The village of Monterosso has the largest number of inhabitants of the Cinque Terre villages, and many vineyards and olive groves unfold around it. This place has a unique building: the Aurora Tower, which was constructed in ancient times on the hill of San Cristoforo to defend the village from pirate attacks, today separates the old medieval hamlet from the modern residential area. Several unique architectural constructions of historical value for the whole of Italy are preserved in the old part of the village, while the new part is very lively. Indeed, you will find numerous restaurants and luxury hotels here, as well as the local authorities.
Article was last updated in December, 2023.
How to reach Monterosso and get around
The train station is located in the modern part of the town, 5-10 minutes' walk from the historic center. From the station you can see the beach and this is the closest outlet to the sea in all of Italy. For further information on prices and timetables go to the page “By train”.
Boats ply regularly between La Spezia, Porto Venere and all villages of the Cinque Terre (except Corniglia). The port of Monterosso is marked on the map. More information on the page “By boat”.
Many footpaths that depart from several places in the surroundings, lead to Monterosso. More information on the page “Cinque Terre Hiking Trails”.
We advise you not to go to these villages by car. Even though there are 2 large parking areas in Monterosso (which are marked on the map, €2.5/h, no more than €25/day), from May to August they are often all full, so it is better to leave the car in La Spezia.
What to see in Monterosso
All the most important places of interest in Monterosso are located in the 1historic center of the town, on the hill of San Cristoforo. Here you can still see the walls of the fortress, the lookout turrets, ancient castles which will enchant you with their medieval air, but Monterosso’s true gem is the 2Capuchin Monastery, one of the most beautiful places in Italy.
It is also worthwhile to dedicate some time to a creation of Italian Gothic and Baroque architecture of the XIII century, the 3church of San Giovanni with its stone bell tower, and the 4oratory of the Confraternity of the Neri Mortis et Orationis, where there is a statue of Sant'Antonio Abate in the dungeons.
If you spend time at Fegina beach, we suggest you to see the famous 5statue of Neptune, situated on the rocky point, overlooking the Ligurian sea. This god of the sea, conceived by Arrigo Minerbi and Levaceri, was built in concrete in 1910. The Neptune is almost 46 feet (14 m) high, and weighs 1,700 tons. After the Second World War and the storm of 1966, the statue was considerably damaged, but has been recently partially restored.
What to see near Monterosso
In an hour’s walk along trail 509 (ex 9) you will come across the 6Sanctuary of Our Lady of Soviore, patroness of the seas, the oldest church in the whole of Liguria. Mentions of this Shrine have been found in documents as far back as 1220. The Sanctuary is composed of several buildings, among which are the Church, the refuge and the bell tower.
Also in an hour’s walk from Monterosso along the SVA (ex 10) trail, you can reach the top of 7Punta Mesco. Panoramic photos from here are simply spectacular.
Trails near Monterosso
There are three well-known hiking trails: two of them (one short and one long) lead to Vernazza and another to Levanto. The latter is the longest and most difficult, but there are some fascinating views from the tracks that run around Punta Mesco and from the top of the hills.
Where to stay in Monterosso?
Hotels in Monterosso are among the most popular in the Cinque Terre, that is why you should choose and book the hotel in advance of your trip. We suggest you consider these options:
Camere D'Autore La Poesia
Rating: Wonderful, 9.4.
Casa d'Elite with 4 rooms is located in the medieval center of Monterosso, 100 yards (100 m) from the beach. The interiors of the rooms are decorated with beautiful fabrics and furniture. The rooms are air conditioned, with bathroom, hairdryer, satellite TV, telephone, safe and minibar.
Rating: Very good, 8.3.
Hotel Souvenir is not far from the center of Monterosso and beach and 10 minutes from the railway station. Good rooms, recently renovated, with large bathrooms. There is a roof terrace with deck chairs.
Rating: Very good, 8.3.
The building is situated in an elevated position, along the path that goes from the sandy beach of Gigante to the hotel, 875 yards (800 m) long, and it takes about 7-10 minutes to walk it. The bus stop is nearby taking you into the center of Monterosso in 5 minutes. The train station is 1.2 miles (2 km) away.
Or you can compare some of the hotels based on the comments from tourists and at the prices indicated on this page.
Where to eat in Monterosso
The most interesting restaurants are located in the historical center of Monterosso. The two most famous places offering local cuisine are marked on the map: the Restaurant 8Cantina del Pescatore, as well as more economical option, the 9San Martino.
We suggest you also visit the famous wine cellar 10Enoteca da Eliseo, where you can taste the Ligurian wines until late evening.
When to visit Monterosso
Monterosso is much loved by tourists: and precisely for this reason tourists come here all year round. The natural beauty of the place, its size compared to the rest of the villages of the Cinque Terre and the great variety of places to go are a real attraction for tourists. And, although the ideal time to visit it is from March to October, even in December with a temperature around +10°C (50 deg. F), you will see some hardy souls swimming in the sea.