No trip to Italy is complete without copious amounts of gelato, and all gelato is not created equal. While visiting Cinque Terre, I set myself to the
difficult task of finding the best gelato in each village, trying strange varieties and judging based on flavor and texture. Disclaimer: not the best photos I’ve ever taken, but it’s hard to get your friends to hold a cone of gelato on a warm day long enough to take a picture without it melting all over your hand or eat half of it on the spot!
Monterosso: Gelateria Golosone
We legitimately walked by this gelateria several times without seeing it, which was mostly my fault- how could I have missed the giant ice cream cone statue outside? But thank goodness we did find it eventually, because it was absolutely worth it. The texture was smooth and creamy, and the flavors? Holy hazelnut. This gelateria didn’t have as many crazy flavors as we saw elsewhere, but they do regular flavors so well that they don’t really need to go crazy.
Vernazza: Gelateria Vernazza
This was probably my favorite gelateria of them all. Not only was the texture absolutely perfect, the flavors were so unique and interesting. My favorite was probably the cheesecake and fig, but I wouldn’t be surprised if they change flavors seasonally. If you’re looking for some of the best gelato in Cinque Terre, DO NOT miss this one.
Corniglia: Alberto Gelateria
This gelateria tops a lot of “best gelato in Cinque Terre” lists, and for good reason. Creamy, rich flavors, and interesting varieties like miele (honey) made with honey from Corniglian beehives make for a transcendental gelato experience and a great snack with which to wander Corniglia’s hilly streets. We probably went back here three times during our visit to try as many flavors as possible. Plus, Rick Steves is a fan. Need I say more?
Manarola: 5Terre Gelateria Creperia
I loved Manarola- it was an incredibly charming town, and this gelato was a delicious find. The coconut flavor was perfect and the texture was smooth. But the best part of this taste-test is probably the little girl in the background of this picture who was getting a real kick out of me taking a picture of my gelato!
Riomaggiore: Gelateria Zenzero
Flavor-wise, this gelateria was good, but the texture wasn’t as creamy as the others I tried. Personally, I would get gelato in another town (or at another gelateria), and grab a cone of fried fish to take with me to the marina to munch on- if it makes it that far!
There are other gelaterias in each town, and let’s be real, in Italy you can’t really go wrong with gelato. I went with the best recommendations that a cursory Google search showed me for each village (except Corniglia, where we stayed), and for Vernazza and Monterosso was particularly pleased. Give these recommendations a shot, and if you’re hiking between the villages, don’t feel guilty at all for having gelato multiple times a day! After all, when in Italy…
Love this post? Pin it to save for your next trip to Cinque Terre!