May 31st, 2017

Postcard From The Amalfi Coast

Postcard_From_Amalfi_Coast_Amalfi, Amalfi_Coast_Travel_Guide
Sun-soaked, citrus-filled (if not in a Spritz) and if-not-pizza-definitely-pasta-overloaded way of living is the ultimate definition of la dolce vita that I personally experienced in the Amalfi Coast couple of weeks ago. I was on a quest to find out how much pasta, pizza, Spritz, sorbet, and some more Spritz I could consume in only 4 days, while giving myself constant pinches by the jaw-droppingly gorgeous views of the Amalfi Coast! Allora, here’s the Postcard From the Amalfi Coast – from where to eat in Amalfi to finding the most delicious granita while overlooking at the breathtaking views of Capri!
Postcard_From_Amalfi_Coast_Amalfi, Amalfi_Coast_Travel_Guide

The Amalfi Coast is a stretch of so many adorable little towns and villages along the coastline of Southern Italy, the Campania region. Amalfi has to be one of the most popular towns (if not the most) of the coast. This colourful, incredibly charming and the most scenic town I have ever been was the home to my Amalfi Coast adventure for 4 days. I could have easily done a whole week there but, oh well, there’s always a next time!

Excited levels are high, we embarked for our supposedly long-ass journey to Amalfi, starting with Naples first. Once in Naples, first you have to remind yourself that you’re in Italy (yay) and that not everything is going to go your way (go with la flow). So trying to figure out what’s the most efficient way to get to Amalfi from Naples – turns out there’s none haha – we (with my Belgian sister from another mister) decided to take the bus to the Naples train station and make our way Salerno (as opposed to the suggested route of going to Sorrento by bus then another bus to Amalfi).

Airport to the station takes 10 minutes and Naples to Salerno is 40 minutes by train- not bad at all.
Once in Salerno, we were lucky enough to catch the bus to Amalfi immediately and were told that the trip takes about 1 hour – WRONG (see above, you’re in Italy)! Though it should take about 1 hour (the actual distance) but instead it took us 3 bloody hours (the harsh reality) to get through the tiniest and the craziest winding roads along the coastline. Don’t worry, I suffered but I’m not defeated, I will suggest the best/shortest route. If there was no traffic and no road-raging Italians (because busses are not meant for these winding one lane roads) the journey itself was pretty fine and the views were incredible. But when you’re up since 6 am, hungry, tired and can’t wait to have your lemon Spritz by the beach, then nah, you just want it to be OVER!

But once we did make it to Amalfi… Oh my… Is this where we are staying *self-pinch*? This straight out of a beach dream town surrounded by cliffs, at the foot of a mount with its colourful buildings and incredible nature?! Sììììì, certo! Postcard_From_Amalfi_Coast_Amalfi, Amalfi_Coast_Travel_Guide

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STAY
– Residenza Pansa B&B  –
I cannot recommend it enough. This very charming, boutique b&b is housed in ancient building that’s located right in the centre of Amalfi – two minutes to Piazza del Duomo – but definitely away from the crowds. We had the cutest yellow balcony that is overlooking at Amalfi, where we had our
Italian breakfast (major fan of the lemon cake with espresso) every morning – la vita é bella!

EAT 

– La Taverna del Duca – 
Cute, unpretentious, good Italian food! It was our first night and we didn’t know what we were in for…
Insalata Caprese was the first real one I had and ever since I made sure I had some mozzarella in my diet! And my favourite was the Amalfi speciality, Spaghetti al Limone – here for all lemon everything!

– Ristorante Lo Smeraldino – 
This was the most boujee restaurant we’ve ever been to, and even then it was not not comfortable.
They had the best location in Amalfi, right at the end of the town by the seafront overlooking
at the beauty of Amalfi. Seafood is what’s all about.
Still thinking about that insanely yummy Pasta Frutti di Mare!

– A’Scillia Sorbetti – 
When in Amalfi… Lemon everything, we got that one covered! You have to try the most citrus-y lemon-y goodness that is the sorbetto di limone at this place!
The shop itself is super tiny, but they have the cutest seating (next to giant lemons) area where you can enjoy your sorbetto and think about your life!

– Stella Maris Di Esposito – 
This restaurant has to be by far my absolute favourite one. We initially first sat down for some cocktails – lemon spritz, duh – and decided to stay for the food. The owner/manager was extremely helpful and friendly and so were the rest of the staff. I had extremely yummy pizza margherita and my friend had some boujee fish, together with some killer seafood antipasti – we both loved everything! The lemon spritz we had were off the charts, they even gave us their recipe of it since we ordered like ten of those haha! It was the most amazing (and yummy) goodbye to Amalfi since it was on our last night!

DO

– A day at the beach! –
Whatever you do, make sure to spare some vitamin D and sea breeze action in Amalfi. The beaches along the coast are not massive so do prepare yourself for it, but the scenery and the we-make-your-life-easier-while-you-are-enjoying-your-sun approach (you can order food + drinks while you’re at the beach) was something I could get used to! Sun, sea, Aperol Spritz, and panino… Ok, I need to go back!

– Duomo di Amalfi – 
It’s there since the 9th century and you have to climb all 52 steps (I counted) to see it yourself! The Amalfi and the square looks pretty damn nice up there – make sure to add it to your list!

