Amalfi Coast by Vespa

– Wake up, Agniese!
– Ugh… What time is it?
– It’s late, 7:30. We’re already running out of time!
– Say what now? Are you kiddin’ me?
Ok, let’s face it: Italians, especially those from the south, are well known for their laziness. Or let’s put it nicely – the different sense of time. I know a few of them quite well so I can tell. Appointment time is a rather relative term, there are not many reasons to be in a hurry, and the coffee break is crucial, no matter what.

But when it comes to showing you their country… Oh well, it’s a different kettle of fish. The schedule is always fully packed, everything must be wrapped up neat and tidy. Generally speaking, they are getting crazy.
It was September when A. dragged me out of bed in the early morning, didn’t let me drink a coffee and eat a croissant, put a helmet on my head and ordered to sit on his motorcycle. We were going for a trip around the Amalfi Coast. On a Vespa, of course.

Heading to the cost.
On the road.

Our road was going from Positano to Amalfi. Positano is described by John Steinbeck, an author of East of Eden, as “a dream place that isn’t quite real when you’re there and becomes beckoningly real after you have gone. Its houses climb a hill so steep it would be a cliff except that stairs are cut in it. The small curving bay of unbelievably blue and green water lips gently on a beach of small pebbles.” But the heart of the coast is Amalfi.

The bell tower in Atrani Village.
Ancient tower “Normnanna” in Maiori.
The view on Positano.

If I had to choose a colour to describe the town of Amalfi, it would definitely be blue. Blue of the sky and sea. The town is surrounded by its port like it was held in the palm of a hand. Picturesque alleys and stairs lead you to the centre. The Lattari Mountains that are above hinge like a curtain dotted with charming houses.

The Duomo of Amalfi gives a particular flavour to Amalfi’s historic centre.
The blue umbrellas.
Piazza del Duomo with its 9th-century Roman Catholic cathedral.
The view on the marina.
Any celebrities in Amalfi?
The cactus. My memory of delicious fruits. Yeah… It took me some time to learn how to eat those without wounding myself.

Note to self that between 10th and 12th centuries Amalfi was the powerful Marine Republic. It used to be a monopolist for the trade in the Tyrhennian, exporting goods to eastern markets in exchange for spices, perfume, jewel or textiles. The architecture here is highly influenced by the East. With its buildings gathered together in adhering groups, connected only by small, labyrinth-like alleyways and staircases. In Amalfi was born the characteristic Sicilian-Arabesque architecture.

Do you know that limoncello is made from Sfusato d’Amalfi lemons?
Seafood in “copo”. The best lunch you can grab in Amalfi.
The entrance to one’s house.
Climbing the town.
Torre a Mare, the ancient watchtower in Praiano that is currently occupied by Paolo Sandulli, a painter and ceramist who opened there his own studio.
Guests in the tower.
The view on the garden around Torre a Mare.
The Mermaid. One of the ceramic sculptures. Yes, you can buy it. Yes, those are quite expensive.
Paolo Sandulli – the artist at work.
Knock, knock. Have I mentioned that Amalfi means blue to me?
Padre Pio. Everywhere. No kidding.
Praiano and typical for Amalfi – architecture.

I believe that Renato Fucini, an Italian writer and poet, didn’t exaggerate saying that “The Day of Judgement, for those Amalfitano that go to heaven, will be a day like any other.” It is indeed, one of those places in the world we call paradise.

On the way back.


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