United Arab Emirates, Italy · 8 Days · 9 Moments · October 2017

Karen's tour through Italy

10 October 2017

Last day in Vernazza started with a walk through the weekly market before the train journey back to Rome and some night time sightseeing. Early morning start tomorrow for Malta

9 October 2017

Last day in the Cinque Terra and a relaxing one. Friends from Sydney, Paul and Maree Girdler are staying further up the coast and came to Vernazza for lunch. A short leisurely stroll around the village was followed by a long leisurely lunch by the waterside with a bottle of the local vino. A late afternoon swim just before sunset was a nice ending to a glorious day.

8 October 2017

A train trip to Pisa and Lucca today. Arrived in Pisa to find it was the Pisa marathon so had a bird's eye view as the bus made its way from the station. The train trip to Lucca was no less eventful as I found myself sharing the very packed train with all the Pisa football fans on the way to play their great rivals Lucca. On arrival they were hoarded onto buses with a police escort to the ground - one police van for every bus. The walled city of Lucca was a lovely way to pass the afternoon.

7 October 2017

Boat day! Having done a hop on hop off bus in Hong Kong and the hop on hop off train in the Cinque Terra it was time for the hop on hop off ferry. A cool morning which turned into clear blue skies and a warm day with a sensational sunset (viewed from the castle restaurant) in Vernazza. A great seafood meal as well washed down with local vino. So today's photos show the perspective from the water. Also took in Portoveno 30 minutes south of the 5 villages. You'll see the new look for summer is a g string bikini with boots! Those rocks sure are tough on the feet - not sure how they go for swimming though

6 October 2017

Vernazza to Corniglia to Volastra to Manorola What a day! 20,000 steps (2 thirds of them uphill on the side of a mountain) 13.7kms and 196 floors recorded on my fit bit. Around five to six hours of fun. .... and then a bus to the next town and a walk up to a cliff top restaurant for a jug of sangria. The photos do not do justice to the climb or views but we started at sea level and those photos looking down were where we had climbed. Walking through vineyards and olive groves - sensational Tomorrow I'm going to chill out on a boat...

5 October 2017

With the weather looking a little inclement I abandoned my idea of a boat trip and instead bought a 'hop on hop off' ticket for the train between the 5 villages. All have something unique to offer but I think I'm staying in the prettiest. Not sure how the Italians eat so many carbs so just as well the Chinese diet was fairly close to vegetarian to counteract this week's diet. Croissant for breakfast, a very good focaccia for lunch, the obligatory gelato (fig and mango - got to have your fruit) and Frito misto at a restaurant recommended by the Rick Styne - excellent. Just as well I clocked up 21,000 steps.

4 October 2017

A relaxing 4 and a half hour train trip later I arrived in the village of Vernazza, one of a group of 5 villages on the cliff face north of Italy. First impressions were exactly as expected. A couple of hours wandering around as the day ended and the sunset over the water. Already I have met a number of other tourists. Sally and her mother (60ish) from Victoria who I sat next to at dinner (a yummy pesto gnocchi), Stacy and David from anchorage who invited me to their balcony overlooking the sea for a drink and a couple from the Sunshine Coast.

3 October 2017

36 hours in Rome and I fell in love with it again. A croissant to start the day, 24 thousand steps traversing the Tiber river, Piazza Navona, the Pantheon, the view from Trastevere, gelato, bruschetta, pasta and wine

2 October 2017

A truly decadent experience flying first class from Hong Kong To Dubai and then Dubai to Rome. I was the only first class passenger on both flights... my advice, save your frequent flyer points and indulge once in your life. A few photos to wet your appetite.