You Can Still Visit the Area
The Cinque Terre is part of the Italian Riviera. There are many other wonderfully picturesque places along this stretch of coastline to stay and explore. Try Levanto, Portovenere, or Lerici. Santa Margherita Ligure and San Remo are a bit further, and have a more resort feel. And Portofino is worth a splurge. Further north is the sleepy town of Camogli.
You’ll still be able to take a boat or ferry that will pass by the five towns. And viewing it from the water is pretty special.
Dramatic Coastline in the South
For stunning coastline you can also head further south to the popular Amalfi Coast. Towns like Positano, Sorrento, Ravello and Amalfi will welcome you. Active travelers can still find plenty of exercise, like walking the Path of the Gods. It’s not as quiet or laid back, but the gorgeous views and limoncello will go a long way to assuaging your disappointment.
Laid Back and Still on the Coast
Although tourism is on the rise, Puglia is a great alternative and doesn’t attract the same amount of visitors. You’ll still have charm, rustic beauty and lovely coastline, but the jumble of sherbet-colored houses will be shades of putty and white.
You may not be able to hike between most villages, but active travelers can bike, which is a very popular activity in the area. Check out places like Polignano al Mare, Monopoli, Otranto, Gallipolli and the Salento. Real nature buffs, looking for isolation, should consider the Gargano, further north.
Natural Beauty but Not on the Coast
The Cinque Terre has always been very popular with backpackers and hikers. Fortunately, you can find walks in the mountains in the Italian Lakes region. Como and Garda are well known, but you can have the place to yourself in Orta or Iseo. Though not on the coast, the scenery, villas and gardens are still breathtaking and the calmer lake waters allow for plenty of opportunity to spend time on the water.