For many families in Naples, Santa Maria di Castellabate has become a favourite summer seaside escape. ‘The Guardian‘ well-known english newspaper choose it for a day on the beach, Italian style. Just two hours south of the bustling chaos of Naples, the Cilento region is one of the most remote parts of Campania. Much of the area is covered by the Cilento national park – the second largest in Italy – and it boasts 100km of coastline and a wild, mountainous interior sprinkled with historic villages still wedded to a traditional way of life.This is where ordinary Neapolitans escape to in the summer and is still largely off the tourist radar, granted little more than a passing mention in most guidebooks. A zigzagging road takes you down from Castellabate to the coastal village of Santa Maria di Castellabate, where the evening passeggiata is in full swing, with young and old strolling along the seafront. At the heart of the historic centre is a sandy beach, surrounded by noble palazzi and fishermen’s houses.
Follow the coast south from here and you’ll discover a mix of sandy bays, rocky coves and imposing cliffs, dotted with fishing villages and tiny holiday resorts. Acciaroli was a favourite of Hemingway, who came here in 1952 after he’d finished writing “The Old Man and the Sea”, spending hours in the cafe-bars along the seaside promenade.Tiny Marina di Pisciotta is famous for keeping centuries-old fishing techniques alive, using the moon and the stars to determine where the anchovies will surface. Visitors can go out with the fishermen at night and then dine with them on the catch, dressed simply in extra virgin olive oil and lemon. You could spend your days clinging to the coast, swimming in some of the clearest water you’ve ever seen, dining at lovely waterfront restaurants and wandering round charming fishing villages, but even those only vaguely interested in history shouldn’t miss out on Cilento’s impressive historic sites.
Altought are the Castellabate beaches who have captured the “Guardian” attention. Which? Above all “Spiaggia del Lago” – large 1.5 km – who in 2016 was awarded from Legambiente as “La più bella sei tu” a famous italian recognition voted by holidaymakers. And than the little beach of Punta Bracale, the beach of Punta dell’inferno,the grotto beach with its paleolithic history , and the beach of Marina Piccola located in the historical centre of Santa Maria, between the sanctuary of Santa Maria a Mare and Pagliarola tower. Because you can go around everyday discovering news bays or beaches. You can easily explore the stunning variety of the area and live days at the beach you’ll , probably, never forget!