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Amalfi Coast 2020 Travel Inspiration

Now that the holiday season has wrapped up, it’s that time when we start looking ahead at the year to come. If you’re planning a trip to the Amalfi Coast in 2020, I’ve gathered together some special experiences to help with your planning or perhaps even inspire you to book a trip to the Amalfi Coast this year. This is by no means a complete list of all there is to see and do on the Amalfi Coast and the surrounding areas. (Psst … Moon Amalfi Coast is a great resource for that!) These are just a handful of events I’m looking forward to this year along with places in Campania I’m eager to explore more in 2020.

While wisteria blooming in the early spring is by no means unique to the Amalfi Coast, for me seeing Positano decked out with wisteria is something I look forward to all winter. The blooms are usually out in March, but sometimes earlier. I’ve also caught them gorgeous right at the beginning of April. I first fell in love with wisteria while meandering through Dumbarton Oaks when I worked in Washington, DC. It made me so happy to discover it grew so plentifully on the Amalfi Coast. However, there’s not much in Amalfi, so I usually visit Positano or Ravello to really kick off the spring. If you’re planning an early spring visit to the Amalfi Coast, the air will be just a little bit sweeter thanks to the wisteria blooms.

Historical Regata Boats in Amalfi 2012

Created in 1955, the Regata delle Antiche Repubbliche Marinare (Regatta of the Ancient Maritime Republics) is a historic parade and boat race that takes place every day between Amalfi, Venice, Pisa, and Genoa. These four cities were powerful republics in the Middle Ages and once vied for control and trading routes. Each city takes part in a parade with detailed and colorful costumes reflecting a key moment in history. Then all eyes turn to the sea for the 2 kilometer race on large wooden boats modeled after 12th century designs.

The Regata rotates between the four cities and takes place in Amalfi every four years. It’s thrilling to be in Amalfi to cheer along during the race. The two times I have seen the Regata in Amalfi, in 2012 and 2016, the Amalfi team had spectacular come from behind wins both times. What an experience! The Regata delle Antiche Repubbliche Marinare is scheduled to take place in Amalfi this year and is usually the first weekend of June. I haven’t seen the dates announced for 2020 yet, but if you’re planning a summer trip to the Amalfi Coast, this is a really fun event to catch if you can since it won’t happen again until 2024.

UPDATE: Word on the street is that the Regata won’t actually be taking place in Amalfi as planned in 2020. I am trying to confirm this and will update the post again when I have more information.

Historic Parade in Amalfi Regata 2012

If you can’t make it to the Regata in June, you can enjoy the historical parade during the Capodanno Bizantino celebrations that take place on September 1st in Amalfi. The event includes flag throwers and the same traditional costumed parade from Amalfi to Atrani.

Mark your calendars and plan a visit to the Santiago Calatrava: Nella luce di Napoli exhibition that will be at the Museo e Real Bosco di Capodimonte in Naples from December 6th to May 10th, 2020. Even if you think you’re not familiar with the work of this noted Spanish architect, you’ve likely see at least photos of some of his stunning buildings like the World Trade Center Station in New York City or the sweeping wings of the Milwaukee Art Museum. Long enamored with the city of Naples, this exhibition is a rare look back at his 40 year career in all its aspects – architect, engineer, sculptor, painter, and designer. Co-curated by Robertina Calatrava, the architect’s wife, this is truly a rare glimpse into Calatrava’s life and career.

On the topic of exhibitions, the Museo Archeologico Nazionale di Napoli (National Archaeological Museum in Naples) has a series of special events planned for 2020. This is just an added bonus, of course, because the permanent collection at the museum is enough reason to visit again and again as it’s one of the finest archaeological collections in the world. But for an added incentive, opening on March 13th, 2020 the exhibition Gli Etruschi al MANN is a retrospective dedicated to the ancient Etruscans. With about 400 objects, the exhibition will be an incredible chance to delve into this fascinating civilization. It will also coincide with the reopening of the Prehistory and Protohistory section of the museum.

Opening on April 8th, 2020, is an exhibition I Gladiatori, which, as you can probably guess, will about gladiators. This promises to be a popular exhibition dedicated to the figure of the gladiator from private life to the arena as told through key pieces from the MANN collection and museum collections around Europe.

At the moment closing dates for those special exhibitions haven’t been announced yet, but keep an eye on the MANN website for more details.

