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Trekking in Punta Manara

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Punta Manara is the promontory that divides Sestri Levante from Riva Trigoso.

Once you walk along the very scenic path and arrive at Punta Manara, you have a spectacular view of both villages, the Bay of Silence, and the view sweeps from Portofino to Punta Mesco.

We started from Sestri Levante and walked a loop route that took us first to Monte Castello (266 meters above sea level) and then to Punta Manara (176 meters above sea level) later reconnecting with the outward path to return to the car.

If you wish from Punta Manara you can descend to Riva Trigoso and return by bus.

It is a walkable trek with children as there are no exposed points but it is not quite as easy as we read on several blogs before our departure.

We will explain more later in the How to get there section.

Fortunately we always leave fully equipped and our 3 1/2 year old daughter is a very good walker so we had no particular problems.

Below you will find a step-by-step description of the itinerary and our tips for walking this beautiful trek with children.

You might also be interested in How to dress in the mountains.

Trekking in Punta Manara with children: departure from Sestri Levante and tips for walking it

Trail to Punta Manara starting from Sestri Levante has several access points; the most traveled ones are:

the path starting from the historic center, in Vico del Bottone which is located halfway down Via XXV Aprile (near the alley, you will find some bakeries where you can possibly buy lunch);

the path that starts from the cemetery where you will find a large square where you can park your car for free. Be careful because in some places instead it is a disc zone and you can leave your car an hour at most.

Most important information that we want to point out, especially if you have children who are still young or not very trained, is that the trail that starts from the old town, is an easy walk that climbs slightly but without great difficulty.

Vivecersa the trail that starts from the cemetery, is a “leg-breaker.”

There are no exposed sections so in itself it is not dangerous, but it consists mostly of rocks and boulders that are high enough for a child’s legs and our daughter had to “climb” often.

So it is important in our opinion to have this information before the trek so that we can choose the route according to personal conditions.

Trekking in Punta Manara with children: route

Leave the car in the parking lot adjacent to the cemetery and take the convenient trail, marked by the hike information board, which starts very slightly uphill.

Signpost to follow: red rectangle.

After 5 minutes you come to a junction with another sign indicating the road climbing steeply to the right. The marker to follow is now two red triangles.

The trail is quite strenuous; some breath and good muscles are needed. Right from the start, however, it is very scenic!

After about half an hour, you reach the first viewpoint from which you can admire the Bay of Silence in all its splendor.

Trekking in Punta Manara with children
Information panel at the beginning of the trail
Trekking in Punta Manara with children
Trail begins at the cemetery in Sestri Levante
Trekking
Pointing to Punta Manara and M. Castello
Trekking in Punta Manara with children
Steep trail in the initial section
Rocks on the trail leading to Punta Manara
Rocks on the trail leading to Punta Manara
Belvedere over the Bay of Silence
Belvedere over the Bay of Silence

Mount Castello

From here you can decide whether to climb to Mount Castello, thus completing a loop trail, or to go directly to Punta Manara (almost flat trail).

We chose the first option: the path enters the woods and, still climbing, leads to the summit of Monte Castello (266 meters above sea level), marked by the sign and a couple of small tables where you can have a picnic. Allow about half an hour or so.

We are located inland so you no longer have a view of the sea.

mount castle
Half an hour between Castle Mountain and Punta Manara
Trekking in Punta Manara with children
View of Punta Manara descending from M. Castello

At this point the descent begins (follow the marker marked by the 3 red dots), which, in about 15 minutes, leads to Bivacco Manara or spianata del telegrafo, with some picnic tables in the shade of the trees and a useful bathroom.

From here a steep flight of steps (but doable even with children), leads to the top of the promontory where there are the ruins of an old Saracen watchtower.

The Punta Manara Tower was one of the circular watchtowers also found on other Ligurian promontories.

It later became a windmill and in the last century found new life as a base for a telegraph: hence “Telegraph” or the other name by which the promontory of Punta Manara is called.

Top of Punta Manara

From the top of Punta Manara there is an amazing panoramic view of the sea and the gulfs of Sestri Levante and Riva Trigoso.

We climbed with our daughter and had no particular problems: perhaps if the child is small it is better to hold hands.

At the top the path is overhanging the sea but I repeat, it is not such a narrow path that children are restricted.

Finally the arrival at Punta Manara
Finally the arrival at Punta Manara
steps
Steep steps leading up to the Saracen tower
children
Trail overhanging the sea at Punta Manara
Fantastic view at the top
Fantastic view at the top
Panorama
View of the Bay of Silence
Saracen tower in Punta Manara
Saracen tower in Punta Manara

At this point it will take about half an hour to join the outward path and return to the car.

How long does it take to get to Punta Manara?

The loop trail we walked from Sestri Levante arriving at Punta Manara via Monte Castello is 4 km long with an elevation gain of 296 meters.

We took about 1 hour and 40 minutes (counting a few small stops to rest and take photos).

Trekking in Punta Manara with children: useful information for the Punta Manara walk

The trail is very well signposted thanks to the various signs placed along the trail, and there are several benches where you can rest and admire the view.

It is not a walkable trek all year round due to the heat as it is almost completely exposed and in summer in our opinion it is not very feasible especially with children in tow. Mid-seasons are ideal.

Don’t forget hat for the little ones, sunscreen and large supplies of water as there are no water fountains along the trail.

Hiking boots are needed, if it has just rained the trail can get slippery.

Be careful with children on the sections overlooking the sea.

It is not possible to carry a stroller.

Trekking in Punta Manara with children: conclusions

Beautiful and very scenic trekking to do with children that winds among strawberry trees, holm oaks and maritime pines with the typical colors and scents of the Mediterranean maquis.

To be preferred in mid-season and, as indicated a few paragraphs above, decide in advance which route to do according to the age of the children and the level of training.

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