So there we were, 650 metres above the beach town of Amalfi and the next bus was not for at least another 2 hours (if it showed up at all). So what choice did we have?
Retire back to the gorgeous Beata Solitudo hostel or man up and walk under the scorching summer sun?
Turned out to be one of the best decisions of our trip.
Agerola to Amalfi
The best place to start this tale is probably with us waiting at the bus stop. Cole being the super organised OCD traveller that he is had us at the bus stop 5 minutes before the expected departure departure. The locals in Agerola, who are well known for being so laidback that they are nearly horizontal, had changed the bus timetable and no one had bothered to update the schedule.
40 minutes later we gave up.
Stuck ridiculously far away from the beach we longed for and with no other option we headed for the local track. This track was actually used in the past as the only route to between Agerola to Amalfi with locals carrying their goods up and down each day to sell at the markets. Luckily for us it was downhill only.
Bounding down the first few steps only 100m from the hostel we were eager to catch our first glimpse of the Tyrrhenian Sea. And we were not disappointed. As the track rounded the first corner the view split open before our eyes and we were rewarded with the most jaw dropping view of this dramatic coastline.
The sunlight danced across the unnaturally blue water that seemed to stretch in every direction forever. While the town of Agerola at our backs disappeared behind the ragged cliff face.
Lizards scuttled playfully over the path. Tree branches dangled down in front of our faces while overgrown weeds tugged at our legs through the many cracks. Ruins of ancient stone buildings long forgotten peeked out from amongst the trees.
It was as if we had stepped into a world that no one else inhabited.
After 40 minutes of hard slog the landscape changes as you reach the outskirts of small villages. Houses cluster together perched in places you would never think to build a house. Their balconies hanging over the 500 foot drop.
Lemon groves hug the precipices and the road starts its hairpin turn decent down the mountain.
Here the path we had been following disappeared and instead countless alleyways and stairs wound between the houses. There didn’t seem to be a wrong path as they all led down which was the only way we wanted to go.
Closer to the shoreline the views become even more stunning. Narrow stretches of beach appear from their hiding places tucked into the shadows of the cliffs. Each only accessible by boat.
The Agerola to Amalfi walk takes you right to the heart of Amalfi town. Kicking off our dusty shoes we headed straight for a well deserved swim. Followed by a refreshing gelato ice cream.
While the walk is not as long or as physically demanding as the well known Path of the Gods, it’s a quick alternative with spectacular views. Plus you will escape the crowds and have the path virtually to yourself.
Where to stay in Agerola – Beata Solitudo
If you want a slightly cheaper option than Positano or Amalfi then staying in Agerola is a great option. And the best place to stay in Agerola would be Beata Solitudo.
With outstanding views along the Amalfi coastline there are plenty of buses to and from Agerola. Or you can try out the Agerola to Amalfi walk above.
Beata Solitudo has all the options for travelling couples from the campground and backpackers for a budget option to the luxurious Bed and Breakfast private rooms that we stayed in.
The spacious private rooms have their own bathrooms and access to a far superior kitchen and lounge than the budget options. We loved cooking all our local ingredients here each night.
The free breakfast in the morning was probably the best we have ever had in a hostel situation. Three types of cereal, fresh home-grown fruit, croissants and pastries galore and tea, juice and coffee to wash it all down. Brilliant.
WiFi is free but only available in the common areas.
We really didn’t see much of the staff as we were out exploring every day but when we did chat they were extremely helpful. Perfect if you want a relaxing retreat as you will be left alone if you want to be.
In the private common room there was no social atmosphere at all. However the dorms below and campground out the back looked like a bit more fun.
It is really far from the coastline so if you come to enjoy the beaches you will have to catch the bus or walk down. Also, while not really the hostels fault as the bus timetable changed, they could have had an updated timetable as the one we read was completely wrong.
Per person: $35 Euros for a private room and $13 Euros for a 8 bed mixed dorm room.
Beata Solitudo has been the best accommodation we have stayed in a long time. We wish we had more time there and even tried to book extra days but they were sold out. If you want a relaxing retreat then this is the place. If you want to party then head to the way more expensive Positano area.
Disclaimer: We were guests of HostelWorld but as always our thoughts are always our own.