This year marks the 10th anniversary of my lovely friend Shari’s annual Positano Yoga Retreat. I can speak from personal experience when I say that this is an incredible retreat. Set in a secluded spot above Positano, it’s an experience that introduces you to the quieter side of the Amalfi Coast as well as offering a break from the rush of modern life. Settle into warrior pose while gazing out over the Amalfi Coast and you truly feel like you can take on the world. Shari has some special events up her sleeves to celebrate the 10th anniversary, so this is the perfect year to attend if you’ve been thinking of a yoga retreat on the Amalfi Coast.

While this doesn’t have to do with a specific tie to 2020, one of my top suggestions would be to spend time on the islands of Ischia and Procida. By far the highlight of writing Moon Amalfi Coast was the time I spent on these two beautiful islands in the Gulf of Naples. Exploring the Castello Aragonese on Ischia is easily one of my top 10 experiences from 13 years living in Italy. And Procida, which is the colorful photo you see above, is a pastel dream. If you’ve been following me for awhile, you know how much I love the Amalfi Coast and Capri. However, if you’ve been to these areas and are looking for somewhere new to experience in the area, do put Ischia and Procida on your radar.

And if these ideas don’t spark your travel planning bug, you’ll find a ton more in my book Moon Amalfi Coast: With Capri, Naples & Pompeii. It covers all the top spots as well as smaller towns along the Amalfi Coast, Sorrento and the Sorrento coastline, Salerno, Naples, and Ischia and Procida. If you visit here this year, I hope you have fun exploring this beautiful part of Italy!

10 Amalfi Coast Instagrammers to Follow

10 Amalfi Coast Instagrammers To Follow Now

10 Amalfi Coast Instagrammers to Follow

When I started sharing photos last summer on Instagram, little did I know I had joined such a wonderful community where I would make new friends and connect with Amalfi Coast lovers from around the world. Along the way Instagram became my favorite social media channel for sharing beautiful little doses of the Amalfi Coast throughout the year. Naturally, some of Instagram users I enjoy following the most are also devoted to the Amalfi Coast. From luxury hotels to fellow expats, these are the Instagrammers to follow for Amalfi Coast travel inspiration and daydreaming – wherever you may be!

 

Villa Tre Ville

#Villatreville #positano #amalficoast #villabianca #biancabar #ottomanterrace #viewtodiefor #luxury #boutique #hotel #panoramic (2 of 3)

A photo posted by Villa Treville, Positano (@villatreville) on

The most beautiful spot on the Amalfi Coast been found. No need to look any further. Have you heard of the Villa Tre Ville? Once the private villa of acclaimed Italian film director and producer Franco Zeffirelli, the villa boasts an exclusive setting with postcard perfect views of Positano and the most remarkable décor and setting. It’s the place for a romantic Amalfi Coast getaway. If you can’t get there soon, then head over to @villatreville to settle in for a good dream. Just save me a spot on that sofa!    

Ravello

An unforgettable view of the Mediterranean #VillaCimbrone #Ravello #AmalfiCoast #Italy A photo posted by Ravello (@ravello) on

If your Amalfi Coast crush is the mountain village of Ravello, then let me introduce you to the @ravello Instagram feed. (You’re welcome.) The daily doses of Ravello beauty will brighten any day and give you plenty of travel inspiration for your next Amalfi Coast trip.

 

Exclusive Cruises

Quiet #inspiration #exclusivecruises #positano #paradise   A photo posted by Valeria Exclusive Cruises (@exclusivecruises) on

It’s easy to imagine sailing off into the Amalfi Coast sunset following the @exclusivecruises Instagram feed as they share photos of their private boat tours and charters. While the dreamy photos make me wish I spent more time out boating, what I particularly enjoy is the mix of photos, great dining spots and lifestyle experiences on the Amalfi Coast.    
 

Le Sirenuse

I would expect nothing less than spectacular from the luxury hotel Le Sirenuse in Positano, and their Instagram account @lesirenuse constantly has me dreaming of Positano. I love seeing the photos they share from guests and reading the comments from previous guests and travelers counting down the days until their arrival at Le Sirenuse. They’ve built a great community!

 

Nicki in Positano

#positano #amalficoast #hiking #seaview #italy

A photo posted by nicki (@nickiposi) on

For a glimpse of daily life in Positano, follow @nickiposi to see beautiful views from Nicki’s walks high up in the mountains, kayaking on the sea with the ever so cute Holly and Positano charm throughout the year.

 

Hotel Caruso


Zipping back down the coast to Ravello, follow @hotelcaruso to escape to a dreamy world of luxury Ravello-style. That infinity pool. Oh that infinity pool. There’s so much more, but that infinity pool is enough to stop my Instagram feed scrolling to a grinding halt every single time.