– Lemon (everything) shopping –
10 minutes into the Amalfi coast, you’ll realise that the lemon are pretty big deal here (literally).
These giant lemons add to the whole scene of Amalfi, from the colourway to the ceramics, from the
cusine to the nature… I’m gutted that I couldn’t lose myself in shopping (only handluggage) but get yourself a cute little ceramic and brace yourself when you notice they have everything lemon in shops; lemon pasta, lemon soap, lemon jam, (the best) Limoncello, lemon risotto…
you name it, they probably have it with lemon!

Postcard_From_Amalfi_Coast_Amalfi, Amalfi_Coast_Capri_Island, Amalfi_Coast_Travel_Guide
Capri – the fancy island life meets the laid-back Southern Italian charm!
When you’re in the Amalfi Coast, it’d be a sin to go back without seeing the beauty that is Capri. Only a short boat ride, and there you are! After having our morning coffee with sinful croissants with jam on our gorgeous balcony, we were ready to hit the road, not so bright but early! It takes about 1 hour boat ride to Capri stopping over in Positano (to take in all the views).

When we finally made it to Capri, it was nothing but INCREDIBLY CHARMING! That whole hour (and additional 30 minutes, again, in Italy time is an illusion) felt like a whole century without being caffeinated enough, so I was ready to chug another espresso. We sat down on this cute cafe looking at the marina, tourists and Popmobile like taxis and waking up to the fact we are in Capri!

Capri is a relatively big island, so you still have to make your way up to centre of Capri. You can take a funicular right from Marina Grande, it leaves about every 10 minutes. When you finally arrive La Piazzetta, you know you’ve arrived… Prada, Dolce & Gabbana, all reminding you that you’re in for a fancy day trip haha! So ready for my daily lunch special that is Insalata Caprese (I mean, when in Capri I guess) because I was so addicted to the best mozzeralla that you can get only in Italy – I’m still trying to live with this, and Aperol Spritz – they go hand in hand!

High on life from mozzarella and spritz, we were ready to discover the island before our ridiculously early last boat back home. I don’t even know at this point, because we just walked and walked but I can highly recommend taking the walk along Via Tragara – it’s such a green and peaceful street that leads up to the cutest granita stand (pictured above) I’ve ever came across with a bigger-than-life-lady that runs it. You have to grab yourself a not-so-cheap granita hear and 5 minutes later you are at this viewpoint where you’re looking over Fraglioni and Marina Piccola – not bad, not bad at all. 
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Postcard_From_Amalfi_Coast_Amalfi, Amalfi_Coast_Capri_Island, Amalfi_Coast_Travel_Guide
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I would definitely recommend staying at least one night in Capri, because if you have to take the boat back you are limited with time and that kinda sucks when you’re surrounded by something like this. Next time, I’m in Capri, I’m staying in for the night and booking myself to a boat trip around the island because those Faraglioni and all the caves that you can dive in… just pains me (in a good way) just to think about it now.

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The talk of the town is Positano. Yes, it is incredibly beautiful and yes, it is incredibly popular but in hindsight I am very happy that we decided to stay in Amalfi instead. We didn’t visit Positano sadly, because not having enough time calls prioritising BUT again, it’s on the “next time” list. It is totally reachable via boat in about 30 minutes either way (Capri or Amalfi). I took these photos, along with thousands of others from the boat… the best view of the village!

If you recall above I mentioned the nearly horrific bus ride along the coast, just don’t do it! If you’re brave and confident to drive one lane winding roads among the road-raging Italians, then rent a car and enjoy the ride, but the bus… just ugh! What you can do instead is to take the boat everywhere. For certain destinations, via boat is not an option then you have to do it with a 20 minutes ride but if you are doing Positano, Amalfi, Salerno, Sorrento… just take the boat, easy peasy! On our way back to Naples, we did the same route but this time via the boat – it’s super nice, relaxing, and being on the sea as long as I can is the most amazing thing ever!

When in Salerno, we took the train back to Naples. Before leaving Italy, we had to one last thing and that thing can only be done when in Naples… The Neapolitan pizza – the OG of pizzas, the real deal!
Forget everything you know about pizza because it is about to change for good… L’Antica Pizzeria da Michele is the place to be, so much so that we could only get takeaways as there were so many people waiting outside to be seated. I didn’t have time nor patience for this life changing experience, so takeaway it is. After doing a 5 minute walk in the streets of Naples with two ginormous pizza boxes in hand, we hit back to the hotel to indulge in this cheesy, tomato-ey carb goodness! It was brutal, it was too good, I refuse eat “pizza” now… If you’re ever in Naples for whatever reason, you have to try this pizza!

The Amalfi Coast and specifically Amalfi itself exceeded my expectations in every possible way. I love Italian food but this trip ruined so many things that I will now hardly enjoy back home haha, and pizza is certainly one them together with mozzarella. I never knew mozzarella supposed to taste exactly like MILK!

Anyway, as you can clearly see, I can go on and on about my Amalfi trip. Hope you enjoyed reading it, as much as I enjoyed putting it together…

Have you ever been to the Amalfi Coast? If not, would you consider a trip? Let me know what your summer vacays are? I’m not going anywhere anytime soon (especially after travelling ALL THE TIME in April/May) , so I can live vicariously through yours haha!

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