Feast of San Lorenzo
Quite by coincidence, we arrived in Manarola on the day of the Feast of San Lorenzo (Aug. 10). In terms of festivals, it isn't that big, but since we love Manarola, it was a nice surprise. Many of the residents light up their homes with white christmas lights, children dress in white robes carrying black lanterns and all of the entire town convenes at the main square until mass has finished. After mass is done, they go in a procession throughout the village, carrying a cross and a big iconic chest in honour of San Lorenzo.
LOCK UP THE LOVE
Well named the Via dell' Amore means the road (or street) of love and links Manarola with Riomaggiore via a well maintained walking track that hugs the cliffs.
There is a covered section where the hill side is too steep and dangerous to carve out a walkway and its there where the famous statue and lovers chair awaits.
The idea is that a loving couple will lock a padlock to the railings close to the statue and throw away the key and therefore they will never part.
Cute story and if only we could have other Via dell' Amore's in other parts of the world, just maybe the world might be a better place.
- Romantic Travel and Honeymoons
There is obviously a fair amount of wine produced here and behind and part way around the town are vinyards that strretch up the hillsides. There are a lot of religious symbols and scenes included and are the work of a local artist who inherited the task from his father. I was told that on religious holidays they are all lighted up. Quite a sight it must be as even not lighted they add an interesting character and some insight into the devotion of the local folk.
- Arts and Culture
On a hill overlooking the town is Manarola's cemetery. It is quite different from what we are used to in the US. Each niche had a photograph of the deceased, some had inscriptions, some had candles and many had fresh flowers. Another difference we have noticed in many European cemeteries is that they are much better cared for than in our country. It is really touching and sobering to see such respect for those who have gone before and in many cases enabled later generations to be who and what they are.
The hills of the Cinque Terre are covered with grape vines, baking in the Ligurian sunshine and waiting to be harvested each autumn and made into the delicious wine that we love to drink on our visits there.
Due to the precarious way that the grapes are grown - on steep cliffs, an ingenious Monorail network has been built to carry the grapes once picked.
It is big enough to carry the driver and containers of precious cargo (aka grapes).
So after a long day hiking past the vineyards, whilst you are sipping a chilled glass of vino bianco, look to the hills and amaze over the ingenious Monorail!
- Hiking and Walking
- Budget Travel
- Wine Tasting
There is no harbor in Manarola so boats are parked on the main road of the town (below the train tunnel). It is very colorful.
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