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2019 SEPTEMBER 09 - 12 ITALY, Amalfi Coast, Bomerano

We are here to walk with the Gods, and swim in the sea.

sunny 27 °C
View 2019 Adventure - Germany, Malta, Italy & Indonesia on Cindy Bruin's travel map.

MONDAY 9TH SEPTEMBER 2019 DAY 80

We left the apartment, leaving the keys on the table as requested. Dragging our luggage down the same street we dragged it up a few days ago, we headed back towards the Naples train station.

Today we are heading to the Amalfi Coast! To the village of Bomerano, to be exact. The bus to this village leaves at a bus stop somewhere behind the train station, not exactly sure which one, but hope to find out or ask someone.
We make it to the train station, but before heading to the bus stop we take the escalator down to the underground shopping center under Garibaldi Square. We have found a place a couple of days ago where we could store one of our bags for a few days, rather that take 2 bags on the bus. We will be returning to Naples to get the train to Rome and the price was only 3 euro per day, so totally worth it.

We had to wait in line, but finally the bag was stored and we made our way to the bus stop. There were multiple bus stops along this street and we hoped we were standing by the correct one. The bus ended up being over an hour late, which was not surprising due to the traffic that we saw around the train station. We were worried we had missed it, but there seemed to be a lot of people milling around also looking frustrated at the tardiness of the bus.

The bus did finally show and we were on our way to Bomerano. The bus was crowded and seemed to stop at every light post so the trip was slow going. Distance was less than 50km, but with the constant stopping and an impressive hill climb the trip took almost 2 hours.

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Our Airbnb host was at the bus stop in Bomerano to meet us on arrival and drove us the short distance to our apartment for the next 4 nights @ 53.70 euro per night plus 2 euro city tax per night. Another nice place. This hill top village is a little cooler than Naples, which is nice also.

We went for a walk to check out the village, visited the lookout which gave us a magic view of the coast line from up high. We stood watching the traffic snake down the switchback road, contemplating whether to hire a scooter for a day while we are here. Stopped for an ice cream, really not having enough of these. Found a couple of mini markets for some supplies, and witnessed a funeral arriving at the village church. I found some sunflowers - happy!

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Tomorrow we are going to walk the Path of the Gods - this is the main reason for our visit here.

TUESDAY 10TH SEPTEMBER 2019 DAY 81

Today we walked THE PATH OF THE GODS from Bomerano to Nocelle (just under 9km), and then descended the 1,700 odd steps from Nocelle to Positano.

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The Path of the Gods, or “Sentiero degli Dei” in Italian, is a clifftop trail running between Bomerano (in Agerola) and Nocelle (near Positano) along Italy’s Amalfi Coast. Situated halfway up Mount Sant’Angelo a Tre Pizzi, the trail averages at about 1640 feet (500m) above sea level. It is often referred to as the best hike in the world for its breathtaking views of the Tyrrhenian Sea.

Once you arrive at the end of the trail in Nocelle, you have the option of continuing on to Positano. There are three ways to do this:

1. Follow the signs to continue down the steep set of 1700 stairs ending in Positano.
2. Take the bus from Nocelle to Positano.
3. Alternatively, keep walking along the road all the way down to Positano.

The day was quite warm, and the path was not too bad. A bit of up and down and rocks to scramble over, but not too difficult. The scenery along the coastline was of course spectacular, and most of the time we had a birds eye view.

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So when we made it to Nocelle, which was the end of the Path of the Gods walk, I suggested to Lyn that we take option 2 to get down to Positano.
2. Take the bus from Nocelle to Positano. But, no, she said we should just go down the steps to the village below. Option 1. Follow the signs to continue down the steep set of 1700 stairs ending in Positano. This would later prove to be a decision I deeply regretted!

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After the walk and the long climb down all the steps to Positano, we celebrated with a cold beer and a swim in the sea. Positano was crawling with tourists, and the overcrowded public beach was just that, overcrowded.

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We dried in the sunshine, and then caught the ferry from Positano to Amalfi (8 euro each). This 25 minute boat ride gave us a great view of the coastal villages from the water and also the cliffs we walked along earlier in the day.

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Amalfi township was crawling with tourists. We just missed the 5pm bus to take us back to Bomerano, so we grabbed a few supermarket beers and sat on the church steps people watching until it was time to catch the 7pm bus. This was the first time we were to experience the sheer talent of the bus drivers, negotiating the narrow switchback roads was very impressive..

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A quick stop for dinner supplies and we walked the short distance back to our apartment. We were proud of our walking accomplishments today, but going to bed a little muscle sore and weary, I had no idea what tomorrow was going to be like.

