A small stony beach decorated by coloured boats of anglers: this is the real jewel of Positano. Positano is considered one of the most beautiful and picturesque places of the world. Small houses, a magic atmosphere, beaches, the friendliness of the inhabitants, the hotels, give a great charm of this village. Tourists do love this village.

Positano is a “vertical” village. Houses are organized as a coloured cascade along the hills. They are built on the rocks and look towards the blue sea, the narrow streets and the clean and nice beaches.

Positano is situated among three small valleys, in the middle between Punta Germano and Capo Sottile, at the feet of Lattari Mountains.

In front of the coast there are three small isles, forming an archipelago, called “Li Galli” or “Sirenuse”: according to a legend mermaids lived there.

The most beautiful church of Positano is the one dedicated to Our Lady of the Assumption, celebrated on 15th August.

To enjoy a complete experience of the divine Amalfi Coast, you can click on the place you are interested in: Praiano, Amalfi, Ravello, Scala, Tramonti, Furore, Agerola, Minori, Maiori, Cetara, Vietri sul Mare.

History of Positano

The legend tells that Positano was founded by Poseidon, Neptun, the god of the sea, for a nymph he loved, Pasitea. Phoenixes and Greeks, during their journeys, landed in this territory, maybe inhabited at that period by Piceni and Oscans.

Roman conquerors built a rich villa near Spiaggia Grande: on that place there are now gardens and Santa Maria Assunta church. With the fall of Roman empire, Positano entered the Repubblica marinara of Amalfi and lived a very prosperous period thanks to commerce with other Mediterranean towns.

Norman invasions started a period of decadence. After that, there were other sad periods, especially under Angevins and Aragons, with the terrible invasions by Sarancen and Turk pirates. To defend themselves, the inhabitants built three towers in Fornillo, Trasita and Sponda and other smaller towers in the town.

In 1492 Positano was a feud of Giovanni Miroballo and then of Mastrogiudice and Cossa families: this was a terrible period made of plagues, famine and frequent sea-quakes that made many people die.

During XVI and XVII century the fast and strong ships of Positano traded with the Middle East bringing home spices, silks, and precious woods. During this period many Baroque houses were built with nice terraces on the sea. XVIII century was a prosperous one and many other rich Baroque houses were built.

After the Unity of Italy many inhabitants of Positano went to look for their fortune in America. During the First World War, many citizens died. Many Russian and German artists and writers went to live to Positano and thanks to their works of art made Positano famous all over the world.

After the Second World War film directors, painters, writers, enchanted by the beauty of this place, by its magic atmosphere, seduced by the way of life of fishermen, decided to restructure the old houses, the monasteries, and to move there. They built wonderful villas. It’s “moda Positano” time: a variegated, polychrome, exotic fashion.

Stefania Maffeo

 

Monuments - Art

Santa Trofimena Cathedral

Santa Trofimena Cathedral

Chiesa di S. Maria Assunta: a wonderful church among houses. The dome is beautifully glazed and it was built around 1200. In the apse there are the remains of an ancient Byzantine mosaics. On the main altar there is a Byzantine altar-piece portraying a black Madonna with the Holy Child (maybe arrived from the sea), of XII century. A local legend tells that a ship coming from the Far East stopped in Positano and could not leave because of the weather. A voice told to sailors to leave there the portrait of Our Lady. They obeyed, and then the winds allowed the ship to sail.

 

Roman Archaeological Villas

Ville romane della baia di Postano e sui Galli: these Roman villas show that Positano and the isles were the place chosen by rich Romans to spend summers.

 

Towers

The towers were built as a defence against pirates; there were three towers at Fornillo, Trasita and Sponda) on the coast and other towers in the inner territory.

 

Churches

  • Chiesa Nuova: a church having an elliptic shape. It is in Baroque style.
  • Chiesa di S. Giovanni: this rectangular church has a barrel vault. Windows are only on the external part. It is decorated with stuccoes. Floor is beautiful. In the sacristy, there is an ancient Roman urn.
  • Chiesa di S. Margherita: this quadrangular church has only a nave with two side altars and a barrel vault. In the entrance there are the choir stalls and on the left the sacristy.
  • Chiesa del Rosario: this is the only church whose altar is towards West, not towards East.
  • Chiesa di S. Caterina: merchants that traded with Alessandria of Egypt, where Saint Catherine was deeply worshipped, built this church.
  • Chiesa di S. Giacomo Apostolo: the church dedicated to Saint James is one of the most ancient of Positano. It was founded in XII century and dedicated to Santiago de Compostela by Parrata family who developed a rich commerce with Spain.
 

Prehistoric caves

Prehistoric caves (La Porta, Del Mezzogiorno, Delle Soppressate, Erica, Vigna Pendente e Mirabella o Monaco-Spera): these prehistoric caves are 8500 years old (6500 b. C.).

 
 

Beach

    The regional agency ARPAC provides the production and publication of data on the state of the bathing water area (according to the criteria fixed controls taken out by the ministerial decree 30 March 2010 implementing the principles and purposes of Legislative Decree 116/2008 transposing Community rules) . On this page you can check the state of the bathing areas along the Positano Coast : Red Flag obviously means that swimming is not permitted (bathing prohibited) and the blue flag means that the water is clear which all the beaches of Positano have obtained this category.

Fornillo Beach

sandy beach.

 

Spiaggia Grande Beach

sandy beach with intense urbanization.

 

Arienzo Beach

sandy beach.

 

Sirene Beach

sandy beach.

 

Photo gallery of Positano

Photos of Positano, one of the most picturesque towns of Amalfi Coast.

Video

 
 

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