Sorrento is known as one of the world’s most charming and romantic old towns with it’s many cafes, shops and historic sites. It is located in southern Italy about an hour south of Naples, wedged on a ledge and separates the Gulf of Naples from the Gulf of Salerno. This is a land of high hills and valleys and mountains surrounding the entire peninsula. The area is surrounded by smaller villages like Meta, Sant’ Agnello and the area known as Massa Lubrense. Sorrento is a good home base for your Amalfi Coast excursions.
Piazza Tasso is the central square in Sorrento and the hub for fancy hotels, artistic and cultural events. There are many side streets, almost alleyways I would call them lined with all manner of shopping from high end boutiques, gelato shops and cafes everywhere just to stop and relax and remember why you are here! The town is laid out on an East – West orientation to take advantage of the most sun and North – South to get the prevailing winds. This was originally a Greek town plan. The 13th century palaces that dot the back streets have no balconies and this was for security.
The limestone rocks here create a soil that is very suitable for various types of vegetation. The most popular and well known product from the region is of course lemons and that oh so famous liqueur: Limoncello! Of course, we won’t forget to mention the olives, vineyards, vegetables, tomatoes and orange groves also.
For our final stop on this Amalfi Coast tour: Capri
You definitely can’t miss Capri! This island is romance on steroids!!! The views are mind boggling dramatic and the ocean is a glorious turquoise color. Capri and Ischia are the islands to the west of Sorrento in the Tyrrhenian Sea. You are hooked immediately upon your arrival to this busy marina and you are in love immediately.
Villa Jovis, one of the most magnificent of the Roman Emperor Tiberius’ island palaces is located on Capri’s second highest peak and is a great spot for hikers. He was the first “tourist” they say who fell in love with Capri looking for a refuge from the hustle and bustle in Rome. The island is famous for hiking and if that is not for you take the chairlift to the top of Mount Solaro and gaze down upon the towns of Capri and Anacapri and the famous Faraglioni rock formations (see top photo). Mount Solaro is the highest and most panoramic location on the Island of Capri. From this vantage point you can see all the way down to the center of the town of Capri and to the town of Anacapri and all the way to the Sorrentine peninsula and the Gulf of Naples.
Of course you will find the most fashionable shopping square anywhere in southern Italy with high end boutiques just calling your name.
Be sure to explore the island both by land and sea. The Grotta Azzura- The Blue Grotto is a true adventure. Both times I have been the sea was too choppy for us to enter but it is supposedly absolutely breathtaking. If it is anything like the other grottos I did see… well- you decide! I have never seen water this color- anywhere!
Are you convinced yet!
I have loved every minute of my time on the Amalfi Coast and frankly can’t wait to return again and again! Thanks for traveling with me! Ciao for now until my next adventure! If you missed parts 1-4 you can find them here on the blog and all the photos are on my Flickr album. Hundreds to enjoy and way too many to put in this blog.
When you are on the Amalfi Coast hire a private driver or take a taxi. Both are experts in the sights and history of the area and will make your journey that much more memorable. Again if you are interested in going to Italy considering working with either of the ladies below and tell them Robin Lensi sent you. I suggest you contact either:
Capritime Tours– Rebecca Brooks or
L’Esperta – Ashley Turney