 

Instagram Amalfi Coast Community

One of the best spots for daily does of Amalfi Coast beauty in your Instagram feed is to follow @ig_amalficoast. They share images all along the Amalfi Coast from users around the world, and I look forward to seeing what they’ll share every day. If you’re fond of a particular village, you’ll find Instagram communities for most of them, including ig_atrani, ig_ravello and ig_positano. (Yay … bonus Amalfi Coast Instagrammers to follow!)  
 

Bell’Avventura in Positano

Don’t you just want to join Rosa Bella at that table and chat about life in Positano as the wisteria petals flutter to the ground? Follow her on Instagram at @bellavventura for beautiful moments of daily life from one of the prettiest terraces in Positano.

 

La Selva, Positano

High in the mountains above Positano with an enviable view, La Selva shares everything good about life that I love: fresh food, yoga and the Amalfi Coast. Follow them @la_selva_positano to share the goodness.  
 

Ciao Amalfi

Buon giorno from a sunny and windy Amalfi Coast!

A photo posted by Laura Thayer (@ciaoamalfi) on


To wrap up this Amalfi Coast Instagram love letter, I’d like to invite you to join me on Instagram to discover the authentic Amalfi Coast throughout the year. You can find me @ciaoamalfi. See you on Instagram!

Smitten with Mayfair!

Mayfair in London Fortumn and Mason

Fortnum & Mason in Mayfair ... it really is the Best Thing Ever!

A trip to London isn’t complete for me without a visit … or two or three … to Mayfair. I just love exploring this neighborhood’s elegant streets so full of London history, going for tea and shopping at Fortnum & Mason, window shopping in the beautiful Burlington Arcade, walking through Hyde Park to the Serpentine or across Green Park to Buckingham Palace or stopping in the Royal Academy of Arts to see a special exhibition or the marvelous permanent collections. It’s a fabulous little area in London that is literally surrounded by all my favorite things to do just walking distance or a short bus ride away.

Burlington Arcade Shopping in London

Shopping in Burlington Arcade at Penhaligon's ... founded in 1870!

Mayfair is one of London’s most fashionable areas, and its location tucked away between Hyde Park and Green Park on two sides and the fabulous shopping areas of Oxford Street, Regent Street and Piccadilly on the other sides means you’re really surrounded by the best of London – shopping, iconic sights and beautiful parks.

Liberty in London

Loved being able to walk to Liberty - one of my favorite shopping spots in London!

On my most recent trip to London I had the chance to not only visit Mayfair but also to call it home. Once you’ve rented an apartment while traveling it’s hard to imagine going back to staying in hotels. For a week I got to call call Mayfair “home” and to discover one of London’s most exclusive neighborboods like a local. Sweet! While shopping in Mayfair is always on the top of my list in London, I discovered an area new to me during my stay at the Mayfair apartment – Shepherd Market. And what a find!

Fabulous Restaurants and Pubs in Shepherd Market

Fabulous Restaurants and Pubs in Shepherd Market

Shepherd Market promotes itself as one of London’s best kept secrets, and I’d have to agree! This area takes its name from a man named Edward Shepherd who developed the square and shopping area from 1735-46. It has always been an ultra fashionable area, especially in the 20s, with an artistic touch. James Boswell lived in Shepherd Market, all the while keeping his famous journals. Just around the corner on Half Moon Street was the stylish flat of Wooster and his faithful valet Jeeves in the stories of P.G. Wodehouse. I couldn’t help but smile every time I walked by Half Moon Street thinking of all the messes that Jeeves managed to get Wooster out of!

Fish and Chips in Shepherd Market

How about fish and chips in Shepherd Market?

But Shepherd Market is more than just historic charm. The area is full of restaurants, pubs, cute little cafes and beautiful stops. It’s a very lively spot for Londoners at night, too! I’ve even read about restaurants and clubs in the area that have hosted Pippa Middleton and the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge on many ocassions … if you feel like a bit of royal spotting!

Beautiful Pubs in Shepherd Market

Just one of the lovely pubs in Shepherd Market

I loved returning in the evenings to see the crowds at the local pubs spilling out onto the street with Londoners enjoying a pint after work or meeting up with friends before dinner in Shepherd Market. There was a vibrant atmosphere and very local feel that I enjoyed experiencing, especially compared to some more touristy parts of London.

Great Restaurants in Mayfair

There are all kinds of restaurants in Shepherd Market ... even some types you wouldn't expect!

