Five villages one after the other, facing the sea where the asperity of the earth has hardened the life of the people. This zone of Liguria
(also called Riviera di Levante, where Portovenere and Levanto are the ideally "doors" of Cinque Terre), which covers a rocky and steep coast of 15 kilometres from Levanto to La Spezia, is an atropical territory, which means that it is different from the neighbouring areas because of the modifications carried out by the people to the original nature of its surface. Five millenaries stories with a common destiny: an exhausting, difficult and hard life, and only today some kind of redemption due to its tourist destiny that brings the five names around the world. The "Cinque Terre", where "Terre" (earth) stands for maritime medieval villages, have become one of Italy's main tourist attractions during the last years. The visitors from all over the world program trips, inserting at least one day to discover these five magic villages situated over the rocks near the sea. The north-European people arrive to the Cinque Terre by train directly from Frankfurt passing the Brenner.
Today the five villages maintain many ancient parts, and they exist in a situation of isolation which guarantees quietness and peace in a spectacular environment which keeps them unique. The local borrows work to keep harmony between the requirements of the local people and the savings of the natural and artistic beauties. The "collaboration" between the Cinque Terre's sea and mountains is able to form a unique and suggestive landscape: The mountains which reach up to 815 meters descend suddenly towards the sea, from which they are 500 or 2,500 meters away. And the part of the sea, which lies in front of the Cinque Terre, from the sounding to the surface, gives hospitality to a wide variety of animals and plants. This is also the reason why it has been inserted in the "Santuario dei Cetacei" as an international protected area.
It is interesting to point out that the Cinque Terre have been declared human world heritage by the UNESCO.