Most people go to the isle of Capri from Sorrento by boat which takes about 20 min . But one can go from Positano or Amalfi as well. We had originally planned to do so when we were in Sorrento , but those 2 days weather was so rough and the sea very choppy , no boat trips were operating. So we went to Pompeii instead and climbed the Vesuvius on a cold windy day, but thats another story in itself .
Everything happens for the best. We waited for the weather to get better and went to Capri from Positano in a private boat.
Although the time taken is longer , the views of the rugged limestone Amalfi coast and its cliffs , rock formations, caves and grottos while cruising on the water were so amazing that it made this trip unforgettable and I wouldn’t have wanted it any other way !
Dr Reshma J Palep
The highlight of the Amalfi coast is most certainly the vertical town of Positano .Like all the towns on the coast its located at the steep edge of the hills overlooking the blue waters. Yes it has atleast 1000 steps ! But whats sets it aside from the other towns is the dramatic panorama of colors presented by the peach and pink houses with terra-cotta roofs offsetting the grey-white limestone cliffs above and the blue waters below.
Such a delight to be in Europe in Spring !We were greeted by bright flowers in various shades of pink everywhere we went …..
The views from the balcony of our Hotel were so magnificent . A perfect place to put up your aching feet from all the walking , have a coffee and soak in the views.
Excited to explore this picturesque town, we walked down about 500 steps briskly to the the Mulini bus stop after which the narrow cobblestone alleys began towards the beach.
Every shop you passed was so enticing. Positano sandals, Linen clothes, colorful beach wear, and limoncello souvenir shops were so attractive. You will be awestruck by the netted canopy of ivy above , through which beautiful vistas of the town peep out. Its easy to miss a step going down the steps of this fascinating vertical town !
You can’t miss this interesting cafe and sweetshop La Zagara Garden Bar, a family run place that dates back to 1950 .The ambience is warm and friendly with artwork on the wall and wicker chairs to relax. The Yellow and blue Majolica tiled dome of the Church of Maria Assunta can be seen from the garden cafe surrounded by lemon trees
We deserved a treat after walking all those steps ,even if it was downhill.It has such a wide selections of desserts, many that I had never heard of before, that it was really hard to make a choice. but since we were in the land of Lemons we chose the local and traditional dessert from Campania region called the “Lemon Delizia” and it was totally delicious.
The cafe was so pretty we didn’t want to leave but we were excited to see more this exciting town had to offer yet ahead at every corner .
The steps led to the courtyard of the Church where local artists were painting beautiful paintings of the town and the coast .Ceramic tiles and plates depicting the blue sea and sky and yellow and green lemon trees adorned the walls as you walked towards the pebbly Spiaggia Grande beach. Boats and ferries had returned from their day trips and docked at the pier and painted a very pretty sight !We booked our boat trip to Capri for the next day and lounged on the beach for a while , soaking in the views and enjoying the cool breeze . As the sun set ,the skies seemed to reflect the the pink hues of the town .
Chez Black seemed to be a really popular open restaurant on the beach with live music so we we headed there for dinner .The decor is that of the interior of a chip and you are served by “sailors”.The walls have pictures of celebrities who have enjoyed a lovely evening here as we were ,eating warm woodfire oven pizzas and seafood delicacies by the sea
All that yummy food and then climb back a 1000 steps again! Not possible ! We waited for the bus after a few 100 steps and and as the bus ascended upwards , we were so fascinated by the town views. If Positano is pretty in the day , its magical at night
Especially a full moon night if you are as lucky as me !
Dr Reshma J Palep
The Sorrentine Peninsula of Italy, famous for its rugged coastal beauty and of course the isle of Capri. This abode of orchards of oranges and lemons intrigued me because I had heard a lot of stories about the place from my neighbour when I spent a month in Tuscany, Italy in 2007. Ever since, I’ve always wanted to visit this land of “Limoncello”, one of my favourite Italian liqueurs.
Instead of a typical hotel in the city centre, I chose an “Agriturismo” or farm stay in the lofty hills, with a fabulous view of the bay of Naples and the majestic Mount. Vesuvius.
“Agriturismo Primaluce” is an old farmhouse straight out of an Enid Blyton book. Half of it still has old stone structure of the 18th century and takes you back in time. The other half has been renovated with chic interiors, beautifully hand painted rooms and modern bathrooms.
The hostess Lea and her two daughters, Anna and Angela, were very helpful, gracious and made me feel at home throughout my stay.
The farm had many dogs , Fortuna the spaniel was the most friendly . She took me on a tour of the farm to show me the coop with about 15-20 hens who clucked away noisily and laid brown eggs for breakfast every day .
Two goats, two ponies and a-not-so friendly cow completed the farm animals family. Green peas, tomatoes and other vegetables were being grown on the farm . Strawberries, basil and lemon, everything we ate came fresh from the garden.They also had a small vineyard and barrels of wine to store the house wine.
The first evening, we had a hot cup of cappuccino in the garden,enjoying the view and then set forth on our adventurous ride to the city centre.The hosts offer a free drop and pick up to the city centre and bus stop and believe me you need it ! The road to the Agriturismo so is so steep and narrow, its a fifteen minute roller coaster ride up and down every day which Lea takes you on confidently like a mini -grand prix driver in her little yellow Fiat. After all the Italians are famous for their cars and grand prix drivers, so why worry ?
Sorrento city centre is very pretty with yellow and white buildings and churches, spring flower baskets everywhere.There is a small train from Piazza Tasso that takes you around the main streets of the historical centre, down to the port ,stopping at the seaside terraces. This is certainly the best way to see the town meandering through narrow alleys with artisan shops and panoramic vistas of the sea.
We happened to spot a very interesting shop called the Cornershop while on the train and we made our way back to explore it. It had all the local products of the region directly from local producers. They have a huge wine cellar carefully selected to stock the best wines in the country as well as Limoncello, Grappa and so many other liqueurs.You can sample a few here. Their Single Malt collection is massive and from all over the planet.They cater to people who seek authenticity they say !You will certainly find excellent pastas , olive oil, balsamic vinegar, truffles, sweets . .best of everything the region has to offer and well worth a visit and buy for sure !
We sat on a terrace Cafe at the coast sipping Amaretto disaronno another of my favorite liqueurs Amaretto disaronno , watching the sunset and birds and then headed back to the city centre for dinner to Ristorante sorrento.
I had it for the first time and loved it !
Dr Reshma J Palep