Ravello is one of the most evocative destinations of the entire Amalfi Coast: suspended between sea and sky, it stands on a natural terrace overlooking Amalfi and Minori. Located slightly inland, with the part of the coast that is instead occupied by the hamlets of San Cosma and Castiglione, the town dominates from a height of 350 m the coastal road which leads from Maiori to Amalfi.
The town is subject to UNESCO protection, recognition that is a guarantee of the absolute extraordinary nature of the place.
You can get to Ravello by car from the North, taking the exit of Vietri Sul Mare and then going up towards Cetara-Maiori-Minori. For those who are already in Amalfi during their vacation or their visit, there will be only a few kilometers to travel to reach this beautiful town on the Amalfi Coast.
The visit to the town of Ravello means above all to visit its 2 famous villas: Villa Rufolo and Villa Cimbrone.
Villa Rufolo is the real jewel of Ravello: a splendid villa, exceptional from an architectural and aesthetic point of view, which contributes to creating timeless beauty. This villa was built in the 13th century by the Rufolo family, a very wealthy family. Famous people also stayed in the villa, including Wagner who, inspired by the beautiful gardens, composed the opera “Parsifal”. The enchantment of the villa is certainly the splendid flower gardens from which it is possible to admire a wonderful panorama of the Amalfi coast below.
The other villa in Ravello is Villa Cimbrone, another historic building of unspeakable beauty. The villa owes its splendor to the Englishman Beckett who, after purchasing its ruins in 1904, rebuilt it according to the style of Villa Rufolo. It is a splendid building inserted in a huge flower garden. At the end of the garden you are in front of a amazing belvedere overlooking the sea.
Today it is a 5-star hotel, but its garden it can be visited by everyone, throughout the year.
The Cathedral of Ravello is also worth a visit. It is one of the oldest cathedrals in Italy and its first construction dates back to 1086. It has undergone additions and demolitions over the years. Inside the seventeenth-century chapel there is the ampoule of the blood of San Pantaleone, which just like that of San Gennaro of Naples, liquefies annually.
There are also two museums inside the Cathedral of Ravello: the Opera Museum, in the crypt of the church, which houses Roman cinerary urns, reliquaries of the early Christian era. And the medieval and modern art gallery which presents paintings from the sixteenth to the nineteenth century.
Continuing the tour of Ravello, you can then visit the Convent of San Francesco, whose tradition wants it founded by San Francesco d’Assisi, who passed through Ravello in 1222 bound for Amalfi. Another enchanting walk is the one that connects Ravello to Castiglione, on a path of ancient origins that for many centuries was the only connection from Ravello to the sea: you walk between the Mediterranean scents and the breathtaking panoramic views.
Finally, a visit to the Coral museum cannot be missed, where you can admire coral objects, cameos and engraved mother of pearl, from Roman times to the last century.
What to buy in Ravello? Among the most appreciated objects there are the splendid ceramics, handcrafted products of excellence of the Amalfi Coast: objects, dishes, vases and even tiles. Goldsmith craftsmanship is also highly developed. The local gastronomy is another famous specialty of Amalfi Coast.