The other day it was sunny so we went to Ravello to enjoy a walk and poke our noses around the Villa Rufolo gardens to see how they trimmed their hydrangea. The gardener there does wonderful things, so I try to learn as much as I can by observing the beautiful gardens. The hydrangea in my garden now look a lot like this:


Ciao Amalfi Coast Blog Winter Ravello hydrangea 

Not far from the Piazza Duomo in Ravello is the Church of San Francesco. Following the walkway that leads to the Villa Cimbrone you first see the campanile, or bell tower, of the church.


Ciao Amalfi Coast Blog Winter Ravello Campanile


Then you reach a beautiful atrium with the entrance to the church. I’ve walked through here many times, but the church has never been open to visit.


Ciao Amalfi Coast Blog Winter Ravello Atrium


Although Ravello was practically deserted this winter afternoon, we did find the church door open and ducked inside to take a look. It was a beautiful and very well-preserved interior. The church was empty, so we walked around for awhile looking at all the paintings and the architectural details.


Ciao Amalfi Coast Blog Winter Ravello chiesa san francesco 

On either side of the apse above the altar there are beautiful paintings showing scenes from the life of San Francesco. Between these paintings there is a grate that likely served as a window for cloistered monks. I’m  not sure about the story for these particular windows, but they were interesting to see.


Ciao Amalfi Coast Blog Winter Ravello San Francecso


You never know when you’re traveling in Italy when you’ll stumble across an open door and find little treasures like this church. Continuing along toward the Villa Cimbrone, next to peaceful terraces of sleeping vines, we hardly met a soul while enjoying the quiet beauty of Ravello in the winter.


Ciao Amalfi Coast Blog Winter Ravello vines 

I did say that we hardly met a soul.


Ciao Amalfi Coast Blog Winter Ravello chickens 

Today it’s raining again, but when the rain stops wintertime on the Amalfi Coast is truly magical!



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  • Heather Jacks

    Looks like a lovely day. I never tire of the lovely old chapels…so rich with artistic detail. It is rainy, windy and chilly in Sicily today.

    January 27, 2010
  • LindyLouMac

    The quiet beauty of Ravello in the winter, sounds wonderful.

    January 27, 2010
  • Wanderlust Woman

    Great minds think alike. Guess what my post this Saturday will be about? Can't wait to visit Cimbrone, a presto.

    January 27, 2010
  • Anne in Oxfordshire

    A lovely day for wandering around a beautiful place..great when the places are quieter. Oh yes you never know if you will find the door open or not, but mostly they are. Great photos. 🙂

    January 27, 2010
  • South of Rome

    When ever I found a silent church to slide into I always found myself holding my breath, trying not to disturb anything. I think I also feared being 'caught!' Although I was never once tossed out I always felt like a trespasser discovering a secret.

    January 27, 2010
  • Saretta

    How lucky you were to visit an uncrowded Ravello!

    January 27, 2010
  • The Food Hunter

    sounds wonderful

    January 29, 2010
  • Welshcakes Limoncello

    You're right – you never know when you'll find a beautiful little church in Italy. Looks a fabulous place.

    January 30, 2010

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