A Beginner’s Guide to Yacht Charters: How to Choose the Right Yacht and Plan the Perfect Trip
Yacht charters offer a unique and luxurious way to explore the world’s most beautiful destinations. Whether you’re looking to spend a week exploring the crystal-clear waters of the Caribbean, or you want to take a romantic trip to the Mediterranean, a yacht charter is an excellent option. Phuket is an excellent location to charter a yacht and is one of the most popular destinations for yacht charters in the world.
However, choosing the right yacht and planning the perfect trip can be a daunting task for those who are new to yacht charters. In this beginner’s guide, we’ll walk you through everything you need to know to make your yacht charter experience a success.
Consider the Size of the Yacht Needed
Yachts come in a variety of sizes, from small sailing boats to large motor yachts. Consider how many people will be traveling with you, and how much space you’ll need for your trip. You’ll also want to think about the type of activities you want to do on your trip. If you’re looking for a more adventurous trip, a smaller sailing yacht may be the way to go. But if you’re looking for a more luxurious and spacious experience, a larger motor yacht may be a better choice.
- Small Sailing Yachts: These are typically 30-50 feet in length and are ideal for more intimate and adventurous trips.
- Mid-Size Motor Yachts: These yachts are typically 50-80 feet in length and offer more space and amenities than small sailing yachts.
- Large Motor Yachts: These yachts are typically 80 feet or longer and offer the ultimate in luxury and comfort.
- Superyachts: These are the largest yachts, typically over 100 feet in length, and are often custom built to the highest standards.
Consider a Place to Discover
Yacht charters are available all over the world, from the Mediterranean to the Caribbean, so choose a location that appeals to you and your travel companions. Research the destinations you’re interested in, and find out what the weather will be like during your trip. You’ll also want to consider the time of year that you’re traveling, as some destinations may be more expensive during peak season.
Here are some popular yacht destinations:
Mediterranean: The Mediterranean region is a top destination for yacht charters, with its turquoise waters, stunning coastline, and rich cultural heritage. Some popular destinations include the French Riviera, the Amalfi Coast in Italy, and the Greek islands.
Caribbean: The Caribbean is a popular yacht charter destination for its warm weather, beautiful beaches, and clear waters. Some popular islands include the British Virgin Islands, St. Martin, and Antigua.
Bahamas: The Bahamas are another popular yacht charter destination, known for its stunning crystal-clear waters, white-sand beaches, and tropical landscapes.
Maldives: The Maldives is a group of 26 atolls in the Indian Ocean, known for its stunning coral reefs, crystal-clear waters, and abundant sea life.
Thailand: Thailand is known for its stunning beaches, lush tropical forests, vibrant local culture, and rich history. Some popular destinations for yacht charters in Thailand include the Andaman Sea, Phuket, and Koh Samui
When it comes to planning the perfect trip, timing is everything. Booking your yacht charter early is key to ensuring that you get the yacht and destination that you want. Don’t wait until the last minute to book, as yachts can fill up quickly, especially during peak season. It’s also a good idea to book well in advance if you’re traveling during the holidays, as yachts tend to be in high demand during these times.
Yacht Charter Cost
Another important factor to consider when planning your yacht charter is the cost. Yacht charters can be expensive, so you’ll want to budget for your trip carefully. Consider the cost of the yacht, fuel, food, and other expenses. Some yacht charters may include some or all of these expenses, so be sure to ask about what’s included when you’re booking. You may also want to look for yacht charter deals or discounts to help save money on your trip.
Think About the Crew
Finally, you’ll want to consider the crew. Yacht charters typically come with a crew that includes a captain, chef, and other members. Consider the size of the crew, and make sure that they have the experience and skills you need for your trip. You’ll also want to make sure that the crew is friendly and professional, and that they can accommodate any special requests or needs you may have.
A yacht charter is an excellent way to explore the world’s most beautiful destinations in style and comfort. With a little bit of planning and research, you can choose the right yacht and plan the perfect trip for you and your travel companions. So start exploring your options today, and get ready for the trip of a lifetime!
Medieval Towns with German Castles Near Munich & Frankfurt
Our favorite castles in Germany near Frankfurt and Munich:
We were crazy enough to visit Neuschwanstein Castle on a public holiday. This meant that along with all the Asian tourists, there were an awful lot of Germans. Plus, even though we arrived by 11 am, the soonest tickets we could buy were for the German tour at 2.30 pm, as the terms in English were sold out until 4 pm. So, if you don’t have German friends at hand to translate the tour for you, we recommend booking in advance online. The castle was impressive, and the time was undoubtedly fascinating! Don’t worry, I won’t spill the beans, but the manmade Grotto room made my jaw drop!
