Looking forward to our day ahead, we rose early to take the hire car back to Sorrento where we would board the ferry across to the gorgeous island of Capri.
Reviving our faith in the GPS, we plugged in the rental car office address and headed off. It was not long until we were at a cross-roads with the GPS and the road signage around us. I was getting flustered as I didn’t know whether to trust the signs or the GPS. In Greece and Israel, you might follow the guidance of a sign and then be stranded with no follow up signs down the road… I had concerns that we would encounter the same challenge here. We drove for much longer than we probably needed to, but had gone past the point of return so decided to go with the GPS flow.
After a while we came around a bend and saw the town of Sorrento below us. We found the rental car office and jumped out of the car to drop off the keys. The guy came over and did his inspection of the car. “What is this?” he asked… Eldad and I both looked at each-other confused. We came around to the front of the car where he was pointing and there was a scratch!! About half the size of my small finger nail – but a scratch none the less. We had no idea how it got there but suspected it might have been our hotel as they parked the car for us. We did not elect to pay the rental car excess when we rented the car as we have rental car insurance through our travel insurer. It was a bummer and I felt slightly deflated but at least we have cover (although we are yet to see how that will turn out).
We bought tickets on the ferry to Capri and joined the other tourists boarding the boat. It was a lovely day in Capri. We caught the funicular up to Anacapri (small town on the island) and then a bus to the Blue Grotto (Grotta Azzura). We went to the pier and jumped aboard a flat bottom boat, being serenaded as we marvelled at the sapphire blue colour of the water in the grotto.
Afterwards, we explored the shopping on the island and bought a few souvenirs including a perfume and the famed Capri Limoncello.
We had a fantastic late lunch where the waiter engaged us in a conversation in Italian. It was a great way to practice and learn new words. The day was getting on and we had to get back to Ravello that evening for the concert. We caught the funicular back down to the port and boarded our waiting boat back to Amalfi.
The boat trip took much longer than we had planned and we arrived back without time to make it to our dinner reservation in Ravello. We checked the bus times and raced back to the hotel to get ready for the evening – at least we would make the concert. We went to the bus stop a little early just in case and waited. The bus was supposed to come at 18:35 and take 40 minutes to get to Ravello. 18:45 came and went and still no bus. It was getting late, we hadn’t eaten and I was beginning to feel hunger setting in – not sure if we would have time for dinner before the concert. Eventually at 19:15, the bus arrived. We had naïvely thought that we could bus tickets on the bus. We couldn’t. Eldad ran to get tickets at the Tabbachi across the road while I tried to hold the bus. The driver didn’t wait…
By this time, it was too late to wait for the next bus. Eldad went over the cab rank and asked how much the fare was to Ravello (a 15 minute trip by car)… “Quaranta euro” was the response. “40 Euro??” I said incredulously. The driver insisted this was the price for “everyone” including locals. I was annoyed but we didn’t really have a choice. So we got in our incredibly expensive cab to Ravello. I had a momentary pang of joy as we overtook the bus we were supposed to be on.
We arrived in Ravello and wanted to have something to eat before the concert (we didn’t have long). Being a town known for its spectacular vistas, we decided to dine somewhere with a view. We managed to pick the most expensive restaurant in Amalfi I am sure. The view was nice, and there were fireworks as we dined so we relaxed again and looked forward to the concert ahead.
The concert was the Francesco Cafiso Quintet. They played fantastic jazz music and had a great dynamic on stage. The backdrop of the stage was the magnificent view down and across the Amalfi coast out to the sea. It was not a big crowd but people bopped along in their seats to the catchy music.
On our bus ride home, I mused to Eldad that “Today, the Amalfi Coast has taken more from us than it has given.” – A rental car insurance claim, extortionate transport and over priced dinner. On reflection though, as I write this, the $ are forgotten and I remember it as very enjoyable evening. That’s hindsight I guess.