Hotel Onda Verde

 

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Hotel Onda Verde Amalfi Coast Italy
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THE AMALFI COAST

 

OVERVIEW

Sights & Activities

This spectacular coastline which embraces the charming resort towns of Positano, Praiano, Amalfi and Ravello, where the narrow road laces its way around precipices defying gravity and which provides us with one of the most beautiful scenic drives in the world, invites us to imagine ourselves back in the sunny carefree days of the sixties - for here the beauty and romance of those times has not changed.

The people here have a strong affinity with their beloved coast and they have perfected the art of living: they are part of the elements surrounding them - and they salute their good fortune in a timelessness which is nurtured by infinite vistas of unchanged beauty. Life here still revolves around the sun and sea, the enjoyment of simple pleasures - and immediately calls to mind those heady days of wine and roses when carefree summers rolled on endlessly.Driving along the coast, past the green terraces of grapevines, the groves of lemon and olive trees which sweep down the slopes to the clear blue water below, you are presented with a panorama of breathtaking beauty.

Houses and hotels are perched in spectacular locations to capture the magnificent views.
The soft greens of hills and valleys, the azure sea and sky, and the warm, faded yellow-pink buildings all meld together in this palette of seductive colour. In small villages the air is heavy with the scent of roses and carnations. As you walk along the narrow, paved streets, the pink flowers of the oleanders hang over crumbling stone walls - and the effect is one of mellow beauty. Completely and utterly charming in its simplicity.

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Amalfi Coast Map

The Amalfi Coast, Italy (la Costiera Amalfitana) is a beautiful and renowned stretch of mountainous coastline south of Naples, in Campania. The southern end of the Bay of Naples stretches out in a steep and rocky peninsula that reaches towards the Isle of Capri. Sorrento, another major tourist destination, looks back towards Naples from the north coast of the peninsula. The southern side of the peninsula is dotted with picturesque villages and towns clinging giddily to cliffs; this is what is known as the Amalfi Coast.

For decades these fishing villages, stacked precariously above the sea, have been one of Italy's major tourist attractions. Nowadays the area's principal industry is tourism, and a staggering number of hotels have been squeezed into the restricted spaces of the small towns. Well-accustomed to catering for affluent foreign tourists, the area offers a generous selection of restaurants, bars, boutiques, boat trips.. just about anything self-indulgent that you can spend money on.

Although prices are generally high, there are affordable options in the area. Some visitors find the region over-developed and over-crowded, especially in the height of summer, but for many the little boutiques, ceramics shops and the welcome laid on for tourists is part of the coastline's charm. The views are undeniably breathtaking, and away from the main road and the tourist hot-spots you can still discover the peace that charmed earlier visitors.


Amalfi Coast holiday information
The main town of the coast is, of course, Amalfi, and this makes a good base for exploring the area. Other popular destinations are Ravello, Praiano and Positano. Ravello is famous for its beautiful gardens perched high in the mountains above the sea, and for its classical music concerts. Positano is on the coast to the west of Amalfi, and is a traditionally 'posh' resort, where incredibly well-dressed tourists wander past exclusive boutiques before dining at even more exclusive restaurants.
Tourism is of prime importance in the area, and is the major employer. Consequently, almost everyone you meet will be friendly, obliging, speak very good English and will do their best to help you.



Amalfi Coast travel information
The coastal road along the Amalfi Coast is famous for its hairpin bends, fantastic views and general scariness. The busy artery winds along the cliffs, affording glimpses of blue sea directly below. The towns are all built at a very steep angle, so streets zigzag backwards and forwards. Many buildings - including hotels - are only accessible by steep alleys and stairways.

The public transport along the coast is cheap and fairly efficient. A company called SITA runs blue buses along the coast, from Salerno to Amalfi, from Amalfi to Sorrento, and from Amalfi to Ravello. Other small buses provide transport within the towns.

Ferries connect the principal towns of the Amalfi Coast area, and can be much quicker than buses. Travelmar (tel. +39 089 872950) run connections between Salerno, Minori, Amalfi, Positano and Sorrento. In Salerno there is a tourist information office to your right as you leave the station; they can give you a timetable for the boats. Salerno to Amalfi takes 35 minutes, and costs €4, with eight departures daily in each direction.

