The path 508 is a historic muletrack of the Cinque Terre that connects the beautiful village of Vernazza to the hamlets scattered on the heights, even beyond the ridge, but above all it joins them all to the beloved Sanctuary of Reggio.
The route, about 2 km, starts from the railway station of Vernazza and passes through the road that connects the village to the cemetery, where a majesty (votive shrine) indicates the beginning of the trail to the Sanctuary.
Along the way you can admire the stations of the Via Crucis, consisting of marble bas-reliefs set in pretty niches or set in the dry stone walls that support the famous agricultural terraces of the Cinque Terre National Park.
The climb softens near the Shrine of Our Lady of Reggio at 317 meters above sea level, in the middle of a shady square where monumental plants stand out.
A cypress leaning against the sacred building is on the list of the “monumental trees” of Liguria made by the State Forestry Corps; more than 800 years are attributed to it, making it the oldest tree in the whole region.
The building that dates back to Roman times, possibly in the first century B.C., was an important crossroads and here arose the homonymous and ancient village of Reggio. Around the year one thousand, the population of Reggio moved down to the coast founding what today is the nucleus of Vernazza.
The church is documented for the first time in 1248.
Its interior has three naves and a Latin cross plan that replaced the previous basilica.
At the edge of the square, a source of drinking water flows in an artificial cave.
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