the slice and ice creams so as not to waste a minute between the alleys of Corniglia and the search for the sea.
In addition to the Marina di Corniglia, the other beaches stretch in the distance: the Spiaggione towards Manarola and the Guvano beach towards Vernazza. The Spiaggione was formed following the unloading of materials from the construction of the new railway line. It can be reached by exiting the train station, taking to the right and passing the old Europa Village. In the original idea, it was to be a tourist village, today in ruins, built in the 1960s with forty bungalows. It was abandoned after the erosion of the beach and never condoned. The Guvano beach, a famous nudist beach, surmounted by the railroad wall is now accessible only by sea, due to the closure of the old railway tunnel from which it was accessed and also due to the impracticability of the path that reaches it from San Bernardino.
Find out in detail where to swim in Corniglia.
In fact, numerous trekking routes wind and pass from the village, including the Blue Trail Corniglia-Vernazza and Corniglia-Manarola (the latter still closed in 2022).
Here you will find all the trekking trails in Corniglia .
The typical dishes of Corniglia have more to do with the peasant tradition than with the seafaring tradition. The savory rice cake, prepared with rice, cheese, eggs and baked in the oven, which together with the Torta dei Fieschi, based on ladyfingers, chocolate and cream, is typical of patronal feast of St. Peter, on 29 June. It recalls the marriage of Opizzo Fiesco in 1230 with the Sienese Bianca dei Bianchi.
Then of course seafood dishes such as stuffed mussels, salted and fried anchovies and the typical Ligurian pastas such as trofie and trenette.
There are two main holidays in the town: 29 June and 8 September. The first celebrates the patron saint, St. Peter, with the procession along the streets from the church to the terrace of Santa Maria. The second celebrates Our Lady of Grace at the sanctuary of San Bernardino, a pilgrimage destination that day.
Here is the calendar of Corniglia festivals.
How to get there
The recommended means of transport is the train, which shuttles between La Spezia and Levanto and with numerous daily trips. Once at the station, it is possible to go up to Corniglia from the Lardarina, a long staircase of 377 steps.
By car is not recommended, both for the conditions of the road, which is very narrow and for the limited number of parking spaces. In fact there is only one small parking about 1 km from the village.
Detailed information on how to get to Corniglia.
The climate of Corniglia is mild during most of the year, thanks to the action of the sea. In winter, average temperatures are between 6 and 9 degrees, while in summer they are around 25-27 degrees, with peaks above 30 degrees. The rains are generally short-lived, but frequent in the autumn and spring seasons.
To find out the weather forecast for Corniglia and decide if it's the right day for a day at the beach, check the weather forecast for Corniglia.