The Cinque Terre National Park is a protected area inducted as Italy
’s first national park in 1999. Located in the province of La Spezia
, Liguria, northern Italy, it is the smallest national park in Italy at 4,300 acres, but also the densest with 5,000 permanent inhabitants among the five towns.
In addition to the territory of the towns of Cinque Terre (Riomaggiore, Manarola, Corniglia, Vernazza and Monterosso al Mare), the Cinque Terre National Park encompasses parts of the communes of Levanto (Punta Mesco) and La Spezia (Campiglia Sunsets). Cinque Terre was included as a UNESCO World
Heritage Site in 1997.
Even though the Mediterranean flora have obvious features, there are many microclimates often different from each other which created a huge variety of landscapes. There are pine, Aleppo pine, corks and Chestnut. Rock and coastal environments produce numerous Mediterranean species such as samphire and sea Cineraria. Flora is visible everywhere even as shrub Rosemary, Thyme, Helichrysum and Lavender. Also present are several species of trees and Succulents clearly visible from many trails.
The environment is conducive to the development of life and habitat of several animal species. Among the birds are the Gull, the Peregrine Falcon and the Raven. Among the mammals are the Dormouse, weasel, mole, rate, marten, fox and wild boar (whose presence is resented for damage to crops). The reptiles that thrive in the rock are the common wall lizard, the lizard and various snakes such as the rat snake, the grass snake of Aesculapius and the viper; around streams live amphibians like frogs and salamanders.
Protected Marine Area
The Protected Marine Area was founded in 1997 and preludes the National Park as an effort to protect and maintain proper usage of the sea off the coast of Cinque Terre. It is subdivided into 3 zones, a Strict Nature Reserve, where boaters are prohibited, the General Nature Reserve, which allows access to motor boats, registered retail fishermen and guided scuba diving tours and the last and least stringent Partial Nature Reserve that allows monitored recreational fishing.