From Vico to the Gulf of Salerno
In separating the Gulfs of Naples and Salerno, the two gulfs of Campania, the Sorrento Peninsula presents two coasts of exceptional beauty and appeal. Although they are similar, these two coasts have differing characteristics which represent the rivalry that is tangible across the whole of Italy: Which coast is the most beautiful? Which has the best views? Which has the most famous traditional dishes and the most delicious local produce? One can only compare and judge for oneself. From Vico Equense, follow the road to the end of the promontory, to Punta Campanella, and straddle both coasts.
Massa Lubrense and Punta Campanella
Massa Lubrense is the Peninsula’s furthest municipality. Overlooking the Gulf of Naples, Massa Lubrense presents stunning views of a green coast mirrored in the sea. The Sorrento coast is partly rocky and partly well-cultivated with olive, walnut and lemon trees, and vegetable gardens. The spectacular curve of the Gulf with its glorious background of Vesuvius and the islands of Procida, Ischia and Capri, is gentle and majestic at the same time. In order to see everything one must reach Punta Campanella, so called because of a bell which warned of the arrival of feared Arab pirates. The view from this point is truly wonderful, overlooking the wild bay of Jeranto, a protected marine area that is reachable on foot.
Sant’Agata and Nerano
Turning back again, Sant’Agata dei Due Golfi, whose named speaks to the character of the place, is arrived at by car. The ascending road provides alternating views of the two coasts. That of Amalfi is wilder and less cultivated, with its rocky peaks of the Monti Lattari that are reflected in the sea. There are also glimpses of the Li Galli islands and, further on, of Positano. From Sant’Agata it is possible to reach Deserto, where the church has a terrace which opens onto a panorama of the Due Golfi. From here one can continue on to Nerano, a delightful little village perched on the rocks. There is a narrow road that goes down through the village, passing between houses and sea views, to a small beach. Nerano is famous for one of the most famous dishes of the area: Nerano spaghetti with finely chopped fried zucchini and Provolone del Monaco cheese. Made for great enjoyment, this is a fresh, fragrant dish, to which much aromatic basil should be added.
Here, at Nerano, we are in the province of Naples while overlooking the gorgeous Gulf of Salerno. On the other side, a few hundred meters as the crow flies, the coast overlooks the Gulf of Naples. Choosing which coast is the most beautiful is impossible: enjoy the comparison and rejoice. On either side one has the impression of being in an earthly paradise.