Calvanico is a pretty pastel-painted tranquil mountain hamlet, yet its just 18 kilometers from Salerno. Here you can enjoy a rural retreat while being in reach of the city, the Amalfi Coast and sights like Pompeii, Mount Vesuvius, and Paestum. Its narrow lanes wend among old buildings clustered together, hiding stores and eateries in their midst. In fact, there are several good restaurants in town and in the countryside nearby that serve hearty home-cooked fare typical of these hills.

The surrounding mountains offer a host of hiking trails that lead through woods of chestnuts and hazelnut groves to springs and streams. There are other villages to walk to or visit, once connected by a network of old mule paths. In town, the church of San Salvatore dates to the 1300s though its built over an ancient structure that was a Benedictine monastery. The church was redecorated in Baroque style, and the frescoes in the vaults are worth a look. Tree-lined Piazza Conforti is the town's living room, fronting the Palazzo Comunale; take note of the stone fountain done by a local mason who provided decorative fonts throughout the region.

Calvanico is a traditional hill town but is in a convenient location, close to the autostrada, in easy reach of Salerno, where there are loads of stores and restaurants, and where you can catch ferries to the Amalfi Coast or Capri. Other sights around southern Campania are easily reached but you can then retreat to a quiet sanctuary away from the crowds afterwards!

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