2 - 3
FATMAP difficulty grade
No matter how much the coastline and nearby piazzas of Amalfi may be bustling with tourists, within a few minutes of this hike you will escape the crowds and be greeting locals with your heartiest ‘Buongiorno!’ This is a glimpse into how life in Amalfi has existed for generations; an old man balances precariously atop a wooden lattice, 3 metres high, tending to his lemon trees, which droop under the weight of the grapefruit-sized, yellow treasure for which the region is famed.
Derelict stone buildings – old paper mills – crumble beside a swift stream as nature steadily reclaims her territory.
All this set within an amphitheatre of magnificent limestone cliff-faces. The quiet, forgotten village of Pontone greets you halfway through the hike, its sleepy Piazza San Giovanni is a peaceful spot to break for a drink or lunch.
From Pontone, the colourful houses of Amalfi, far below, appear like a ribbon threaded through the valley, nestled between two mountains, and with an unbeatable backdrop of the Mediterranean, a rich sapphire-blue. Ravello is a popular village where tourists enjoy browsing through the vibrant ceramics shops and art galleries, stepping into history in the old monasteries and churches, or watching the world-go-by with a gelato ice cream, or a slice of pizza in the Piazza Duomo, the square around which the village is centred.
From here, you can return to Amalfi by bus or continue on foot.