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Amalfi & the Amalfi Coast

The Amalfi Coast, or Costiera Amalfitana in Italian, is the stretch of coastline south of Naples  in southern Italy. A UNESCO World Heritage Site, the area is known for its scenic beauty and quaint coastal towns.

The largest town is also named Amalfi. Overlooking the Bay of Salerno, it rests spectacularly on steep hills surrounded by cliffs.

Once a capital of trade and later a center of papermaking, as well as a holiday destination for British aristocracy, today it is known primarily for tourism and limoncello. This lemon liqueur is a local specialty — you might even still find a shop that makes and bottles its own.

Amalfi is the burial place of Saint Andrew, and his relics remain in a tomb in a cathedral dedicated to him. 

Amalfi’s 11th-century duomo, the Cathedral of Sant' Andrea, is at the top of a steep flight of steps, and dominates the town's main piazza. Its architecture is an amalgam of eras and styles, with bronze doors from Constantinople, dating from 1066, and a mixture of Saracen and Romanesque styles, now  all heavily restored.

The cloister is oddly Arabic in feel, with whitewashed arches and palm motifs.

Other sights of Amalfi include a museum with various medieval and episcopal treasures; the Municipio, where you can view the book of maritime laws that governed the Mediterranean until 1570; and the Arsenal, a relic of military might turned host to art exhibitions.