One thing I’ve realised since we’ve started travelling, is we almost always take the hard road in getting to our destinations. Now this isn’t intentional, we just aren’t good at following instructions, or reading directions, or listening, or…..well you get my drift. Anyway sometimes it’s not so great, but other times you stumble across something you wouldn’t have seen had you taken the easy route, and that’s what makes travelling fun, it may at the time seen stressful, but in the end it’s all worth it.
Which brings me to Piano di Sorrento. We had left Sicily and we were onto our next leg – Italy. One short flight from Catania to Naples, a very long 50min train ride in stifling heat (places on my body were sweating that I never knew could sweat), shoulder to shoulder with other sweaty passengers, all while trying to balance our backpacks. We nearly collapsed when we made it to Piano train station, it was extremely hot and we were exhausted. As we walked out into the street there wasn’t a soul to be seen, it was deserted, except for the little green lizards that scurried along beside us. No Taxis to be flagged down, no buses, our only option was to walk.
I whipped out Google maps and we began our 20min walk through narrow streets, in the general direction of the waterfront. Now this is the bit where the first paragraph comes into play – had I read the instructions properly, we woulda arrived to the accommodation sooner and with the assistance of a lift. But nope, I chose the very steep and winding roadway, dodging traffic and certain we would collapse at any moment. But them views, they were amazing, and in my defence you wouldn’t of got them in the lift. Well that’s my excuse and I’m sticking to it!
When we conquered the downhill voyage, we nearly fell into our next hosts arms (we will do a separate blog post on our accommodation soon), we were emotional, tired and probably stunk badly, but he checked us in with a smile. We were staying in a family run bed and breakfast – B&B L’approdo – and it was right on the water’s edge. I highly recommend this place as the food was exceptional, the hosts were lovely and so helpful and it’s easy enough to do excursions to surrounding islands, Pompeii and Mt Vesuvius and also Sorrento. Added bonus being it was less touristy and in a beautiful fishing cove, a place to unwind and relax away from the hustle and bustle of a city!
So after a chat with our host, we booked a day excursion – and here is my next story in regards to the first paragraph. After booking said excursion we returned to our room for a rest and this is how our conversation went:
Me: “So where are we actually going?”.
Mum: “Umm………(awkward smile and shrug)….i’m not really sure….”
Me: “Yeah, I couldn’t really understand him”.
Mum: “Yeah, neither”.
Me: “Guess we’ll find out tomorrow then”.
Mum: “Guess, so”.
And with a shrug we continued on with our day, to tired to find out (probably wouldn’t have listened again anyway) and dubbed tomorrow’s excursion a mystery tour. Yup, we are hopeless and I’m unsure how we’ve survived this far!
It turned out to be ok and we found out just before we boarded the boat, that we were heading to Isle of Capri. The sun was shining and the water was a gorgeous blue. This was my kinda day. There were 12 on our tour so we spread out on the boat. The boat sped through the waves, bouncing about, sending a few of us airbourne, and landing with nervous giggles! The wind whipped through our hair, as we explored the Sorrento coast, heading toward Capri’s monstrous outline that loomed in the distance.
We cruised the many grottos, exploring the caves and huge cliff structures. Our guides told us tales and pointed out different points of interests. I was delighted when they stopped in a beautiful lagoon for a swim, I lept gracefully (or perhaps like a bellyflopping starfish) into the crystal clear water, surfacing like a mermaid (or sputtering idiot who gulped seawater when jumping in with mouth agape), feeling happily refreshed (once I had stopped choking).
The boat sailed through the famous Faraglioni, a rock formation created by the erosion of waves, and that is composed of three rocks called Stella, Faraglione di Mezzo and Faraglione di Fuori. Faraglione di Mezzo is meant to bring you good luck, if you kiss your love when you pass through the arch. We then coasted past Punta Carena lighthouse as we made our way around to the other side of the island.
We finally arrived at Marina Grande and we were free to have a wander around the island for 4 hours. In fine fashion, with a bit of bad map reading, we were lost. But once again all was ok, as we wandered through picturesque vineyards and beautiful flowering walkways. We backtracked and managed to find our way, but not before climbing yet another steep walkway (found a shorter way on our descent back to the port) to Piazza Umberto I (also known as the piazzetta). It was packed and buzzing with other excited holidaymakers, but the views were phenomenal.
Our day on the island consisted of pizza, ice-tea and the obligatory mojitos, before we made our way to the port to catch our boat back to Piano di Sorrento. We were all sunkissed and fancy-free, as we quietly lay about drinking in the surroundings and the delightful tastings of lemoncello.
I highly recommend you give this spot a look if like us, you aren’t always attracted to big cities with loads of people!
What a fantastic start to our Italy adventures 😊
Until next time……Laugh, Dream, Reach xx
📷 photos by Shirley xx