Saturday, 9 March 2019

Hilton Sorrento Palace (Sorrento, Italy)

Last night, after speaking with someone at the front desk, I learned that the ferry to Naples doesn’t run on Saturday and Sunday. Just during the high season. Looks like I will be taking the train to Naples today. This change of plans will give me time to sneak in a morning nap after breakfast.

The Sorrento train station was a relatively short walk from the hotel. About 20 minutes. There was no waiting for a train. It was ready to leave 10 minutes after I purchased my ticket. The first thing I noticed about the coaches of the train is that they were completely covered with graffiti. Top to bottom. I don’t believe the subway trains in New York have this much graffiti.

As we left the Sorrento station the train was not quite half full of passengers. That changed very soon. At the third stop down the line, around 50 teenage youngsters boarded the train. They stayed on the train for about 20 stops and then got off. It was very lively on the train in the meantime.

We passed through some very long tunnels along the way. The mountains in this area come right up to the water in many places. Many of the tunnels we passed through had only been built in the last 30 – 50 years.

During the trip to Naples, I sat on the side of the train where I could see the mountains that climbed quite high. There were a number of villages hugging the slopes of these mountains at fairly regular intervals. Down by the tracks, as we got closer to Naples, I could see piles of trash and more graffiti at each of the stations. I had been advised this might be the case.

As the train pulled into the Naples Central (Garibaldi) Station, this part of the station serves only the local trains that run to Pompei and Sorrento. The station is located in the older, more historical, part of the city. Just outside the station there was a new underground shopping mall and many small businesses and restaurants.

At first I thought about finding a good pizza place. I tried one place but the wait was one hour. After walking down to the water front and then back again, I didn’t see any place that had received many good reviews. I eventually found a restaurant that had good reviews and it also wasn’t busy. After viewing the menu I decided to have spaghetti with clams rather than a pizza. The service was good and I enjoyed the spaghetti.

I had thought about walking around a little longer, but there wasn’t much else to see. The only attractions in this part of Naples were a couple of museums. I knew that Naples wasn’t going to be that interesting. Though the variety of people that I saw kept me entertained. I saw one very large cruise ship in the harbor, but I didn’t see many tourists while I was in Naples.

At 3:30 I was ready for my return trip to Sorrento. Since I had a late lunch, I purchased a couple of sandwiches for dinner. I’ll probably only eat one of the sandwiches and save the other for when I return from Capri tomorrow.

I sat on the side of the train with a view of the Gulf of Naples. I could look and see Sorrento in the distance. Sort of an opposite view of what I see from my hotel room.

It was a nice walk back to the hotel from the train station. It seemed like a long day, though I didn’t do much in Naples Most of the effort was riding the train to and from Naples. In any case, I was looking forward to a nap as I walked into my room.

After publishing my blog entry for today I’m planning to watch the movie Three Coins in a Fountain. I enjoyed Roman Holiday last night. Was fun to see many of the scenes in the movie since I had just seen them a few days ago.

Tomorrow I’ll leave early to board a ferry for Capri. The weather is expected to be cooler than today but we should have plenty of sun.

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