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Travel Guide To Amalfi Coast

  • Italy
  • Amalfi
  • 11°C, Wind
  • Euro
  • We'd like to thank Efisio for making our holidays such a memorable experience as we were able to do everything on a single scooter.

    Jessica Brown
  • The best way to travel in Amalfi coast! We rented a scooter for the duration of our trip and we paid very little.

    Lisa Kimberly
  • When in southern Italy, if you need a safe driver, Efisio Tatti is the guy! Day trips, airport pickup, sight seeing, Efisio is the “go to guy” for anything you need while in the Naples/Amalfi area.

    Jimi Bonaro

General Information About Amalfi Coast

Its foundation is traced back to the Romans (its emblem bears the inscription Descendit ex patribus romanorum). Starting from the ninth century, first (in chronological order) among the maritime republics, rivaled with Pisa, Venice and Genoa for the control of the Mediterranean Sea.

The Maritime Code of Amalfi, better known as the Tavole amalfitane, had a great influence until the seventeenth century.

Amalfi reached its peak in the eleventh century, after which began a rapid decline: in 1131 it was conquered by the Normans and in 1135 and 1137 plundered by the Pisans. In 1343, then, a storm resulting in tsunami destroyed much of the city.

Traditionally, every year a crew of Amalfi rowers participate in the Regatta of the Ancient Maritime Republics, challenging the weapons of the cities of Genoa, Pisa and Venice.

For an error of interpretation of a Latin text, which instead reported that the invention of the compass was attributed by the historian Flavius ​​Biondo to the Amalfitans, the philologist Giambattista Pio claimed that the compass had been invented by the amphitrite Flavio Gioia. In the text in question (Amalphi in Campania veteri magnetis usus inventus to Flavio traditur), however, we should not understand Flavio as the inventor of the compass, but only as the one who reported the news: precisely Flavio Biondo. However, the Amalfi navigators may have been among the first to use that instrument. "An ancient Amalfitana tradition refers, instead, to a certain Giovanni Gioia as inventor of the seafaring instrument".

Particularly flourishing in the history of the city and alive in two residual paper mills on the many present and now in ruins, is the paper industry, linked to the production of the precious Amalfi paper. In fact, in the city it is possible to visit the Paper Museum of Amalfi.

Events and Folks

The Regatta of the Ancient Maritime Republics is held every four years in June. A sporting event of historical re-enactment, it was established in 1955 with the aim of recalling the companies and the rivalry of the most famous Italian maritime republics: Amalfi, Genoa, Pisa and Venice. It is a rowing race disputed by galleons, rebuilt on models of the twelfth century, driven by eight rowers (on a fixed seat) and led by a helmsman.

The regatta is preceded by a historical procession, composed of numerous figures who take the role of ancient characters that characterized each Republic.The patron saint of Amalfi is Sant'Andrea, and his party takes place mainly on two occasions: June 26th and 27th and November 30th.

On the first occasion we remember the miracle of the saint who in 1544 saved Amalfi, Minori and Salerno, together with Santa Trofimena and San Matteo, from an attack by the pirate Ariadeno Barbarossa. On the second occasion the liturgical feast of the saint is celebrated instead. In both occaisons, the culmination of the event is the traditional blessing of the sea at the beach and the subsequent final "Race" on the stairs of the cathedral.

It was carried out for the first time in the late forties. Archbishop Ercolano Marini had recently resigned and he was temporarily replaced by that of Salerno. He forbade the blessing of the sea, considered a pagan rite, and, on the descent of the statue on the beach, breaking his ban, he continued towards the cathedral without waiting for the bearers. Then they, after a quick blessing, rushed into the cathedral. Upon arrival in the square, the archbishop ordered to close the doors of the cathedral and the bearers ran with the statue in a desperate attempt to enter, but the door closed completely upon arrival in the hall.

After hours of negotiations, the statue was finally able to return to the church.Also worthy of note are the sea processions at the opening and closing of the summer season, in honor of St. Anthony and the Madonna of Porto Salvo, which are held respectively on June 13th and September 12th.

Among the rites of Holy Week, the Good Friday procession is worthy of note. At the arrival of the most complete darkness, at the only light of the torches and the candles, the procession leaves the cathedral with the statues of the dead Christ and of Our Lady of Sorrows.

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