Backpacking thru 9 European countries in 14 days

Naples and The Amalfi Coast


Amalfi Coast Italy

Experiencing the Amalfi coast has long been a dream. Spoiler alert-it was even more amazing than I could’ve imagined. We arrived in Naples from Rome early enough to find our Airbnb before dinner. Good thing. Naples didn’t seem to be as nice of a city as the ones we had visited so far. And our Airbnb-whoa!! We usually have the best experiences with Airbnbs. This time was a little different. Somebody lives there! A very nice and hospitable girl was renting it out though. All the owner’s clothes are in the closet. Not really set up to accommodate guests. No soap, shampoo, trash cans, etc for us. No thank you, we do not want to use the owner’s soap-on-a rope in the shower. Yikes! Getting in is a little creepy too. Through double doors on street, you step down into building, go though a tall locked gate then up an antique elevator. From there you access an unlocked door and another covered landing space inside the building, before entering into 1 of 3 apartments.  Most of the entrance steps described are not totally uncommon for Europe. Even our amazing room in Rome was a similar layout, without the step down and with a more modern feel.

Maybe not the best part of town, but we walked by lots of restaurants and shops getting to apt. The area was full of families. Even tho it wasn’t the cleanest, most well kept area, we felt pretty safe. We were cautious. On our Amalfi Coast tour, some ladies said they were staying in the ‘old part of town’ and according to them it was nice. Of course, according to all of the reviews regarding our Airbnb, it was really nice too!! Perspective. Lol

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After dropping our things off at the room, we walked around and found a busy little Pizzeria in Naples. Busy, rather than not, is always a good sign to me. It recently renovated with a contemporary look. There was seating inside and outside. All packed, so they were not overjoyed that a couple of Americans were taking up space. Haha

We were picked up for the Amalfi Coast tour outside of a local hotel a few blocks away. We got there early enough to enjoy some pastries before buses started picking everyone up. Hotel Naples, where we met, looked like a nice hotel. On our amazing Amalfi Coast Tour there were 19 from Spain, two from France, and us two. The guide, Sara, was wonderful, friendly and very engaging at every stop. The first stop was at the Limoncello Factory and store.  Our group was here for a Limoncello tasting and a lemon chocolate tasting. I regretted not buying some lemon chocolate. Our chocolate from the chocolate making class in Brussels was gone! The coastal drive was beautiful. If you take a tour, the best views are on the right (passenger) side of the bus. After stopping in Sorrento, we made our way to Amalfi. My 1st thoughts of touring the coast consisted of flatter, sandier images. Nope. This was a mountain journey. The roads were narrow and windy. The towns were a tight squeeze for traffic -and we were in a big bus! Sorrento, as was Ravello, is basically a town of shopping and dining carved out and meandering behind the initial mountain facade that you see. Sorrento also had a big church and funny little fountain there. Of course there was also gelato. Had a cone of dark chocolate and Limone. So good!  There was a long pier out into the ocean for beautiful coastal shots. Continued our scenic journey to Ravello. This town was just as charming and lovely as Sorrento. After wandering along through the path of shops, it opened up in to a large space with dining, more shops, lots of outdoor seating, etc. Unfortunately the tour takes the quick route back to Naples so we didn’t get a double dose of the Amalfi Coast, but it’s unforgettable. 

Arriving back in Naples late afternoon, we decided to ditch the Airbnb and not stay for the 2nd nite. We were flying out to Paris early the next am and decided to go to the airport and check out accommodations nearby. At the airport info desk, we were given the option of a capsule hotel, the 1st in Europe, called BenBo. It consisted of reception desk, several rows of capsules (think cruise ship cabins), vending machines, seating area, and shared bathrooms/showers. All of the capsules were single small cabins, but we were able to get adjoining rooms. Each had a single bed attached to the wall, a tv, a couple of fold down tables/trays and a little bedside table. Bed had covers and a pillow, other than toilet paper and a towel from reception, there was nothing else in bath/shower. Good thing we had our own body wash and didn’t need a hair dryer!

When we walked into BenBo, we met the sweetest lady, Jacqui, who was checking in also. She was reluctantly traveling back to Canada from Italy by herself. We all laughed about the new capsule experience, had dinner, and planned to walk over to airport before 4am the next morning. She was very friendly, and a Realtor too! We hit it off immediately. 

All in all the capsule experience was great. Much more comfortable bed than nite before and very clean. Off to Paris, on our Backpacking Through Europe Adventure!

