Vernazza is a town and comune located in the province of La Spezia, Liguria, northwestern Italy. It is one of the five towns that make up the Cinque Terre region.
Vernazza is the fourth town heading north, has no car traffic, and remains one of the truest “fishing villages” on the Italian Riviera.
It is the only natural port of Cinque Terre and is famous for its elegant houses.
Vernazza’s name is derived from the Latin adjective verna, meaning “native”. The aptly named indigenous wine, vernaccia (“local” or “ours”), helped give birth to the village’s moniker.
The town, like also the other villages of the Cinque Terre, greatly testifies the hard job of the farmers that “ modelled” the earth of the steep slant to build the innumerable terraces, where nowadays olive trees and vineyards luxuriant grow, as well as scented and coloured gardens.
Unique natural harbour of the Cinque Terre, the town develops itself along the stream Vernazzola (now covered), and goes up on the slopes of a rocky spur that it hides the inhabited area to the ones coming from the sea.
Steep and narrow trails go down toward the main road flowing to a small square in front of the harbour.
The presence of valuable architectural elements, like loggias, arcades and portals testifies that in the past life level here was economically and socially higher than in the other towns of Cinque Terre.
Also nowadays it appears, in fact, as a noble and elegant village overlooking the sea.