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The last of the five villages along the Cinque Terre strip, Monterosso al Mare is the most visited, largely because it has the only sizable sand beach and the biggest hotels. Though it can get very crowded with tourists during the peak summer months, Monterosso is still delightful. The old town area, separated from the more modern resort area by the Aurora tower, is home to the ruins of a medieval castle and San Francesco church, which houses an important Van Dyck painting of the crucifixion.
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