As the Supremes sang in their 1966 hit “You Can’t Hurry Love,” you’ll just have to wait if you want to hike the Via dell’Amore hiking trail in Italy’s Cinque Terre region.
Translated in English to the “Path of Love,” the 1-kilometer (0.62-mile) trail that connects the cliffside towns of Riomaggiore and Manarola via a 20-minute coastal walk has been closed to locals and visitors alike since a September 2012 rockslide injured four Australian tourists. But earlier in October, the Cinque Terre National Park announced that it has finally secured funding for restoration work and will reopen the trail in 2023—more than 10 years after it closed.
The national park said in a statement that the project will take that long to complete because of the dangerous workplace conditions for workers, “as well as the objective operational and logistical difficulties of construction sites and materials.”
Besides restoring the footpath and existing artificial tunnel that was damaged in 2012, the national park plans on extending the tunnel for another 80 meters (262 feet) to secure the most precarious portion of the trail. It will also need to install additional bolts to block sections of unstable rock above the trail and fix existing nets to catch any errant rocks.
The €12 million (US$13.3 million) project will be funded in part by Italy’s Culture Ministry, which is providing €7 million (US$7.8 million). The region of Liguria and the Environment Ministry is providing the other €5 million (US$5.6 million), The Local, an Italian news site reported.
Before the Via dell’Amore closed, it was one of the most popular hiking trails connecting the five towns of the Cinque Terre region thanks to its spectacular views of the Ligurian Sea and flat and easy terrain. Until the Via dell’Amore reopens in 2023, the quickest way to get between Riomaggiore and Manarola is by train. From station to station, it’s a two-minute, €4 ride that can be booked in person or on the Trenitalia website. The drive takes about 11 minutes but isn’t recommended because cars are heavily restricted in the towns.
If you’re visiting the Cinque Terre before 2023 and want to walk the area’s other trails, you can find information about alternative hikes on the national park’s official website.