Up to date information on the campaign to rebuild, restore and preserve the jewel of the Cinque Terre.
Save Vernazza: Rebuild, Restore, Preserve
Save Vernazza Projects

Save Vernazza Projects

Two projects completed:
1) Repairs to Vernazza's Santa Marta chapel, lovingly dubbed "the little chapel that could" (see the video from October 25, 2011 showing the chapel being inundated by waves of mud and water) have been completed.
2) Reconstruction of the two dry stone walls, critical to maintaining the stability of the hillsides amongst Vernazza's Cheo Vineyards, has concluded.

Cheo Vineyards & Save VernazzaCheo: Vernazza's only commercial wine producer and the official wine of Save Vernazza.

When in Vernazza: Be local, buy Cheo.

For more information on additional Save Vernazza projects including the 5 footbridges in the most damaged area of town, the town playground, historical pilgrimage trail number 8 and more please visit Rebuild, Restore, Preserve.
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Richard Rogers & Vernazza

It's Official!

Vernazza & Richard Rogers
Vernazza has accepted architect Richard Rogers' generous donation to design and oversee the Project for the Reconstruction of Vernazza. Since February, SV's President Ruth Manfredi has been working tirelessly with Rogers, Mayor Resasco and others to coordinate this important and vital project. We'll have a final plan by summer's end and hope to start construction in November.
Richard Rogers & Renzo Piano
On his most recent visit to Vernazza on June 4, Rogers brought his friend Renzo Piano. Both architects have won the Pritzker Prize (the Nobel of Architecture) and are considered two of the world's leading architects. Together they designed the Pompido Centre in Paris. Rogers and Piano believe that Vernazza's reconstruction should be elegant in its simplicity in order to preserve Vernazza's unique character as an authentic Italian small town.
Richard Rogers & Vernazza
We are honored and excited to have their involvement and guidance in helping to rebuild Vernazza. With Richard Rogers' involvement, Vernazza has a very special, once in a lifetime opportunity. Please consider a donation today to help rebuild and preserve Vernazza. Visit our donate page for more information. 
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Santa Margherita

Patron Saint Day

On July 20th Vernazza celebrated Santa Margherita with games (the children from Vernazza's sunny side "Sciuiu" competing against the shaded side "Luvegu"), bancarelli (stands) selling everything from towels to toys & a marching band just before mass. The procession held that night was almost as grand as in days past, with the 3 large crosses carried up the main street and back, followed by the congregation.  As Vernazza's townspeople walk their streets today, admiring all that is new with remembrance of what stood before, annual traditions such as the Festa di Santa Margherita help to unite the community in prideful celebration of their heritage. On July 20, Vernazza celebrated its past, present and future in recognition of forefathers who carved out the beautiful village with their hands and hearts, in tribute to those lost on October 25, 2011 and in acknowledgment of the road still ahead in the renewal of the exceptional village. Like Save Vernazza Newsletter on Facebook

Making A Difference

Yana Pietras had been visiting the beautiful Cinque Terre villages for 12 years and after arriving in Florence for a semester abroad she understood there was much curiosity amongst the many international students regarding what happened on October 25th. Yana did her best to communicate news and discovered that many students wanted to help but didn’t know exactly how to do so. For more information on what Yana and friends are doing to support the campaign to Save Vernazza visit our S5T page.
S5T: Students for the Cinque Terre
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This month's Save Vernazza featured fundraising partner: Photography by Allen Beatty
“Places like Vernazza must be preserved.”
Save Vernazza Fundraising Partners
Visit our Fundraising Partners page and see how your purchases can support the campaign to rebuild, restore and preserve Vernazza.
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Get the latest information on Vernazza: Save Vernazza Travel Advisor

Where to stay, shop, eat

Current photos & videos of Vernazza

Trail updates, maps & itineraries

Trip planning information and useful links

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Donate to Save Vernazza Today
Your donations help us to continue on the path to recovery and rebuild, restore and preserve the community of Vernazza for both residents and visitors.
Save Vernazza is committed to the future of this exceptional village.
With your help we can continue to make a difference.

The Story of Santa Margherita

According to a confusing Greek legend as told by Teotimo, Margherita was born in 275 in Antiochia of Pisidia (Asia Minor, now Turkey). After the death of her mother, her father, a pagan sacerdotal, put her in the care of a wet nurse who secretly practiced Christianity. Upon return to her father, Margherita declared her Christianity and was banished from her father's home. Consequently the wet nurse adopted Margherita and raised her as her own.  One day while herding sheep, an official named Ollario tried to seduce Margherita. To keep him at bay she declared her consecrated virginity to Christ and confessed her faith. Humiliated, Ollario denounced Margherita as a Christian and she was jailed. While in her cell she was swallowed by a demon who appeared to her in the form of a dragon. Margherita, armed with cross in hand, victoriously fought her way out of the beast’s belly.

It is for this reason that many women pray to Santa Margherita for an easy childbirth. Subsequently, Margherita resisted various tortures. During one in particular, an earthquake struck and a dove came down from the sky and placed a crown on her head. She was eventually decapitated on the 20th of July, in the year 290, at the age of 15.
Church of Santa Margherita, Vernazza

The Gothic Ligurian style church in Vernazza dedicated to Saint Margherita was built in 1318 and later enlarged during 1500 – 1600. According to legend, a small box containing the finger bone of Santa Margherita was found along the coastline of Vernazza. The population took this to be a sign and decided to build a church in honor of Santa Margherita in the area known as the “Isolotto”. However, high seas washed the box back into the sea and it was later found in the exact location of its first discovery. Heeding the sign, the church was built on the coastline of the sea where it can be found today.

Vernazzese celebrate their Patron Saint, Santa Margherita on July 20th each year. Torta di riso (rice quiche) and buccellato (simple cake) are typical dishes prepared for the festival. The children from the two sides of town, Luvegu (dark side) and Sciuiu (sunny side) compete in various races on the beach and in the water. At night there is a procession from the church up the main street and back to the Church where local men carry 3 elaborately decorated crosses and the towns people sing traditional song. In the past Vernazzese participated in the “falò” where every useless piece of wood, including boats at the end of their life, chairs, trees and brush, were burnt on the rocks by the younger people and on the beach by the women who competed with them to see who could make the biggest fire.
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