Need opinions!:) I am surprising my husband with a trip to Italy for our 15th wedding anniversary this July (2014) . We took the in-laws and kids in 2012 but weren't able to hit Amalfi Coast or Cinque Terre.
We arrive Rome and stay for a night, AC for 3 nights, Siena for 2 nights and CT for 3 nights. I have booked 2 hotels in Monterosso and also a back-up hotel booked for Vernazza. In CT, we will be hiking the trails, snorkeling at beach and also 1/2 day in Portofino to scuba dive. We don't mind walking anywhere in Italy - you discover the best things and meet lots of awesome locals. My husband is 100% italian and fluent so we can get around easily. Won't be in the room except for sleeping and for sitting on the balcony enjoying views and drinking wine...:)
I like the fact that Porto Roca is very close to the start of the trail and also that it has a pool, nice to have esp, in July. It is expensive though (335E/night) and I have read mixed reviews, majority about the outdated rooms. Currently I have a double room with sea view and not guaranteed a 3rd floor room.
La Spiaggia has recieved very nice reviews but does not have a pool. It is 60% the cost to stay versus Porto Roca, which is definitely appealing.
Other option is to scrap the Monterosso and stay in Vernazza. Much cheaper but majorioty of hotels don't have pools and I heard the beach is not as nice to swim in as Monterosso.
Looking for travelers who have spent time in both regions and stayed for a few days so I can make an accurate decision. Thank you!!!