WEDNESDAY 11TH SEPTEMBER 2019 DAY 82

I.CAN'T.MOVE!

Who's bright idea was it to walk down those 1700 steps yesterday? My legs are so stiff and sore it is almost impossible for me to get out of bed. Which I only end up doing due to a call of nature. Unfortunately there is a tiny step (I'm talking about 5cm) into the bathroom and the pain to just climb into this room is killing me. And then to try and sit on the loo, all uses leg muscles, I have never been so sore in my life!

As we had not been out at all today to get any dinner supplies, we had to get up and go out to eat. The closest restaurant to our accomodation was a pizza place that was about 300m up a laneway. I managed to stand and get dressed and soon we were outside and making our way there. Lucky we had not made a reservation as the time to walk the short distance took about 4 times the amount of time it usually would have. I soon worked out the the least amount of pain was encountered when I walked without bending my knees or flexing any leg muscles. So you can imagine what I looked like, 'strolling' up the street, rocking from side to side as this was the only way to move without bending my legs. Finally we reached our destination and lucky for us they were not busy and we were shown to a table inside. Now you know that sitting down onto a chair does involve bending at the knees and using just about every leg muscle that I have. I knew this was going to be painful so I stood by the table taking my time and working myself up to the task. Needless to say the waitress was eyeballing me very strangely as I stood beside the table not taking my seat as any normal person would have done.

I managed to sit without screaming out in pain, by this stage Lyn and I were laughing so much at my pain that there was no room for screaming.

The pizza was ok, good. But the walk home was hanging heavily over my head during the meal. We shared a jug of local wine during dinner, but that was certainly not nearly enough to dull any of my pain. We shared the pizza and bill only totaled 14.50 euro for the both of us.

I braced myself with my hands on the table to try and hoist myself up. Of course that did not do anything towards dulling the pain as I straightened my legs to try and stand. Walking home was the same style as I'd walked up to the restaurant. Legs locked straight, rocking from one foot to the other as I moved down the street. Now I say down as the laneway had a slight decline and as soon as I started moving I was like one of those toys that rocks back and forth just getting faster with momentum. By now I couldn't stop and we both couldn't stop laughing as I gained speed rocking down the laneway.

I soon remembered that this laneway came out onto the main road just opposite our accomodation. Not that there was a heavy stream of traffic at any time of the day, but I just a visions of my arrival at this road would coincide with the local bus timetable. Lucky for me it did not and I managed to negotiate the few stairs need to be climbed to get into our apartment. Getting undressed and using the bathroom were achieved in slow motion.

I crashed onto the bed, praying that tomorrow I would be more mobile and less pained.

THURSDAY 12TH SEPTEMBER 2019 DAY 83

After waking up and still feeling a bit stiff and sore, it was decided we should get out and about and explore the Amalfi Coast further.

We caught a very overcrowded bus from Bomerano to Amalfi, where we caught another bus to the high village of Ravello.

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This shorter trip we managed to get a seat in the bus. Another beautiful day as we walked around the village admiring the scenery.

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It was another hot day so we needed a coldie to cool us down a little.

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Bus back down to Amalfi where we had a swim in the ocean. This is will our last dip in the sea for awhile as we head north and inland. The public beach was crowded and the water was crystal clear and refreshing.

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We sat right behind the driver in two buses today. The 2 euro each we paid for the bus legs are well worth it just for the thrill of watching the skill of the bus driver negotiate very narrow roads, with cars, bikes and trucks parked on both sides of the road, while being overtaken by crazy scooter riders and impatient Italian drivers. All this while trying not to head on with oncoming traffic which is also addressing the same traffic hazards. All this is done with so much skill and we never travel under 60kmph, and the driver is constantly on his mobile phone (hands free at least).
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When we returned to our village, Bomerano, we stopped at a bar on the square to have a lemon beer and were given free snacks which we called lunch! Good timing too as we got to witness the village religious procession and later in the night there was fire works.

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For those of you interested, yes I was still in a bit of pain today, although not nearly as much as yesterday. All the steps in the pedestrian village of Ravello were a killer and all I can say is thank god for handrails! Apparently, there is a video of me struggling with some stairs, but there is no way I am going to share that on here!

Posted by Cindy Bruin 04:14 Archived in Italy Tagged the of gods path amalfi ravello positano bomerano Comments (0)

2015 MAY NETHERLANDS - STENA LINE FERRY HARWICH TO HOOK

UK to the Netherlands, we sail across the English channel over to the Continent.


