19 Of The Most Spectacular Cliff-Side Villages And Towns

These stunning cliff-side villages and towns will compel you to pack your bags, quit your city life and flock away to these serene locations to enjoy a quality time. Centuries old, these towns and villages are man-made wonders that are the testimony of human expeditions. Today, it’s truly amazing that how these flabbergasting structures were built right in the middle of wilderness and mountainous terrains, in times when technology wasn’t available.

If by any chance you happen to visit any of these locations that we have listed down, you’ll surely be left stunned by the exquisite beauty. So without further ado, have a look at these 20 of the most spectacular cliff-side villages and towns.

Azenhas Do Mar, Sintra, Portugal

Feel, breath and relax at this sea-shore heaven located just 30km off Lisbon.

Azenhas Do Mar, Sintra, Portugal (1)

Image: Flickr / Lugares a Descubrir

Azenhas Do Mar, Sintra, Portugal (2)

Image: Flickr / Nuno Maia

Pitigliano, Grosseto, Italy

The quaint old town is known as the little Jerusalem for the historical presence of a Jewish community that has always been well integrated into the social context and have their own synagogue.

Pitigliano, Grosseto, Italy (1)

Image: Flickr / Sor Capanna

Pitigliano, Grosseto, Italy (2)

Image: Flickr / Bruno Tardioli


Bonifacio, France

Located directly on the Mediterranean Sea, the town sits over the cliff-tops at an elevation of about 70 meters (230 ft.). Bonifacio looks like a white city shining in the sun and hanging over the rough waters below. The town’s attraction, and vicinity to serene beaches makes it a popular tourist destination.

Bonifacio, France (2)

Image: Flickr / []__I_r_o_n__B_u_t_t_e_r_f_l_y__[]

Bonifacio, France (1)

Image: Flickr / Pitchoun


Piodao, Portugal

Perched on the side of a lush mountain, Piodão a tiny Portuguese town is utterly breathtaking.

Piodao, Portugal (1)

Image: Flickr / Luís Santos

Piodao, Portugal (2)

Image: Flickr / Urloplany.pl

Castellfollit De La Roca, Spain

The town is situated on a basalt rock which is over 50 m high, almost a kilometer long and was formed by the overlaying of two lava flows. Castellfollit de la Roca is one of the most picturesque villages in the autonomous community of Catalonia, in Spain.

Castellfollit De La Roca, Spain (1)

Image: Flickr / CaminanteK

Castellfollit De La Roca, Spain (2)

Image: Flickr / Xavier Puig

Civita Di Bagnoregio, Italy

Perched on the top of a hill, the town of Civita looks down the valley it is located in. Some 80-miles from Rome, this town has been around for more than 2,500 years. Today Civita is an enchanted place, where time seems to have stopped. The population today varies from about 12 people in winter to more than 100 in summer.

Civita Di Bagnoregio, Italy (1)

Image: Flickr / Antonio Cinotti 

Civita Di Bagnoregio, Italy (2)

Image: Flickr / Tyler Durdan

Cuenca, Spain

This historic walled town of Cuenca was built from 1182 to 1270 and towers above the magnificent countryside. The town is home to numerous famous landmarks such as Spain’s first Gothic Cathedral, Bridge of Saint Paul and the famous hanging houses suspended from sheer cliffs.

Cuenca, Spain (2)

Image: Flickr / Chuwei LB

Cuenca, Spain (1)

Image: Flickr / Ro Translates

Gordes, Provence, France

Gordes has been listed as one of the most beautiful villages of France because of its exceptional charm and distinctive architecture. Many movie artists have made their homes here, adding to the fame of this hilltop village.

Gordes, Provence, France (1)

Image: Flickr / Momo

Gordes, Provence, France (2)

Image: Flickr / Erik Berman

Riomaggiore, Italy

In addition to the beaches and the enchanting sea, there are lots of possibilities to do sea sports such as diving, sailing and trekking. Riomaggiore has a well-equipped diving center that organizes guided tours to incredible depths.

