Hiking in Liguria's Eastern Riviera

The trail of the sanctuaries, view to Vernazza
The trail of the sanctuaries, view to Vernazza

The Eastern Ligurian coast, the Riviera di Levante, is famous for its green, lush mountains which slope steeply into the azure blue sea. The trail connecting the charming coastal towns is therefore called the green-blue trail, the "sentiero verde azzurro", abbreviated to the SVA route sign. Many of the most spectacular trails between Genoa and La Spezia can be found along this route, offering great views over the coast. But there is something for all senses: we are surrounded by the scent of Mediterranean aromatic herbs and pine trees, we hear the lizards rustle in the undergrowth and the waves shatter on the rocks when the sea is rough. In every season there are blooming plants to discover, even in late autumn or in winter. Especially in winter, the Ligurian coast is a wonderful hiking area due to the evergreen vegetation and the mild climate. In early spring, we enjoy the colours of the wild herbs, from April bloom lavender, broom and rock roses. With the warm temperatures in May and June you can even dare to jump into the sea after the hike. The hot days in midsummer are not recommended for hiking on the coastal paths, it is advisable to switch to higher elevations, for example to the trails in the hinterland. The autumn is ideal for hiking: in September we can watch the winemakers during grape harvest. In October and November ripen the delicious fruits of the strawberry trees, which we find everywhere along the trails, and the olive harvest is going on. 

 

Along the coast of the Riviera di Levante, there are countless interesting hikes - even after many years here, I still discover new great tours :-) 

 

In addition, there are several areas with special protection status:

- Cinque Terre National Park and Cinque Terre Marine Reserve

- Natural Park Portovenere and islands

- Natural Park Portofino

- Natural Park Montemarcello-Magra

 

You have the choice between shorter and more demanding day tours, with a walking time between 3 and 6 hours. The differences in altitude are within a range of 400 to a maximum of 700 meters ascent and there are always quite steep ascents and descents on narrow and stony paths. You should bring a certain fitness and be used to mountain hiking.

By the way, all coastal towns are easily accessible by train or boat - a car is not necessary. 

 

Recommended equipment: 

Hiking boots with good soles, hiking backpack, sufficient drinking water, sun protection and headgear, rain protection, possibly hiking poles.