Italy’s Amalfi Coast
Photos and Words by Jen Pollack Bianco :: On Oggl as LAX2NRT
Since the early days of the Roman Republic, Italy’s island of Capri and the stunning Amalfi Coast has been the destination of choice for everyone from Roman Emperors to American rappers. From mid-April to mid-October, the area is a non-stop party. Here’s how I got my La Dolce Vita on.
Naples is the closest major international airport. I took one of the regularly scheduled hydrofoils from the port of Naples to Capri’s Marina Grande, which cost about 20 Euros.
I spent a memorable day sunning myself among (occasionally topless) sunbathers at Capri’s La Fontilena Beach Club, which was well worth the 20 Euro entrance fee. For lunch, I ate grilled octopus sipped white sangria.
From Capri, I took a ferry to Sorrento and had a taxi drive me along the Amalfi Coast to Positano so I could enjoy the epic views. Taxis have fixed fares between cities along the coast. Buses are a cheap alternative (a three day ticket costs 15 Euros) and have wonderful drivers.
Roll like a rock star at Le Sirenuse, a spectacular luxury hotel built into the cliff side with killer views and olive oil tastings for guests.
Budget travelers favor the Agriturismos (Italian farm properties with boarding rooms) in the area.
I ate well in Positano. The eggplant parmigiana and limoncello (the local booze) from La Sponda blew my mind. Capricci has a standout salumi & gorgonzola pizza. I burned off those carbs walking up the Thousand Steps.
Long before Fifty Shades of Grey, D.H. Lawrence wrote Lady Chatterley’s Lover in ahotel room in Ravello, practically launching the softcore industry. Perched high in the hills, Ravello oozes romance. Get in the mood for amore by visiting Villa Cimbrone and checking out the panoramic views of the coast from the Terrace of Infinity. Then head to the Palazzo Avino, a pink 12th Century residence-turned-hotel and have dinner al fresco at Rossellini’s.
Drive towards Sorrento during sunset for maximum impact or head to Salerno before looping back to the Naples airport.