I will be staying in the Lucca area in early May and plan to do a day trip to cinque terre. I am currently planning to have a car to get from Florence to Lucca, Pisa and Viareggio. I am already nervous about driving in Italy and no cars with automatic transmissions were available (I haven't driven a manual shift in over 20 years.) and I'm also afraid of heights/cliffs. If I do attempt this, how long would it take from Lucca?; Would it be better to drive to somewhere outside Riomaggiore, like LaSpezia or a small town without much traffic and park? Wherever you suggest, would you know where parking might be?
Thank you for any help.