Our last day in Italy – how bittersweet! We decided to take advantage of the sunshine and… hike! (no, no beach). There are a few trails that connect Minori to Amalfi, if you are willing to climb a mountain. We started the morning by taking a ferry from Minori to Amalfi, and made our way through the main street. I bought a hiking guide that provides landmarks to look for instead of actual maps (actually helpful!) and so once we made it to the traffic light on the main drag, we were off.
We climbed (according to my phone), more than 120 flights of stairs, weaving our way to Minuta, a small town nestled in the Italian mountains. From Minuta, we walked to Ravello, this time taking the main road as it was a bit more direct and would take about half the amount of time as continuing through the mountain.
I had one goal in Ravello (okay two goals!): buy myself a pair of custom made Italian sandals and eat at Villa Maria because their garden looked spectacular after passing it on our first day here. We went to the sandal shop and I picked out the sandal style and the colors. And then the woman made them, customizing them to my feet and ensuring that they were comfortable. I’ve never had a pair of sandals, or any shoes for that matter, that have not gone through a break in period. They fit like gloves. Perfect. Even better? They were only 60 euros.
Gleeful with my new purchase, we headed off to Villa Maria for lunch. The views were amazing. I wasn’t even expecting that! The food was also spectacular. James had pizza and I had smoked mozzarella with garden vegetables. It was positively delightful. We rested our aching feet and took in the views. Shortly before we left, a couple we met at the previous nights dinner sat down next to us. Funny how the world really is “so small.”
We finished our hike by descending the rest of the way to Minori. If you ever want a challenge, walk down 80 flights of stairs. Our legs were shaking by the bottom, but it didn’t stop us from grabbing our final cups of gelato at Sal Del Riso. (For 2 euros, you can get two flavors of delectable gelato). I had pistachio and crema and James had stracciatella and strawberry. The pistachio tasted as though I had just deshelled some and popped them into my mouth. Amazing.
With the sun still out, we changed into our bathing suits and spent a final afternoon at the pool before packing (always more difficult than I anticipate). We had dinner reservations at Ristorante Eolo in Amalfi that evening – somewhere I was very excited to try. The restaurant is situated in the cliffs, overlooking the town and ocean. The views were stunning – especially as the sun set.
Our next door tablemates were slightly ridiculous (a mom and daughter celebrating a birthday and arguing for a good portion of the evening) but once we started eating it was easy to forget that they were there. For my first course I had octopus and veal tongue served with lemon mashed potatoes and a red sauce. For my pasta course, the most amazing risotto with a sundried tomato powder and for my meat course, fresh grilled fish, served with grilled vegetables and a lemon. James had lobster for his first course, a beautiful seaweed pasta with rabbit and oysters for his pasta course and for his meat, the sucking pig. Everything was wonderfully delicious.
For our last adventures, we had to figure out how to use the SITA bus system to get back to Minori (because calling Ambrosio just wasn’t going to happen again). We luckily did, and I’m happy to share this ride back cost us less than 3 euros together.