3. From Levanto: E-bike Through the Cinque Terre to Vernazza
We will meet in Levanto, at our garage (located in via Galli 62, 7-minute walk from the train station). After the explanations on the correct use of pedal-assisted ebikes (no throttle assist), we effortlessly start to go uphill in the beautiful valley of Levanto, where our journey into the beauty and the history of this region begins. Stops for taking pictures are always welcome. The first longer stop is at the sacred sanctuary of "Madonna di Soviore", right above Monterosso. This amazing place has 1300 years of history, and the panorama of the National Park and the coast towards Portofino is simply amazing. Here you can also find a cafeteria, a restroom, and a fountain for refilling your bottle of water. We then proceed further into the National Park of the Cinque Terre. The panorama slowly opens at the point that we will be able to see the coast of the Cinque Terre until Riomaggiore. If the air is dry enough, it's also possible to see Corsica on the horizon. We arrive at a panoramic spot right above Vernazza. From here we can have the most iconic and instagrammable view of the Cinque Terre: the small colorful houses, the small bay of Vernazza, the clear water of the Ligurian Sea, and the hills and vineyards surrounding the town. Paradise has to be nearby! ;-) In another 5 minutes, we arrive at the second sacred sanctuary that we visit on the tour: "Madonna di Reggio", above Vernazza. Here we have a taste of Ligurian focaccia accompanied by a great local white wine. After some minutes of rest in the shade of centuries-old holm oaks, we go down to Vernazza. Here you have to possibility to visit the town, its cute square nearby the bay, the medieval church, the narrow local streets, the castle and its tower 500 years old, and the harbor. Finally, the return to Levanto is done by train, loading the bikes into the special wagons. This tour is suitable for everyone, from 0 to 80 years. Small children can be carried in a trolley attached to mama's or papa's bike. While starting from 9 years old, if children are at least 1.30 cm (4'3'') tall and can safely manage a bike on a road where cars are present, they can ride their own bike. In the hot season, riding an e-bike permits to stay fresh, due to the wind which is like a natural fan. This tour gives you the opportunity to explore the true heart of this region: the terraced landscape, that in the past hosted hundreds of vineyards. Wine production has made history here, and the agricultural traditions are still part of the local heritage.