“You may have the universe, if I may have Italy” – Giuseppe Verdi
From Albania, we were back on our way to Southern Italy – and so excited to complete the circuit across the Adriatic Sea to Bari, Italy.
We loaded up our car on the ferry and got settled, ready for an overnight journey across the Adriatic Sea.
Sleeping accommodations were tight (especially as tall Californians) but it was worth the journey.
When we awoke, magically we had arrived in Italy! We jumped back in our trusty Clio Renault and headed for the Amalfi Coast. It was a good 4 hour drive from Bari, winding through vast fields, mountains and ocean roads, but the views made every part worth it. We stopped along the way for a fresh local taste of delicious seafood pasta and local beers while enjoying old castles along the coast.
When we finally arrived, the views took our breath away.
We stayed with an incredible AirBnB host, Gregorio – a 4th generation local Italian farmer who lives his life completely sustained by his farm on the mountain. He cooked us a delicious home-made meal with everything cooked and prepared straight from his land. Because the Amalfi coast has such vast, steep mountains, his entire farm is built on a cliff with a steep trek up and down the side of a mountain. He completes this climb many times daily to feed his cow, tend to his vegetables, and pick the grapes for his wine. (“Secrets to a happy, long life!” He tells us)
The views from his homestay were absolutely breathtaking, and we instantly fell in love with Italy all over again.
He was so proud to share with us his crop yields and explain how he is able to sustain himself completely from his land. His brothers and father all live in the neighboring houses next door to him with their families, and each supports each other to maintain the land and provide for the family. We seriously considered forgoing the rest of our travels to just become Amalfi farmers and live this rustic, fulfilling way of life.
During our stay, we spent our day exploring “the Path of the Gods”. This famous 4 hour hike traces the top of the highest mountains along the Amalfi coast, starting in the town of Amalfi and ending in Positano.
According to the Star Tribute, the Path was given its title by Italian historian and politician Giustino Fortunato in the mid-1800s. It stems from the gorgeous views of the sparkling waters and the island of Capri, as well as it’s own mythological history. The story goes that gods came down from heaven to the Path to reach the sea and were lured by the sirens that sang in an attempt to seduce Ulysses.
It was a truly incredible hike, and a major highlight of our trip to date.
From the top of the ridge, we then hiked down the 1700 stairs to get down to the village of Postiano to enjoy a fresh limencello and a mozzarella, prosciutto sandwich before taking the boat ferry back to Amalfi. Our calves were burning for a good 5 days after, but it was more than worth it!
My gorgeous Italian man – in his element ❤
After an amazing few days in Amalfi, we continued the beautiful drive through the mountains and on to our next Italian hot spot to go try what is known to be the BEST pizza in the world… Naples!
Naples was a foodie’s delight! Although we only spent 3 precious days there, we roamed the streets in search of all the best food we could find.
Pastas, pizzas, bruchettas galore! We still are trying to understand how Italians stay so fit when there are so many wonderful rich foods to eat!
The only downside to Italy was it’s severely slow and unreliable internet… which, when running online businesses can cause some big problems. While on the Amalfi coast, the internet went out for 30 minutes while in the middle of Teal’s online webinar and caused a big fiasco.
So while in Naples, she knew she couldn’t risk that possibility again. With her 2nd webinar scheduled, she scrambled to find a place with strong internet – which was tough to find! With 60 minutes to go before launch, she grabbed Spence and jumped into a taxi to find a fancy hotel – hoping that would suffice. After being denied internet use at the front desk, she sweet talked a housemaid to share the precious wifi code (only for guests) and hid upstairs in one of the conference rooms… Which was when she then realized her computer battery was going to die and she had no charger converter for Italian plugs….! Spencer came to the rescue, charming another hotel employee to give up their precious converter plugs (only for guests) and found his way to deliver it to her just in time.
After running a successful webinar launch, they both went up to the rooftop bar for a drink and stumbled upon some of the most amazing views in all of Napoli. Just when they thought the night couldn’t be more crazy, they began to be serenaded by a live violinist into the sunset, as if the universe was saying – ‘Que sera, sera – whatever will be will be… The future’s not ours to see, que sera, sera”.
Stories like this just can’t be made up… it was truly a rollercoaster of a night, but ended on such a sweet high note.
Teal – frazzled, exhausted, makeup smeared from crying… and in a state of disbelief of what just went down.
From Naples, it was on to our final destination in Italy – to say hello to beautiful Rome! Our time in Rome was all about soaking up the sites and the historic ruins. From rustic tomb burial grounds, to majestic buildings, to getting lost in the cobblestone streets, we soaked up as much as we could (while also bearing with extremely hot days).
After Teal’s 3rd webinar launch, she couldn’t help but dance in the streets out of joy and success, soaking up the golden sunshine outside the coliseum.
And what trip to Rome would be complete without going to pay tribute to the Vatican and St. Peter’s Basilica. It was every bit as magical and astounding as described.
After what seemed like too short a time, we ended our time in southern Italy with a romantic moonlight dinner in the plaza outside the Pantheon. There are no words to describe the feelings of eternal gratitude, love, and joy that we experienced during this time. Dining on this last night, we soaked up the ancient history reminding us of everyone who has lived before us, while discussing everything that is still yet to come for our own future. This trip has been absolutely everything we could have dreamed of – and there is not enough joy to express how grateful we were to be alive and together sharing this dream – knowing that we’ve actively created every part of this memory. Vivite Somnia!
And then, off to…. IRELAND!