Europe

Ten Perfect Activities for the Amalfi Coast Winter Season

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Are you thinking about going to the famous Amalfi Coast, but worried about the excessive crowds the region has now become notorious for? Take our lead and visit during the winter holidays!

Believe it or not, this is actually a great time to go. The weather is cooler and there are no crowds. You’ll be able to take in the spectacular views without battling swarms of other tourists and you will develop a sense of what it is really like to live in this picturesque part of Italy.

Here are 10 incredible activities to lure you to this stunning destination during the tourism off-season this winter.

1. Try the famous Sorrento lemons

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The Amalfi Coast is revered for its production of exceptionally flavorful and bright lemons. Beautiful lemon trees climb their way up steep cliffs and add to the visual appeal of this region.

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Throughout this region’s trading history, lemons have been an important and valuable export. The Mediterranean climate is perfectly suited for growing the ideal lemon.

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To experience the taste of the Sorrento lemon, we recommend ordering a seafood dish that makes use of the burst of citrus. You can also try Limoncello, a liquor made from lemons that is quite popular in the region. Finally, order a dessert that highlights lemon such Delizie al Limone (sponge cake with lemon cream).

2. Positano cliff views and sunset views

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The cliff views and epic sunsets are a big reason people visit the Amalfi Coast. We suggest viewing from the town of Positini or heading northwards of Positini to the village of Termini to get the right angle.

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Once you are in Positini, it is worth sticking around and wandering the narrow streets

3. Ravello gardens

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The Villa Rufolo has served as a grand villa entertaining the wealthy, famous and royal since the 14th century. In the mid-19th century, the stunning Ravello Gardens were cultivated to bring further glamour to the estate.

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These gardens have quite the celebrity endorsement– the famous composer Richard Wagner exclaimed that “I have discovered Klingsor’s garden” when he arrived on a visit. He loved the gardens so much that he remained to write a full act of Parsifal, one of his final operas.

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At the Ravello Gardens, neat and bright flower compositions light up around traditional Moorish architecture. But even more impressive are the views! From these gardens, you’ll be able to look down the coastline at the towns climbing up the rocky cliffs and towering over the shimmering ocean.

Photo Dec 20, 4 58 49 AM4. Cetara anchovies

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Cetara is a vividly painted small fishing village between Amalfi and Salerno. Cetara is still actively supported by the fishing industry, and thus is less dependent on tourism. This is a great village to visit if you crave authenticity. Cetara fishermen pull many species from the depths, but the most famous of all is the anchovy. The anchovies are fished in the summer months and packed in salt barrels to preserve them through winter.

We recommend a visit to the small but renowned factory of Nettuno. Here, anchovies are preserved in the traditional style. They also produce the flavorful anchovy oil called Colatura di Alici. This oil can give a rich flavor to sauces and is often used in recipes in this region.

5. Vietri Ceramics

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Vietri Ceramics offers a wide range of beautiful and striking hand painted ceramic items for both home and garden. It’s a must to pick up an original piece to carefully bring home as a reminder of your trip.

The Fabbrica di Ceramiche Solimene is also worth a visit. It is a huge ornate ceramic covered building that houses a ceramics showroom inside. You’ll be able to learn more about the history of this art form.

6. Wine tasting

Amalfi’s wine region may not be the most famous in Europe, but the climate produces lovely and bold varieties.

Marisa Cuomo in the small town of Furore will provide excellent exposure to the unique taste of Amalfi wine. Furore is high up on a cliffside overlooking a fjord, so you’ll get amazing vistas along with your tasting. The winery itself is actually built right into the cliff face! We recommend trying the Fior d’Uva, a delightful white wine.

Due to the remoteness of many vineyards, we strongly suggest booking a tour that visits multiple wineries. This will allow you to fully experience the variety of options along the coast (plus, you won’t have to worry about driving).

7. Salerno Christmas lights

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If you visit the Amalfi Coast during the holiday season, don’t miss the spectacular and magical lights displays in Salerno. The streets and squares become illuminated by a rand of beautiful installations.

The lights season runs from early November to late January (check for specific dates for the year you travel during). Everything lights up at sunset each night and stays on until midnight.

We suggest you start with a stroll down Corso Vittorio Emanuele, which is a major shopping street, and then stop at Piazza Portanova to see the huge Christmas Tree. The historic district will have illuminations on Via dei Mercanti as well. Finally, visit the Villa Comunale Public Garden to see their “Il Giardino Incantato”  display.

If you arrive in Salerno before sunset, you can also check out the Christmas Market by the waterfront before beginning your tour of the lights.

8. Pompeii

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The story of Pompeii has captivated visitors for many years. The chance to see a moment from humanity’s past, frozen in time, is extremely compelling.

This vast and incredibly well preserved Roman city spans a full 163 acres, so it’s best to set aside a full day to visit. And of course, wear your walking shoes!

There’s a ton to see at Pompeii if you love archaeology, history and ancient artwork. Don’t miss the city center– you’ll be able to see a triumphal arch perfectly frame the dangerous Mt. Vesuvius. Some of the best preserved and most colorful artwork is in the Chamber of Mysteries. And the Garden of the Fugitives will give you the chance to see preserved bodies of those who were unlucky enough to be caught in the volcano’s wake.

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Given the complexity of the site, a visit to Pompeii can be greatly enhanced by taking a tour led by an expert. You’ll avoid getting lost and be able to learn far more about the history of this incredible city.

9. Naples pizza

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Naples is a great place to start or end your Amalfi Coast visit. It’s a gorgeous city full of ancient history and traditional Italian culture and cooking!

Start by wandering the Piazza del Plebiscito square. You’ll be able to find beautiful villas, churches and the Opera House. Then, grab yourself some world famous Naples pizza!

We loved the bright red, white and green Margarita pizza at Pizzeria Brandi. Believe it or not, Pizzeria Brandi is said to have been cooking up pizzas since 1889! In fact, it is rumored to be the origin of the Margarita pizza.

Another fantastic slice can be found at Pizzeria da Michele, in operation since 1870. It’s a ton of fun to watch the pizzas slide in and out of the huge brick ovens!

Naples also is home of the delicious pizza fritta, or fried pizza. This is commonly a street food, and you shouldn’t miss it on your trip (yes, we realize we are telling you to have pizza for every meal of the day). Fried pizza is exactly what it sounds like, and its exactly as tasty as it sounds too! We suggest visiting Di Matteo for the best slice.

The Amalfi Coast during winter offers many opportunities for those willing to forgo sunbathing in exchange for a less crowded and more authentic experience!

Have you ever traveled to a famous destination during their off-season? Let us know where and why it was amazing in the comments!

 

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