In August of 2014, my wife and I were fortunate enough to enjoy two weeks in Europe. We stayed with friends during the first leg of the trip, exploring the villages outside of Toulouse. Our second week was spent with family on the Italian coast. Both trips produced tons of wonderful photography opportunities; I’m going to focus on the Italy travel we did for this post.
Our Italy tour started with our arrival in Salerno, where we met the family and stayed overnight. Salerno is a small, dense town, the largest that is close to the famed Amalfi coast. We there for only a short time and I didn’t get many photos, but the Italian town’s location between the Gulf of Salerno and the mountains makes for picturesque landscapes. Neither of these photos are for sale–I was so tired at this point I wasn’t focused enough to take quality shots–but I wanted to include them.
The next day, we travelled to the Italian coast via train, to stay at a family resort just outside the town of Ascea. Here, there were numerous photographic opportunities. The Italian coast family resort we stayed in was a collection of small, single family units that were just steps from the beach. This was not tourist Italy–this was Italy for Italian families on vacation. There were no tourists here (besides us); the only travel being done was to and from these families full-time homes.
Italians love the beach and love to be near each other; both those preferences were reflected in the resort’s daily activities. During the day, almost everyone would migrate out to the beach and, like clockwork, almost everyone would return for dinner. Once the dinner hour was done, the resort would have a discotheque for kids, providing parents a few hours of time to relax and chat until bedtime.
In the middle of the week that we stayed, my wife and I borrowed the car of a family member and headed up the coast to visit the Roman ruins near Velia. It’s often forgotten in discussions and photos of southern Italy, but there is a ton of history down there. We drove the scenic route, stopping often along the way to enjoy the breathtaking views of the sea and stunning contrasts of the mountains.
The town around the ruins has a small infrastructure, mostly supporting the tourism that the historical site attracts. Again, though, the experience was of being in a place for locals, instead of being in a place that caters to American preferences. After a fantastic lunch, we bought most of the gifts we brought back from the stores along the strip of retail.