Ravello is one of the most beautiful places in Italy, and the world! This stunning Amalfi Coast town is known for its jaw-dropping views and ornate garden villas. Here are the best things to do in Ravello Italy.
Ravello Italy Attractions
Ravello is located in the province of Salerno, in the province of Campania, South Italy. At 365 meters above sea level, the coastal views are out of this world! However, there’s more to this charming Amalfi Coast town than panoramas. Here are 10 of our favorite Ravello attractions.
1. Auditorium Oscar Niemeyer
Ravello is often referred to as “la citta della musica” or the town of music. There’s an extensive Summer program of musical events, so a new auditorium was constructed in 2011.
Perched on the cliffside at Via della Repubblica in Ravello, this concert hall has a striking contemporary design. Painted all white, the Ravello auditorium was designed by famous Brazilian architect Oscar Niemeyer.
The auditorium has capacity for 400 people and hosts concerts, exhibitions and other cultural events. You can get a good photo of the auditorium and the Mediterranean sea from the adjacent plaza.
Address: Via della Repubblica, 12, 84010 Ravello SA, Italy
2. Chiesa Dell’Annunziata
The Church of the Annunciation is known for its twin towers, which make for an incredible photo. The inside of the church is impressive, with marble columns and restored frescoes.
However, it’s the view of it from the terrace at Villa Ruffolo which is not to be missed. It is thought that the church was founded in 1281.
Address: Via della Annunziata, 84010 Ravello SA, Italy
3. Duomo di Ravello
Ravello Cathedral, known as Il Duomo di Ravello in Italian, was built in 1086. It’s centrally located on Piazza Duomo.
There have been a few changes to the cathedral through the centuries, and the facade dates from the 16th century. When you visit, admire the central bronze door which is from 1179. Designed by Barisano da Trani, the Romanesque door depicts Christ, saints and warriors.
Inside the cathedral, there’s an ornate pulpit created by sculptor Nicola Southern Bartolomeo in 1272. The Pulpit of the Gospels is adorned with stone lions at the base.
Address: Piazza Duomo, 84010 Ravello, Italy
4. Lunch at Belvedere
Whether you choose to stay at Belmond Caruso or elsewhere, don’t miss lunch at Belvedere, their in-house restaurant. Open to non-residents, this Ravello restaurant is known for its delicate Mediterranean dishes.
Chef Mimmo di Raffaele excels at simple yet elegant Italian food. There’s nothing heavy about it, so you can eat with a clear conscience ;-).
We chose to dine on the outdoor terrace for the far reaching sea views. You can also eat in the historical dining room with its ancient frescoes.
Address: Piazza S. Giovanni del Toro, 2, 84010 Ravello SA, Italy
5. Ravello Old Town
The centre of Ravello is extremely picturesque. Known in Italian as the Centro Storico, Ravello old quarter has many cobbled streets and pavement cafes. Enjoy an aperitivo on Piazza Vescovado or browse the artisanal boutiques.
You can purchase limoncello to take home at Profumi della Costiera on Via Trinita. Amalfi Coast lemons are huge and known as sfusato amalfitano. This limoncello has no coloring and no preservatives.
Il Filo d’Autore is an artisanal cashmere and linen shop, run by two sisters. Cristina and Eugenia make soft-knit shawls and scarves in vibrant colors.
Ravello is known for its beautiful ceramics, often decorated with a lemon motif. There are several ceramics boutiques close to Villa Rufolo:
- Ceramiche Cosmolena Ravello
- Ceramiche D’Arte Carmela
- Ceramic Store Pascal – Pascal Ceramiche d’Arte
6. Ravello Walks
People come from all over the world to hike along the scenic walking trails around Ravello. Here are some of the best one-way Ravello hikes:
- Ravello to Amalfi – a downhill walk that takes an hour. You can catch a bus back to Ravello.
- Ravello to Maiori – known as the Path of the Lemons or Sentiero dei Lemoni, this 2.4 mile trail takes around 1 hour.
- The Path of the Gods – this famous Amalfi Coast hike starts in Bomerano and ends in Nocelle or Positano.
7. Ravello Wine
Thanks to its mild climate and low rainfall, the wine in Ravello is particularly sought after. Costa d’Amalfi Ravello wines can use the Denominazione di Origine Controllata (DOC) quality control title on their labels.
