“Ragazzi .. L’ozio è molto importante .. Questo dolce far niente che practicamo tanto chi nello sud dall’Italia ..!” Smiling, I can still hear the words of my dear Italian language teacher Pina, thinking back about my Italian language course in Salerno. With her typical South-Italian charm, she emphasises the “importance of doing nothing” – without remorse, that is. Like, just sitting in the sun. Perhaps looking at the Vesuvius. Feeling the ruins of Pompeii at your feet. And already, my mind is busy travelling elsewhere because …
… “Il Dolce Far Niente” is virtually impossible to practice for a traveller in such an exciting destination as the Gulf of Naples.
Especially for a first-time visitor like myself: Excited like a child, I enter the “Scavi di Pompeii”, the perhaps most well-known archaeological site in the world. And immediately, I am blown away by the history of the place …
Yes, walking around Pompeii has all been about realising a big childhood dream of mine. As well as walking up the Vesuvius itself!
It’s a fascinating volcano of an almost perfect shape. Dominating the skyline of the Gulf of Naples, well over three million people live here today. A contradiction to the fact that the Vesuvius has and will again become active, like my parents read to me from the Baedeker travel guide they carry. High up at the mountain, you are only left with choosing a guide (in several languages), or reading from the information you brought, in order to learn more about the Vesuvius. There are no further signs (nor WiFi!), which in a way emphasises the primitive nature of the volcanic mountain summit – an eerie place all along. Check this out.
After spending a day on the island of Capri, I take a speed boat from Sorrento to Positano, further along the coastline. Boats leave at either 10.00 or 10.30 from Sorrento; right about an hour later, you are in Positano passing by Capri in a beautiful turn! Positano grants you two hours of free time, before taking the same boat on to Amalfi : I take well over a hundred photographs in these two hours alone, that’s how beautiful this coastline really is! From Amalfi, I opt for taking a bus on to Vietri sul Mare … a great combination of land & sea travel, opening up different views of the impressive terraced hills that have earned the Amalfi Coast UNESCO World Heritage status – and rightly so.
There’s more if you wish, but be careful – you’ll want to travel to Southern Italy immediately: