The towns of Praiano and Positano on the Amalfi Coast are a must see for an Italian traveller. This area of Italy is a place of beauty and captivating landscapes that should be on every Italianophile’s itinerary. You must first endeavor through the windy roads that lead into these tiny pockets of civilization that have crept up into existence like flowers popping up out of rocky crevices.
The views are breathtaking and the sea breeze invigorating as you take in the wonder of the region. As you sip the local wine and taste the exquisite gifts of the sea, the sunsets will never be forgotten.
Some Italians call it lemonland and if you happen to be there after winter during harvest, you will see why. I was very fortunate to spend Easter in Praiano which is kind of a little sister town to its more famous big brother Positano, which happens to sit on the cliff face to the right as you look out over the bay.
Praiano is a small village and I was lucky to be invited to spend the Easter long wend with a very hospitable amico called Paco and his entourage of fun loving Roman friends. The family home sat overlooking the water and the attached photo was taken from the courtyard lined with lemon trees.
The lemon trees were in almost every backyard and full of huge, juicy lemons and the local vodka sours are to die for, not to mention the limoncello!
The local seafood is fresh from the Mediterranean and simply fantastic. I ate spaghetti and other types of homemade pasta con vongole e cozze (clams & mussels) everyday. The calamari and local fish are also incredible and you can have all kinds of local produce on the ‘frutta di mare’ pizza if you can’t decide what to choose and I highly recommend.
The huge green olives from the Amalfi region are the best I have ever tasted and are offered for free at every bar in the area to compliment your drinks.
Both these wondrous towns are built amazingly into the rocky outcrops that tower above the bay and are places to enrich your soul. Positano has developed a famous name for itself as one of the hotspots in Italy and if you are after the same views in a slightly quieter setting, then choose Praiano as your next holiday destination.
Edward Close May 2012