A review – what to expect on the hike
The hike from the starting point in a small village called Bomerano (a frazione of Agerola, a small village high on the mountain above Amalfi) to another called Nocelle and the return takes approximately 5-6 hours. This seems to be the main path and then there are options to continue to Positano, Montepertuso, or alternatively go towards Praiano. A sign along the path indicates that from this starting point to Positano the trail is 7km (about 4.5 mi) and will take 3 hours. The altitude is 650m (2,132ft).
From Amalfi the drive up to Bomerano will take approximately 1 hour by car. If you are not in a hired car you could make your way by bus or start with the various options to climb up from Positano or Praiano or over from Montepertuso. If you prefer to avoid the limited schedule and crowds on the buses or the extra hiking, I can also arrange a private driver option for someone interested to plan an excursion with or without me as a hiking guide. Contact me for rates if interested.
Who can do this hike?
The Alpine Club of Italy rates this trail as Easy. However, the hike is strenuous at times if you are not used to hiking often and it certainly shouldn’t be done by anyone who has trouble walking long distances, has major knee problems, isn’t comfortable climbing over some rocks, and going up or down steep inclines. I would say that I’m fit and fairly active. My knees aren’t as good as they used to be, but I walk often with Lulu, and I’ve become used to the hills of the coast here. Even if in an overall good shape, we were still worn out the next day after our first 4.5 hours hike (my friend that joined us during the first time was on a bit of a time schedule so we hurried back).
What to wear
You’ll want good hiking shoes for this trek. I wore an older pair of boots on my first hike and they did not survive. After kicking too many rocks my toes ended up a bit bruised and my legs were sore from the up and down hiking but they fully recovered after a couple of days. I don’t know how my friend who joined us was able to do his 15k run the next day. I imagine he did a lot of stretching before the race. Apparently, he had more endurance than me since I’m not a runner. Lulu and I stayed quiet at home the next day.
What to bring
Some other things to take note of if you plan this hike is that there are some places where you can refill your water bottles. There were more of them closer to the Bomerano end of the path.
Occasionally you will also find picnic tables for you to stop and rest or break for a packed lunch or snack. Much of the path is in the open sun and there are some areas shaded under trees. Make sure to bring some sun protection.
You are also high up on the mountain so you will want to dress in layers of clothing depending on the time of year you hike and the weather. It often gets very windy in the mountains here. My first hike was a sunny day in mid-March and I wore light pants, a t-shirt, vest, and a light hoodie. I get chilly easily, so as the sun went down towards the end of the day I put back on my hoodie I had comfortably removed earlier in the day after working up some body heat a couple of hours into the hike.
Where to park
If you are driving, there is a free parking lot at Bomerano where you can leave your car. Overall the path is well maintained – no trash, not a lot of overgrowth. You do traverse through farming areas where there are goats, so watch your step and expect the appropriate piles left behind from such creatures. More of these piles were found on the higher alternate parallel path we took on the return.
On the hiking trail near my village we have cows. The piles are much bigger. In both cases I have to remind Lulu sometimes that these are NOT “snacks.” Eww! If you bring your dog you want to keep an eye on them too and not just for the potential snacks. There are some very severe vertical cliff drops and if not careful either one of you could go over an edge where there are not always rails along the path or you are on a rock ledge that is nice to stop for photos but dangerous to fall over.
Lastly, on my phone I do have some cellular coverage while on this hike. For me, and I imagine for some others, it is important to know if you can get reception if you need to check in with someone not with you, have an emergency on the trail, or you are taking an escape from work and need to be certain that you can receive urgent messages.
Perhaps not all carriers will work there. When traveling before in several rural parts of Sicily or on the coast south of where I live now I rarely had a signal with my old service that improved after I switched. If you are thinking to purchase a SIM card for your visit to Italy, send me a message and I’ll gladly give some suggestions.
Contact us if you are interested in taking this hike as part of an organized shore excursion or daytrip from a nearby area.