A Weekend Trip to Luca’s Agriturismo in Cinque Terra, Italy

Cinque Terre on the Italian Riviera

Adventure, Laughter, and Culinary Delights on the Italian Riviera

Few things have given me more pleasure than my long weekend with my girlfriends Carolyn and Kish on the Italian Coast. I made a new friend—a Brazilian supermodel—and almost drowned in the Mediterranean Ocean. We hiked the death-defying trails that connect the five coastal towns in the pouring rain. Yet, I will always remember Luca’s Agriturismo and the food I ate while visiting Cinque Terra in Italy.

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Luca’s Agriturismo In Cinque Terra
Sostia A. Levante

We flew from Frankfurt Hahn Airport early Friday morning to Pisa Italy on our favorite discount airline RyanAir. We each purchased two tickets from the Information window. I had to elbow a pushy Italian woman out of my way when she tried to cut the line.

Framura

The first ticket took us from the airport to the train station 5 minutes away. And the other tickets bought us a seat on the train to Framura. It was the first town we’d visit and our gateway into the string of pearls along the Italian Riviera known as the Cinque Terra less than 2 hours away.

We sat back, watching the view from the windows change from the city’s concrete buildings to the craggy cliffs of stone that ran parallel to the sea. Until we finally arrived in the tiny Cliffside town of Framura. And the waves of the Mediterranean Ocean lapped against the rocks below. White foam caps rose and fell as the seagulls plucked fish from its peaks.

The Green Machine

We made our way across the tracks being careful not to start our weekend to Luca’s Agriturismo with a visit to the emergency room. And had barely rested our tushes before our complimentary ride to our weekend home rumbled and screeched its way into the station. We looked up to see what has since been dubbed the green machine. We half expected Shaggy and Scooby-Doo to emerge from the driver’s seat. But were pleasantly surprised to meet Luca, our host for the weekend instead. Italy, not surprisingly, has some of the most colorful and flamboyant men in the world. And he was no exception.

Luca

Luca was a big guy, looked more 80s hair band than a hotelier. He spoke softly but with a dismissive tone that is rampant in countries where the men think they are so masculine but really isn’t based on American standards. He grabbed our bags, tossed them in the back, and climbed back in the driver’s seat in about 27 seconds.

Driving on Rails

Kish took a seat on the back row and Carolyn and I sat next to each other in the middle. Luca turned back on the ignition and spun off like a bat out of hell. I swear he took off on two wheels. The road to Framura wasn’t wide enough for two cars, but he drove like he didn’t know that. He beeped his horn whenever he came to a bend in the road where he couldn’t see impending traffic.

Driving up to Framura

The sun was setting over the mountain and for a split second, I questioned my judgment. It wouldn’t be the first or last time I would do that this weekend. Who knew? Kish screamed bloody murder and obscenities the entire ride up the mountain. Carolyn and I, just as scared, opted for the nervous laughter approach to dealing with our impending death.

We screamed in delight with every jerk of the wheel and realignment of our spine. Luca seemed unfazed by our crazy scream laughter crying. Or maybe that’s how he entertained himself by scaring his guests half to death on the steep climb up to Framura.

Where we Stayed: Sostio A Levante, Framura, an Agriturismo on the coast.

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A Room with a View

We rented a large room at a bed and breakfast high up in the mountains with sea views. That 20-minute ride up the hill to Sostio A Levante lasted a lifetime. However, we were alive when we reached our final destination. No pun intended.

Kish stepped out of the green machine on wobbly knees. The agriturismo, or working farm, produced organic wine, olive oil, honey, and cheese.

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The Food at Sostio A Levante Agriturismo

The bed and breakfast prided itself on being a time capsule of sorts. The rooms don’t have a television. The furniture is eco-friendly, and all the food is organic. I was very excited about the food. All the reviews stressed how good it was and how it exceeded their expectations.

Everything was delicious. We ate eggplant Parmigiano the first night and roasted lamb the next. I think we managed two bottles of wine and dessert with dinner each night. We really expected the bill for dinner to be much more than it was. And we paid $60 for two of the best meals I’d ever eaten–to this day.

A Working Farm

Fruit trees and grapevines scented the air. The dogs and cats roamed lazily about the morning Carolyn and I decided to do CrossFit in the yard. Luca came out and took one look at us, said STOP that right away, whispered something under his breath, and walked off. I remember thinking all this place needed was a pool.

Luca put one in a few years ago. All it needs now is ME!! During breakfast the next day, I met Fredrick and Natalie, a French couple from Strasburg who offered us a ride down to the train station. I think I saw Kish shed a tear of happiness.

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No Tourist Attractions

We had lunch in town, and everything we ate was delicious. There are no museums or tourist attractions per se along with the Cinque Terra. I hope that always stays the same: restaurants, family-owned shops, B&Bs, hiking trails, and the ocean. The drive back to the station in the Green Machine a few days later could have been more adventurous.

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Comments

  1. Rona

    I unfortunately didn’t get to make it to Cinque Terre before we left Baumholder. However it’s still on my bucket list, so I’ll be sure to come to you for tips and info when that day comes. Thank you for sharing!

  2. Lotte

    I love Cinque Terra! It’s so pretty:-) And Italian food… I could eat my weight in pizza, pasta, olives, focaccia, gelato and all the Italian delicacies!!! Sounds like a really great trip Stacey:-)

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