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The origins of the Via dell’Amore

The fascinating path known all over the world that connects Riomaggiore and Manarola, carved into the rock walls and cliffs overlooking the sea known as Via dell’Amore, was born in the period between the two world wars.

The first stretch of the Via dell’Amore, on the Manarola side, was built in the 1920s by the company that worked on the extension of the railway tunnel that connected Manarola train station with that one of Riomaggiore. It was a narrow path that led to a deposit built on the cliff intended to house the explosives necessary for the tunnel works. Once the works were completed, the path was abandoned.

Subsequently, in 1928 arrived the company in charge of building the “Biassa” railway tunnel that was to connect Riomaggiore to La Spezia. Thus a second section of the path was born, which from Riomaggiore reached the building where the explosive was stocked. The construction of the two sections of the path gave rise to the idea of ​​their reunification among the inhabitants of the two seaside villages, also considering that the Railways had created a large open space below the splendid rocky stratifications of the Batternara, halfway between the two villages.

It is thanks to the men and women of Riomaggiore and Manarola who committed themselves to providing numerous free days of work, allowing them to complete the “new road”, as it was called at the time, which today with its path that develops along the splendid rocky formations that plunge vertically into the Ligurian Sea, is considered the jewel of the hiking network of the Cinque Terre National Park.

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