Europe River Cruise with Italy & Paris Day 5

Europe River Cruise with Italy & Paris Day 5

By Max Seebohm


Sorrento

After breakfast this morning we headed to Sorrento and arrived at our hotel in time for lunch, some people had lunch at the hotel bar and others went down the street. After lunch our two smaller buses showed up because we were going to the Amalfi Coast road which is very narrow and very windy so shorter buses were always going to be easier to manoeuvre on this road. Well so we thought! The road is like the Great Ocean Road multiply by 10 higher, narrower, windier and much busier! Full of tour buses going backwards and forwards and when you meet the mirrors miss by the thickness of a cigarette paper! And no I’m not exaggerating!

The drivers over here, well at the risk of saying they’re CRAZY I will be diplomatic and say they take opportunities with passing manoeuvres that you and I would say are not there if you know what I mean!

The motor bikes and motor scooters are the cheap option to get from A to B as petrol is at a premium $2.35 per litre. There are so many on the road and they don’t hold back they will go through any gap, how they don’t get knocked off these things has got me stumped but we haven’t seen any accidents yet. There are many cars with scrapes down both sides where they have either rubbed together or been up against the wall or guard rails. We actually saw a car wedged against the wall of someone’s house and the lady that lived there had washing hanging out the window dragging on the top of the car, the lady leaned out the window and took the washing of the line while the car was trying to back off her wall, looked very funny!

The other thing we have noticed is that they will park anywhere, around the corners, across pedestrian crossings anywhere, even where there is parallel parking some of them will park at 90 degrees to the kerb, no one seems to worry. We have even heard that when they park their cars they leave them out of gear so they can be nudged backwards or forwards so they don’t need to leave a gap in between.

Anyway back to the Amalfi Coast, it was quite an amazing trip and in places the road hung over the edge of the cliffs. It was a very windy road with very sharp corners and when you looked down there was nothing except a very sheer drop down to the water. Going through little towns and villages and meeting trucks, buses, cars and motorcycles one after the other, many times looking like there was no way they would get past but somehow they did. After what seemed to be hours we arrived at Amalfi where we had some free time to have a look around and do some shopping.

On the return to Sorrento we came back a different way, the road was nearly the same but there wasn’t so many steep drop offs. We got back to our hotel and most of us went to the Irish pub about fifty metres down the road and had a pub meal and a couple of pints of Guinness.


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