Welcome to Sorrento
Enjoy a unique view on the Naples Gulf
by Nicoletta Speltra.
Sorrento and its sea. Sorrento and its ancient downtown, with the path of orthogonal streets of Roman origin. Towards the top of the hill, instead, the part enclosed in the 16th century walls, contemporaneous with Torquato Tasso, born here in 1544. Here on there are the neo-gothic Cathedral, rebuilt in the 15th century, and the Church of Saint Francis, with a nice little cloister of 14th century, with some Arabian style arches. The museum Correale di Terranova is very interesting, here you can find some collections of Greek and Roman artifacts, Capodimonte porcelain and paintings of the XVII-XIX centuries. From the museum park you can enjoy a magnificent view of the gulf.
Going west, you find Punta del Capo with some fascinating remains of the Roman Villa of Pollio Felice and, under the romantic Hotel de la Syrene, another building overlooking the sea: it is the Villa of Agrippa Postumus.
Sorrento welcomes every year thousands of tourists, especially British, attracted by the beauty of the town, of the beaches and of its “unrivaled in Europe” mild climate, as François-René de Chateaubriand described it in 1810.
Some years later, Gaetano Moroni, bibliophile and papal dignitary, wrote:
“Few cities can boast its really lovely, romantic, delicious, and very most agreeable situation, which can not be expressed in few words; so well as the charming and graceful promontory and for the pure and salubrious air. So it was appealed miracle of nature and highly renowned”
Something more: in Sorrento there are also ancient traditions that survive thanks to the work of fishermen and craftsmen. One of them is Antonino Tramontano. Until few time ago, his yard was very similar to a magic cave with the walls covered by the tools of the trade, used to built the typical fishing boats witch float on the sea of the Naples Gulf.
Pics courtesy of Anna Maria Speltra
Visit Naples: helpful hints
Italian name: Napoli
Naples has its own international airport, connected to the city centre by a bus (it takes 15 minutes and it costs 5€). For transcontinental flights you have to stop in other airports, Rome is the closest one.
In Naples you find both buses, subways and funicular. The ticket is the same for all the transports and it costs 1,5€. For more information check the ANM website. If you prefer to visit the city on foot, here you can find an idea for you tour.
What to do
Naples is the capital city of Campania region, in Southern Italy. Naples is on a beautiful Gulf, extended from the Sorrento Peninsula to the volcaninc area called Phlegrean Fields, on the background the huge Vesuvius, one of the two active volcanoes in Italy. In the Gulf, three famous islands – Capri, Ischia and Procida. The historical centre of Naples is listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1995, the most important monuments are the Dome, Palazzo Reale and the Maschio Angioino.
Speaking of food, Naples is the city where Pizza is born!
Where to sleep
The best place to sleep in Naples is of course the city centre. Other very good alternatives are Posilippo and Vomero area, the harbor and the University area, the boardwalk and the more expensive Chiaia area.