Monterosso al Mare is the largest, most populated and oldest village in the Cinque Terre, dated to the ninth century.
Strait between sea and the mountain, located along the coastal arch of the splendid Gulf of Poets, the town is divided into two parts: the area of Fegina, relatively modern and characterized by a tourist-bathing facility and the old village. In the village, as a witness to the past, there is the Castle, with its elongated walls that includes the round towers, the Aurora tower overlooking the sea and the medieval tower in the town in front of the Church of St. John the Baptist.
The oldest part of the village is located below the Castle, in the vale of the stream Buranco, while over the years the town has developed on the other side of the river and on the level of the inlet, bordered to the east by the Corone peak and from the cliff of the Aurora tower.
Monterosso is a village rich in art to discover and boasts important monuments, including the fourteenth-century church of San Giovanni Battista, in Piazza della Marina, the hub of the village, in front of which stood the medieval Palazzo del Podestà, and the Capuchin convent, erected on the hill of San Cristoforo.
In Fegina you can admire the Giant of Monterosso, an imposing statue of the god Neptune in reinforced concrete, built in the early twentieth century.
The famous poet Eugenio Montale spent, together with his family, the summers of his childhood and adolescence in the famous seaside villa, named "Casa delle due Palme" in Monterosso, whose place was of great inspiration for one of his most famous lyric: "Lemons".
The lemon is a very important fruit for this village, excellent for preparing lemon liquor and anchovies with lemon, in fact at the margins of the village there are numerous lemon gardens and in the areas of Buranco and Morione you can see the beautiful lemon groves.
Every spring in Monterosso we celebrate this precious fruit with the famous Sagra dei Limoni.
One of the main activities that has been taking place for a long time in the village is fishing. Thanks to the particular salinity of the water, the Monterosso anchovies have a particularly pleasant and balanced taste, being at the same time tasty and delicate. Called u pan du ma (the bread of the sea), anchovies are a very common ingredient in Ligurian cuisine, traditionally preserved in salt.
The task of conservation was entrusted to women, who were responsible for cleaning the fish and storing it in clay pots. In fact today we celebrate the third Sunday of September this tradition with the "salted anchovy festival".
Gourmets cannot miss the opportunity to taste the monterossino, a sweet with cream, jam and chocolate, typical of Monterosso while in mid-August you cannot miss the delicious "sweet focaccia" with candied fruit, raisins and pine nuts. The typical wine is the Sciacchetrà liquor, produced with raisins and also to taste the grappa of the Cinque Terre.