The Beauty of Naples, Sorrento & the Amalfi Coast – Driving & Sea Cruising the Amalfi Coast
When one visits Naples, Italy, there are so many choices of sights to see and things to do. Naples itself is a busy, port city. There is a castle overlooking the harbor that is neat to see, but a claim to fame that Naples has (at least for us Americans) is that Naples is the home of where pizza was invented! So, if you are a foodie, or just love pizza (who doesn’t), then Naples is for you. But, just don’t stop there in Naples, as there so many choices of fantastic places to visit around Naples, it can be hard to choose.
Other places to visit while in Naples are the sites of Pompeii and Herculaneum, two cities destroyed and covered by ash from the eruption of Mt. Vesuvius in 79AD. Pompeii is interesting to see, but one should note that the majority of relics from Pompeii have been moved to the museum in Naples.
Another popular destination from Naples is to the Island of Capri, which is about a 30 minute ferry ride away. Capri has wonderful shopping and sights to see in the town located by the sea, and offers a breathtaking view from its mountain summit, which can be reached by cable car.
Now, all of the places mentioned above, are things that we did NOT do on this visit to Naples. This was our 2nd time visiting the area, and instead, we took a day-long trip from Naples to the town of Sorrento before driving along the Amalfi Coast, ending in a boat tour of the Amalfi Coastline itself before driving back to Naples. One word to sum up this trip: WOW!!
From its stunning vistas, to the shopping within Sorrento, to magnificently placed villages pressed into valleys along the Mediterranean Sea. The Amalfi Coast is simply stunning to see, and we were fortunate to view this beauty by land and sea. The beauty I would say is on par with our visit to the Cinque Terre north of Rome, near Livornio/Florence from last year (here is the link to our blog post about the CInque Terre).
Once we reached Sorrento, we witnessed a demonstration of wood-carved artwork, and then were on our own to explore Sorrento for two hours before meeting for lunch. Amanda chose to shop, while I explored the scenery of Sorrento.
I love just getting lost in small villages…..
After lunch, our group then left Sorrento for a drive across the rugged countryside to the sea to the area known as the Amalfi Coast. The highway along the shore is basically a narrow two-lane road that twists and turns its way along the sea to the village of Amalfi. Along the way, we were treated to some truly breathtaking scenery, and harrowing moments around blind curves in the road.
We finally reached the village of Amalfi and had about an hour to explore the village before meeting our boat for the next leg of our adventure. We walked the village streets, saw a cathedral wedged into a mountainside, and ate some delicious gelato before leaving.
After spending an hour in the village of Amalfi, it was time to board our boat for the 45 minute cruise along the coastline to the city of Salerno.
TRAVEL TIP: If you like taking pictures, know the direction that the boat will travel, and sit on the top on the side facing the coastline!! For this trip from Amalfi to Salerno, the best seats on the port (left) side of the boat (and in my opinion in the back so you can take pictures from behind the boat). Also, even on a warm day, make sure to bring a light sweater or jacket, as it can get windy out on the water.
After a wonderful cruise along the Amalfi Coast, we had reached the end in the city of Salerno. From here, we had an hour drive back to Naples to board our ship. While this was a long day, the excursion was well worth it, as we saw Sorrento and the Amalfi Coast by land and by sea!!