The very first time I arrived in Italy through train it felt very different to anywhere I'd gone already.

It was the summer regarding 2000 and I had been travelling for a nearly 2 weeks. I was more than relieved when the exercise pulled out of Nice on that bright August dawn, what a misnomer, Nice is at my eyes not very nice at all. So when the teach wound its way around the rocky hillsides, passing within the coastal rocks below I place it from my mind and focused on the electric blue lakes and rivers of the med and the known about my first genuine First-rate cappuccino.

From my window seat I could see the vibrantly coloured flowers hanging through the trees clinging to the banks above the bays, bright blossoms in pots along the platforms of the tiny train areas, and the heart-warming sight associated with an Italian Nonna sweeping her porch out, her home sitting right next to typically the train tracks. As I was in the future to travel this track frequently she became my 'Italian Nonna' and I looked out and about for her every time I transferred by.

Arriving in Ventimiglia, the first real stop on the border from France, (Monaco was also along the way) into Italy I was very happy to see a distinct difference between Italian locals and the This particular language ones I'd left behind. Granted there is a real sense on the Mediterranean life all the way on the Cote D'Azur, with relatively laid back individuals, all generally there to soak up sun along with wine, but these locals shown up even more so. The Carabinieri on the platform as we pulled up ended up looking so relaxed about almost appear asleep, the actual sniffer dog didn't check out all bothered that 12-15 sweaty backpackers had simply arrived. Nobody moved, no passports were checked, only a few cheery 'ciaos' and a 'benvenuti'.

After leaving our bags with the guide to mind we set off to explore for an hours before catching the next coach. Having already spent the greater half of the previous hour practising how to order a cappuccino in Italian I was desirous to try it out. We found a new kerbside cafe and kommet down. To my awe the waiter understood this request on the first move and duly brought me the coffee. I was nevertheless grinning when we got back around .

The journey for you to Cinque Terre takes you through countless tunnels, carved in the cliffs hanging out over jagged rocks and pebbly beach locations. Each time we hit the particular darkness, the curtains flapping dementedly in the open windows, I can still see the blue waters imprinted on the inside of my eyelids. Nowhere else have I experienced that effect.

The locals and us were being all chatting amongst themselves until one guy requests me where we are all planning Italian. I answer Caudal Maggiore. Then he asks us where we are all from. I explain that I am a tour guide and this group are all from around the world. He is going to Calabria to see his mother and he is usually from Milan. He is effective in a factory there creating cars. Another lady opens her travelling cool field to share some iced coffee beans in tiny plastic coffee cups with the 2 Korean language girls in my group, as well as another one pulls out a number of 'dolce', sweet pastries to share with the Canadian girls.

Of my train journeys with Europe I have found the Italians to be the most generous to help backpackers, in terms of communication and also sharing the contents in their cooler bags. Especially about the train going to Calabria from the north.