In the area of Cinque Terre, Italy the most popular beach is in the town of Monterosso. The white sand beaches of Monterosso offers umbrellas, a boardwalk, restaurants and large crowds. This town seemed to be mostly populated with tourists and for that reason it was my least favorite beach!
Personally I prefer the small, quiet beaches hidden off the beaten path. I went to three wonderful beaches in Cinque Terre. Although they may seem unconventional, they offer peaceful and clear blue waters.
1. Corniglia Del Mar in Corniglia, Italy-
The swimming beach in Corniglia is not a traditional beach. Hundreds of feet below the shops and restaurants of Corniglia is a small cove were swimmers can enjoy a dip in the sea. While there is no sand on this beach, there are large flat, black rocks sprawling along the shore. Although the rocks of this beach can be treacherous to navigate they are perfect for relaxing on. The waters here are choppy and can be difficult to get into, but if you jump off the end of the dock you can swim around in less wavy water.
2. Hidden Beach in Vernazza, Italy-
This beach can only be accessed during low tide. When my friend and I first walked into the town of Vernazza we could not see the way to the beach because it was underwater. But when the tide went out, suddenly there was a large muddy tunnel with a sign that read ‘do not enter’ in several languages. Naturally, this intrigued our curiosity and we had to see what was on the other side. After we walked through the tunnel a large pebble beach appeared. This beach is quiet and has a gradual decline into the sea. It is perfect for swimming.
3. Strada Provinciale delle Cinque Terre Beach in Monarola, Italy-
I’m not sure the real name of this beach but it is located off of the Strada Provinciale delle Cinque Terre walking path. If you walk to the northern ocean front of Monarola you will see a walking path that takes you to a wonderful area for pictures. It seemed as though after people snapped their photos they would head back into town. But the path continues around the peninsula and leads to a great place to swim. There is a large concrete slab that was once used as boat access. This is where locals will lay out their towels. If you walk to the bottom of the incline this is a perfect place to jump into the calm waters and take a dip.