Costa d'Amalfi

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May 5th 2011
Published: May 4th 2011
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Costa d’Amalfi – Praiano: Sat 30 April to Thurs 5 May

Well have to say the Amalfi coast with its towns of Amalfi, Positano and Praiano where we are staying is gorgeous. We not been blessed with mountains of sun but it has been still beautiful.

We arrived in pouring rain at the town of Salerno and mucked about trying to work which bus to catch to Amalfi with other lost visitors from UK and Sydney. Part of the adventure really. The locals do not necessarily speak much or any English so you have to be lucky also on the Saturday late afternoon, nothing was open. We caught local bus to town of Amalfi with views from one of the most spectacular winding roads i have ever seen. Apparently the SITA bus drivers are world famous for their skills in managing large tour buses around the blind hairpin turns. All along the way you seen beautiful villas, restaurants, resorts / hotels cut into the cliffs and lemon trees vineyards on sides of the mountains. This is the location of the famous liqueur, Limocello - which we have been enjoying several of since we arrived.

We arrived
at our hotel after taking a world’s most expensive taxi fare for 11 km = 50 Euro from Amalfi to Praiano but given it was biblical rain it was money well spent as shortly we were nice and warm and enjoying an amazing meal at a local’s favourite restaurant called La Brace. Both our meals were blissful and we then we shared the most wonderful pie of marachino cherries/almond and shortbread crust.

Next day was overcast but we ventured out for 3 hours of mountain walking, just following cut out paths and steps. It is amazing to see how people live in the mountains without cars/road access. Donkeys are used to cart up building materials/concrete and then intricate systems of pulleys will transport food and supplies to remote churches set above 600m.

Returned home to beautiful sunshine and quick dip in the ocean – Dave the brave jumped in for a swim & only ‘dipped’ my toes only.

We went to dinner at La Gavitella – realized we were going to have a big bill when the price quoted for one grilled whole fish was 90 Euro alone without any vegetables or fries. So far most meals have been really reasonable but this one was ‘so so’ for big bucks but you know swings & around abouts. You definitely paid for the view from this restaurant and that was worth it.

We backed up the first walk with a walk to Positano (3hours) called the Hills of Gods walk which was spectacular – check out the photos including meeting a goat herder and his band of goats. The bells of the goats were like beautiful wind chimes. The downside, literally were the 1,700 steps from little mountain town, Nervello to main road on Positano, our poor old knees. We took the bus home for a well deserved nap followed by an amazing spaghetti & risotto overlooking the ocean.

Next day was raining/overcast so we chilled and rested our weary legs.

We are off to Sicily now with an overnight ferry trip from Naples to Catania, Sicily. We’ll see what that is like. We have booked a car, mini Fiat/Smart car size so we can cruise around including checking out Mt Etna and enjoying some seafood.

Ciao ciao xx

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