Casa Vinicola Ettore Sammarco Ravello on Via Civita is a good place to stock up, as they’re very friendly. White wine lovers will enjoy Costa d’Amalfi Ravello Bianco Vigna Grotta Piana Ettore Sammarco. Red wine fans should try the Ravello Selva delle Monache Riserva Rosso.
Address: Via Civita, 9, 84010 Ravello SA, Italy
8. Chiesa di San Giovanni del Toro
The Church of Saint John the Apostle of the Toro takes its name from John the Apostle and the aristocratic area of Il Toro where it was built.
This Catholic church was consecrated in the 11th century and subsequently damaged in an earthquake. It was restored in 1715 and also in the 1990s. A glass floor reveals historical remains below the church.
The pulpit dates from the 13th century and features mosaics including one of Jonah coming out of a whale. The famous graphic artist M.C. Escher visited Ravello in the 1920s and was inspired by this pulpit to create interlocking patterns.
Address: Via S. Giovanni del Toro, 4, 84010 Ravello SA, Italy
9. Villa Cimbrone
Famous for its Terrace of Infinity, Villa Cimbrone is named after the Cimbronium rock on which it is built. The building dates from the 11th century and is now a luxurious 5 star hotel.
However, it’s the Villa Cimbrone gardens that are the true crowd pleaser. The Terrazzo dell’lnfinito is flanked by a series of 18th century white marble busts. The panoramic view of the Mediterranean from this belvedere is extraordinary.
The British nobleman Ernest William Beckett renovated the gardens in the 18th century. A plaque commemorates the visit of Greta Garbo in 1938.
As the American writer Gore Vidal once said:
Twenty five years ago I was asked by an American magazine what was the most beautiful place that I had ever seen in all my travels and I said the view from the Belvedere of the Villa Cimbrone on a bright winter’s day when the sky and the sea were each so vividly blue that it was not possible to tell one from the other.
Address: Via Santa Chiara, 26, 84010 Ravello SA, Italy
10. Villa Rufolo
The other famous Ravello garden is Villa Rufolo. Benefiting from a fantastic location off the cathedral square, Villa Rufolo overlooks the sea and has far reaching views to the Gulf of Salerno.
Constructed in the 13th century for the wealthy Rufolo family, this historical villa has distinctive Moorish style cloisters. King Robert of Anjou lived here, as did several popes.
In 1851, Sir Francis Neville Reid fell in love with Villa Rufolo and set about renovating the house and gardens. The German composer Richard Wagner visited in 1880. He was inspired to finish the second act of his opera Parsifal during his stay.
Known as the Garden of the Soul, it is spread over 2 levels. There’s also an interactive exhibition, the Torreo-Museo in the 13th century Torre Maggiore.
Getting to Ravello
Ravello can take a while to reach during the Summer months, when the roads are often congested. It’s worth staying for a few days once you’re there. If possible, hire a car as public transport is not all that frequent.
The closest international airport is Naples (NAP). From Naples to Ravello the distance is only 29.5 miles and it should only take around 49 minutes to reach Ravello. However, at times the journey can take over 2 hours.
When to Visit Ravello
You’ll find most hotels, restaurants and shops open in the Summer months, from May to October. Outside of these months, many boutiques and eateries are closed.
The weather in Ravello is pleasant all year round. April to June and September to October are good times to avoid extreme heat and crowds.
If you prefer to travel in the high season of July and August, there are some interesting festivals. Bear in mind that temperatures often reach above 30°C, so book accommodation with air-conditioning.
There are some great Ravello 5 star hotels, all with incredible views of the Mediterranean:
- Belmond Hotel Caruso – a 5 star Ravello hotel with a lovely infinity pool overlooking the ocean.
- Hotel Villa Cimbrone – famous gardens and beautiful historic decor.
- Palazzo Avino – private beach club and fabulous service at this Ravello luxury hotel.
If you are staying with a group, you may prefer to rent an apartment in Ravello. There are some great options including Sea View Villa with its fabulous hot tub, The Lemon Garden Villa, Villa Milu and Villa Bacardi.
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Published at Fri, 31 Jul 2020 09:58:33 +0000