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  • M Vignati

The Ins and Out of The Amalfi Coast

The Amalfi season runs May thru October, many hotels, shops, and restaurants close for the winters. Summers are hot and crowded, but also lively, with a variety of cultural events and long days for enjoying outdoors. I suggest booking at least eight months to a year out to ensure you get a space, as the hotels tend to book fast. The shoulders months of April and October are quieter and cooler.

Amalfi is a walkable port town. In the eleventh and twelfth century it was a major maritime republic and today a refined version of an Italian port city, with seafront cafes and a busy marina. Cafes and a pedestrian promenade flank a small beach near the entrance to the medieval Old Town, where Arab-style covered alleys and narrow staircases recall a time when Amalfi was a major trading partner with North Africa.

During the day, cruise ship crowds fill the restaurants around the ninth century cathedral on Piazza del Duomo. to get the feel walk through the town, past the cathedral to where the road curves, and start following the little pathways to the right or left. These are the vicoli, tiny streets where the Arab population lived. It's another world to discover. Sip an aperitif in the square.

Amalfi makes a convenient base for touring the coast's smaller towns. Day trips by bus or car to the ceramics town of Vietri sul Mare and the fishing village of Cetara, known for and amber colored anchovy sauce used to season pasta. Hotels can arrange transportation the mountain hamlet of Furore, where Cantine Marisa Cuomo offers vineyard tours, plus wine tastings and lunch.

Getting around for the first time visitor I recommend a driver and only rent if you are an experienced driver.

You can have beach time and the classic Italian scene with crowds, chairs, umbrellas at Marina Grande. If quiet is your forte try Atrani, a small village partly connected to Amalfi via a scenic walking path. If your hotel is the Santa Caterina you can retreat to a saltwater pool and private beach area via an elevator that descends to sea level.

Giusi Gambardella along with her sister, Ninni; son, Crescenzo Gargano; along with other family members runs the Hotel Santa Caterina, opened on 1904. She encourages guest to explore beyond Old Town's souvenir-shop-lined main street.

Don't leave without...Cards, calendars, and leather-bound journals made with paper from Amatruda, Amalfi's last remaining mill. buy them at Las Scuderia del Duca, neart the Old town entrance.

Amalfi Coast Of Italy Naples

Naples Amalfi Coast of Italy

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