Pisa Overrated Crap

Trip Start Apr 12, 2008
Trip End Jun 18, 2008

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Flag of Italy  , Italian Riviera,
Tuesday, April 29, 2008

<Brian's brief chronological list of "highlights" (and of whinging)>
- Caught a train to Pisa. Walked over to the famous leaning tower and guess what? It's just a leaning tower... it was sorta underwhelming. It was funny watching all the people posing, pretending to be pushing the tower up or over... which of course we did as well.
- We then caught the train to Vernazza in the Cinque Terre, or the "5 lands"... which is basically 5 towns along the coast. Vernazza is the 4th town and is composed of one main street and a harbour. It's pretty quite there, until a large group of 30 or so teenagers come through.
- We checked in to our accom and walked around the main strip of town. Everything in town closes around 9pm, so there's not much to do really. Something screwy happened to the EEE PC, seems as though the powerpoint isn't giving enough current to charge and power up the EEE PC which was kinda distressing... I played DS instead...
<Lang's Extended Version>
We woke up this morning at around 7am to get ready to leave for our next destination - the Cinque Terre, or the "Five Lands" in the Italian Riviera. Our plan was to take the 8.30am train to Pisa, but when we got to the station, there was a train leaving in a few minutes, so we decided to take that instead. It took roughly an hour to get there and after checking our bags in, we went in search for the leaning tower. It wasn't that difficult to find, and all the places at the station were trying to charge at least a Euro for a map - crazy! Do they think all tourists are made of money or something??
Anyway,, we did the obligatory cheesy shot of trying to hold up the tower and watched others doing the same, it was hilarious actually. We had a quick walk around the so called "field of miracles" before leaving in search for a toilet. We found one in a small café and purchased a pastry and coffee each. We hadn't had a proper Italian coffee since Rome and that one really hit the spot. We have no idea how they can make it soooo good and smooth!
We headed back to the station and went to see if we could buy our next tickets to Murren, in the Swiss Alps. I also needed the rail pass validated as I wasn't sure I would get the chance to in Cinque Terre.
So after spending a good 30-45minutes sorting that out, we had another half hour to wait before our train departed so decided to get Maccas to share.. It costs 6.90 Euro for a meal and the burger was pretty crap..
The next train took about 1 and a half hours to La Spezia, then we had to catch the small regional train to Vernazza, one of the 5 villages in the Cinque Terre.
While waiting at the station, I got talking to 2 American couples who were also doing the backpacking thing - there was Josh, Mary, Julie and Patrick. They were only spending a night in Vernazza and were winging it, so had to find a place to stay when they got there. It was pretty funny as we kept bumping into them, but then again, Vernazza only had one main street, so it wasn't that difficult! We ended up sitting at the bay for a while chatting to them..
After that, we went in search for some food and ended up with a small slice of pizza each with the local specialty on them - pesto.. This was the place where pesto and foccacias were invented and it was oh, so good! The pizza base was just so fluffy and the ingredients on top were really fresh also.
It was about 5.30 when we went back to our room on the other side of the train station for a rest. By around 8pm, we decided to head back out again, but 90% of the shops and restaurants were closed.. All the day trippers and school kids had left and everything was pretty quiet. It was nice in a way, but we also wanted some food!
One of the few restaurants that were still open, was the Blue Marlin so we shared a pizza before calling it a night - we had a big day tomorrow..
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anel claassen on

Where did you stay in Vernazza and how much did you pay?

flashpackers on

Hi there,

We stayed here - http://www.cinqueterrecamere.com/index2.html.. At the time it was 65€/night, but obviously this would have increased since we went 3 years ago..

Hope that helps..


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