Subject: Amalfi coast
I went as part of an organized tour through my university so we probably saw many of the typical touristy things. We were based out of Sorrento (you can skip it, not that interesting) and made half day-day trips to Positano, Paestum, Pompeii, Naples, Capri, and the town of Amalfi.

The coast itself is beautiful! Though I cannot imagine driving it myself--too scary. Lots of twisty windy roads and cliffs that drop down to the ocean. The two places I especially liked were Positano and Paestum.

Positano is a small town with a lot of hills and stairs, it is built into the side of a mountain and goes down to the Mediterranean. It has incredible views and great little stores. It's known for is women's fashions--very colorful, lacey, flowy, gypsy-like skirts and dresses. I was only there for a half day and can't comment on hotels or restaurants. But it is one of the places I am considering for my next short trip, so if anyone else has more comments and I would love to hear them.

The other place I recommend is Paestum. I don't know much about the town itself--another half day trip. We went there for it's archeological museum and ancient ruins. It boasts being the home of the most in tact Greek temple in the world. Depending on which archeologist you ask it is either dedicated to Hera or Neptune. There is also a temple to Athena and a smaller one to Fortuna. Plus, they have original Roman roads and a variety of building foundations. We went to Paestum before Pompeii and it was great to be able to have some perspective. Paestum is much smaller and also less well known, therefore much quieter. There was no one at Paestum other than our group. Pompeii was horribly, horribly crowded--and this was in early March! I would hate to visit during the high season.

Paestum should be seen with a guide. I don't know the details on how to arrange for one since I was with a group and guides just showed up like magic. (Definitely an advantage to being with a group.). I believe there is a tour book to Paestum, but I don't know if it is in English or where you can get it.

Erina in Amsterdam, The Netherlands