The Amalfi Coast’s beauty stuns me into complete speechlessness.
There are so many little details in this region that add up to create a gorgeous sum of its parts; so many that to be able to merely put them into words – or to barely begin to describe the loveliness that is this place – requires recounting of every single detail.
I don’t even know where to start – so I’ll just tell you what I can remember of its immense beauty.
Maybe it’s the wind that strokes your face as you cruise in the car along the curvy, narrow coastal route, which has been voted one of the world’s best coastal drives.
Or maybe it’s the lemon trees along the roadside, their branches heavy with large yellow fruit swollen with ripeness. Perhaps it’s also the plants growing haphazardly by the side, flushed with flowers of every shape and color; evidence of summer.
But mostly I believe, it’s the fact that as you drive from town to town along the coast (from Sorrento to Positano to Amalfi and then uphill to Ravello), you have the vast blue waters on your right and tall towering cliffs on your left.
Views like this required us to stop the car every so often to stop and stare, and then get a picture in between.
I may sound like I’m waxing lyrical, but trust me – this is a beauty so magnificent it literally takes your breath and heart away.
(If I haven’t lost you yet, and you want to follow me on my adventure, read right on…)
Little houses are perched on the moutain cliffs; cars are parked as close to the edges of the roads as possible, and as the road twists and turns precariously, you are treated with spectacular views of the sun’s golden rays reflected off the sea, casting shadows to form gorgeous silhouettes.
Against the almost perfect blue, there are white yachts dotting the waters; just as the clouds are sprinkled across the sky.
I’d say that the best time to drive along this route is anytime from 5pm to 8pm during the summer, just as the sun begins its slow descent.
Days are long this season, and with this vista we don’t even mind being stuck in rush-hour traffic.
We stayed in the large and busy town of Sorrento as our base, and from our La Vue D’or hotel room, we had gorgeous views of the Bay of Naples.
During the day we would drive along the coast to explore other towns – Amalfi (about 25km away), Ravello (30km away) and Positano (15km away).
But each night we ventured down from our hill-top hotel to wander the streets of sorrento, picking a restaurant of our fancy and eating so much we would swear not to indulge like that again.
Come the next day, with that promise promptly forgotten, we would go off once more in search of good pasta, pizza and gelato (a rather repetitive but alluring menu in these 12 days).
One of our favorite places to have lunch is this cute little Casa e Bottega cafe in Positano.
We liked it so much we went there twice. TWICE!
The owner and her helpers were extremely friendly.. They made eating there a wonderful experience, and with fresh, organic ingredients, I’ll say the food was amazing.
The first time I’d ordered a marinated salmon and rock melon salad together with cheese and arugula.
The second time, I had cold arugula pesto rice with marinated shrimps and an arugular and tomato salad. SO DARN GOOD.
As you make your way amongst the tiny cobbled streets, you find many shops aimed at the cash-rich tourists – pastel linen shirts and dresses; soft light scarves; straw hats and most of all, lemon-flavored everything.
Because lemon is the region’s signature fruit, the streets are filled with the scent of lemon – either in the form of soaps, candles, or the lemon-flavored digestive liquor, limoncello, the souvenir to bring home.
Amongst the few towns we’d visited along the Amalfi Coast, I think Positano and Capri are absolutely the most beautiful.
In my opinion, the harder it is to reach a destination, the bigger a treasure it tends to be..
Positano, with its pretty views and stony beach, and Capri, the quaint and star-studded island, have definitely proven this theory to be true.
I’ve wondered so many times during our trip what it would be like to live in Italy, and I think it would be an endless heaven.
I hope I don’t have to wait another 7 years to visit it again..
A presto, Italia!