The Mayfair apartment was perfectly located at the end of a quiet street, but just around the corner from the lively heart of Shepherd Market. There’s not a lot of traffic in Shepherd Market to begin with and many of the streets are pedestrian only. Love that! The apartment I stayed in is set in a charming red brick building on a street that wasn’t even a through street so it was a nice and quiet setting. Once I stepped inside the apartment the bustle of Piccadilly and the energy of Shepherd Market seemed worlds away even though they were literally just around the corner!

Cool Modern Wallpaper in Living Room

Very modern decor with cool wallpaper in the living room

This apartment had a modern and fun decor with a striking wallpaper in the living room and dining area. I really enjoyed the contemporary vibe that seemed just right for the lively feel of Shepherd Market and the location in the stylish Mayfair neighborhood.

Mayfair Gorgeous Living Room Details

Loved all the gorgeous little details in the living room

The design details were lovely, including a whimsical piece of artwork that contrasted nicely with the Victorian fireplace in the dining area. It was a very comfortable apartment in every detail – especially the under floor heating. Oh how lovely that was! It sure made a delightful change from the freezing cold tile floors at home in Italy. When the super nice greeter showed me how the under floor heating worked when I arrived, I joked that I might never leave again. (I liked this apartment so much that I wasn’t really joking!)

Mayfair Dining Table

Glass table and modern chairs ... and warm floors!!!

I always look for a beautiful kitchen when picking out an apartment to rent for vacation, because I love enjoying the comforts of home while traveling. I’m also a bit of an intensive sightseer … meaning I walk and walk and walk and walk all day long since it’s my favorite way to discover cities like London. At the end of the day I often feel like coming home to a comfortable apartment, preparing something to eat at home and just relaxing!

Modern Kitchen in London Apartment

Lovely modern kitchen with fab appliances!

The kitchen at the Mayfair was perfect – completely modern with all new appliances, very clean and with beautiful dishes, too. Some evenings I stopped off on the way home at the great Marks & Spencer Simply Food store nearby or one of the other little food shops in the neighborhood to pick up something fresh and easy to prepare. Other nights I couldn’t resist heading out to try some of the restaurants and pubs in Shepherd Market. It was great that they were just a few steps away! However, after a busy day there’s nothing quite like relaxing, staying in and … Downton Abbey!

Watching Downton Abbey in London

Watching Downton Abbey in London ... how perfect is that?

The TV in the living room was massive! It angled out just right so I could relax on the sofa and enjoy an episode of Downton Abbey in the evenings with a DVD I picked up at the airport. There was also a TV in the bedroom just opposite the bed. Oh, the bedroom …

Peaceful Bedroom in Mayfair

Ahhh ... it felt so good to sink into bed at night!

The bedroom was beautifully designed and decorated with pale shades of beige and off white. I really enjoyed the inset lighting above the bed and the small reading lamps on each side of the bed. The windows are double paned and were frosted part of the way up for privacy, which was a great feature. There was a ton of storage so I could unpack when I arrived and store away my suitcase. I really like doing that when I travel so I don’t have to think about leaving until it’s time to pack again!

Comfortable Bedroom with Great Features

Great storage in the bedroom plus reading lights, a TV and stereo with iPod dock

Before staying in Mayfair I hadn’t realized just how well connected it is for public transport in London. The Green Park tube station was just a few minute’s walk away, and that station is conveniently on the Piccadilly, Victoria and Jubilee lines. It was just one stop to Oxford Circus, Piccadilly Circus, Westminster, Victoria and just a few stops to go direct to Harrods in Knightsbridge, Museum Row in South Kensington, Leicester Square and Covent Garden, the British Museum and so much more.

Taking the Bus in London

On the bus zipping around Duke of Wellington Place

While the Tube is fabulous, my favorite way to get around London is on the bus. It’s so easy to use (and I used to be scared to use buses while traveling!) and you get to actually see London on the way.

Easy to Take the Bus in London

It's easy to take the bus in London - you can see the name of the upcoming stops and whether or not the bus is stopping to tell when to press the stop request button. Simple!

There were lots of great bus lines that passed by the Green Park Tube station and other stops nearby. One day I took the #9 bus straight to Kensington High Street for shopping and to visit Kensington Palace while another day I hopped on a bus and enjoyed the ride through Knightsbridge and South Kensington to King’s Road in Chelsea for another fun shopping expedition. The rest of the time I usually just walked everywhere I wanted to go since Mayfair is so centrally located.

Take the Tube to Harrods

Take the Tube or bus to Harrods

London is full of surprises and mine on this trip was the discovery of Shepherd Market and the Mayfair apartment. It’s such a quaint and intimate neighborhood right in the heart of Mayfair. It’s an ideal central location yet with tons of London charm … I’ve become smitten with Mayfair!