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Saturday 23rd May 2015 (day nineteen)

An early start this morning as we had to be down at the ferry at 8.00 am for 9.00 am departure. After thanking and bidding goodbye to our friends Janet and John, we loaded our huge bags into a taxi to take us down to the dock.

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The crossing of the Channel from England to Holland was long and uneventful. Thankfully the sea was calm so it was smooth sailing, only complaint was the air conditioning was turned up to Arctic levels so we froze the entire 8 hours. It was not only us who felt the shallow temperature, other passengers around us were rugged up and shivering under blankets also. We regretted checking in our luggage as we had sleeping bags with us that we could have readily used to try and stay a little warmer.

I guess the high air con was trying to acclimatize us for the coolness of temperature that met us as we left the ferry terminal to walk to the train station. Luckily it was only about 20 meters away so we did not have far to go. However, once there we had to wait on the drafty platform approximately 25 minutes until our train arrived. We still had a way to travel as tonight we had a hotel booked in Almere which is about an hour north of Amsterdam. Our ferry ticket included a train ticket to any Dutch station, but the first train we boarded would only take us as far as Rotterdam from where we got on at the Hook of Holland. As we had to change trains in Rotterdam, we thought it best to leave half our luggage at the Rotterdam train station as we were only going to be away one night then return to this same station. This was a better idea than carting it with us for one night.

While at the station we stopped for a quick picnic break with the left over food we were given for the ferry journey. (Thanks Janet).

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Another train took us from Rotterdam to Amsterdam where again we changed to a different train that took us to Almere. It was almost 9.30pm when we finally booked into our hotel and it was still broad daylight outside. Gotta love a hotel that hands out ear plugs to its guests on checkin. They warned us there was going to be very very loud music from 10pm until about 4am. We were given a room on the 4th floor and after showering we more or less went to bed. (After watching the Eurovision Song Contest of course).
I don't know about Lyn but I did not hear much of the music that was played downstairs, it had been a big day of travelling and slept like a log on a very uncomfortable soft bed, in a room with very loud wallpaper.

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Sunday 24rd May 2015 (day twenty)

Breakfast was included with our room and we took full advantage of it this morning.

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Rest of the day was spent with our cousins Alie & Koos and Wout & Ria. It was a beautiful day and we sat outside in the sunshine. Koos cooked some amazing schol (sole fish) which we enjoyed for dinner.

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After a lovely day spent with our Dutch rellies, which was as usual a complete day of overeating, Lyn and I boarded a train to take us back to Rotterdam to the apartment that we have rented for the next week. It was well and truly dark by the time we finally arrived in Rotterdam, collected our luggage from the locker and went outside the train station to get the tram. This of course was perfectly timed with the exact moment that it started to rain - not very heavy, but enough to be a pain with full luggage and no idea where we are going.

Amazingly, we found the apartment without too much trouble. This is a place I had booked via air bnb so very interested and not sure what we were to expect. Luckily the owner lives in the same building so our late arrival was not too much of a problem and Erik was really nice and welcoming. Only down side was apartment was up 4 flights of stairs, a rather large drama with heavy luggage, but Erik helped and soon we were upstairs and settled. We had forgotten to buy milk so could not even have a tea/coffee, best thing to do was go to bed and find something in the morning.

The hunt for bicycles starts tomorrow.

Monday 25th May 2015 (day twenty-one)

I went out first thing this morning to look for milk and bread. Little did we know that it was a public holiday and nothing, and I mean nothing was open. I walked the surrounding unknown streets but found nothing open, so returned empty handed to the apartment.

Friends on FB assured me the shops would open at 12 noon and we would be able to get sustenance then. And sure enough they were correct, we went out for a walk around lunch time, managed to get some supplies and then went for a walk around town.

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Not much luck on the bike finding front, hard to believe it's hard to find a bike shop when you are looking for one. As we only had half a day anyway we decided to wait until tomorrow to really get into it. After our walk we returned to the apartment, did some washing (we have a machine here). Cooked some dinner and waited around for Toni & Shawn Lemon to arrive. They are joining us for the first 6 weeks of our bike tour, having enjoyed (news to me) the ride along the Danube River with us some years ago. Toni & Shawn are bringing bikes with them from Australia so although their flight is due to land in Amsterdam around 8.30pm we are not expecting them to arrive until much later. Not that they are riding these bikes from the airport to Rotterdam, but need time to assemble and then get them on the train from Schiphol airport to Rotterdam and then they will ride them from the station here in Rotterdam to the apartment.

Posted by Cindy Bruin 13:28 Archived in Netherlands Tagged of holland line almere harwich hook stena Comments (1)

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