The path Volastra-Riomaggiore via Groppo-Costa Corniolo (n. 532C / n. 531)

The path in question is the only way to reach directly Riomaggiore starting from Volastra, without going through Manarola, considering the prolonged closure of the stretch of the Blue Trail between Manarola and Riomaggiore, better known worldwide as the “Via dell’Amore”.
The path starts right in Volastra, in the lower part of the village, where once stood the stables that gave rest to the horses of the pilgrims who were travelling along via Romea. In fact “Vicus Oleaster” (Volastra in latin language) was considered a staging post for changing horses since Roman times.
Leaving the village you descend a steep staircase through terraces mainly cultivated with olive trees, in the valley of “Vistone”, until you get to a source of rainwater that flows within a niche built with dry stones; on one of these sandstones has been carved a four-legged animal, resembling a wild boar.
Before Volastra was connected to the municipal water, the fountain of “Vistone” was the only drinking water in the area and was used by the inhabitants also for domestic use. People used to carry the precious liquid on the shoulders or on the head in large copper cauldrons.
Leaving the valley of “Vistone” you proceed on the left side until you reach Groppo (from the German “Krupp”: round cultivated land), small settlement founded in the neighborhood of the river which flows through Manarola. Once in the little village of Groppo you walk along the typical carugi (narrow streets typical of the Ligurian region), and then walk another 50 meters on the paved road with direction Volastra, until you reach a sharp curve from where the path n. 532C starts. At first it passes through a flat hill surrounded by the Mediterranean scrub, and then you reach the beautiful scenery of “Costa Corniolo”.
“Corniolo” is the hill that divides Manarola to Riomaggiore, where you can notice the recovery of several terraces with the plantation of new vineyards. From there you can enjoy a breathtaking view of the entire coast of the Cinque Terre and you can make use of small areas equipped with tables and chairs.
Leaving the “Costa Corniolo” on the left you have to go through a dizzying descent to Riomaggiore, taking path n. 531 ending near the railway station of the village, where numerous regional trains and boats quickly reach all villages of the Cinque Terre.