Amalfi Coast: Hostels Built Around Churches, Caves and Sandals in Capri, and Pompeii
I'm not generally one to like small, enclosed places especially one that you can only get to by taking a boat through a two feet tall entrance. Yet, the Blue Grotto on Capri is one of the Seven Natural Wonders of Europe so I braved the tiny entrance, despite the high waters and waves that made the entrance even smaller than normal.
To get in the Grotto, I had to take a small fishing boat with a few others. To get in, we all had to lie down and slide into the cave. Inside, it didn't look like much, but once my eyes adjusted, I saw the brilliant blue colour. It was definitely worth entering!
Capri was a gorgeous place and I got to take a little boat tour around the island. It was lovely except for when I lost my towel (any Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy fans out here?)
The tan house on top of the hill is the family home of the Gerber Baby Food company. I need to make friends with them.
This is allegedly the second most important lighthouse in the world.
I took a tiny ski lift-esque cable to the summit of the island. The lift was so small, only one person fit per seat. It took about 15 minutes to get from halfway up the island to the summit. The views were stunning. The ride back down the mountain was a bit sketchy, as we took an open air taxi down the side of the mountain. The road had steep cliffs with minimal guardrails and hair pin turns. All the taxi drivers had rosaries hanging from their rear view mirrors. Must be a dangerous job!
On Capri, there was a really neat sandal making shop with Italian leather.
You could pick your design and colour. They also chose the sole to fit your foot. I was told that I needed an extra wide sole because I apparently have fat feet!
The sandal maker was an older, grandfatherly Italian man who kindly let us watch him make sandals and then posed for a photo.
My sandals were the most expensive clothing piece I've bought for myself his whole trip, but I'll wear them a lot and I'm already obsessed with them so that justifies it!
The next day, I went to Positano. There was a lot of more driving along a dodgy mountainside rode. There was also climbing up and down massive staircases to get to and from the beach.
Citrus was really big in the Almafi Coast. Their lemons and oranges were amazing. I got a glass of pure lemon juice at one point which I don't think would be drinkable in other parts of the world.
If you're intrigued by the "hostel built around a church" bit, I'll elaborate for you. Our hostel was literally built around a church. We had a lovely rooftop terrace which was massive. In the middle was the roof and steeple of the church. My room was right beside the bells. The very loud bells went off at 6:47 each morning and evening. On Friday, I had to wake up earlier than that, but I was not pleased to wake up that early on Saturday and Sunday. This trip has made me so sleep-deprived!
I was also not pleased by the abysmal Wi Fi. I had to submit the second of my three essays I had to write during my weeks of wandering. After struggling with it for four hours with no success, I pleaded with the front desk and they kindly let me use their computer.
The next morning was spent in Pompeii. I've always been kind of obsessed with Pompeii, ever since I read The Magic Treehouse book about Pompeii as a child. I seem to remember reading lots of historical fiction as a child. From later history classes and research, Pompeii was high on my list of places to visit.
For those of you who have read my blog for a while, you know how I like to have a soundtrack to my travels. This was quite easy when visiting Pompeii, as I just listened to "Pompeii" by Bastille all day.
Pompeii was so incredibly interesting! The city is remarkably well preserved. The irony of having their city utterly destroyed is that today it is one of the best preserved examples of Roman cities. Also interesting and ironic is that Mount Vesuvius erupted the day after their festival intended to please their volcano god.
This paint from the marketplace is the original: over 2000 years old!
This writing is also original. It was the Roman greeting for "welcome" and was outside a house.
The city was massive and I only got to see a small part of it. I could have spent all day there. I really hope to come back!
Thanks for reading and I'll have updates about making Rome my temporary home soon.
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Hi, I’m Crystal! I love to travel and am currently a graduate student in Scotland. You’ll get all the best tips and insights from my experiences as a former ice-skating coach in Iceland and former study abroad student. Of the 27 countries I have visited, a type 1 diabetes diagnosis has been the strangest land yet. Type 1 has not slowed down my travels and you'll learn how to take type 1 with you on the road! You can connect with me further on Instagram @CrystalChilcott, or send me ideas of where I should travel next via email: email@example.comHappy Travels, Crystal
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