No matter what anyone tells you, do not go to Cinque Terre. And everyone who has been to Italy will tell you to go there.
It is a series of 5 villages perched up on the cliffs over the sea. And at one time, when the area was undiscovered by Rick Steves (don’t get me started on the topic of this imbecile), it was a lovely and quaint place to visit. Now it is a completely congested mess filled with touristy shops and restaurants. To be honest, I didn’t eat there so maybe the restaurants are great. But I doubt it. Food in places that are packed with tourists is rarely good.
The round trip to Riomaggiore, the southernmost of the 5 villages, from Portovenere on a ferry was sort of nice, in a really crowded but controlled way. Once you get to there, though, yikes, it is as if you are in a huge line to get anywhere. There is always someone in front of you no matter where you are and they are stopping to take a goddam picture, light a goddam cigarette, or gawp at something that looks just the last goddam thing they saw. The problem is that the view from the sea is lovely but once you’re on land you don’t see much except other people, and mostly they aren’t that pretty. These are old fishing villages that are not so picturesque close up and are not really equipped to handle large crowds. We turned around and took the next ferry outta there.