Amalfi Coast Best Adventures In Italy

Welcome to the Amalfi Coast

The Amalfi Coast is defined by it’s rich history, steep cliffs and tremendous views of the Gulf of Salerno and the Tyrrhenian Sea.

As a result, the Amalfi Coast is one of the most scenic coastal destinations in the world. In addition, you can enjoy the ancient architecture, communes, museums and cathedrals.

Location of the Amalfi Coast

This famous stretch of coastline called the Amalfi Coast is located on the southern part of the Sorrento Peninsula. Additionally, the Amalfi Coast is named after the ancient commune of Amalfi.

Fortunately, transportation on the Sorrento Peninsula is simple and inexpensive. We took the bus from Sorrento, but private cars are also available. Either way, you get to enjoy the awesome views as you arrive via the coastal road.

Photo Scenic Amalfi Coast

After we arrived the first thing I did was take a few photos of the Amalfi Coastline. The coastal road offers amazing vistas of the Gulf of Salerno. This photo was taken from the jetty at the Amalfi Marina.

Amalfi Coast Things To Do

The best Amalfi Coast things to do are centered around the ancient commune of Amalfi. Therefore, main points of interest in Amalfi are the Museo delle Carta (The Museum of Handmade Paper) and Saint Andrew’s Cathedral.

However, these attractions are sideshow compared to the ancient ambience created by the architecture, shops and town atmosphere that Amalfi has to offer. Additionally, we visited Ravello in the afternoon (more on this below).

The Amalfi Coast is famous for it’s production of limoncello liqueur which is made with locally grown lemons. Therefore, you will have an abundance of opportunities to stop for limoncello, espresso and other Italian treats at the cafes which line the ancient cobble stone streets.

Photo Amalfi Cafe

There are an abundance of opportunities to stop for espresso at the local cafes. It is amazing to sit in the open air and enjoy the ambience of ancient Amalfi. This cafe was situated in the Piazza Duomo across from Saint Andrew’s Cathedral.

Saint Andrew’s Cathedral on Amalfi Coast

Saint Andrew was the patron saint of Amalfi. The Cathedral of Saint Andrew overlooks the center of Amalfi, Piazza Duomo.

Additionally, the cathedral was constructed in the 11th century and features a unique baroque architectural design. Also, the relics of Saint Andrew were brought to the cathedral in 1206 from Constantinople.

An additional feature inside St Andrew’s Cathedral is a bronze statue of the patron saint that was sculpted by a student of Michelangelo. Also, the facade of the cathedral is adorned with paintings of the saints including a fresco of Saint Andrew.

Photo Stairway to Saint Andrew's Cathedral

The Piazza Duomo is named after Saint Andrew’s Cathedral. I took this photo at the cafe where we were enjoying our espresso.

Museo delle Carta on Amalfi Coast

In ancient times the Amalfi coast was famous for the production of high quality paper called “carta bambagina”. The citizens of the Amalfi Coast learned how to make paper from the Arabs. As a result, in about the 11th century all the water mills in Amalfi were slowly transformed to paper mills.

The high quality paper is noted for it’s thickness and durability. In fact, bambagina is still valued by artists in modern times. Although the production method changed dramatically along with the industrial revolution. As a result, the only remaining paper mill in Amalfi is now a museum.

The Museum of Handmade Paper is located in the Mill Valley in the northern part of Amalfi commune. As we were nearing the museum, we encountered it’s power source, which is a rustic mountain stream.

Photo - Power source for paper production on the Amalfi Coast.

Here is a photo of the power source of the Museum delle Carta which was formerly a water mill before it’s transformation to a paper mill.

Making Carta Bambagina on the Amalfi Coast

At the museum we were assigned an English speaking guide who showed us the paper making process in total. It is rather fascinating.

The paper is made from cut up rags which are pulverized and put into vats. Next, the pulp is strained through wire mesh and a press is used to create the final product.

The entire process can be viewed in less than 2 minutes and I have posted an excellent video on my youtube channel. Here is the finished product below:

Photo Museum of Handmade Paper on Amalfi Coast

This is a photo of our lovely guide at the museum who is holding up a piece of finished “carta bambagina” (Amalfi) paper. Can you spot the Amalfi watermark?

Photo Museum of Handmade Paper on Amalfi Coast

This is a piece of finished and refined high quality carta bambagina. The watermark is very important because it identifies the product as authentic carta bambagina made on the Amalfi Coast.

Why did we go to Ravello?

Our trip to Ravello was actually not the immediate objective after leaving the museum. However, it turned out that way after we strolled down to the coastline to the neighboring commune – Atrani. We were exploring Atrani when we started seeing very enticing signs that pointed towards “Ravello”.

The road to Atrani from Amalfi

This is the road to Atrani coming from Amalfi, as you can tell the scenery was classic Amalfi Coast. 

The Path to Ravello on Amalfi Coast

We started walking up the valley following the intermittent signs that pointed towards Ravello. As a result, we decided to keep going and see where the path went.

I was familiar with Ravello, however I did not know exactly how far it was from our current location. It was a footpath after all, so why not make the most of an unplanned adventure?

The view was excellent as we ascended the steep valley path. Additionally, we passed small village farms and churches.

Photo Path to Ravello on Amalfi Coast

My friend passes a church as we ascend up the valley path to Ravello.

Path to Ravello on the Amalfi Coast

There were some small farms as we approached the head of the valley.

The path to Ravello on the Amalfi Coast

However, the path just kept going, going and going. As a result, we decided to flag a ride when the next road crossed our path.

We Arrive in Ravello on Amalfi Coast

Ravello is situated above the Amalfi Coast and it’s history predates Amalfi. Indeed, it was founded in the 5th century A.C.E. as a mountain refuge from the raiding barbarians on the coastline. As a result, the views from Ravello were awesome! We stopped for lunch at a place that had some of the best coastal views that I had ever laid eyes on.

Views from Ravello Commune on the Amalfi Coast

The mountain town of Ravello boasted some excellent views of the Amalfi Coast. This is the view we enjoyed at the restaurant where we had a late lunch.

Returning to Amalfi

It was time to start heading back to Amalfi. We found the local bus stop which made my friend very happy.

Conclusion

The sun was now setting on our excellent day adventure to the Amalfi Coast. After I had some parting shots of limoncello and a few more photos, it was time to say goodbye (for now). The Amalfi Coast was an amazing experience and a very beautiful part of Italy. 

Creative Shopkeeper on the Amalfi Coast.

Creative Shopkeeper on the Amalfi Coast.

Sunset photo taken at Amalfi Marina on the Amalfi Coast.

This is a departing sunset photo I grabbed from the Amalfi Marina before we returned to Sorrento.

 

Additional sources:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Amalfi_Coast
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Amalfi#Museum_of_Handmade_Paper_.28Museo_della_Carta.29
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ravello
http://amalficoasting.org/news/handmade-amalfi-paper-and-its-museum