Travel diary of a winter site inspection by María Zurita (Sales and Marketing Director at Italian Special Occasions DMC & Events).

After so many years of constant travelling, it often happens to me: if I wake up in the middle of the night or during the early moments of the morning, I don’t know where I am. The sensation lasts only a few seconds and, although it can cause disorientation and unease in some travellers, I enjoy it.

I enjoy those minutes in bed thinking that I am going to discover a new place or revisit one that I already know, but where there is always a corner unknown to me, a new experience.

On my last trip, I returned to Italy.

I wake up in the silence of the morning, snugly tucked between quilts and sheets, and for a brief moment, I don’t know where I am. Soon a smile comes to my face: I am in Amalfi. And snuggled up, I begin to recall the previous day.


Our itinerary along the Amalfi Coast begins with a rental car in Salerno. Excitedly, we hop in, anticipating the day ahead.

Even before the coast comes into view, there are panoramic and spectacular views of the sea that make us wish we never have to arrive.

A strong winter sun, the vibrant blue sky and the sparse traffic in the off-season all contribute to making driving along the narrow road that winds along the coast an enjoyable experience in itself.

Our first stop will be an ancient convent converted into a hotel, perched high up, proudly overlooking the sea. The former cells are now perfectly adapted rooms in a luxury hotel: simple, bright, with just the right furniture, so that rest is the main focus.

The jewel of the convent is its cloister. So much so that many couples from all over the world who decide to marry in Amalfi choose it for their wedding ceremony, with the subsequent celebration being held at the hotel.

The viewpoint, terraces and outdoor common areas blend elegantly and non-invasively with nature.

In the afternoon, we have a very special appointment in Maiori, where a gate at the roadside conceals one of the most beautiful villa complexes in this gorgeous region of Italy.

While one of the charms of the convent hotel was its privileged location high up, dominating the coast, accessed by elevator; this resort around a lemon grove has the privilege of being close to the sea.

The visit begins by boarding a golf cart to zigzag down a path of olive trees, pines and oaks, gradually glimpsing the blue of the sea through the branches and foliage. This delightful five-minute ride prepares you to reach the wonder that awaits below.

After crossing a grove of fertile and aromatic lemon trees, we reach the most modern villa in the complex: a true example of design and sustainability, whose simplicity and perfect fusion with nature manifest a new version of luxury.

Beautiful suites without extravagance, a cozy living room and a panoramic pool complete everything a traveller seeking privacy could desire.

But the visit has only just begun.

As the evening falls and the sea and landscape become increasingly magical, on our way to the medieval tower that gives the complex its name, we encounter four independent suites. How to describe them? Maintaining a traditional style, the combination of tilework, furniture, immaculately white walls and facades, along with the essential adornments in ceramics or typical materials of the area, make it very difficult to choose which of the two areas is more beautiful.

Coinciding with the sunset, our visit culminates in Villa Torre, a medieval stone vestige that stands defiantly against the sea and opens up to it from windows and terraces at different heights.

Back in Amalfi and after a stroll through its streets, we dine at a restaurant serving typical cuisine and head to bed early, as an intense day awaits us…


After recalling all the emotions from the previous day while still in bed, a detail comes to my mind. I head to the living room to gaze out the windows overlooking the fabulous cathedral of Amalfi. It’s great the apartment is strategically located near Piazza del Duomo.

Once in the square, we have a delicious cornetto and coffee for breakfast at one of the most emblematic pastry shops. The early hour, the deserted square, the silence, the cathedral shining in the first rays of the sun… This sublime sensation of enjoying the moment becomes very special in winter.

Our first stop today is Ravello, where a historic castle awaits us, housing apartments from whose terraces you can almost touch the sea with your fingertips. The castle perches on a cliff, unfolding its charm and its harmonious structure adorned with beautiful arches in windows, terraces and porticoed balconies.

Bougainvillea, vines and fruit trees blend with the stone of the rocks, the tower and the ancient statues that dot the complex. Only a boat trip could tempt us to leave this villa, its panoramic pool and its magical corners.

After so much beauty by the sea and taking advantage of another spectacular day of intense blue sky and radiant sun, we decide to explore a lesser-known area of the famous Amalfi Coast: the inland.

We visit a family-owned vineyard, where we receive a warm welcome and can taste a couple of young wines while chatting with the locals. It’s always a pleasure to spend some quiet time with people who were born there and have a thousand stories to tell.

After saying goodbye, we head to a restaurant surrounded by nature, decorated in a traditional and exquisitely tasteful manner, with its lemon grove where you can receive an Italian cooking class or hold an event. The chef treats us to a tasting of three dishes that make us want to stay there forever.

Back in Amalfi towards the late afternoon, we have tea at a family restaurant where we can once again enjoy the breathtaking sea views for which the coast is famous.

For dinner, we once again choose typical local cuisine. Like the night before, it’s a pleasure to stroll through the streets and spend the evening at the restaurant, as being in the off-season means there’s no overcrowding, rush or stress.


After rising early and bidding farewell to the cathedral, we set off for Raito. Along the way, we stop for breakfast at a seaside restaurant in Minori, with a glass-enclosed terrace overlooking the coast.

We visit a family-owned vineyard where we are greeted by three generations: mother, daughter and a cute, smiling baby who seems to enjoy the visit as much as we do.

Unlike the vineyard from the previous day, which was located inland, this larger vineyard unfolds on terraces offering breathtaking views of the sea.

The approach to the main house winds through a beautiful path lined with cheerful lemon trees whose scent brings to mind the delicious limoncello. Among the vines, strategically placed rustic furniture invites visitors to pause for a chat while enjoying a glass of wine.

To end our Amalfi itinerary, before returning to Salerno, we make a stop in Vietri sul Mare, a town famous for its ceramic craftsmanship. We enter a workshop where a craftswoman teaches some students how to paint various figurines.

We love learning a bit about the technique and the different stages through which the clay passes until it becomes the original pieces displayed in the workshop-store.

And as all good things come to an end, before we realise it, we are back in Salerno, where we catch a train to Naples. Heading to this historic city, we will begin to prepare for what will be our next itinerary…

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