Wednesday, May 9, 2012

April 29th – Stepping Out In Sorrento

On a beautiful spring day in Sorrento, we decided to leave the tourist crowds behind us in town, and so we decided to do a bracing walk over the hills behind Sorrento, up to the untouristy town of Massa Lubrense.

We followed the trails that led up the steep hills, and immediately we were in a beautiful bucolic landscape of fragrant lemon groves, olive trees and the odd vineyard. All the time, behind us we had increasingly spectacular vistas across the Bay of Naples to Vesuvius looming malevolently, and the mist-shrouded island of Capri in the distance.

We hadn't heard it for a while, but I quickly heard the familiar Tracy call of, "I could live here". It was difficult to argue with – beautiful weather, amazing landscapes, and fabulous food are a fairly compelling combination. You'd just have to ignore the threatening volcano, the tourist crowds, the organised crime gangs, and the high price of property along the Amalfi Coast.

Anyway, it took us about an hour and a half to walk up and over the hills and reach our destination, the town of Massa Lubrense – on a quiet Sunday morning not much was open, but it was a pretty spot and a nice place for a much needed drink and rest in a pavement café.

All week long, I'd been fantasising about having a pizza here in Italy, so my disappointment at finding that the town's two pizza places were shut is hard to describe. Instead we had to settle for a couple of doorstep sandwiches which were filling, but not quite the culinary delight we were expecting.

The walk back was equally delightful – just the sort of laid-back, civilised day we needed to round off the world cruise.