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Early arrival in Cinque Terre

My daughter and I will be traveling to Cinque Terre by train from Naples in early June. We were thinking of taking the overnight train. But it arrives very early in the morning !
Has anyone done this? Hotel check -in times are much later than this arrival time.

I’m wondering if we should rethink this idea.
We didn’t want to spend a good part of our day in transit from Naples, but we may have no choice.

Any thoughts?

Posted by
688 posts

Do they still have night trains? I didn’t look but I wouldn’t. If memory serves me, you would have to change trains so I doubt you would get much sleep.
I looked into doing this about 7 years ago and decided I wouldn’t get any sleep.

Posted by
1341 posts

hey hey caldot
if you are determined to come by train, if available, I wouldn’t do it, rent the room the day before and inform hotel what you’re doing. Be there when hotel opens and your room should be ready and waiting you. Another expense but you’re in charge of it.

Posted by
2338 posts

Learn something new every day. I didn't realize Trenitalia had night trains on that route. Looks like you have to change trains in Pisa or La Spezia for the last part of the trip, so your sleep (such as you might get) would be shorter than you might like. Note that the train will be stopping at several intermediate stations during the night, with all the attendant noise and jerking. We've done night trains a few times and manage to get a few hours sleep, but usually are tired the next day.

As for your hotel - you could likely have them store your bags while you are out and about for the day. Or you could pay for the previous night so it would be available when you arrive ( be sure the hotel is aware of your arrival time so they don't write you off as a no show and give away your room).

Posted by
5690 posts

We were thinking of taking the overnight train. I’m wondering if we should rethink this idea.


Any thoughts?


Others have already articulated the reasons a night train may not be the best plan.

Posted by
11091 posts

Double "UGH" for all reasons listed. I'd look at leaving Naples very early in the morning instead, and choosing an option taking least amount of hours and changes. For instance, looks like there's one that departs Napoli Centrale at 5:00 AM and gets to La Spezia at 9:37; one change in Rome. From there you'd catch a local train to whichever village you're staying in.

Yes, it's early but figure with the potential discomfort and the many night train stops which may disturb your sleep, you'd have to choose which end you're willing to lose some ZZZ's. Personally I'd opt for an early bedtime and that 5:00 AM train. It would also allow me to look out the window and watch the Italian world go by. :O)

Contact your accommodation in the CT and ask if they'll store your luggage until check-in.

Posted by
1058 posts

N_Kingdom, regarding your very relevant comment. The Cinque Terre are crowded even w/o the cruise ships. About 2.5 million people will visit the CT this year vs. 650,000 cruise passengers into La Spezia - many of whom don't travel to the villages.

Posted by
482 posts

Mike you are correct. People say "it's very pleasant early morning and evening," but so's everywhere else.

Posted by
2 posts

Thanks everyone for your input! We will use your tips and advice in making our final plans to get from Naples to Monterosso.

Although we’ve been to Italy before, it will be our first trip to the CinqueTerre. From my reading, I’m aware ( as suggested here) that the crowds can be crushing! I had a similar experience in Venice four years ago when two cruise ships docked there. Literally, there was no room to walk along the canals.
We will stay in Monterosso for four days, and venture out from there . So , during peak hours, we can try to avoid the crazies.

I’ll be back with more questions as we continue planning .......

Mille grazie!