Revealing Ravello: Discover the Best Cultural Experiences on the Amalfi Coast
No matter how you’ve arrived in Ravello – whether by self-drive Amalfi Coast vacation or a Mediterranean ocean cruise – it’s worth your while if you build in some extra time to explore this Italian coastal gem. You’ll find myriad opportunities to soak up the region’s culture through immersive experiences without the crowds of Rome or Milan. We’ll whet your appetite with a few options, whether you crave architecture, gardens, or cuisine.
The Amalfi Coast is known for its dreamy views, and perhaps none are as gorgeous as those from Villa Cimbrone, one of two famous gardens in Ravello. Stroll around, and you’ll feel you’re on the grounds of a century-old palace in Vienna or Paris. You’ll have far-reaching views of the turquoise sea and the rugged coastline from just about every spot in the garden. Head to the Terrace of Infinity for the best photos, lined with Romanesque statues. You can see the iconic stone houses that line the Amalfi cliffs.
Continue your garden tour at the magnificent Villa Rufolo, a showcase of brilliant floral displays. The 13th-century villa exemplifies typical Amalfi Coast architecture, and the gardens themselves are said to have inspired Richard Wagner to compose his opera, Parsifal. Don’t miss the museum and tower on the grounds overlooking the Gulf of Salerno.
Piazza Vescovado and Duomo di Ravello
Make your way to the main square in town, the picturesque Piazza Vescovado, for souvenir shopping (pick up locally made ceramics and cloth handbags) and immersing yourself in local life. From here, as in most spots around Ravello, you’ll have picture-perfect views of the ocean and surrounding mountains.
The piazza is the site of the 11th-century Duomo di Ravello, a stunning example of Romanesque architecture. Notice the vast bronze doors that feature a carving of Jesus Christ surrounded by saints. Barisano da Trani designed the doors in 1179. Inside, you’ll find several mosaic carvings and Christian symbols embedded throughout the medieval architectural details.
Path of Gods and Minori Walk
Combine culture and nature by walking along the 4.3-mile coastline path from Bomerano to Nocelle – the Path of Gods. Along the hike, you’ll see small villages, stone houses, wildflowers, and forests, as well as breathtaking coast views. The trail is just a short drive from Ravello – we suggest starting early, around 7 am, to beat the crowds.
Want more? Take the stairs from Ravello to Minori, beginning at Villa Rufolo. Secluded Minori village is a lovely spot to relax and enjoy the Amalfi Coast views without the crowds. After descending the staircase at the archway, follow the signs for Minoro past terraces, vineyards, and gardens. While there, visit the Villa Romana and the Basilica of Santa Trofimena.
Take a Cooking Class
Learn the secrets of Ravello’s regional cuisine and how to recreate it when you return home. Discover how to roll sfoglia (fresh egg pasta) by hand. Perfect the mixing of Italian aperitivos. Pick fresh produce with a local chef, then prepare an entire Italian meal, including a decadent dessert. Not only will you bring home new tips and tricks as a souvenir, but you’ll get to taste the fruits of your labor along the way!
Are you looking for a relaxing vacation in Ravello? Get in touch.