This post will make you think that we were actually in Summer rather than Winter! We even had a day where it was warm enough to even contemplate a swim 🙂
After braving the narrow windy roads of the Amalfi Coast, not to mention getting used to driving on the other side of the road as well…we made it into Positano.
This part of the trip was quite a change from Rome, breathing in the fresh air on the coast and waking up to an amazing sunrise each day which we had from our hotel balcony. We stayed at The Hotel Villa Franca which had awesome views which of course meant that we were right at the top…. and to get to the beach and town or back we had to climb some 800 steps.
We were recommended by a friend to explore some of the walking tracks- one in particular was called the Sentiero Degli Dei (Path of the gods). This track was supposed to be an easy walk between the towns of Praiano and Positano high up in the hills. One website said the walk starts at either Bomerano or at Praiano. It did say that if starting from Praiano, that you first had to climb a long staircase. As the bus didn’t go to Bomerano, we decided to start from Praiano. What we shortly discovered that what the website failed to mention was that this “long staircase” was actually and extremely long staircase! So long it took us almost 2 hours to climb up it! And the staircase wasn’t even part of the Sentiero Degli Dei.. it only led you to join the track! We climbed higher and higher up the peaks of the mountains over the Amalfi Coast past a monastery perched up the side of the mountain till we finally reached the actual track!
To say that the views from the track were amazing would be an understatement! Over the course of the trek, we past goats, orchards, ruined shacks and secluded shrines.
We were told it was a fairly easy track that should take a couple of hours but realized that we were climbing up the mountains across 4 towns. After 6 hours and rationing 2 bottles of water, we finally were on the track down to back to Positano as you can see from the photo saying there were 1700 steps to go! Toward the end of the track we found a dog waiting there for us, almost sent to lead us back to base. All I can say is that I probably did more exercise that day than I had done in the whole of 2011!
Part of the charm of the Amalfi Coast is to discover and explore each of the different towns. Each town has its own unique flavor and personality. We loved the remoteness of Ravello and the busyness of Amalfi and the laid back feel of Positano. We’re really glad we visited in winter. The weather was beautiful, and though we weren’t able to cruise to Capri, we were glad not to be swamped with the tourist crowds. It was just blissful to enjoy a beach or town practically all to yourself.
What a wonderful part of the world. We hope to be able to come back again one day… till then we have these photos to look back on and reminisce on memories and experiences forged.