Hey beautiful people, I hope you’re all having amazing weeks! I’m currently in the picturesque area of Santa’Agata, Italy and I couldn’t be happier. There’s no questioning how much I love Italy. If I could spend a few months every year living and breathing the Italian lifestyle, I’d be one happy woman. There’s just something about the warmth of the people and their simple yet happy lives that connects with me. I’ve even come to enjoy an espresso or two, which for me (a non coffee drinker) is saying something.
Over the last few days, I have been making the most of my time here, exploring the stunning areas of Sorrento, Positano, Pompeii and Capri. I’ve even been getting up at 5.30 every morning to catch the incredible sunrise. And I can assure you, that a few hours less sleep has been absolutely worth it.
WHERE TO STAY?
The majority of visitors to South Italy base themselves in Sorrento. But during peak season (which is usually when you want to go because it’s the best time weather wise) you can expect to pay an absurd amount for accommodation. If you’re a regular reader of my blog, you’ll know that I love to stay in Airbnb’s when I travel, and when I was doing my research I came across one located in Santa’Agata, just outside of Sorrento.
The minute I stepped inside and saw the views from the living room, well, I felt like I’d died and gone to heaven. It is without a doubt, the most incredible accommodation I have ever stayed in. Not to mention how amazing my host has been, providing bus schedules and restaurant recommendations.
St Agata is only a 40 minute bus trip from Sorrento’s city centre and a one way ticket is less than €2. Flying into Napels, I got the CURRERI bus from the airport to Sorrento (€10 for a ticket, purchased on the bus), which dropped me out the front of Sorrento’s train station. From there, I changed busses to the SITA bus and headed to Santa’Agata.
WHERE TO EAT?
For great pizza, and well of course pasta, head to Mimi’s. It has a cosy, family run feel to it, and the staff are incredibly friendly. They even gave me a free appetiser and some homemade melon flavoured limoncello. It was incredible!
Now if you want to head to where both the locals and tourists frequent, then a trip to Lo Stuzzichino is a must. The restaurant is extremely busy, but I had no trouble getting a table. During my visit, they had live music playing and the atmosphere was out of this world. Waiters were dancing on chairs, and at one point the whole restaurant was up on their feet (me included) dancing and clapping away to the tunes. Oh and the chocolate gelato here is sooooo yum.
Busses run regularly from Sorrento and Santa’Agata and a return ticket costing around €9, you can’t go wrong. The journey from Santa’Agata takes 40 minutes and the views of the Amalfi Coast are breathtaking. The drive up involves a long stretch of winding road, so if you’re prone to car sickness, I’d recommend taking something beforehand. The bus back from Positano is from a different locationt to where you’re dropped off, so just keep this in mind when planning your day.
WHAT TO DO?
Sun baking with the incredible backdrop of the world famous limestone cliffs and embedded houses should be at the top of everyone’s Positano to do list. One side of the beach is sectioned off with lounge chairs and umbrella’s that you can rent for €10, or you can do as I did and bring your own towel, soaking up the sun and relaxing on the free side.
After getting my tan on, I wondered along the various pathways, stopping in all the cute shops selling everything from silk scarves and handmade paintings to hats and crockery of various sorts. I found that the closer the shops were to the beach, the more expensive the items were, so I waited until I was further away before making any purchases. Not too far from where the bus departs from, I found a shop selling beautifully designed cheese boards – which of course, I just had to buy!
WHERE TO EAT?
For THE BEST lemon sorbet, head straight to Covo Dei Saraceni. After hearing so many great reviews, I was beyond excited to give it a thorough taste test. Located by the pier, the cafe is situated next to the Covo hotel, and the best part, is that the sorbet is served in a cut out lemon!
Trains direct to Pompei depart from Sorrento’s train station, but be sure to get off at Pompei Scavi not Pompei. When it comes to purchasing tickets for both guided tours and general admission, ignore the locals holding “tour ticket” signs right outside the exit of the station, instead walk the short distance to the main entrance of the ruins and get your tickets from there. You’ll save yourself a few euros this way.
WHAT TO SEE?
I decided to skip the guided tour and instead explore on my own. If you decide to do the same, just be aware that the area is huge. So huge that they’re still uncovering ruins today. Trying to navigate where I was on the map definitely took some skill, and quite a few times I found myself walking in circles, but despite this, the areas I did see were incredibly beautiful and it was such a surreal feeling to be surrounded by so much history.
I almost didn’t go to Capri. My original plan was to go to Amalfi but being a Sunday, the bus schedule to and from Santa’Agata didn’t allow me much time to really explore the area, so I decided to visit Capri instead. And I’m so glad I did! From Sorrento’s pier, a ferry across to Capri takes around 30 minutes and costs only €17 each way. I purchased my tickets one hour before departing and because my day trip wasn’t pre booked, I wasn’t able to choose what time I came back. I lucked out and managed to find availability on an evening ferry, but if you’re wanting to travel at specific times, I recommend booking your tickets a day or two in advance.
WHAT TO DO?
Capri is a little slice of heaven. From exploring the winding pathways, to shopping local handmade items, taste testing limoncello and sitting by the bay, once you arrive you won’t want to leave. Well, at least I didn’t!
If you’re not afraid of heights, then take the chair lift to the top of monte solar for some seriously incredible views. You can also hike up, but it will take some time.
The beach here isn’t a, lay on the sand kind of beach, as it’s full of pebbles, but I was able to find a beautiful spot, where I sat with my book enjoying the sun and later having a quick dip in the turquoise water.
WHERE TO EAT?
Gelato became my obsession whilst in Italy and the place to go in Capri is Bar Grotta Azzurra. Three flavours for €3, it’s cheap and oh so delicious.
After I devoured my gelato, I did a little shopping and found myself in chocolate and limoncello heaven. A place called L’Isola Dei Sapori, after the staff gave me multiple free tastings, I walked out with a bag full of goodies. The pistachio limoncello and the lemon rind chocolate were my favourite.