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7 min.

I always thought that this sentence of Starrs didn’t apply to me because living between Levanto and the Cinque Terre, which saying between mountains and the sea, a bike ride around here implies my effort, and I’m more a contemplation type…

However, a few years ago, my colleagues, aware of my non-athleticism, involved me in some test in a “or the all or nothing” style. A newborn pedal-assist-system-electric-bikes rental service in Levanto, and they thought that I would be the perfect cavy to see if they go really well for everybody. Not sure how to react to it, though.

The night before the test, I was a bit worried … would I make it ?, would I faint on the way? Would I hate it?… All the questions I couldn’t help but repeat in my mind until climbing on the saddle.

Well, I had a really nice afternoon! I rediscovered an area that I know very well, but I had never seen in this way, and most of all, I felt the joy of doing it by bike and without sweating.

Melancholy is incompatible with bicycling

James E. Starrs

The ebike, a great option to discover Cinque Terre and Levanto

Mind you, assisted-pedal-bikes help a lot in having fun without stress, but it’s not a scooter, and the next day you really feel your legs’ muscles, but what satisfaction!

E-biking in the Cinque Terre

The first tour led me to my own village, Vernazza.

We started from downtown in Levanto in the afternoon. Following the path of the local stage of the Italian Tour, we headed to the Shrine of Our Lady of Soviore overlooking the Gulf of Monterosso.

One hairpin bend after the other, we could see the Mediterranean maquis, smell the intense perfume of ginestra and appreciate the beauty of the valley of Levanto, dotted by colorful medieval villages and with its intense green that dives into the sea and, peering over the horizon, see the rest of the Italian Riviera and beyond France. Beautiful Liguria.

Di e-bike, levante ligure e soddisfazioni

Once in Soviore, we allowed ourselves a break to visit the Marian sanctuary so dear to the people of Monterosso that since 1300 revere the wooden Madonna in it. The devotion to this place is so important that it is said that during its restoration in the eighteen century, the building material was transported by creating a human chain from the port of Monterosso to the church, 466 meters above sea level!

I am not at all devout, but this sanctuary was my first home, and the feeling that binds me to its beautiful shaded yard and its panoramic view is special.

Di e-bike, levante ligure e soddisfazioni
Di e-bike, levante ligure e soddisfazioni

After a few kilometers, we reached the Passo del Termine. There began a beautiful descent with a sea view, offering us breathtaking views and a vertical panorama of Vernazza that leaves you speechless.

In a few minutes, we came to our second stop, the Romanesque Shrine of Our Lady of Reggio, where I spent endless days studying to get ready for my university exams. I have already spoken about this place in my post on Vernazza, but I omitted some curiosities:

  • Ezekiel Azzarini got married here, and his good friend HD Lawrence attended the wedding, and it seems that he asked: “Why did not Christ returns among these olive trees?”
  • on the square of Reggio stands since eight hundred years ago the oldest cypress in Liguria. 23 meters high and half a meter wide, considered a symbol of longevity and eternal life
  • the water flowing from the fountain is for the people of Vernazza the best water in the world … I already said it, but it should be stressed 😉
Di e-bike, levante ligure e soddisfazioni

The downhill from Reggio to Vernazza is quite daring, to quote my beloved Battisti (an Italian singer you should listen to), but it’s enough to slow down to enjoy it. Upon arrival in the village, we visited the amazingly scenographic vineyards of Bartalo and tasted the wines of his company Cheo. This is a person I admire cause of his hard work to starting again after the Cinque Terre flood in 2011.

We got back by train, another detail that I really liked.

E-biking from Levanto to Bonassola and Framura

Given the positive emotions, the laughter, the views, and the satisfaction of the first tour, I repeated the experience with my friend, writer Serena, Ale, and Tommaso, and it was just as exciting.

Starting in this direction, the view of Levanto is exceptional, and it is impossible not to stop to take a picture of it, framed by the green of the Mediterranean maquis and the deep blue sea. So beautiful. And beautiful is Bonassola too, suddenly appearing behind the curve, with the Madonnina of Punta peeping into the sea.

Di e-bike, levante ligure e soddisfazioni

We made the first stop close to the quarries of Levanto red marble. It was already known and appreciated by Roman and Etruscan and widespread in the Mediterranean basin and far away! The floor of the Savior’s church on Spilled Blood in St. Petersburg is in red marble and many doorways in La Boca in Buenos Aires.

From the quarries, the route is slightly downhill on the sea up to Framura, where we made a stop to visit the church of St. Martin of the twelfth century, the watchtower of the Carolingian period. Then the sea … the panoramic terrace of the hamlet of Costa leaves you speechless.

Di e-bike, levante ligure e soddisfazioni

Before leaving Costa, I recommend you take a look at the staircase-alley leading down to the hamlet of Setta … flowery balconies and doors, clothes hanging in the sun and cats … the essence of Liguria.

Di e-bike, levante ligure e soddisfazioni

Further down, we stopped to visit the hamlets of Setta and Anzo, other Ligurian small pearls deserving to be discovered and admired.

Arrived in the picturesque port of Framura, we took the glass elevator that leads to the walking and biking path running along the old railway line.

Between one gallery and the other, we admired the sea and breathed brackish, quickly reaching Bonassola and its tranquility. Please, do not leave this village without visiting the church of St. Catherine of Alexandria with its Barocco column and gildings.

If you can read Italian, don’t miss the post Serena wrote about this experience: Guardando le cose da più prospettive: il ritorno a Levanto

Useful info on Levanto E-bike-in

Since last autumn, ebikein has a new manager and tour guide, Matteo! He offers several tours to Cinque Terre and Bonassola daily, and he provides electric bikes, hardhats, and a guide.

The starting point is at their headquarters via dell’Orologio in Levanto. We recommend you get there five / ten minutes before your appointment for a short briefing on the pedal assistance system with Matteo.

E-bike tours with EbikeIn

  • In the early afternoon, at 3 pm, Matteo offers the “Bonassola for everyone: a simple, scenic and fun e-bike route for the whole family” two hours tour, designed for groups looking for a simple route on the plains, also suitable for children. It costs €40 per person, including local white wine and typical focaccia;
  • Heading in the same direction, you also have the “Wine tasting in the vineyard” tour to live a uniquely emotional experience. You arrive in a typical vineyard overlooking the bay through breathtaking views, where the owner will let you discover and taste his products: wine, cheese, focaccia, olives, etc. The ride back is in the sunset light —cost: € 70 per person;
  • An incredible five hours adventure starting at 8.30 am. In a few hours, you can visit two villages of the Cinque Terre – Vernazza and Corniglia – and three ancient sanctuaries overlooking this world-famous coastline. The Cinque Terre are beautiful, but seen from above are really special! This tour costs € 69 per person, including local white wine and typical Genoese focaccia;
  • Monterosso at sunset” a two hours tour to discover the first village of the Cinque Terre. The tour starts in the afternoon, but the exact meeting time changes according to the season, in order to offer you the best of sunsets! It costs 49 € per person and we recommend it for a fun and different experience.
Di e-bike, levante ligure e soddisfazioni

E-MTB tours around Levanto

Mountain Bike for everyone: routes in the Ligurian wilderness by e-MTB” is the title of this super cool experience in an e-bike. A simple mountain bike ride suitable for everyone; an original way to enter the unspoiled Ligurian nature off the beaten track.

It costs € 59 per person, including local white wine and focaccia and if you’re ready for a most advanced ride you can always ask Matteo!

Di e-bike, levante ligure e soddisfazioni

After some bike rides along the beautiful Italian Riviera, I can know to confirm it: e-bikes are for everybody, and it’s easy to get addicted to them!

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Silvia's Trips

Hi there! My name is Silvia and after 15 years between the Paris Opera and the Palau de les Arts in Valencia I now run a boutique hotel in Cinque Terre, deal with tourism management and blogging, sail, horse-ride, play guitar and write about my solo trips around the world. For more info about me and my travel blog check my full bio.