Mespelbrunn Castle is located on a pond between Frankfurt and Wurzburg. Unfortunately, we arrived 30 minutes after its closing time of 5 pm, but it looked cool from behind the fence!
Lichtenstein Castle is located on a clifftop near Stuttgart and costs 6 euros per person for a tour in German; however, they did give us a very informative written guide in English. This castle is small compared to Hohenzollern castle, but its story is fascinating. Tanks shelled it in World War II, and today you can still see the cracked mirror from where a small fragment of a tank grenade ricocheted!
Hohenzollern Castle is not too far from Lichtenstein Castle. It is located on a hilltop near Hechingen, and we enjoyed the guided tour. Along with getting to wear GIANT slippers, make sure you explore the casemates and secret passages. One sign made me want to learn more. It read, “Exactly where these steps lead to is unknown. More casemates and secret passageways are likely waiting to be discovered in the heart of the mountain”!
Heidelberg Castle was a lot larger than we expected! Unfortunately, we had spent far too much time at the Auto & Technik Museum in Sinsheim, so we did not have time to explore this castle. But if we get the chance, we will explore the town and its castle next time in Germany.
On our drive from Munich to Frankfurt, we also loved:
The beer garden at Andechs Monastery was just like Oktoberfest but amongst trees and more family-friendly. The beer was cheaper, and the food was great, including the giant pork knuckle, which Moss could not finish. It was also fun walking up multiple flights of stairs to the tower’s very top.
Three hours in Rothenburg was not enough to explore this wonderful medieval town! We recommend getting your hands on a city map from the tourist information office. We enjoyed Roder Gate, walking along the wall and exploring the 17th-century spital bastion, plus Moss lost me in the Kathe Wohlfahrt Christmas shop for over half an hour, and I didn’t even buy anything!
The average person would Google Munich to Frankfurt and see that it only takes about 3 ½ hours depending on how fast you wish to drive on the autobahn! However, we are NOT typical. We took one look at train prices and decided that hiring a car wouldn’t cost too much more.
We aren’t going to tell you our exact route. Still, after surviving Oktoberfest in Munich, we did a giant zigzag to see as many castles and medieval towns as possible. So to save you doing so much driving, we have picked our favorite cities and castles. First of all, ‘Ausfahrt’ is not a destination accessible from every off-ramp! It means ‘Exit’! Another word of wisdom to keep in mind is that the autobahns with speed limits do have speed cameras… and the flash is blinding!
Running with the Bulls Video
Our shaky Running with the Bulls Video footage from the Festival de San Fermin in 2012. Experience it first hand in Pamplona. Enjoy.
We recently wrote about our life or death experience of Running with the Bulls this year at the Festival of San Fermin in Pamplona. On that run, I carried along with our GoPro video camera and tried to shoot some footage for our running with the video of the bull.
All our travel video shooting techniques went out the window when the bulls’ hooves started to shake the ground beneath our feet.
Once we had lined up for the running with the bulls, there was no escape from it as we were walled in by apartment blocks, shopfront windows, and 3-meter high wooden barriers packed with photographers along the entire length. At one end lay the relative safety of the bull ring pulsating with the cheers of the crowd who were still partying from the night before. Behind me, a dozen wild bulls pawed the stony ground looking for freedom.
Unfortunately, I was standing in their path.
What we ended up with is below. However, I think what we filmed for our running with the bull video captures the chaos, craziness, and complete madness a lot better than if I had stood my ground.
Enjoy it and watch for the guy that nearly gets trampled to death near the beginning!
Running with the Bulls Video
Would you ever consider running with the bulls?
While we are very aware that not all people agree that the San Fermin Festival should be allowed to go ahead mainly due to animal cruelty, we think there are two sides to every story. We wrote a post about the controversy surrounding Bullfighting in Spain and the Festival de San Fermin.
We would love to hear your thoughts on the Festival de San Fermin and whether you would ever consider running with the bulls.
Meet Cole and Adela
We have been wearing out our jandals (Kiwi for flip-flops) on our travel adventures around the world since 2009. We think our blog is thought provoking and a little witty. But we have been proven wrong before. Find out more about us here...
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