|Amalfi Coast and Ravello, Italy
Beautiful, Scenic and Peaceful
John and I drove from the Fuimicino Airport in Rome to the Amalfi Coast. It is about 4 hours drive and takes you near Naples and
Pompeii and then on to Solarno and the Amalfi Coast.
We stayed in Maiori in the Panorama Hotel overlooking the Ocean. Very beautiful view. On the drive to Maiori we had our adventure
on the Amalfi Coast Road which in many parts is one lane with many winding turns. One must rely on mirrors which have been placed
on many of the curves to see if a car is coming. This would not be too unnerving if not for the fearlessness of the other drivers. We
figured that they were the locals who know the road well because they took up the whole road and had no sense of danger. We would
pull to the side as close as possible to let them pass. Eventually, John got 'it' the Italian driving code of fearlessness and somehow
everyone gets around OK.
We had a wonderful time in Maiori in the evening because the local people come out and shop and walk. It is really very charming.
The next day we went to Ravello which is the next town over from Maiori and up the mountain and a little higher on the cliffs. We had
no problem parking in a lot and walking to all the local sites including the Duomo.
Later for a snack we walked to the Hotel Ruffolo which has a spectacular view of the Amalfi Coast and we were told the snack bar was
the only thing opened and that the restaurant was closed until lunch.
The snack bar was the terrace overlooked the entire coast. Very beautiful. We sat down and someone came and we asked for menus
and were told the snack bar was not opened. We explained that we had been told it was open. They, immediately got menus and we
had our desert and coffee along with a magnificent view. It was so peaceful, only John and I with the terrace to ourselves. Quite a treat.
We stopped later to look at ceramica because I had been looking for dinner plates to bring home. We found a wonderful store with a
great designer Margarhite. She had sold the same dishes to the owner of MGM Grand's Restaurant Fiamma Trattoria & Bar.
Eventually, we will have to go there to eat and visit the dishes since ours are on order will not arrive until December.
I could not talk John into going to the Ravello Concert since he would have to drive at night on the winding road. But there is always
next time to stay in Ravello and go to the concerts.
The town of Ravello is really the town of Rebello or Rebel. Gives you an idea about the independence energy.
In 337 A.D. some adventurous Roman Patricians set sail from an unknown port headed to Constantinople. They ran into a storm and
were shipwrecked and forced to give up their idea of resettling in Constantinople. They decided to found a new city, possibly in the
hills, as it could be defended from pirates. The town today is called Scala which eventually inhabitants left and formed Ravello as noted
In 1081 Ravello belonged to the Amalfi Republic and taking advantage of Guiscard the Norman's expedition in the East against the
Emperor Alessio Commeno, the inhabitants took the opportunity to elected their own Doge, this betraying Guiscard. Mt. Torello was
the area the people fled to and elected their new doge who became a sort of anit-doge vis-a-vis the one of Amalfi; in fact the
inhabitants of Amalfi called the leader at Torello "rebello" (from "ribelle" = rebel). Several years later this was transformed into "ravello"
and hence the area of Monte Torello came to be called Ravello.
In acknowledgement of its loyalty and to shame the town of Amalfi, Pope Vittore III, from Capua, elected the city of Ravello as the
bishop's residence. Ravello was no longer subject to the rule of Amalfi but instead to the papacy. Later in 1086 the Pope raised the
town to the status of Episcopal see.
The people of Ravello were and are still today skilled craftsmen, traders and seaman. What I tapped into and came away with is the
energy of resourcefulness, creativity in a very practical way, self-actualized living doing what you love - completely. Not sacrificing
anything to accomplish your heart's desire.
A powerful place Ravello.
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