This weekend was the first trip that Gonzaga had planned for us, it was an excursion to Cinque Terre. Cinque Terre is a group of five villages along the Italian coast. We took a bus to the largest village of the Cinque Terre, Monterosso, it was a three hour trip from Florence and by the time we got to Monterosso all I wanted was some food. Cinque Terre is the birthplace of pesto so for the first night we figured that pesto pizzas for everyone would be the best choice, it was a good call.
Cinque Terre is a UNESCO World Herritage site that I would label as a worth while stop on any trip through Italy. The name translates to 'five lands' and the best way to explore them is on foot, with a beautiful (but difficult) trail connecting all five of the villages it is a great way to spend the first half of a day, but be ready for a tough couple of miles between Monterosso, Vernazza, and Corniglia. The rest of the hike is more of a walk, between Corniglia, Manarola, and Riomaggiore the path is level and paved. After the hike you have two choices to get back you can take the train which is quick but no view or you can take the ferry back which gives you great views of the villages and it only takes half an hour from end to end. I took the ferry back and had myself a little nap time before dinner. Dinner was an amazing experience, the staff took us to arguably the best restaurant in all of Cinque Terre, Ristorante Belvedere in Monterosso, it was one of the best meals I've ever had. They served us homemade pasta with pesto sauce, it was amazing, I had four servings. Then they served us veal with potatoes and green beans. For dessert they had homemade tiramisu that was quite good. After dinner we all went out to a bar for drinks, I had a mojito, only because mom had mentioned that she wanted to try one this summer (it was good).
Went home early, the trip was supposed to last until Sunday but by lunch on Saturday I had seen enough of Cinque Terre. So Tim and I got tickets to La Spezia and from there we got tickets to Pisa and from Pisa we went to Florence. I didn't stop and see the Leaning Tower but Pisa is only an hour away by train so I will go back, maybe even next weekend.