The next train hop dropped us into Manarola, the second of the Cinque Terre towns. Tall and narrow houses cling to the side of the cliff, their colors of peach, apricot, and lemon brightening the pewter-gray skies. Small slashes of green from the ubiquitous shutters punctuate the pastels.
A narrow stone pathway that hugged the mountain brought us from the train platform down to Piazza Capellini, marking the beginning of our town walk. In the piazza’s center an enamel mosaic encircled with marine motifs decorate its center.
Walking deeper into town, we waded through a sea of boats parked on the main street, seemingly flung there by a rogue wave. We learned that since there is no proper harbor, the street also serves as a maritime parking lot.
Ready for a bracing cup of espresso, we ducked out of threatening skies and into a cozy cafe. A band’s instruments were set up in a corner waiting for their musicians. After a brief rest, revived and warmed, we set out to complete our walk through and above town.