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The Gulf of Naples June 2016

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Sorrento

The holiday started on a rainy day very early in the morning at Gatwick Airport, this combined with the prolonged exposure to the so called Brexit made us very glad to leave the country for a short while. We arrived at Naples airport and were greeted by glorious sunshine of 30 deg something that would not leave us for the next 6 days. Our Hotel was situated high up in the hills of Sorento bay overlooking the town with great panoramic views of the Gulf of Naples with Mt vesuvius in the background. A walk up to the Hotel was a feat in itself as it was up a twisted hairpin road at 10% incline but we managed to get the cases up there in the end, luckily for the rest of the week we used the Shuttle Bus that run frequently into Town. Sorento itself is a old Town with narrow streets filled with bars and Restaurants with an endless supply of scooters flying up the roads. Fish is the towns specialty and it was my main aim to enjoy plenty, I had Sea Bass and Red snapper fish, also prawns and pizza galore, this was enjoyed with plenty of Italian beer and wine.The holiday started on a rainy day very early in the morning at Gatwick Airport, this combined with the prolonged exposure to the so called Brexit made us very glad to leave the country for a short while. We arrived at Naples airport and were greeted by glorious sunshine of 30 deg something that would not leave us for the next 6 days. Our Hotel was situated high up in the hills of Sorento bay overlooking the town with great panoramic views of the Gulf of Naples with Mt vesuvius in the background. A walk up to the Hotel was a feat in itself as it was up a twisted hairpin road at 10% incline but we managed to get the cases up there in the end, luckily for the rest of the week we used the Shuttle Bus that run frequently into Town. Sorento itself is a old Town with narrow streets filled with bars and Restaurants with an endless supply of scooters flying up the roads. Fish is the towns specialty and it was my main aim to enjoy plenty, I had Sea Bass and Red snapper fish, also prawns and pizza galore, this was enjoyed with plenty of Italian beer and wine.

Pompeii

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Pompeii was an ancient Roman town-city near modern Naples, in the Campania region of Italy, in the territory of the comune of Pompei. Pompeii, along with Herculaneum and many villas in the surrounding area, was mostly destroyed and buried under 4 to 6 m (13 to 20 ft) of volcanic ash and pumice in the eruption of Mount Vesuvius in AD 79. The Town can easily be reached from Sorento by using the local trains that run from the central station it is cheap to use costing just 2 euros each, the trains are a little dirty and slow and very packed so just keep you eye on your luggage etc. When you arrive you will be amazed at how close it lies to the volcano and you can see why it received such damage. Entry fee to the site is only 11 euro each and trust me it is great value for money as the ancient site is over a huge area. You can do an audio guide or walk around with a guide if you so wish, however, we decided to do it on our own. On the day we visited it was extremely hot however there are many water fountains dotted around the site and its both free and safe to drink. You will see the old docks where they once moored the boats, although the sea today is another 2 miles away. Do make sure you visit this world heritage site it is an eye opener and well worth the money.

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Isle of Capri

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he isle of Capri turned out to be the best trip we made whilst in the gulf of Naples, with glorious weather and jaw dropping views it was a great trip out and easy reached. First you will need to reach the harbour in Sorrento (map) and purchase a ticket from the many companies that sail to the isle. We chose a company called Caremar paying about 60Euro total for the pair of us, you will need the earliest sailing there and the latest back to make the most of the Isle. I think it only took 45 mins to reach the place and boat will disembark in Marina Grande the main harbour, once there you will find loads of shops etc and also many boats trips around the island and the famous Blue Grotto caves. We decided to take a two hour boat trip around the isle and it proved a real gem of a trip and it also visited the Blue Grotto however we never went in as the queue was massive and you have to get from a big boat into a little rowing boat. The best part of the trip was going through the natural arch Faraglioni di capri and the skipper will take you right up to the rocks into the many caves that line the route. When we arrived back at Marina Grande we then went high up into the mountain and visited
Anacapri which is a little less busy and much cheaper than Capri town, the journey up there was in a bus designed for 20 that in the end held 30, and it was by the grace of god we got there in one piece. Same thing in Anacapri a multitude of gift shops to help empty your wallet at every convenience, so with a quick sit down for a wine and a beer we headed for the highest-point Monte Solaro at 589m and its spectacular panoramic views. The best way to reach the top is to take the 12 min journey time chairlift that will cost you 11E each for a return ticket.


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Amalfi Coat

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If you visit this area then you must take a drive or go on a tour of the Amalfi coast, our trip was booked online with Viator and included in the cost a pickup from the hotel door to door. The trip started by visiting the cliff town of Positano famous for its building perched high into the cliff and mountain, only problem was we could not get the bus into the heart of the town due to regulations so the driver found us a good vantage point to take pictures. The route takes you straight along the cliff edges passing some great view points and all along the way the guide gave us details descriptions of the Towns and history including folklore and legends (trust me there are loads) . Amalfi was the first stop of point and we headed straight to an organised boat trip that took one hour with the guide pointing out all the famous villas and the people that live within. A stop off at the high mountain of Ravello finished the trip off where we indulged in some more wine and a quick bite to eat before setting off along the winding roads back home to Sorrento, all in all well worth the £60 it cost us to book up

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Mt Vesuvius

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It was only fitting that we had to visit the most striking view on the whole of the gulf of naples Mt Vesuvius, this active Volcano stands at 1281m high and stands high above the towns villages and Naples with 3 million people that sit at its feet. This is the volcano that finished the town of Pompeii and Herculaneum in that fatal eruption dated 79AD, infact that last time it erupted was only back in 1944 causing much damage to a few surrounding towns. It does make you think what would happen on a full blown explosion with the city of Naples 5km from the crater, we was told that Sorrento itself was in the safe zone however it does look bloody close. You can walk to the summit from the bottom or catch like we did a tour that ends up some 250m from the top, here you pay some cash to allow you to make the final journey up to the crater. On the way up you will pass many lava formations that have happened on previous eruptions then finally you get to look into the crater itself. Views from the top are fantastic with the island of Capri and Sorrento bay early visible, this was another worthwhile trip and we were both glad we did it.


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Photos on Flickr

The Bay of Naples