Cinque Terre is only 105 miles away from Florence, making it an easy side trip that takes between 1.5-3 hours one way. There are a few options for making your way here—train, car, private transfer, or organized day tour—but before choosing your means of transport, consider the geography.

Cinque Terre is made up of five small villages perched on steep cliffs overlooking the sea. As a result, roads are quite narrow (not wide enough in some places to allow two cars to pass each other) and parking is limited (most available spaces are exclusively reserved for residents). To avoid these challenges, we recommend traveling from Florence to Cinque Terre by train.

By Train

Duration: 2.5 hrs - 3 hrs   
Fireze S.M.N station - La Spezia - 5 Terre Express

From Florence, there are frequent trains to La Spezia. Once at La Spezia, it is easy to switch to the local 5 Terre Express which takes you each of the five villages that make up the Cinque Terre. While the train takes about an hour longer than driving, you won't need to navigate the winding coastal roads—and best of all, you don’t need to worry about finding parking.

Train schedules offer a range of options. In the high season, the earliest train departs at 4:30 am, and the last train leaves La Spezia at 10 pm, so you could technically make it a day trip—though it's worthwhile to spend at least a couple of days enjoying the area.

By Rental Car

Duration: 1.5 - 2.5 hrs

Without traffic, it takes around 2 hours to drive from Florence to Cinque Terre. Renting a car allows you the flexibility to move around on your own schedule—you can stop in Pisa or charming Levanto on the way. 

If you choose to drive, we highly recommend not driving into the villages themselves. It's much easier to move between villages using the aforementioned 5 Terre Express train. Park your car underneath the La Spezia Central Station while you're out exploring the towns.

By Private Transfer

Duration: 1.5 - 2.5 hrs

Another way to visit Cinque Terre from Florence is with a private driver.  While not the least expensive option, it is certainly the most convenient and gives you a lot of flexibility. Have the driver drop you off at the southernmost village of Riomaggiore. Your experienced driver can navigate the narrow roads and parking, and you'll already be enjoying your Aperol spritz with a view in the villages. 

By Organized 1-Day Tour

Duration: 12 hrs

If you don't have the time to spend a night or two in the Cinque Terre villages, consider booking an organized day trip from Florence. Choose a small group tour or a private excursion; it can be guided or unguided. You'll be picked up in the morning from your Florence hotel and driven to Cinque Terre. There, you have the day to explore the villages, enjoy a leisurely walk or hike and grab an early dinner before heading back to Florence at the end of the day.

Ask your local specialist to organize your day trip to Cinque Terre.


Map of How to Get from Florence to Cinque Terre
Map of How to Get from Florence to Cinque Terre
Updated Jun 11, 2019