Thursday, October 27, 2011

2011 Amalfi Coast Adventures: Ravello, Paestum, Capri . . . . and Naples

Yikes!  Only 12 days more before I leave, so I will have to really speed up my pre-trip (itinerary) posts really fast now.   :) 

Ravello  is a small picturesque town positioned high up on the mountains above the coast.  In the early 19th century, Ravello was a favorite vacation spot for aristocrats also attracting the attention of famous poets and artists because of it's amazing views and peaceful atmosphere.  There is a market square in the center of town where you will find a wonderful Cathedral.  The San Pantaleone Cathedral has pulpit carried by columns decorated with mosaics that sit on six stone lions. It really reminds me a little of the Alhambra in Granada, Spain.   

Not far from the cathedral is Villa Rufolo which was built in the 13th century characterized by Byzantine and Arabic elements. The Villa Rufolo is the sight where the very Internationally known Ravello Music Festival takes place.  The concert season ends in October so unfortunately I will not be able to attend.  Next, I want to visit Villa Cimbrone which was built in the 14th century and is famous for stunning views of the coast. 

Paestum is an ancient Greco Roman city which is famous for having three well-preserved ancient greek temples.  The three main temples that can be found in Paestum (Sacred Destinations) are:  The Temple of Neptune (or Apollo or Hera II), the Temple of Ceres (or Athena), and the Temple of Hera. I can't wait to explore these great archaeological finds.  This trip will be a long day as I must travel by bus from Praiano to Amalfi, then take a bus on to Salerno and finally a train to Paestum.  Whew!  I'm tired just writing about this.  I am very confident that it will all be worth it. :)

The first time I visited the island of Capri was in 1993 when I took my first ever international trip to Europe.   I was part of a group tour (and not a Slow Traveler) and so I hardly remember any of my experiences.  My three most vivid memories from that trip was seeing the Tower of London in England, seeing Venice and finally taking the boat ride over to the Island of Capri.  It will be very interesting as it was when I revisited Venice in 2007, to see what my experiences will be like revisting this very popular destination.   

For this day trip, I will have to take a bus from Praiano to Sorrento and then take a Ferry to Capri.  I will have two nights here on Capri and during my visit I want to get a closer look at the Faraglione, take the Funicular up to see the Natural Arch and then take the gondola up to the highest point on the island on Monte Solero where I will find some of the best views of the island (hopefully it will still be operating).

I am really excited about visiting so many wonderful towns on the Amalif Coast and hearing from fellow Slow Travelers and Blogging friends, Jane (Casey, Italy and Other Good Stuff) said:

You will love, love the Amalfi Coast. We haven't been there for years but it will be the just the same when we get there as last time. So beautiful!

And fellow Slow Traveler and Blogging friend Menehune (Syncrhonicity) said:

 I visited Sorrento, Capri and Positano on one of my first trips there....Wondering why I never went back! The description of Sorrento is so true, at least for me. Loved this area of Italy.

I have received lots of encouragements and support from Fellow Slow Travelers and Blogging friends, Sandra (looking forward to hanging with you in Rome) (Leaping without a Net), Annie (Churches in Vencie), Girasoli (Shave Ice and Gelato), Barb (Follow My Bliss), Nancy (A Winelovers Wanderings), Anne (Light is Sweet) and Marta (Postcards from the Trail) and now I am really getting excited to start my 2011 Amalfi Coast Adventures. 

But hold up . . .

What about Naples!  I wasn't planning on visiting Naples, but the more I read about this city that is full of energy, history, and culture, the more I begin to develop an interest.  And then finally, I read fellow Slow Traveler and blogging friend, Jerry's blog (Jerry's Thoughts, Musings and Rants), about his experiences in Naples and well . . . I just have to go now.  Afterall, how could I be so close and not visit the "birth place of Pizza! :)  I'm even contemplating a possible over night stay in this amazing city.

On my must see list:

And I cannot leave without sampling an authentic Neapolitan and very yummy Pizza!

Much appreciation and heartfelt thanks to all my Fellow Slow Travelers and Blogging Friends for continuing to inspire, guide and share so much of your knowledge and experiences so I may have a wonderful adventure. And a pre-trip post cannot be complete without a special shout out to the wonderful and generous community of Travelers on Slow Talk and Pauline Kenny (Slow Europe) founder of Slow Travel. 

