Vernazza (Cinque Terre, Italy)

9.19.2012- Cinque Terre, Italy is an oasis from the crowds found elsewhere on the Italian Coast.  Granted, it is not exactly a secret from European tourists, but it is truly authentic.  Cars cannot enter the 5 little villages that make up the Cinque Terre lining the coast, so you can enjoy the narrow, cobbled streets and seaside views in peace.

Sadly, in October of 2011, heavy rains brought on severe mudslides; Vernazza (pictured here in 2009) and neighboring Monterosso were covered in mud–up to 12 feet deep in places.  The two towns have since cleared the tons of mud and continue repairs at a remarkable speed.  Cinque Terre is once again open for tourists smart enough (and lucky enough) to plan a trip there.

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