The nearest airport to the Amalfi Coast is Naples Capodichino.

If you're travelling to the Amalfi Coast from Rome or other parts of Italy, there are a number of options for getting to the area: You can take a train to Naples or to Salerno. From Salerno you can get the SITA bus to Amalfi, and then a bus connection onwards if necessary (or take a ferry all the way from Salerno). From Naples you can take the Circumvesuviana train to Sorrento (see Sorrento page), then take a SITA bus to Amalfi via Positano.

An alternative option is to take a bus all the way from Rome. This is a much better idea than it may sound at first. A bus company called Marozzi run a fast efficient coach service from Rome to Amalfi (summer season only) or to Sorrento (all year round). Obviously this method of travel depends upon road congestion, but the buses are usually fast and comfortable.

In 2002 Rome-Amalfi bus service operated from 1st June to 30th September, every day except Sundays. The daily bus leaves Rome at 6am, and stops in Sorrento, Praiano and Amalfi, arriving in Amalfi at 10:30am. The cost will be around €20 each way. Before planning your journey call to confirm these details, as timetables can change. The telephone number for information is (+39) 06 4424 9519). Alternatively you can enquire and buy tickets at the Marozzi kiosk by the bus station. (This is outside Tiburtina station; cross the area where orange ATAC buses are parked and you find a smarter covered area for long-distance coaches.)

Bear in mind that the buses may not stop close to your hotel, and roads can be steep or no more than staircases. Ask your hotel for precise directions, and if necessary carry the address in your hand, and ask the first locals you see. Some hotels offer their own minibus service for pick-ups, trips down to the beach etc.; find out about this if your hotel is one of them.

Capri and Sorrento

Capri, in the Bay of Naples, can be reached easily from Naples and Sorrento by hydrofoil or ferry. All boats dock at Marina Grande, from where it's a funicular, bus, or taxi ride up to Capri Town, the main settlement. Capri is well served by road, but on a few major ones only cars, taxis, and buses are permitted -- elsewhere foot power is the mode of transportation.

Sorrento's population (less than 20,000) swells with tourists in season, all of whom are here to luxuriate in Italy's prettiest Belle Epoque resort. Winding along a cliff above a small beach and two harbors, the town is split in two by a narrow ravine formed by a former mountain stream. To the east, dozens of hotels line busy Via Correale along the cliff -- many are "grand" (an enconium sometimes included in the hotel's very name), and some, indeed, still are.

Farther east (and usually out of sight of most tourist itineraries) is modern Sorrento, engulfed in a wave of "concretitis." If you make the wrong turn, you can easily think the city is only made up of apartment blocks and other modern detritus, so beware. To the west, however, is the historic sector, which still enchants -- it's a relatively flat area, with winding, stone-paved lanes bordered by balconied buildings, some joined by medieval stone arches. This part of town is a delightful place to walk through, especially in the mild evenings, when people are out and about, and everything is open. Craftspeople are often at work in their stalls and shops and are happy to let you watch; in fact, that's the point.

Most visitors arrive at the Stazione, the end of the line for the Circumvesuviana Railway; a 10-minute walk to the left along Corso Italia will bring you to the Piazza Tasso and the center of the historic quarter. At the station (which also functions as the main bus terminal), note the bust of Ernesto De Curtis, composer of Turna a Surriento, that music-box anthem you'll find yourself humming or whistling long after you return home.

Beyond Sorrento, narrow Statale (State Road) 145 winds westward around the tip of the peninsula and, as Statale 163, returns eastward along its southern edge. This stretch, from Positano through Amalfi to Vietri sul Mare and Salerno, is the Amalfi Coast. If you think a road is just for getting from here to there, the twisty Amalfi Drive is not for you. The natives joke that to drive it end to end in the English manner takes three hours; Italian style, a half hour.

 
 
  • Duomo
    Religious Site, Ravello

 

 

 
 

Hotel Onda Verde
Contact Us
Via Terramare, - N° 3 - 84010 Praiano (Salerno) - Italy - Amalfi Coast
Tel.: +39 089 874143 - +39 089 874125 - Fax.: +39 089 8131049

 

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