Towards the southern end of Italy is found the Amalfi coast. This is a particularly pretty, quaint and quite rural area, and is located nearer the cities of Naples and Pompeii, as well as Sorento, for those looking for a more active holiday. Personally though, what I found particularly lovely about the time I spent here was how relaxing the area was. It’s quite tourist-laden in the summer months, because many have discovered its charm, but if you can find the right places, you can still get a glimpse of it’s untouched beauty.
The area is named after the small coastal town of Amalfi, which features a charming town square and an array of gift shops, as well as boat tours to neighbouring areas. Perusing the gift shops in the area, it is immediately noticeable that there is a trend for pottery shops, pasta shops and those selling lemon themed goods, since the fruit is a local speciality. The beaches that the town have to offer are also particularly nice, if a little busy. However, if the beaches in Amalfi are too packed with tourists, then it’s just a short walk to the neighboring town of Atrani, which is a little quieter and more relaxed.
There are also buses that run about every half an hour up in to the mainland, which has steep hills and valleys. If you do visit the area, I would personally recommend staying further into the mainland in one of the small towns nearby the coast, such as Scala, or Ravello, since these will once again be much quieter and relaxed than anywhere right on the coast, and actually come with some of the best views, from the tops of the hills looking out over the sea and across at the cute villages across the other side of the valley. Scala, is on one side of the valley, and Ravello the other, and both offer their share of small shops and cafés. Ravello is a little bigger and also features some very pretty gardens and viewpoints, and a cathedral that borders the very idyllic town square. Around the whole area, there are also footpaths through the woods and around the coast to get some spectacular views.
For those looking for a trip further afield, a boat ride to Positano another coastal town, a little bigger in size only takes 10 minutes, and the views from the boat alone make it a worthwhile trip. When you’re there you’ll find some more nice beaches and a swim in the sea is a nice way to cool off from the heat if you’re there in the summer. You can also walk up into the town, though it’s a little hilly and you’ll find some nice shops again, though they are a little pricier than anywhere else in the area, and the café’s offer a great selection of pastries. On the topic of food, when in Italy, don’t miss out on the freshly made ice cream made at one of the many gelateries. One of my favourite things about visiting Italy, there’s just so many flavours to choose form and every single one tastes amazing.
As well as being a lovely area in itself, the surrounding area of the Amalfi coast does also feature a lot of tourist attractions that you can travel to by car, such as Mount Vesuvius and the famous Pompeii, so you certainly won’t find yourself bored.
Image from: http://images.nationalgeographic.com/wpf/media-live/photos/000/634/overrides/best-family-trips-amalfi-coast-italy_63433_600x450.jpg