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Currently the Lovers walk from Riomaggiore to Manarola is closed. For experienced hikers there is a new route 531 which follows an inland route through vineyards and over the hills. It is signposted from the castello - follow via tra castello to the 531 signpost. After this the next signpost is two thirds of the way up the hill : so don't set off unless you have a excellent sense of direction, and a good map/GPS device.
Caution : this route is for experienced fit hikers only, wear appropriate footwear and note it is very steep. In places it is twice as steep as an ordinary flight of stairs.