Big Dog’s Review: Naples was a little bit different city in terms of cleanliness than any of the previous places we visited. We had booked an Airbnb for two nights, but only stayed for one. The place was not set up for visitors. No soap in the bathroom and a dirty used razor in the shower. We checked out and into a cube for our last night. The cube is just that a bed in a cube. Just a place to sleep. Adjacent to the room there are bathrooms. While in Naples we took a tour out of town to the Amalfi coast. It was beautiful and we recommend going there if you have the chance. The scenery was exceptional and lunch was included in our tour.

48 thoughts on “Naples and The Amalfi Coast”

  1. I’d love to see the Amalfi Coast! We didn’t do southern Italy while we were there. The sleeping cubes sound fun!

  2. I would love to visit these places one day! There are so many places in Italy I would love to visit. I think I’d have to go for at least 3 weeks to see it all.

  3. This is the exact area we are looking at! I think I could live there no problem, lol.

  4. Amalfi coast is on my must-see list as well! Bummer that your Airbnb wasn’t great though. Sounds like an amazing trip all in all!

  5. What a beautiful place to visit. I’d love to go! Lemoncello looks fun, and I’m always ready for ice cream. I’ve never stayed in an AirBnb, but that would be an adventure!

  6. I enjoy your journey. My friend had a similar experience in Washington state at an room she rented for a week. Nasty!

  7. I love Airbnb but they can be tricky. I actually stayed in a bunk (with my daughter) capsule at Gatewick when we missed a connection. It was clean and perfect for a good nights sleep. The things stories are made of!

  8. Oh how these pictures made me dream of going there someday soon! Definitely a dream trip for me that I hope to make happen!

  9. OMG so beautiful and so much to see, eat, and drink. We love limoncello so that would be a must see for us.

  10. The cube looked quite interesting! Kind of a bummer you had a bad Airbnb experience but at least you had a plan B! Lovely photos!

  11. The architecture looks so amazing and it is neat that is on such steep terrain.

  12. My cousin brought me back a bottle of crema di limoncello from the Amalfi Coast, and it was one of the best gifts I’ve ever gotten. Beautiful country!

  13. The Almalfi Coast has been on my bucket list for a while, and your post makes me want to go more than ever. Not to mention limoncello, gelato and lemon chocolate!!

  14. Today, I went to the beach front with my children. I found a sea shell and gave it to my 4 year old daughter and said “You can hear the ocean if you put this to your ear.” She put the shell to her ear and screamed. There was a hermit crab inside and it pinched her ear. She never wants to go back! LoL I know this is entirely off topic but I had to tell someone!

  15. Beautiful pictures! Sounds like and look like you guys were able to see some amazing sites. Thanks for sharing your experience with the AirBnB. Based on what you went through the 1st night I think you guys made a great decision in not going back. I’ve always been skeptical about AirBnBs. Which is why I don’t think I would ever try one. What you experienced is exactly how I imagine they all are – lol. After my experience in Europe last year I believe I will always opt for a hotel and not just any hotel – a chain hotel. Like Sheraton, W, Marriott etc. Some place in which I know that if I “forget” my soap there will be a fresh clean and new bar in the bathroom for me to use. Thanks for sharing your experience. Hoping to get back to Italy soon.

    1. Yes, don’t you just love Italy?! We hope to go back too!
      Actually, we have stayed in some amazing Airbnbs and that’s the only questionable experience that we’ve had. Possibly, our concerns may not even be concerns to some, but we felt better about leaving anyway! Haha I do agree with the chain hotels being the most familiar, but maybe not the most charming sometimes.

  16. I love the Amalfi Coast. Too bad about your airbnb. We stayed in sorrento and it was really nice. Naples is not my favorite city, it kind of scared me!

  17. This looks like a great trip! one I would take for sure. I love lemon anything so I would get a kick out of exploring the Lemonchello place. I love the tiny cars and views!

  18. Your photos of the Amalfi Coast were beautiful! I also enjoyed and appreciated your candid review of your experience. I have never seen the capsule-style accommodations – a pretty innovative idea for airports! I have seen many photos of the coastal areas of Europe and hope to visit there one day. It looks incredible!

  19. The views there are gorgeous!
    The capsule rooms sound very similar to something my husband tried out in the Dubai airport once. Just a simple spot to sleep between connecting flights. I love the concept.

    1. Hi Susan, yes I bet it’s basically the same thing. Safe, clean and convenient. That’s all we needed! Thanks for reading our blog!

    1. That’s how I like my gelato too! Part lemon and part chocolate! Luckily, I’ve found a great gelato place since we got back. I got hooked on it in Italy. Haha

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