We’re doing some reconnaissance work this January, checking on the conditions of the lesser-used trails in the Cinque Terre, and yesterday we were on the glorious Levanto-Monterosso trail, a real gem of the Cinque Terre National Park (and free to boot!). [This post is not about the trail, but FYI, it takes about 2.5 hours and is best done in the direction from Levanto to Monterosso. The only land-based point from which you can see all five towns along the coast is on this trail.]
Close to the overlook point at Punta Mesco, the Italian Environmental Fund (FAI) has begun a project that will recuperate lands and buildings that had been abandoned to the quite vigorous, almost rapacious Ligurian nature. The new site at Case Lovara, when completed, will have put back into action an olive grove, vineyard, animal stalls, chicken coops, and two buildings that had fallen into disrepair. It will also be solar-powered. I’m not sure if eventually there will be any rooms to rent for hikers and other tourists (certainly in its current state that is a long way off in any event), but there will certainly be hands-on educational events going on here eventually.
It’s not much, just a tiny slice of this once predominantly agricultural land, but it’s a great initiative. If you want to donate to this or any other of the excellent projects by the FAI, click this link.