Summer adventures in Europe are well underway and we are excited to share some wonderful experiences by our WT travelers. Seven-time WT adventurer Bill shares about his recent trip to Amalfi and Capri, where the group had beautiful weather and stunning hiking days. Enjoy!
Our Amalfi and Capri adventure was a careful blend of hiking, culture (ancient and contemporary), cuisine, and local wine. We met in Naples on Day 1 and visited the archaeological museum in the morning followed by Herculaneum in the afternoon. Vesuvius’ eruption in 79 A.D. destroyed Pompeii and Herculaneum. Excavations in recent centuries revealed palaces and other buildings, mosaics, and murals. Consider adding a few days before or after the trip to enjoy Naples and visit Pompeii.
On Day 2, we visited the well-preserved Greek temples at Paestum in the morning and hiked up to Ravello in the afternoon. At Paestum, an archaeologist joined the group to share her knowledge and insights. Like other coastal towns on our itinerary, Ravello has stunning sea views.
Over the years, Ravello’s charm has attracted artists such as composer Richard Wagner, writers D.H. Lawrence and Gore Vidal, and graphic artist M.C. Escher.
We hiked down to Amalfi town on Day 3, passing through terraced farms and small towns. The trail provided ever-changing views of the coast. Amalfi has attractive architecture including a 9th-century cathedral, pedestrian-only streets, a paper museum, and many gelato shops for hikers who crave their daily fix of Italian ice cream.
On Day 4, we hiked along Sentiero degli Dei (Path of the Gods), descending to lovely Positano where we caught a late ferry to the isle of Capri.
Early May is an ideal time for Path of the Gods, because of the moderate temperature and sparse crowds.
On Days 5 and 6, we hiked up to the highest points on Capri. The first hike passed Villa Jovis, home of Tiberius who ruled the empire from Capri until 37 A.D, and continued past Arco Naturale on the south coast.
The second hike reached the summit of Mt. Solaro (elevation 1,700 feet). We took the chairlift for the descent. Evenings in Capri were for strolling old town streets lined with high-end shops.
After returning to the mainland, we visited Sorrento and walked around the crater of Mt. Vesuvius on Days 7 and 8. Although dormant, the volcano is still active with hot spots on the surface.
We lunched at a family-owned vineyard on the volcano’s slope before returning to Naples for a Farewell Dinner. A poster at the vineyard said “Wine improves with age. The older I get, the more I like it!” It’s hard to disagree!
—Text and Photos by seven-time WT adventurer Bill Waller, Amalfi and Capri.