And to my friends and family, thank you so much for putting up with my obsession (I mean passion)! :)

I'm not sure if I will be successful in getting my MiFi to work while on my trip, so I'll either blog and tweet a lot or I'll blog and tweet a little.  I love reading my live posts to reminisce about my trip, so I hope to have it up and working.  I will definitely have WiFi in my hotels in Rome and Capri, so I will definitely be doing some posts.


  1. That pizza makes my mouth water. Did you read "Eat Pray Love"? The pizza she ate in Naples was a life-changing experience!

    You're gonna have a blast.

  2. Kathy, you do such great research before a trip!

    I know you can hardly wait to get there!

  3. Your trip sounds AWESOME!!!! Mom and I stayed two nights in Sorrento a few years ago and thought it was wonderful. Loved the hair raising bus ride along to coast to Amalfi too!! (Well I loved it...Mom less so! lol)

    I fear I've all but dropped off the face of the earth with my blogging - holy moly school is intense! Exciting and overwhelming at the same time. I'm loving my new community of fellow students and professors (AST has a great faculty), but also missing my blog and my blog friends.

    I just read an article in my local paper and immediately thought of you! Guess what? Prince is coming to play in Nova Scotia. The article calls him the "guitar-funk god"! Just had to let you know :)

    Hope you have a great trip (of course, you are going to Italy, so how could it not be great?!)

    Take care, Anne :)

  4. Hi everyone, thanks so much for your comments . . .

    Annie, unfortunately I haven't read Eat Pray Love yet, but I wouldn't mind eating a pizza in Naples and having a life changing experience too. :)

    Nancy, the pre-trip research is fun and these pre-trip posts really helps me to focus in on what I really want to see and do. You are right, I can hardly wait. :)

    Anne, we miss you around here. I really enjoyed your blog posts when you were in Italy with your mom. That was really fun traveling with you. It's good to hear that you and your mom loved sorrento. I recently bought a nice supply of Dramamine for those hair raising bus ride. :)

    I'm so glad to hear that you are enjoying your fellow students and professors. We miss you around here but completely understand that your school is no doubt keeping you very busy and that is a good thing for us too because you are fulfilling your dreams and calling.

    Wow! Prince is coming to town. That is so awesome. Guitar Funk God is a very cool nickname, right up there with his Purpleness (Annie's nickname) and the Cool One. :) Nova Scotia will enjoy the Purple Yoda's visit (sorry I couldn't help one more nick name). :) Yes, Italy will definitely show me a great time, I'm sure of it too.

    Thanks again everyone. I appreciate your comments and support.

  5. As Annie says, you are going to have a blast! So many beautiful things to see, and new sights (and pizza!) to discover. I'm really looking forward to tagging along with you, via your blog, and then getting together in Rome!

  6. Hi Sandra, thanks so much for your comments...

    Can't believe that it's almost here and you have only 4 more weeks before your move to Rome. Time sure does fly by .... I've started my packing and it's a challenge for just for the 3 weeks. Can't even imagine a big move like yours.

    Best to you with the move and I'll see you in Rome. :)

  7. Wonderful!!! I hope that you enjoy Naples as much as we did. If you need any information or help let me know.

    There is better pizza than that eat pray love spot. our favourite was right off of via tribunali. Look at San Lorenzo and the pizza spot will be on the left of the square that is located left of the church. There is also an amazing spot for limoncello there too. This is where you'll find the entrance for Napoli Sotterranea - the amazing underground tours. There are two bakers located on the other side of via tribunali - they are supposed to have the bets baba in town - a high claim. I must admit that it was pretty darn good.

    The wonderful street with all of the nativity scenes and figures is right around the corner.

    ahhh - Naples

  8. Hi Jerry, oh you're making me so excited! Thank you so much for your tips. I shall print it out and re-read your blog posts again for more notes to take with me. I haven't had much chance to work on my Naples itinerary so reading your blog has helped me a lot. I shall try to find the places you've recommended and have some pizza, pastries and limoncello. May have to do an overnighter in Naples. :)

    Thanks again for blogging and for sharing. I really enjoyed reading about your experiences. It's so cool that you are able to take your mom on this trip. She's sounds cool!

    Thank you. Have a wonderful weekend.


It's me Trekcapri (aka Kathy). Thanks so much for visiting and leaving a comment.