Monthly Archives: October 2017

Italy’s Amalfi Coast – 23 October 2017 – day 9

Mozzarella factory, gelato class and limoncello production

By this time, all the ladies are expert tasters of these treats:

After a wild and crazy overnight wind storm it was calm this morning.

We visited Villa Le Sorgenti farmhouse – a working farm – to learn about mozzarella production and to enjoy a light lunch.

After lunch we made a stop at I Giardini di Cataldo laboratory to learn more about Limoncello production and for a tasting, of course … well as a mini lemon gelato cone.


This was followed by  a visit to a gelateria for a hands on lesson in creating the perfect gelato.

We returned to the hotel in time to pack and relax before going to the marina for our farewell dinner at the wonderful seafood restaurant Zi’Ntonio a Mare.

All good things must come to an end ….we have had a wonderful time sharing the experience of exploring the Amalfi coast with our amazing guide Pasquale ….new friendships have been made and hopefully some of us will have the opportunity to travel together again soon.

Italy’s Amalfi Coast – 22 October 2017 – day 8

Pompeii and Mt Vesuvius

Paintings in the hotel dining room.


One of the most impressive archaeological sites in the world, Pompeii provides a glimpse into ancient Roman life; During our 2 hour visit of the fascinating archaeological site our guide Michele showed us the highlights. We walked the Roman streets and explored houses, shops, amphitheatres and cafes.


We then headed toward Mount Vesuvius; enjoying a light lunch and wine tasting at Cantine del Vesuvio on the volcano slopes.

After too much eating and drinking a walk through the vineyards was a perfect solution.

Unfortunately our hike on the slopes of the volcano to admire the breathtaking views on the Bay of Naples had to be canceled as they closed the mountain trail due to heavy fog and the expected rain storm, resulting in zero visibility which would have been dangerous.

Postcard picture of the crater we did not get to see:

Instead we watched a cameo making demonstration followed by a return to the Pompeii shopping area for some last minute shopping.


After a tiring day some of the ladies relaxed at the hotel while others ate at a restaurant close by or made their way into Sorrento for an enjoyable dinner at one of the many wonderful restaurants.

Thi is the first time we have experienced a little rain and this evening extreme wind.  We have been so fortunate with the lovely sunny days we have had.

Italy’s Amalfi Coast – 21 October 2017 – day 7

Free day in Sorrento

The day was ours to continue exploring the town’s narrow streets and alleyways and shop the boutiques and artisan workshops of the Corso Italia and Piazza Tasso. I think many suitcases are going to be much heavier on our return!

After that some of the  ladies went to the beach, had a swim in the sea or pool and relaxed in the hot tub.

After a scary drive up winding narrow streets we enjoyed a delicious dinner at a popular local restaurant called ‘Donna Sophia’ – dedicated to Sophia Lauren – great ambiance and delicious food.

Italy’s Amalfi Coast – 20 October 2017 – day 6

Excursion to Naples

Today we explored Naples after a lovely breakfast on the hotel dining room patio.

Our guided walk of Naples took us to the UNESCO World Heritage historic centre wandering through the alleys:

It’s a bustling, energetic city and its street life has an infectious vitality.

We learned that baci are kisses :-)

We visited two churches including the San Severo chapel:

We sampled pizza for lunch at Trattoria Medina, in the city where it was invented.

In the afternoon we had a scenic drive through Naples and up to a vantage point for a magnificent view before returning to Sorrento.


We met at the rooftop bar for a glass of vino and to listen to music and watch the sunset.

Yet another day in paradise!

Italy’s Amalfi Coast – 19 October 2017 – Day 5

Cooking Class

Today’s excursion was to Villa Ida’s Cooking School (named after the chef’s grandmother) where we learned to prepare some of the traditional regional dishes of the Amalfi Coast in a hands-on cooking class in a lovely traditional home.

We started our day in the garden, drinking almond milk, espresso and almond cake.

After which we picked fresh herbs to use in our cooking

Chef Roberta’s dishes are based on perfect seasonal ingredients using the chef’s family recipes.


