Praiano and Back to Ravello

Tuesday, April 16, 2013
Positano, Campania, Italy
We decided to walk from Positano to the next town, Praiano which is 8 km (5 miles) away. The walk is on the main road along the coast, a lot of it high on the cliff face. The scenery is spectacular with lots of villas and hotels for the rich and famous. You have to be careful though as the road is narrow in places and the buses and cars can come fast and close. Also because of the limited parking in Positano, the locals park their cars on the approach roads. We went on a Saturday and it is even more interesting as the motor bike riders are out - they all think they are Valentino Rossi in their leathers and leaning into the corners. We were told on Sundey there are even more!! However, it's well worth the walk. The photo here is looking back to Positano. If you look at the top of the hill in the middle of the photo, that is the main cemetery of Positano. What a spot, close to heaven and with the best view in town. About halfway to Praiano, is the Hotel San Pietro, where rooms in season are from $800 to $2,000 per night. For those of you interested in getting married or redoing their vows, it has its own chapel. When you book it don’t forget to include your friends, ie us!!!

The walk to Praiano took us close to 2 hrs . Our landlords here in Positanno, live in Praiano and own the local grocery shop. They recommended a local family restaurant, La Brace, which had views over the ocean. Typically Italian, with red and white check tablecloths, pizza ovens and open kitchen. Great pizzas.

After lunch we walked around the town for a while and then took the bus back to Positano which took less than 20 min. The drivers know every bend and go as fast as they can – blind corners, just beep and go.

Sunday we were a bit tired but knew that if we did not walk, we would both seize up. So down the hill to the waterfront looking at places for Sue to sketch, and then a long slow climb back to the Villa. On the way we bought our flowers which are shown in the photos.

Earlier, in our stay we went to Ravello which is in the hills above Amalfi. The day had been cold and foggy so we did not see much. We decided to go back . The ferry (€8 per ticket) goes to Amalfi and then there is a bus to Ravello. This time the weather was perfect. The town is quite something with beautiful old buildings, little alleyways and some nice shops featuring local ceramics, local produce and modern clothes. It has also been the inspiration for many novels and music. DH Lawrence visited here and the town was instrumental in setting the scenes in his masterpiece, Lady Chatterley's Lover.

There are a number of villas which can be visited and show the recent history of the area. Unfortunately, generally access to the inside is limited but they all have magnificent grounds. One is Villa Eve which is now owned by one of the hotels and used for weddings and other functions. The main villa in the town is Villa Cimbrone which overlooks the whole coastline, see the following for details It had gone into ruin until redeveloped in the early 20th centurt by an Englishman, Lord Grimthorpe . The views from the gardens are sensational.

Rather than take the bus, we had decided to walk back to Amalfi but needed sustenance first, choosing the terrace restaurant in the Hotel Rufolo. The food was excellent and the service first rate with incredible views.

Then for the walk back to Amalfi. This took about 75 min and although it was downhill, there were a huge number of stairs. It zigzagged down the cliff face, through lemon orchards and vegetable gardens terraced out of the hillside. Besides often being able to look out to sea and down the coastline, the other feature of the walk are the little hill-towns. The walk takes you through a little coastal village of Atrani which is next to Amalfi. We were pretty tired by the time we got to Amalfi but felt we had achieved something. Caught the ferry back to Positano where Sue took the bus back up the hill and Renze had the pleasant task of having to do some shopping and carrying the groceries up more bloody hills and steps!!
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Jannette Knowley

Aloha from S.L.C., Utah. I am so jealous. We have been to Almafi and the general area. i was quite familiar with the photos of your last blog. The scenery is simply unbelievable. You are two very fortunate people to be FORCED to do this trip. Ha Ha. Renze you are most eloquent in you descriptions, makes me feel like I'm right there with you, and Oh how I wish I were. Be safe and Healthy Angels on your days. Jannette and Kent


Glad you are enjoying our adventures. The legs are getting a real workout, stairs and more stairs. Sue

Tony & Anne

Looks wonderful guys, really enjoying the blog and particularly the photos. I presume you wrote the last post Renze............ "renewing your vowels...."!!!!
See you soon.