Day Trips from Cinque Terre: Portofino

Our last day in Italy, we took a day trip from Cinque Terre to Santa Margherita and Portofino. 

It's about an hour train ride from Monterosso and well worth the trip!  However, there were some things we learned so I want to help you avoid the mistakes we made!

If coming from Monterosso, you will take for Santa Margherita.  This is how you get to Portofino.  There are several train options, but it'd be best to get the train that goes directly to S. Margherita.   

The trains can be very confusing in Italy!  If you've been, you probably know.  We got on the wrong train (went past Santa Margherita) and ended up being delayed an hour to get on the right train. The best advice I can offer is to plan your trip the day before or a couple of days in advance.  Go to the train station to find out what time the train to Santa Margherita departs and ask multiple people to verify!  See if any other tourists are going that way and compare notes.  We did not plan ahead and that led to our mishaps!  The attendant that helped us was so confident and we followed his instructions exactly and ended up on the wrong train, way past our stop!  We had to back track(also waited an hour for the train to come, that was supposed to be every half hour), but once we arrived, it was all worthwhile!

On the edge of S. Margherita, heading into Portofino

When you get to the train station at S. Margherita, you can either walk or take the bus to Portofino.  We love walking, but we did not realize how far it was and I wore my Toms! Not the best for a 9 mile walk. :)  We had been hiking every day prior so we thought this was our "rest day"! Ha! We enjoyed it though because it was so beautiful! We stopped and had lunch in Santa Margherita I had a delicious shrimp pesto dish! Oh can't get enough of that fresh pesto in Italy! After that we continued to Portofino.  

The walk through Santa Margherita was a little crazy with Vespa's flying by us, and it feels like your walking forever, but once we reached this hotel the walk becomes truly breathtaking! 

After passing through this hotel you'll see signs to continue to Portofino and there's an uphill path to follow.

I'm actually really glad we walked because it was probably my favorite part!  You begin to see the houses perched up over the harbor and it really is more beautiful than pictures can capture.  Once in Portofino there's plenty to do! Shopping, getting gelato and people watching!  

We saw a wedding party unloading from a yacht and we oohed and ahhed wondering if it was a famous celebrity!  We almost felt like we didn't belong here it was so posh!  

It's definitely a little touristy here, but the views coming into the harbor were magnificent!

Portofino definitely has a much ritzier feel than the towns of Cinque Terre.  It was absolutely stunning!  It was a fun change up from wearing mostly athletic clothes and hiking all day!  I prefer the more rustic vibe of the Cinque Terre for the majority of our trip, but I'm so glad we made the day trip here! It was truly unforgettable!

Happy Traveling!


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