Travelling 2283 Km from Bucharest to Ravello, Italy to one of the most beautiful wedding location I ever saw, to make a fairytale come true
The Ravello episode happened so fast that without even realising I was already in a van heading with full speed towards Romanian border to Hungary, It was 5AM and I was looking outside the window how mists were lingering above the ground glowing from the morning sunshine on Transylvanian plains.
I knew about the wedding in Ravello Italy but I found out that I am the one going to Ravello the day before the departure. I had no idea till then, As it was expected, the moment I found out, I could`n say no, although that meant to travel so many miles crossing Europe in a van.
I knew that it was going to be tiring but I just did not care. After all, it was about travelling, flowering and photographing. So any tiredness it might occur, it would have been worthwhile.
It was a bit harder than I was expecting but the beauty of the landscape I was passing by made me forget about tiredness, I was impressed by Slovenia and I said to myself that definitely, I should convince my friends to do a road trip to Slovenia. Especial in the region close to the Italian border. I loved it so much those little villages on the hills that I wanted to wonder on those country roads thinking that probably that it will be the best place to be stroke by amnesia and forget my way back home . Not for too long, I think one month should suffice,,,,or not.
We reached the border with Italy at sunset so soon it was too dark to see anything but the lights on the highway. I was thinking that now I can call myself an expert on highways around Europe and especially on those around Italy since I was able to guide my colleagues without internet connection following the signs on the highway and an offline #GoogleMaps which proved to be my best friend once again.
As planned by morning we were already in Naples from where we had to pick up the flowers we ordered from Holland, It strike me as being a bit overcrowded and definitely is not a place I would like to visit the second time. I was a bit amazed to see the mount Vesuvius surrounded by houses like is not even one of the active volcanoes of Europe and apparently is part of the Campanian Volcanic Arc, Not to mention that the remains of Herculaneum and Pompei are living proof of what this volcano can do.
From Napoli to Ravello we took the shortest road which crosses Parco Regionale Dei Monti Lattari, SP1 road. The road is winding for an hour on the mountain between the terraced vineyards and lemon orchards on a steep spectacular landscape.
Actually the moment you leave Naples and unexpected world reveals itself, of a wild rough beauty. Totally surprising to me because although I knew about it, was exceeding my expectation. I can say that by far the Amalfi coast is more beautiful than Cinque Terre. Usually, I do not compare the places I am visiting but I was deeply impressed by it.
The fairy tale begins the moment I stepped into this world which seems to be the work of the imagination of a painter.The rough steep coast, at first sight, seems almost unwelcoming making you wonder how these people were able to build houses and how did they terraced the mountain side to plant lemon trees and establish vineyards.
Ravello is one of the villages adorning the vertical landscape of Lattari Mountains. A sort of Meteora of Amalfi Coast, because being there it gave me the sensation that it was actually suspended above the sea beyond the sky hiding its face in the morning and at night time between mist coming from the sea.
I loved the abundance of colours and scents and I could still see some wisteria flowers left here and there and I was trying to imagine how everything looks like when wisteria is in a full flowering season. I wondered, how the pergolas I could see everywhere could look with the abundance of purple clusters hanging from it.
I took lots of photos although I had such little free time. Still, I was there to do the setup for a wedding and do the flower arrangements for it. My inner voice was telling me “Go! Explore!~“, but I was consciously doing my job. So, after I finished the bouquet and the centrepieces I went to Belmond Caruso Hotel, Wagner Gardens where the rehearsal dinner was taking place and I put them on the tables.
The view from the Wagner Garden at Belmondo Caruso Hotel was breathtaking. There could be no other way, Ravello is magnificent and every place there bores this “burden“. It was so magical to see how the night was falling over the coast. The atmosphere was so relaxing , the live music was completing the scenery and I could see in the eyes of the bride when she was whispering “Thank you “ while she was embraced by her groom that she was happy.
I was also happy and I could finally relax, I could go to sleep since I slept only 3 hours in almost 48 hours. But how could I go to sleep when I was surrounded by such beauty??? Instead, I went strolling on the streets and took some pictures. I have to admit that all of my pictures were taken in a hurry, every time I had a moment I just took out my phone and took a picture.
The next day was the day of the boat trip. Since the rest of my colleagues arrived from Bucharest I could finally relax, So during the boat trip, I admired from the sea the massive beauty of the Amalfi coast.
Seeb from the sea the Amalfi Coast looks like the legendary suspended gardens of the Hesperides. I often wondered about the amount of labour to built even the tiniest house up on those cliffs. Our host, from Il Ducato di Ravello Hotel where we were staying, told me that the rich were always building their villas upon the peaks so they can be protected from the attacks of the Saracens or Pirates, while close to the sea only the poor people were building their houses.
I was so fascinated to see how the mountain sides are plunging so dramatically in the sea and the multitude of headlands and inlets, bays and fjords entwined with small pebbled beaches. I could see the road going along the coastline and thought about having another trip to take that road and go even further south till I reach Sicily. But this is already something to add up on my to do list.
When we left the restaurant on the cost of Positano where the festive lunch was taking place clouds were coming towards us threatening with a storm. The sun was setting and the boats were running at full speed back to Amalfi. To me, that moment was the highlight of my entire trip to Ravello. I was there, close to the mountain and sailing on the sea. I was surrounded by such beauty and I felt thankful for the turn of events in my life. I was trying to capture as much as possible of that moment. Splashes of salty drops were landing on my cheeks and it seemed like I was kissed by the sea. I was smiling. For a moment like that, it was worth my 2500Km of travelling across Europe…
Sunday. The day of the wedding at the most beautiful Wedding Venue, Villa Cimbrone. I thought that Hotel Belmondo Caruso offered the best view, but I was so wrong, it can be even better. But, as I said, Ravello is magical, so why did I thought that I saw everything there is to be seen? The Villa and the surrounding garden is a real gem so refined and so delicate. Centuries of history are seen there in every feature and detail. The architectural style it is refined although it was built in the 11th century. All its owners were rich families and concerned about conserving its beauty and enhancing it. I can’t say I found even the tiniest detail I did not like, although I have a very keen eye for details.
There are so many things to be said about the beauty of this place but I am not so sure you will have enough patience to read all. Words, pictures or videos can’t replace the real thing, the sensation when you are there and you feel like being in a fairytale. When in Italy, think about adding Amalfi Coast as your destination. It is unique and although well established on the touristic world map, its beauty was not spoiled yet by the touch of tourism.
As a wedding venue is one of the tops, it will transform that special day in something unforgettable. There is a minus, though, like everywhere in Ravello or on the coast, the party is ending at midnight. The villa being also a hotel they do not want to disturb the other guests, Which means, in case you want to continue partying, you better do it on a boat on the sea,
Monday was here and the wedding was long over. It was time for a bit of Mirela time so I went to visit the place that caught my eye the moment I set foot in Ravello, Villa Rufolo.It is placed in the central square and same as Villa Cimbrone Gothic Style with Moorish influences prevail. Wagner fell in love with the place when he visited the first time and he liked so much the garden that he imagined as being Klingsor`s garden from the Parsifal opera.
In commemoration every year, Villa Ruffolo is the place of a major festival Ravello Festival. When I was visiting the garden the stage was in full process of setting-up and I was thinking that this is the most amazing “concert hall“. It seems like being suspended in the air overlooking the stunning Amalfi Coast, the feeling one must have when listening to a concert in such place must be priceless.
My Ravello trip it felt like I coming out of a tunnel in a mirific place, somewhere deep in my imagination. It felt almost unreal to be true. An epitome of everything I love, and I was there. I could touch, see, feel, I was in the world of my dreams…