A Marian Sanctuary watches over each hamlet of the Cinque Terre. Each of them keeps the deep roots of the Cinque Terre’s spirituality and culture that the inhabitants are bound to through worship. They are an unmissable stage for the careful visitors who decide to get closer to the most genuine identity in this stretch of the outermost eastern Italian Riviera. Even if they are all reachable through roads open to vehicles – except for the Nostra Signora di Montenero Sanctuary in Riomaggiore – the best way to visit them and enjoy their natural beauties and panoramas is walking. The itineraries belong to the Cinque Terre’s path network, and they are all marked with the white-red trail markers, symbols of the CAI.
Nostra Signora della Salute Sanctuary – Volastra (Manarola)
The first documents mentioning the Nostra Signora della Salute church date back to 1240. The church has one nave without apse, and it keeps an image of Mary which was crowned in 1861. The romanic façade features an ogival gate and a small mullioned window.
Celebration: 8th September, celebration of the holy Mass
Nostra Signora delle Grazie Sanctuary (Corniglia)
The Sanctuary was built at the beginning of 1900 on the mount’s side to replace a chapel dating back to 1584, and it lies at an altitude of 390 m above Corniglia. According to a legend, the inhabitants of Corniglia once went to the church to restore a painting of Mary, but they found it untouched and with vivid colors. The coronation ceremony dates back to 1874. Celebration of the holy Mass on Saturdays at 4.00 pm.
Celebration: every 8th September the holy Mass and the procession will take place.
Nostra Signora di Reggio Sanctuary (Vernazza)
The Nostra Signora di Reggio Sanctuary has been mentioned since 1248. Within the church there is a painting of the Virgin Mary which, according to the legend, was realized by St. Luke, but it is attributed to a Genoese school from the 14th century.
Holm oaks, cedars, horse chestnuts and Liguria’s most ancient cypress (800 years old) cast a shadow over the square, where a spring pours out of picturesque masks.
The coronation ceremony dates back to 1853. Holy Mass celebrated every Sunday afternoon at 3.00 pm.
The “Festa del Cristo” takes place on the 2nd Sunday of May, when the holy Mass is celebrated.
The “Festa della Madonna del Reggio” is celebrated on the first Sunday of August with a Mass and a procession.
Since 1853, every 25 years, the effigy of Mary is brought to the village, where it is kept for a week, and then it is brought back to the Sanctuary with a solemn procession.
Nostra Signora di Montenero Sanctuary (Riomaggiore)
The first testimonies to the existence of the Nostra Signora di Montenero Church, with three naves, dates back to 1335, and it is the result of a series of renovation works that ended in the 19th century. According to the Byzantine legend from the early Middle Ages, the painting of the Virgin Mary is actually an oil on canvas from the 16th century.
1st May. Celebration on the occasion of the beginning of the Mary’s Month on Pentecost Sunday and Monday. On the previous Saturday the inhabitants of the village organize a procession up to the Sanctuary. On this occasion the exhibition of the votive offerings called “Gli ori di Montenero” (the gold of Montenero) is also organized.
On the 4th Sunday of July, after Saturday’s procession, it takes place the celebration called “Festa dell’Incoronazione”.