Going from west to east, Vernazza is the second village of Cinque Terre we meet after Monterosso.
By many, it is also considered to be the most striking village of Cinque Terre. Already in the Middle Ages, it was economically and socially developed and still today this is shown by its several valuable architectural buildings, such as loggias, churches, tower-houses and porches.
This little lovely village is overawed by the ruins of a “castrum”, a series of fortifications dating back to the 11th century, a castle and a tower. In 1276, it permanently became a property of the Republic of Genoa. During the struggle against Pisa, a port was built in order to allow the galleys to shore.
The most important historical monument here is Santa Margherita di Antiochia, (St. Margaret of Antioch), a Romanesque-Genoese style church, which was built in the 13th century. Dedicated to the patron of the town, it remains intact: in the inside you can marvel at three well-preserved wide naves and an unspoilt altar.
Over the town of Vernazza, at 325 meters above sea level, visitors can marvel also at the magnificent Romanesque Sanctuary of Nostra Signora di Reggio (Our Lady of Reggio), easily reachable from the old town through a path which ends in a shadowy square, where you can find a spring streaming. Such a church, whose origins date back to 1248, is tucked away among the gently rolling hills, in close contact with a still unspoilt nature at more than 300 meters above sea level, from which you can enjoy a breathtaking panorama.
Finally, no visit to Vernazza would be complete without visiting the Doria Castle, whose construction dates back to the 11th century. The cylindrical tower, restored during the 20th century, represents the most ancient part of the fortification.
We remind you also that every year, Vernazza celebrates the traditional Feast of St Margaret of Antioch on July 20th. During the day you can find several stalls in the main street of the village, whereas in the evening there are spectacular fireworks.
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