A motorcycle tour between Vico Equense, Sorrento, Sant’Agata sui due Golfi and Nerano is a wonderful experience full of landscapes, beauties and tastes.
You have to drive a distance of only 40 km, but we suggest to spend at least a week in these beautiful places.
Let’s start with Castellammare di Stabia, a town in the Bay of Naples famous for the luxurious villas belonged to the ancient roman aristocracy destroyed by the eruption of Mount Vesuvius in ad 79. Here Charles I d’Anjou built the Royal Palace of Quisisana. The villa was then remade into a typically sumptuous Bourbon estate and was inhabited by various members of the dynasties that ruled the kingdom of Naples, becoming a stop of the Grand Tour. From the XIX century the city was a tourist destination, with the Grand Hotel Quisisana, the Villa comunale, the Giardini pubblici, the historic Gran Caffè Napoli, the Cassa Armonica (Luigi Denza in 1880 wrote here the Neapolitan song “Funiculi Funiculà”). Ph:Mentnafunangann – Opera propria, CC BY-SA 3.0
Move forward bend after bend on the SS145, passing Vico Equense, the first town of the Sorrento Peninsula, known for the pink facade of the ex-cathedral of Santa Maria Annunziata, built on a rocky hill overlooking the sea. Don’t miss a break at “Da Gigino Pizza a Metro – L’università della Pizza” in the center of the city (this local version of pizza has a crust that is deeper and softer than its Neapolitan cousin, and is served “by the meter”), and taste the provolone del Monaco: this local type of cheese is only made by a few specialized cheesemakers located in the hills surrounding Vico Equense, and exclusively using milk from the heirloom Agerolesi breed of cow. You can sample this cheese at the “De Gennaro” deli on Via Caccioppoli (across from the hospital). If you are not full enjoy the gelato di Gabriele: this dairy bar makes fresh gelato, cheese, and yogurt…all excellent. Ph Amadalvarez – Opera propria, CC BY-SA 3.0
Once in Sorrento, leave the motorbike and take a stroll. From Piazza Lauro, passing through Corso Italia, arriving in Piazza Tasso, the main square of Sorrento. Going up along the viale Enrico Caruso, don’t miss to look down at the Valley of the Mills! It’s a verdant grouping of ruins nestled at the bottom of a deep Italian crevasse, like little canyons. You can see some flour mills, built from stone as far back as the 13th century, in the bottom of the valley. After the visit to the Cattedrale di Sorrento, wander through the streets of the center. On a corner of Via San Cesareo, there is the Sedil Dominova, the last surviving ancient noble seat in the Campania region and now the Mutuo Soccorso’s headquarters; from there take the Via Reginaldo Giuliani. The Villa comunale offers a spectacular view of the Bay of Naples (a perfect spot for a selfie with the Vesuvio) with the church of San Francesco on your right side (the famous cloisters where a lot of weddings take place). We suggest to continue heading to Piazza Vittoria and to visit Marina Grande, a picturesque fishing village (don’t worry to go back you can use the lift!). Ph Berthold Werner – Fatica propria, CC BY-SA 3.0
After this amazing break, drive towards Sant’Agata sui Due Golfi, along the SS145. On one side, the Bay of Naples and Mount Vesuvius, on the other, the Bay of Salerno, the islets of Li Galli and the Amalfi Coast. Opposite, almost within swimming distance, Capri, a mountain in the blue sea. Perched on a hilltop, and within easy walking distance of the main square in Sant’Agata, the Monastero del Deserto, was constructed by Carmelite monks in 1679. Another house of worship worth visiting is the Church of Santa Maria delle Grazie, famous for its precious altar of inlaid wood and mother pearl. One of Sant’Agata sui Due Golfi’s best guarded treasures is its culinary tradition. You can choose between two excellent restaurants: “Don Alfonso 1890” and “Lo Stuzzichino“, a “slow food” temple directly opposite Don Alfonso.
To see more beauties, go ahead towards Nerano, along the via Nastro Azzurro, another fragment of paradise on the Amalfi Coast, famous for its underwater caves, pretty historic center, and typical restaurants. The village is said to have acquired its name after the emperor Tiberius Nerone built a summer residence here. Nerano’s beach faces onto the bay of Marina del Cantone, the rocky seabed and transparent waters of which make it a well established favorite among scuba divers: the area is in the center of the Punta Campanella Natural Marine Reserve. Don’t leave Nerano without having first savored Nerano’s legendary spaghetti, served in a delicious zucchini, cheese and basil sauce… to taste the “original recipe” you’ll need to go to “Mariagrazia”, where the dish so loved by the famous Neapolitan comedian, Toto, was first invented. Di Mattia Luigi Nappi – Opera propria, CC BY-SA 3.0
Finally, enjoy your lunch/dinner before heading to Conca dei Marini.