Avoid­ing crowds in Italy’s Cinque Terre

Baltimore Sun Sunday - - TRAVEL -

Es­cape to al­ter­na­tive trails and towns.

If you hear that it’ll be a busy cruise day, plan your ac­tiv­i­ties else­where. If you’d like to hit the beach but Mon­terosso’s is a park­ing lot of bod­ies, hop the train a few min­utes to nearby Le­vanto, rent a bike and pedal on a level path to the de­light­ful (and far less crowded) beaches at Bonas­sola or Fra­mura.

Skip the tourist conga line on the coastal trail.

The en­tire Cinque Terre is criss­crossed with hik­ing trails where you’ll scarcely en­counter an­other per­son. The of­fices of the Cinque Terre na­tional park (there’s one in each town) are a great re­source for learn­ing about your op­tions.

Don’t let the vertical ter­rain in­tim­i­date you.

DO­MINIC ARI­ZONA BONUCCELLI/RICK STEVES’ EUROPE

The pic­ture-per­fect set­ting of the Cinque Terre vil­lages (in this case, Riomag­giore) draws mil­lions of tourists an­nu­ally.

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