The Amalfi Coast; Positano!

August 14, 2018

The final destination on my Italian adventure: Positano! The Amalfi Coast is one of the most picturesque, a post-card in real life kind of places. Each little town varies slightly from the one preceding it and they all have something different to offer. For Positano, that was the beach, the shops, and the food. 

 

The Amalfi Coast is one of those places where there is a million different ways to get to each little town, but in general, there isn’t an easy, direct option. When we arrived at the Naples train station, we originally were planning on taking the public transit into Positano, only to realize that the public transit option would put us behind nearly four hours, and a couple of confusing transfers. We ended up opting for a taxi, it was a bit more expensive than we would’ve liked to pay, but the fee is a flat rate (around €160.00) and therefore eliminates any surprises with the bill if you get stuck in traffic on your way there. Beyond taking a taxi, or the public transit, there are other options for getting yourself to the Amalfi Coast from the train station; coach buses travel to and from the major transport hubs to the towns on the coast, or you could also hire a personal driver. As a general rule, they do not recommend that tourists rent their own car and drive themselves because the route up the Amalfi Coast is not for the faint of heart, or the inexperienced driver. Our cab driver literally pulled over to the side of the road to pray before we drove up the mountain, and he drives that route nearly every day. 

 

The ride up the mountain to Positano was genuinely a little terrifying; the cliffside was full of sheer drops into the rocky waters below, lots of blind twists and turns where you can’t see what traffic lies ahead of you, and you just keep going up, and up, and up. If you can stomach all of that, then the ride itself really isn’t that bad; I mean, I would prefer that over bumper to bumper traffic on the 401! Soon enough, we had arrived in Positano and we were greeted with quaint shops and waterfronts on either side of the road. We met our AirBnb host, and then made the climb of a 117 stairs to our apartment. The apartment itself was lovely, it had two full bedrooms and bathrooms, a full kitchen/living area and a big outdoor patio with a view of the adjacent mountainside. We were all thoroughly winded and sweaty from our ascent to the apartment, so we took our time to get settled and cleaned up before heading out for our first evening! Later on, we emerged from the apartment and descended the many stairs to the street below us; we spent the evening walking down the winding path that headed to the beach and checking out the shops filled with knickknacks that lined the path before heading to Cafe Positano for dinner. Cafe Positano was directly across from our AirBnb and was a recommendation of our host; we decided to go here for our first dinner in town and it did not disappoint! Our table was overlooking the water, and had a view of the mountainside. Our servers were friendly and prompt, and the food was delicious. Everyone at our table had some variety of pasta, and it was genuinely the best pasta I’ve ever eaten. With our food babies in tow, we finished the night with more exploring, shopping and photographing everything in sight before climbing back up to our apartment. 

 

Our second day in Positano was our only full day there, so we dedicated this to our beach day. We got up bright and early, packed our beach bags and headed down 700+ to the beach for some sun and sand. First things first, while I loved our day at this beach, it is a total money-grab in every aspect. The beach itself is sectioned off into different areas: fancy people, medium fancy people, and not fancy people. The fanciness of the section your in, determines how much you have to pay for a chair and what colour/style of chair you’ll receive. Also, say there’s three different people in your party, but you only want one chair for the purpose of storing your items, you still have to purchase at least two chairs. You also have to pay for things like the on-beach showers, and the price of your thirty second shower varies depending on if you got hot or cold water. Needless to say, we weren’t interested in paying for beach chairs, so we wandered over to the not fancy people section and set up camp with our towels there. Lucky for us, it wasn’t a super busy day at the beach so this area wasn’t packed. But, if there were many more people then everyone would have had to line up towel-to-towel in order to accommodate everybody. Mom and Dad stayed on the beach, while Nick and I went down to the water. The waves were crashing onto the blackened shoreline as Nick and I waded out into the water; unfortunately, it wasn’t long before Mother Nature made me her bitch and knocked me down into the water where I backflipped six times back into the shore, spluttering to the surface and surprised to be alive. Due to my near death experience, Nick and I decided to not try wading passed the waves (because I kept getting knocked over and nearly drowning), and ended up sitting in the shallows of the shore, playing in the sand and water. While we were sitting, and not in any depth of real water, that didn’t stop the waves from toppling both of us over on numerous occasions and stealing my sunglasses (which I am still bitter about). Nick and I sat in the shallows, playing and giggling like a couple of school girls for hours on end until Mom came and found us and we headed back to my parents. The rest of our day was spent strolling along the beach, meandering through the markets and grabbing dinner at a pizzeria. We ended the night in our AirBnb with a bottle of Limencello! 

 

Our final day in Positano was a quiet one, we had a few hours to kill before our driver was to arrive. We had a lazy morning; sleeping in, eating breakfast at Cafe Positano and packing up. We spent some more time walking around and doing last minute shopping for souvenirs, grabbing some gelato (the best flavour combination was strawberry and lemon!!!) at the cafe we frequented, and taking in the sights one last time. Once our car arrived, we packed up and headed to the Naples airport, and flew back to Berlin. 

 

Positano was easily one of the prettiest places I’ve ever been. But, I don’t think it’s a destination for everyone. If you intend to stay in Positano and not visit the surrounding areas, there is limited things for you to do in the town. Beyond going to the beach, shopping or stuffing your face, they don’t have a lot else. Also, the STAIRS, all of the STAIRS. No matter where you are on the Amalfi Coast, you’re going to have to climb some stairs, which is why I could see this being a deterrent for some people when visiting because you literally have to work for everything you’re doing; it doesn’t feel very “vaction-y”, when you’re climbing the Mount Everest of stairs four times a day. Definitely not the best place for the elderly, or for really young kids. 

 

Would you ever visit the Amalfi Coast?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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