We also visited Charlie’s wine cellar to taste homemade wine.

We were fortunate to enjoy lunch based on our efforts under the pergola.

After our delicious meal we visited Pasquale’s family’s farm for an olive oil processing demonstration. An added bonus – we got to meet his papa, his nonna and the farm animals.

This evening we were free to enjoy a visit to Sorrento for a bite or just stay and relax at the hotel.

Italy’s Amalfi Coast – 18 October 2017 – day 4

Amalfi Coast towns: Positano, Amalfi and Ravello

The Amalfi Coast is a glittering string of coastal gems, an outstanding example of Mediterranean landscape and seascape with coastal mountains plunging into the sea.

Today we explored the charming small towns of the coast travelling by coach along the panoramic seaside road – or as our guide Pasquale calls it “the mama-mia road”.

Positano lives up to its reputation as the most photogenic town on the coast with pink, peach and terracotta coloured houses seeming to tumble down to the sea.

We took a boat ride from Positano to Amalfi which was wonderful to see from the sea perspective  the way the houses and villas cling to the cliffside.

Amalfi was once a Maritime super-power; its striking 11th century cathedral is all that remains.

We enjoyed lunch outside,  wandering the little alleyways and of course indulging in a little shopping.

Ravello, the town of music, has a refined and polished feel with ravishing gardens and the very best views on the coast.

This evening we had dinner at Ristorante Tasso, another of Sorrento’s many eating establishments. The Italians certainly know how to eat well!

Yet another day in paradise!

Italy’s Amalfi Coast – 17 October 2017 – day 3


A 20 minute hydrofoil ride from Sorrento took us to the magical Isle of Capri. With its white-washed buildings, narrow, car-free streets, the mix of luxury hotels, villas and designer boutiques, and entrancing views everywhere, Capri is the epitome of Mediterranean chic. There are ancient Roman sites to discover dating from the time of the Emperor Tiberius and beautiful gardens overlooking the limestone Faraglione Islands.

After our wonderful excursion by boat all around the island on our boat “the Titanic”

we visited Anacapri, the laid back village at the top of the island. It was the perfect spot to enjoy a leisurely lunch.

Some of the ladies took the chairlift to the very top of the mountain to enjoy the breathtaking view while some went on a scenic walk or shopped.

We then spent time exploring Capri town before heading back to the hydrofoil to return to Sorrento.

After a wonderful day we returned to the hotel for a delicious dinner in the rooftop restaurant.

Italy’s Amalfi Coast – 16 October 2017 – day 2


This morning after a delicious buffet breakfast eaten on the rooftop restaurant patio, we explored the town of Sorrento’s fine old buildings and narrow cobbled lanes on a guided walk. There are beautiful churches, the occasional palazzo and equally lovely shops, restaurants, and temptations of all kinds to discover.

It was a perfect, sunny day.

We stopped in for a taste of the famous ‘limoncello’ liqueur.

And enjoyed hearing lots of information about Sorrento

catching our guide almost touching Mt Vesuvius


Followed by a delicious lunch

We then had the afternoon free for wandering the alleyways and shopping


It was a glorious sunset enjoyed from the hotel room balcony

In the evening we enjoyed a delectable dinner at one of Sorrento’s many spectacular restaurants – Restaurant Circolo dei Forestieri (circle of strangers)

We are no longer strañgers :-)

Italy’s Amalfi Coast – 15 October 2017 – Day 1

Arrive in Naples/Transfer to Sorrento

We were met by our Italian tour guide Pasquale on arrival at Naples Airport after various delayed and missed flights

We were then transferred to our beautiful hotel in Sorrento, gateway to the Amalfi Coast where they kindly served our exhausted ladies dinner at 10.30 at night …..this is Italy after all :-)

Our home for the duration of our adventure is Hotel Mediterraneo – a luxury boutique hotel offering rooms with spectacular sea views, a lovely pool area surrounded by gardens and exceptional service.

Now that we are all here we are excited to begin our adventure.