Amalfi environments

This is an excerpt from the book “The Amalfi Coast“.

Emerald Grotto – Photo www.italycruiseshoretours.com
Emerald Grotto – Photo www.italycruiseshoretours.com

Emerald Grotto

The Emerald Grotto is nearby and is reached by steps or lift and then by rowing through exceptionally clear water in this marine cave is illuminated indirectly by rays of sunlight giving it a beautiful emerald color of extraordinary depth. Reflected in the water are the marvelous golden colored stalactites which are suspended from the cave roof. The road winds on towards a sight that suddenly bursts into view as you emerge from a tunnel gouged through a cliff. It is unbelievably pretty; tall, white houses, churches and towers perch atop rocky precipices in the Molini Valley facing a bay of azure blue with a backdrop of rugged mountains. Three miles of Praiano, the grotto is reached from the coastal road via a descent by elevator, which costs 3 Euro, including the boat ride. Then you board a boat that traverses the eerie world of the grotto. The stalagmites are unique in that some are underwater. You can visit daily 10 am to 4pm. Take the Sita bus in Praiano going toward Amalfi. The best way to go is by boat from Amalfi or Praiano, leaving from the docks and costing 6 Euro round trip, plus the 3 Euro entry fee.

Marina di Furore – Photo © De Maio Agostino
Marina di Furore – Photo © De Maio Agostino

Furore

A corner of Norway, cut in the Mediterranean rock, that is Furore valley, a fiord, a deep wound in the territory of the Coast, along which the stream roaming downwards from the Agerola mountain flows, calm in summer, but rumbling and terrible in winter.  All around, clinging to the fiord precipices, the houses and the small terraced gardens which make up the village.  Below, where the fiord encounters the sea, a small sandy beach, framed by the steep valley walls and high, up there, the bridge of the state road which crosses the narrow gorge.  Here it is possible to leave the asphalt strip and, from step to step, from garden to terrace, you can go up to the woods of Agerola, walking between the sea and the sky, the earth and perhaps Paradise.  At Furore Greta Garbo stayed during her romantic involvement towards Ravello.

Furore borgo medioevale visto dal ponte – Photo © De Maio Agostino
Furore borgo medioevale visto dal ponte – Photo © De Maio Agostino

Furore is famous for its fjord, narrow stretch of water placed at the mouth of a steep valley to the sea, and a picturesque small fishing village that was inhabited, among others, by Roberto Rossellini (who shot the film Love) and by Anna Magnani, who was romantically linked to director and was the star of an episode of the same movie. In July 2009 has been inaugurated a small museum dedicated to the actress in one of the houses of the village. Very popular is also the international diving competition  Marmeeting that is held every year on the bridge of the fjord. The fjord of Furore can be reached by some inner paths such as the path of the bats crazy that connects Punta Tavola with fjord through the Meta-Amalfi road that crosses the fjord with an impressive suspension bridge over the sea (30 meters high), or by sea of course. Furore takes its name from the sound of waves crashing on its coast, particularly violent during the days of rough seas. The history of Furore is linked to the history of the Maritime Republic of Amalfi. The fjord has always been a natural harbor, its flourishing trade and the development of the oldest forms of industrial activities, such as paper mills and mills. Furore is also known as “the town that does not exist”, since there is not a real town and houses sprout isolated from rocky ridges. Singular is the art gallery en plein air consists of more than one hundred “walls,” murals and sculptures that make Furore a “painted village”. Furore has not fractions, but three quarters up the town: Sant’Agnelo (Contrada della Gatta), St. Elias (Contrada of Cicala), Santo Jaco (Contrada of the Pacifier). Furore is one of the most beautiful villages in Italy as it is the site dedicated www.borghitalia.it

How to get to Furore

By car: Motorway A3, Castellammare di Stabia – SS-336 for Piedmont Agerola. From Salerno SS 163. By train: railway station of Meta di Sorrento, then SITA bus (one hour).

Ravello

On Ravello, undoubtedly one of the most suggestive places of the whole Coast, Alfonso Gatto wrote a splendid rhymed card the meaning of which is as follows: “the calm houses dreaming of the rosy charm of the hillocks, go down towards the sea, as isles, as villas, near the churches”.

Where to stay in Ravello

Hotels, villas, B&Bs and apartments: search and make reservations here.

Where to stay in Amalfi

Hotels, villas, B&Bs and apartments: search and make reservations here.