Monterosso al Mare lies in the most eastern part of the Cinque Terre, and it is the first village, which you will reach coming from Levanto. Monterosso was probably constructed after Albareto's destruction by the "Longobardi" in the 7th century. The place-name appears for the first time in a document of the year 1056.
It is definitively known that Monterosso was a feud of the Obertenghi and the Da Passano; in 1276 it was handed over to Genoa which took care of its fortification.
The village is closed between various hills (which go down to the sea), olive-trees, lemon-trees and above all vineyards which produce an excellent white wine.
The village consists of two centers with two sand beaches: Fegina and Monterosso. Monterosso is the antique settlement which in part has maintained its characteristics. Its main axes is constituted by the covered brook Buranco. About 100 years ago in the west of the village's old part a residential zone with villas (Fegina) was constructed.
This zone has launched the Cinque Terre's discovery by the tourists. Today the original agricultural-maritime vocation has been replaced by the tourism which is also responsible for the building expansion. Because of its wide dimensions Monterosso does not impress you with the typical charm of the Cinque Terre's other villages, nevertheless it will be able to fascinate you.
It offers e.g. a lot of accommodations and two big beaches. Furthermore, the street along the sea is ideal for having a long walk in the evening and during the day.
- San Francesco - A pedestrian street goes up along the slope of the hill San Cristoforo that divides Monterosso from Fegina, and that leads to the Capuchin's monastery with the adjoined church of S. Francesco.
Inside you can admire the historical-architectonic richness like e.g. the crucifixion by Van Dyck.
- San Giovanni Battista - You should have a look at the beautiful church S. Giovanni Battista of the year 1244. It is a wonderful example of the Ligurian gothic with a front in marble and local stone, and with the belfry which originally was a watch tower.
- To Madonna di Soviore - You have to go towards north along the street which goes up to the hill Gritta, where you turn right towards Pian di Barca (km 5,9); or if you go by foot, you have to follow the path N. 9 (1.20 hours). Crossing an area of olive-trees, you will arrive at the Sanctuary (464 m), which has very old origins dated back the Rotari's invasion.
The church was modified in the 14th century, and restructured between the 18th and 19th century. Its front contains a valuable ogival door, which conserves in the center a bas-relief of marble (Madonna Addolorata).
On the mountain side of the wide square, you can see a guest-rooms' building with arches, built in the 18th century and enlarged for the last time in 1909.
- To the promontory of Mesco - 311 m - path N. 10 - 45 min. From the beach of Fegina, after having left behind the "Giant" (a stone sculpture), you will go up by mule-tracks to the rests of the church of S. Antonio, from where you can go on to Levanto.
- To Vernazza - path N. 2 - have a look at the "blue path".