Manarola is a picturesque village with bright colours.
The houses stand on a promontory stretching in the sea, and a small creek for the boats is enclosed within the rocks.
The village, which is older than Riomaggiore, takes its name from from a temple dedicated to the Mani ( the soul of the departed) "Manium arula". Its special colour was caught on canvas and handed down to us by the painters Llewelin Lloyd and Antonio Discovolo. But the original citadel was in the Roman "vicus" higher up in "Volastra".
The village is situated in a narrow valley and the sides of the hills are planted with vines producing the famous wine called "Sciacchetrà".
Travelling by the sea, a spur appears, which rises from the sea. On the left you can see a small seemingly dug in the rocks, acting as a harbour for small boats. On the spur, sheltered brown houses form a kind of an abstract ornamentation around a real jewel: the Gothic church of S. Maria.
Every year, on the 15th August, an exhibition of paintings inspired to the area of the 5 Terre takes place at Manarola.
An extraordinary world-wide known lane link Manarola to Riomaggiore: it is called "La Via dell'Amore", carved in the core of the rocks jutting out over the sea.
Olive-trees with robust stumps, spurges, cinerarias, wild pinks and brooms accompany lovers everywhere in a suggestive walk.
The Parish Church of St. Lorenzo (1338) It is dedicated to the nativity of the Virgin Maria. It was built in the gothic-ligure style.
The cemetery just outside the village you can find the picturesque cemetery of the village
The Sanctuary of the Madonna della Salute a walk to the Sanctuary is also worthwhile. From there you can enjoy the view of the Gulf below, called "the Cape of Venus".Madonna della Salute (Good health) in Volastra, at the end of a mule track, which is one of the most picturesque on the coast is the shrine of the Madonna della Salute, who has been worshipped there since the 10th Century.
From Manarola to Corniglia: Path n. 2
From the railway station of Manarola, path n.2 runs in a tunnel as far as the village and it turns left going down to seashore.
The new and more panoramic section of the path follows Birolli promenade, under the equipped area of Bonfiglio Point (which can be crossed too) grazes the small call of Paledo and rises to the old track n. 1 in the lakes basin (35 meters).
The path was mostly carved into the rock. It is called "of the sea-trasparences" as an homage to the painter Giuseppe Arigliano, who was ispirated by the sea depths where the small path is reflected.
From the point where the new and the old n. 1 meet, the track grows milder, becoming a flat path which dominates for its whole length Corniglia's long beach.
Then it approaches the railway station and rise to the village through a flight of steps.
It is a easy way, to cross the heap of stones which moves continually, over the beach was necessary to suspend a "Tibetan" bridge held by steel cables to avoid the possible fall of stones.