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Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Beautiful Sorrento

On our fourth day in Italy we actually woke up early (not something that happened regularly on our trip) and quickly made our way to the train station. Lets just say we were both very ready to get out of the craziness that was Rome and go to the beach. Sorrento and the Amalfi Coast did not disappoint.

At the train station we tried to buy our tickets and found out that Italian train ticket machines require you to have a credit card with a pin number or allow you to pay with cash. Unbeknownst to us, most European credit card companies allow you to set up a pin card for your credit card and you pretty much have to enter that pin each time you use it at an automated machine. I think that's a pretty great idea, and feel like the US should jump on that bandwagon. It seems like attaching a pin number to each credit card might help prevent some theft. After talking to some American tourists we learned that you are able to get an American credit card with a pin before you leave for a European trip. I don't know the details but it might be something to look into if you are taking a longer trip and will be using lots of public transportation.

But I digress, going to customer service to talk to a human being and purchase our tickets with credit card would have been fine, except the line to talk to an actual teller was about two hours long, with lots of people cutting... because hey, it was Italy and that's what happens there. =P 
Point is, it was a bit of a shenanigan but we managed to scrounge up the right amount of Euros to purchase our tickets, used the automated machine, and avoided standing in the above described line.
The 2.5 hour train ride south to Naples was a nice one except that everyone on the train was melting. I quickly learned the Italian translation for very hot on that train, molto caldo. =P We were all melting, the air conditioner was off, and the windows wouldn't open. Ohhh Italy hehe. Sauna and melting aside, we met some awesome locals on that train, and had a great time exchanging experiences with them. If you are ever on a train in Italy, try and talk to the people seated next to you, they're usually curious about your experiences in Italy and are excited to share their recommendations with you. :)

Once we arrived in Naples we purchased our tickets on the Circumvesuviana train line to Sorrento. Finally, we got off the train and saw....
Soon everything was right in the world. Oh and if you get off the Circumvesuviana train in Sorrento and find that man selling his homemade lemon granita STOP and buy some. For reals. It was the absolute best granita we had in Italy.

We then started on the relatively long uphill walk to Hotel Elios the little B&B where we stayed. We really enjoyed our time at the Hotel Elios. Staying with Guiliana and Guissipe in their home was like staying at our Italian grandparents' home. You know if we had Italian grandparents. Anyway, their home is simple, and sweet with a view like this...
Things just kept getting better in the world that first day in Sorrento.
Oh, and just a tip if you decide to stay at Hotel Elios. Giannia and Guissipes' home does not have air conditioning, but Giannia will happily set up a good fan in your room if you ask. 

After settling in, we asked Gianna where the nearest beach is and she waved her hands, talked a whole lot, (Italians, I love it) and eventually informed us that the nearest beach, or spiaggia in Italian, was about 15 steps down the road. I know I don't mention God a whole lot on this blog, but really...
Thank God hehe.
The beach was where we needed to be. We basically slapped on our bathing suits and ran to that spiaggia as quickly as we could.  
We lazed around the spiaggia until the sun started to set and then made our way back to the hotel to get ready for dinner. 
See that mountain? That's Mt. Vesuvius and the view we saw each time we left Hotel Elios and made our way into Sorrento town. 
This place? Well it suited me well.


Anonymous said...

Gorgeous photos! I seriously need to travel/explore more. I have living in St. Louis my entire life, and I am sure there are tons of places I can go that are amazing and would make for beautiful photos.

Anonymous said...

i would love to go there! it's so pretty! that view is just amazing!

Treasure Tromp said...

oh I love it! Sorrento was one of my favorite towns in Italy

Britt said...

I'm really ashamed to admit that I thought this would be a post about a new car.
Pictures are beautiful as always!
Britt @ One&20

Simply Evani said...

What an incredible view.... I could not be more jealous!

Andrea Mesterhazy said...

I can't get over these Italy posts. The photos are so beautiful. It must have been hard to come back :)

Anonymous said...

I'm really enjoying reading about your Italy trip - and I always use Rick Steves books, too! I've been to Italy a few times but never made it to the Amalfi Coast - and after seeing your pics, I'm realizing that's a huge oversight on my part!!


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