Riomaggiore – The Gateway to Cinque Terre

Riomaggiore cinque terre italy

Riomaggiore is the first town of Italy’s stunning Cinque Terre. This popular beachside region offers stunning clifftop views, quaint old towns with colourful houses, beautiful clear water for swimming and challenging hikes. Read more about our highlights and recommendations for Cinque Terre in our blog post here!

Riomaggiore was our favourite of the five Cinque Terre towns for a variety of reasons which we will discuss through this post. It also served as our base during our 4 night stay, with our accommodation situated in the heart of the town.

Why We Loved Riomaggiore:

The Sunset:

The sunset on the rocks at Riomaggiore is stunning, and the most popular of the five towns. Even if you’re not staying in Riomaggiore, you should try to catch one of the sunsets here.


The entire Cinque Terre region offers great hikes. Riomaggiore has a great hike up to the monastery above, with this offering stunning panoramic views of the town and hills surrounding. You will have to work for this view however, with around an hour of constant uphill required to get there.

Swimming off the rocks:

Swimming off the rocks is common and beautiful in all of the Cinque Terre towns. In Riomaggiore, they have a rocky beach around the corner to the left of the town, however we much preferred swimming off the rocks in the harbour. You get clear water and great views of the cute colour houses.

Keen to take some great split shots in the water with your smartphone? We use the GDome and find it excellent for underwater photos and video with your smartphone. Take a look here for more info.

Coffee with a view:

Tucked into the base of the main street right near the water is a little coffee shop/bar. Situated just under the kayak hire stall, this little coffee shop offers the perfect place to sit for a coffee with a view. Whilst we didn’t have a meal here, the setting for a drink is perfect. Alternatively, grab a take-away coffee and sit on the rocks in the early morning sunshine.

Wine (Or Spritz) with a view:

One of our favourite little moments in Riomaggiore was grabbing a drink at I Trogi. Situated at the base of the main street, this offers a great way to experience the vibe and location without the pricetag of the expensive restaurants in the same location. Alternatively, grab a bottle of wine from the supermarket and sit with a view (see below).

Take-away on the rocks watching a sunset:

Grab some take-away food, a bottle of wine or spritz, and head down to the rocks around sunset. This was one of our favourite moments in Riomaggiore. An alternative view point from the main harbour would be the panoramic street that runs parallel and above the main street in Riomaggiore.

A few food, wine & coffee recommendations in Riomaggiore:


The food in Riomaggiore, and Cinque Terre as a whole, isn’t particularly budget friendly. To work around this, one of the fun and easy options we did was head to the local supermarkets (Coop) or the multiple delis on the street. Grab some proiscutto, fresh pesto (Cinque Terre is known for it’s pesto), sundried tomatoes, cheese and whatever else takes your fancy. Head to your rooftop terrace like we did, or down by the water and enjoy a cheap meal that is very ‘Italian’. There are also multiple bakeries offering pastries, pizza and focaccia style options, however we tried to limit our consumption of these where possible.


There were a number of take-away options in Riomaggiore, including your stock standard Italian favourites (e.g. pizza, pasta etc). Our go-to options in Riomaggiore were:

  • Bottega Alimentare Riomaggiore: This unassuming little shop offered some healthy and budget friendly breakfast/brunch options, including fruit and yoghurt, smoothies and a Melbourne favourite, avocado toast.
  • Il Pescato: There were 3 or 4 options for fish cones in Riomaggiore, however upon recommendation, we tried Il Pescato. Our experience was excellent, and we loved the mixed seafood and the vegetable cones. We would advise to go when it’s busier (e.g. middle of the day) rather that late evening, as the food is fresher.
Wine Bar:

As mentioned above, I Trogi Riomaggiore was a great little wine bar we enjoyed during our stay. Grab a drink and enjoy the seaside views.

Top Quality Eats:

We received recommendations to check out a few of Riomaggiore’s top restaurants, Dau Cila (has a Michelin star) and Rio Bistrot. We didn’t get to them, but their location, and reviews mean that if you’re looking for some fine dining they may be worth checking out.

Where we stayed:

We stayed in Riomaggiore, the first town of the five (closest to La Spezia) for 4 nights. We stayed in a cute little room along the main street and only a few minutes from the train station and the beach. The place was called Via Dei Banchi and it’s somewhere we would recommend due to location, cost, awesome host and the rooftop terrace. Check it out here!!


Check out the things you MUST DO when in Cinque Terre!

Have a look at what we did during our 48 hour stay in Florence, Italy. Check it out!

Take a look at some more highlights, tips and advice from our travels in Italy! Check it out here!

Check out further highlights from our time in the Europe! Take a look!

Keen to take a look at further travel memories and advice? Take a look here!

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