Positano, Amalfi, and Ravello

During our stay in the Amalfi Coast, I decided to use one company to do all of our tours, just to keep things simple.  The company was Tours of Amalfi Coast, and they were very easy to work with. They picked us up in our hotel lobby, except for the Capri tour – where we met our guide about a block from our hotel in the town square.  They were very quick to answer any questions I had, and our guides were great.

Our second day was the Amalfi Coast Tour – which took us to the towns of Positano, Amalfi, and Ravello.  Our driver was Lallo, and he was fantastic!  He had actually been a secret service agent in the past, but wanted a slower paced job, which landed him as a driver/guide for this company.  He was very knowledgeable having lived there his whole life.  We met him in our hotel lobby at 8:30am and we were off for the day!

The early morning light made for some beautiful and serene photos.IMG_3221

Round some narrow winding mountain roads on our way to Positano.IMG_3245IMG_3244IMG_0962IMG_3248

The island on the left is privately owned!!  Wouldn’t you just love to live there!IMG_3231IMG_3218

We made our way through the mountains to Positano.  It’s amazing how this small village town just perches on the rocky face of the mountain!  IMG_3230IMG_0969IMG_0974IMG_3258IMG_3261

It the picture below you can see where the 2 black cars are parked – on top of the house!  That’s because space is so limited here that they build the garage on the street level, and then build the house on the mountain side below it!!  IMG_3260IMG_3338

Driving through the town…IMG_3282IMG_3298IMG_3342IMG_3264

Check out this villa’s views!  Gorgeous!  IMG_3341

Religion is a very deep and fundamental part of the Italian culture.  These nativity scenes could be seen all round the town, and along the roads.  Lallo told us during the Christmas Holidays, they are exquisitely decorated and lit.  IMG_3275IMG_3281

We stopped our car and walked around Positano for a bit.  We were still early – a lot of shops weren’t even yet open at 9:30am!  Plus it was a Sunday morning, so many people of the town were still in church services.IMG_3288IMG_3291IMG_3296IMG_3319IMG_3318

After walking around the shops, we walked down the hill towards the beach.IMG_0976IMG_3304IMG_3300

Always trying to get a good shot!IMG_0992IMG_3313IMG_0985IMG_3310IMG_3303IMG_3302IMG_3307IMG_3308

By now we were ready to grab a drink and sit for a bit to enjoy this beautiful town!IMG_3321IMG_3323IMG_3327IMG_3328

This little cove was the original fishing village of Positano!  IMG_3505

It was time to leave Positano and make our way to Amalfi.  Some sites along the way…IMG_3384IMG_3388IMG_3373IMG_3370

We made it!  As you can tell by the traffic, people were out of church and ready to enjoy a beautiful Sunday afternoon!IMG_3400

The main square.IMG_3406

The main Duomo of Amalfi – Duomo di Sant’Andrea Apostolo IMG_1008

A Catholic Mass service was going on when we visited, so we didn’t stay long.IMG_3411IMG_3410IMG_3413

Somehow both cars and people manage to make their way through the narrow streets.IMG_3415

The main Nativity in Amalfi – De Cape ‘e Ciucci Fountain Presepe. It was amazingly detailed, and included everything!   Be sure to check out the link above for more information on this Nativity fountain and see more up close pictures!IMG_3419

After seeing Amalfi, it was time to continue our tour.  Ravello is further up the mountain, and much more remote.  IMG_3450IMG_3440

One of the first things you notice about Ravello, is that it is largely terraced, so crops can be more easily grown here.IMG_3492IMG_3452IMG_3453

The ancient, medieval walls that surrounded this city still stand, and no vehicles are allowed within the walls.  So we parked the car, and walked around Ravello.IMG_3493

The main square had some amazing views.  IMG_3454IMG_3485IMG_1012IMG_1011IMG_1010IMG_3456

You can still see ruins here and there.IMG_3457IMG_3494

And visit the castle and walk around ancient streets of Ravello.IMG_3470


After all that walking around ancient ruins, it was time to get some lunch.  Lallo told us about a restaurant that had the fantastic views and okay food, and another restaurant where “Mama” cooked that had no views but fabulous food (and is where the drivers and guides always eat!).  So we decided to check out the views at the one restaurant, and eat at the other!  The views here and the food there did NOT disappoint!IMG_3464IMG_3468IMG_3466IMG_1016

After a wonderful lunch (sorry, I don’t have pics of the delicious lunch we had!) it was time to head back to our hotel.  MyMan and I both loved Positano and Ravello the most.  Amalfi was just okay for us.  It kind of had a gritty feel to it.  If you were not able to compare it to other towns nearby, and went there on vacation, it would be a lovey town and a great vacation.  But when compared to the surrounding villages – there was just no comparison for us.

On the way back to the hotel in Sorrento, Lallo made a stop at a ceramics factory in Positano, as it is known for their ceramics.  The Picadilly Ceramics Factory had all varieties of pottery you could imagine, in all colors and designs.  Honestly, I am not really into the colorfully designed ceramic pieces like the majority of shops have. But I have always wanted a serving dish or bowl that had a Tuscan countryside scene on it.  After looking at all the pieces they had, I found a nice sized fruit bowl and olive oil container that called my name.  Unfortunately I forgot to take a picture of the exact ones I ordered, but they have matching scenes on them very similar to this: 998ce417ed202af913cd4d1e55125d7fAfter ordering my new ceramics pieces, we headed back to Sorrento.  Lallo was talking to us about inlaid wood working, which is what Sorrento is known for.  We told him we had been to several shops, but had not yet purchased any.  So he made a call to Notturno, which is an inlaid wood factory that was very near our hotel.  They are continuing a 500 year old tradition of the region and use a variety of materials and woods including walnut, olive, birch, and mahogany to create their masterpieces.

What was amazing to me (besides the beautiful artwork and craftsmanship) was that it was Sunday afternoon, and no workers were in the shop.  It was literally my family, our driver Lallo, and 2 of the owners of Notturno!!  One of them made a demonstration for us on how they inlaid wood was created step by step.  Then they took us to their showroom floor so we could look at their pieces.  After looking around for a few minutes, MyMan and I saw a table we both immediately fell in love with!  It was a design that they had only made twice – one had a shiny lacquer coating on it, and the one we liked was more of a matte finish.  I can’t wait until it’s delivered!!  IMG_1032IMG_3515IMG_3513

The Amalfi Coast is definitely an awe-inspiring destination.  The people are so nice, and the sites just can’t be beat!  I’m hoping we can visit Sorrento and Positano again in the not too distant future!





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