A guest blog post from Michelle Wagner.
As an undergraduate student, I studied abroad in Rome, Italy, during the summer between my second and third year of college. I was determined to see other parts of the country while taking classes and completing an internship. One weekend, my roommates and I took a trip down the coast of Italy. Visiting Paestum, Amalfi, and Ravello remains as one of my most cherished memories abroad.
First stop: Paestum
Paestum is an ancient city founded by the Dorics. There we saw the Temple of Hera which dates back to 600 B.C. These ruins used to be underwater in a quarry that was drained, and that is when this old city was found. In the museum, there were painted tombs from the burial monument: Tomba del tuffatore (Tomb of the Diver). The diver is a representation of life and death — Life is a short dive, death is a dive into the wildly unknown.
Next stop in Paestum was Tenuta Vannulo, an organic buffalo farm that sells fresh mozzarella, ricotta cheese, yogurt, gelato, and coffee. A group of us toured the buffalo farm, home to over 300 buffalo. They called it a spa because of the way they treat their buffalo. In order to reduce stress, they play Mozart for two hours every morning and have spinning wheels that the buffalo can rub up against for a massage. I learned that using buffalo milk rather than cow milk makes their products more creamy. I was hesitant at first, but the lunch they made for us on the tour was one of, if not the best meal I have had in Italy yet. Absolutely the freshest meal I have ever eaten.
Next stop: Amalfi Coast
We stayed at the Hotel Bristol on the rocks of the Amalfi Coast, and you can see our view of the ocean from the balcony in the photo below. We took a boat tour of the Amalfi Coast, which was just as incredible as it sounds. When we got off the boat, we walked around the town for a while, shopping and sightseeing at the Cathedral, and then headed to the beach. My Sunday consisted of swimming in crystal clear, warm water with the most amazing view behind my friends and I. I wish I could have stayed there for weeks, not just one weekend.
Last stop: Ravello
We took a bus up to Ravello villa which looks over the Amalfi coast. The gardens offered a breathtaking view, where we found the stage for Ravello festival. Of course, we got on the stage and started singing Lizzie Mcguire’s “This Is What Dreams Are Made Of.”
Read more about my internship in Rome here.
Have you ever adventured down the coast of Italy? I would love to hear all about your experiences; make sure to comment below!
Meet The Author:
Michelle Wagner is The Caffeinated Grad, a public health student and traveler. She shares all about her study abroad trips and her journey through graduate school as well as making time for wellness and other passions outside of school and work.