Salerno – out and about
I’ve been to Salerno twice, in November 2009 and June 2015, staying just a few nights each time.
The town can be divided into three zones; the medieval area, the 19th century area and the post-war area. All the places I mention in my posts (predominantly in the first two areas) can be found on this Google map. See my next three posts for restaurants and one on hotels.
Most people alight in Salerno at Piazza Vittorio Veneto, the square in front of the train station where buses also terminate. Conveniently, the Hotel Bruman where I stayed is located here.
There’s a beautiful Art Deco war memorial in the middle of the square.
The main pedestrian street, Corso Vittorio Emanuele, leads out of Piazza Vittorio Veneto. It’s about fifteen minutes’ straight walk along it to the medieval area.
I love walking around the maze of streets and alleys.
They’re especially atmospheric in the evenings.
In the Middle Ages Salerno was a Lombard principality. The most picturesque street in in the old Lombard area is Via Botteghelle.
Nearby is another must-see; the Cattedrale di Salerno.
The entrance courtyard has a portico with arches that allude to an Arabic influence.
The 12th century bell tower is built in an Arabic-Norman style.
Several Roman sarcophagi are on show under the portico.
Ancient lions guard both the inner and outer entrances.
Inside my favourite sights are the two beautifully patterned pulpits. Sadly my photos didn’t come out but here are some from the web to give you an idea.
The ceiling above the altar is pretty stunning too. I’d like to come back and get some better pictures.
Salerno also has a castle on the hill above it; the Castello di Arechi. Built by the Lombards over a Phonecian fort it has Norman and Aragonese modifications. Unfortunately, the castle is not accessible by foot, but the #19 bus goes up there. I’ve never had the time to visit it sadly.
The tourist info at 2 Corso Vittorio Emanuele will be able to help you with suggestions. It’s on the corner on the right as you turn right out of Piazza Vittorio Veneto. Apparently there are many good walks in the area.
A boat trip to Positano or Amalfi would make a good day out in the summer. You can also easily visit the Greek temples at Paestum (best by bus) or Pompei (best by train).