Riomaggiore, Italy (1)

Image: Flickr / TOTORORO.RORO

Riomaggiore, Italy (2)

Image: Flickr / Steven Verlander

Haraz, Yemen

Haraz is a picturesque mountain region of Yemen offering some of the best hospitality practices and spectacular views. Haraz is famous for its fortified villages perched atop rocky peaks, adding beauty to its landscape. This area was added to the UNESCO World Heritage on July 8, 2002.

Haraz, Yemen (1)

Image: Flickr / Henk Klein Hazebroek

Haraz, Yemen (2)

Image: Flickr / Rod Waddington

Manarola, La Spezia, Italy

Manarola is one of the five tiny towns on the coastline known as Cinque Terre. Cinque Terre, meaning “five lands,” refers to five villages that are all connected by a walking path. The tiny harbor at Manarola features a boat ramp, picturesque buildings tripping down the ravine and swimming holes.

Manarola, La Spezia, Italy (1)

Image: Flickr / Alessandro Pavone

Manarola, La Spezia, Italy (2)

Image: Flickr

Meteora, Greece

Meteora in Greek means “”middle of the sky”, is a commune built over huge rock columns. What make Meteora so special are the monasteries atop the rock towers that seem suspended in the air, literally.

Meteora, Greece (1)

Image: Flickr / Thomas Mulchi

Meteora, Greece (2)

Image: Flickr / Thomas Mulchi

Positano, Italy

Naturally beautiful, Positano attracts thousands of visitors every year. All year long, the town is always full of people, but if you are planning to visit Positano, it would be best to schedule your trip during the spring season.

Positano, Italy (1)

Image: Flickr / Christian Perez

Positano, Italy (2)

Image: Flickr / Yoshing

Rocamadour, France

Located in south western France, Rocamadour sits high above the River Dordogne, and includes the famous sanctuary of the Blessed Virgin Mary, along with many other historically significant monuments.

Rocamadour, France (1)

Image: Flickr / Tosh

Rocamadour, France (2)

Image: Flickr / Franck Bachere

Ronda, Spain

Ronda a town in Malaga, Spain is a must-see town at any time of year. It lies in a mountainous area, 750m above sea level offering a relaxing atmosphere to enjoy a peaceful break.

Ronda, Spain (1)

Image: Flickr / Marc

Ronda, Spain (2)

Image: Flickr / Lui G. Marín

Santorini, Greece

Santorini is the most popular island in Greece and may be the most popular island in the world combining beautiful beaches, spectacular sceneries and amazing restaurants.

Santorini, Greece (1)

Image: Flickr / Mintstime

Santorini, Greece (2)

Image: Flickr / Visure Wang

Portofino, Italy

Portofino is an Italian fishing village and vacation resort famous for its picturesque harbor and historical association with celebrity and artistic visitors. The town is clustered around its small harbor, and is known for the colorfully painted buildings that line the shore.

Portofino Italy 1

Image: Flickr / Trey Ratcliff

Portofino, Italy (2)

Image: Flickr / Palumbos

Veliko Tarnovo, Bulgaria

Veliko Turnovo is a mountain town located in the north of Bulgaria with a very rich history. The town has museums and historical sites, combined with spirited night life.

Veliko Tarnovo, Bulgaria (1)

Image: Flickr / Cameron Wears

Veliko Tarnovo, Bulgaria (2)

Image: Flickr / Stephan Rebernik

Vernazza, Italy

This astoundingly beautiful cliffside town offers incredible sight-seeing. This town is one of the 5 towns that create the Cinque Terre region. This town has no car traffic, and remains one of the truest “fishing villages” on the Italian Riviera.

Vernazza, Italy (1)

Image: Flickr / Namaki

Vernazza, Italy (2)

Image: Flickr / Digitaler Lumpensammler

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