Here are my 5 Insider Tips for successfully visiting Cinque Terre:
1) Go on a weekday. The crowds are slightly less packed making it easier to transport between villages by train. If you are there for a weekend trip, the mornings and late afternoons are prime if you’re looking for a quiet crowd.
2) If you can try to say overnight within one of the villages. You get to see the sun rise and sunset! You can find some accommodation inside the five towns or just off the outskirts of Cinque Terre.
3) Cinque Terre is suitable for all ages. So bring the entire family. For children explore the beaches, tackle the seaside playgrounds or relax with delicious Italian gelato. For teens try cliff diving or trek the famous coast line for amazing views. For adults, fancy a romantic evening during sunset or a stroll around the village after dusk.
4) You can rent sun chairs and umbrellas while at the beach for a small price. This is common throughout Italy and leaving your belongings here is seen as relatively safe.
5) The main form of transportation between villages is the train. There are walking trails which lead to all five which make for an amazing daytime hike. Otherwise, the trains operated by Trenitalia, run frequently and quickly to all five villages.
If you’re deciding whether or not to make the trip, I’d say do it. The colorful houses can brighten any rainy day. It’s a UNESCO world heritage site for a reason. It just can’t be missed.