Vietri sul Mare
The first pearl of a mesmerizing collection -the Amalfi Coast starts (or ends) its glistening necklace with a colorful beauty, Vietri Sul Mare.
Brilliant tones of orange, green, red, and deep sea blue are the natural colour schemes representing such a beautiful fishermen village, adding a touch of magic to this wonderful Mediterranean retreat. But those colors and more make life bright and beautiful in town, as Vietri is famous for the unique production of "Ceramica Vietrese", a special traditional kind of pottery exported everywhere. The roots of this craft are traced back to the XV century. The local craftsmen became so skilled and reknowned that they were exported around the world (and still are!)
The majority of the lemon-painted and other vibrant ceramics you see all over the Amalfi Coast are created right here in the many workshops of Vietri sul Mare.
You should definitely go visit the delightful Museum of Ceramics set up in the Tower of Villa Guariglia. The museum is located on top of Mount Falerio, overlooking the sea and Vietri itself, in the lovely hamlet of Raito. It's a natural nativity scene, with just a few white houses set like precious stones of which Villa Guariglia is the diamond!
Vietri sul Mare's old town strings along the hillside, anchored by small panoramic piazzas at each end, with up-and-down lanes veering off the main street, Corso Umberto I. Along the corso you'll find a litany of flashy shops, nice cafes, shops and restaurants. There is plenty to capture your attention here!
Also, do not miss to visit the Church of St Giovanni Battista, with a late-Renaissance façade, surmounted by an elegant majolica cupola. Follow the signs on the lanes from the church for the "stazioni" -the Stations of the Cross. They will lead you through charming corners and down to a sunny piazza with outdoor dining. It is the "middle section" of Vietri. Further down at the water's edge is the Marina di Vietri, which offers one of the largest beaches on the Amalfi Coast. The Marina area is an old fishing village, with some shops, a few streets with hidden-away stores, and a plethora of sea-facing restaurants to choose from.
Other hamlets, called frazioni, under the municipality of Vietri sul Mare are:
- Molina, whose name derives from the numerous medieval mills (in Italian, mulini) that used to be all along the river Bonea;
- Albori, clung on the Eastern side of a picturesque valley dominated by mount Falerio, where to eat a fantastic "bruschetta", located just a few hundreds of metres before Raito;
- Raito, a picturesque village with staircase "streets" (similar to Positano);
- Benincasa e Dragonea, surrounded by lovely old woods, starting point of many hiking trails;
- Fuenti that borders with the near Cetara.
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Explore nearby towns
Marina di Vietri is the first beach along the divine Amalfi Coast, set into the rocks of the Lattari Mountains.
The village of Dragonea is cradled in the hills above Vietri sul Mare, at 270 meters above the sea level.
Albori is a characteristic uphill village on the Amalfi Coast, clinging to the eastern side of a valley dominated by Mount Falerzio.