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On September 17, 2022, the City of Ravello presented an innovative project: the Ravello Digital Grand Tour, a real revolution for tourism on the Amalfi Coast!

by Roberta Cascone

Have you ever heard of the "Grand Tour"? This expression refers to a trip to continental Europe that was undertaken by young people from aristocratic families beginning in the 18th century. This passage was considered essential for the education of young scions, who thus had the opportunity to learn about the places that had been the cradle of Western culture. Many intellectuals also took part, leaving beautiful and interesting written memoirs of their travels, as in the case of Goethe and Stendhal.
Obviously, the main destination of the Grand Tour was Italy, and in particular the cities of art such as Venice, Florence, Rome and Naples; then one would stop in the Phlegraean area, whose natural and volcanic phenomena could be studied, in Pompeii and Herculaneum, which had been rediscovered just in the mid-1800s, and finally in Sicily, where one could admire the Greek remains. This practice has had a great influence on our society, if we think that the very term "tourism" and in general the phenomenon of tourist travel in fact originated from the Grand Tour! 
It is precisely the idea of retracing the steps of the intellectuals who traveled in Italy that has been taken up by the City of Ravello in devising its digital Grand Tour, adapting it to new technologies. Read on to learn more!

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Spring in Amalfi Coast

The project "Ravello Digital Grand Tour"

The Ravello Digital Grand Tour is a digital map of the mountain trails that wind through the Ravello area, which aims to enhance and promote the cultural and scenic heritage. But what is so special about these trails? All 10 trails are dedicated to artists and intellectuals who have visited Ravello during their lives and connected with the town in some way.
On the occasion of the inauguration of one of these trails, dedicated to writer Edward Morgan Forster, Mayor Paul Vuilleumier said that the initiative was created not only with the intention of offering tourists a new tool to get to know lesser-known places, but also to get the Ravellians themselves more involved and entice them to explore more of their own territory.
The digital map is only one part of the project. In fact, this is still work in progress: soon, along all the paths, colorful ceramic marker elements will be set up, while information totems will be placed at the starting points and in the main squares of the city.
Councillor Paola Mansi specified that it is "an initiative that stems from the desire to reappropriate our paths, deepening their knowledge, rediscovery and enhancement. It is therefore an original and interactive way for everyone to learn more about the Ravello area and discover places that would otherwise remain unexplored and neglected. If you are an art and hiking enthusiast, this is just the experience for you!

10 trails

There are as many as 10 routes on the Ravello Digital Grand Tour map, each of which is dedicated to an artist or intellectual who had ties to the city during his or her lifetime. These are Forster, Wagner, Pasolini, Reid, Gide, Woolf, Vidal, Escher, and Lawrence. Added to these is a trail dedicated to Pasquale Palumbo, a Ravello citizen who died prematurely and who was very involved in the Ravello community and loved walking the trails in the area.
The degree of difficulty is specified for all trails: the letter "T" indicates the easy ones, "E" those of medium difficulty, and finally "EE" those recommended for more experienced hikers. 
In addition, once the digital map app or site is opened, the user will be able to view the estimated duration of the chosen path and identify viewpoints and the location of fountains and monuments along the way.
The trails are thus ten small journeys, which will take you to discover almost secret aspects and places of the city of music. As you explore Ravello you will come across chestnut and lemon groves, ancient medieval ruins, fascinating churches and, of course, spectacular views that will leave you speechless. 
The "Ravello Digital Grand Tour" map is available both for smartphones at this link and for computers by clicking here

So, what are you waiting for? Experience the Grand Tour of the third millennium yourself!

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  • Some of the most famous quotes about Ravello were written by the very intellectuals to whom the 10 paths of the Ravello Digital Grand Tour are dedicated. Here are a few of them!
    - "Ravello is a delightful town with a delightful little hotel in which we met people full of charm." (E. M. Forster)
    - "Twenty five years ago I was asked by an American magazine what was the most beautiful place that I had ever seen in all my travels and I said the view from the Belvedere of the villa Cimbrone on a bright winter's day when the sky and the sea were each so vividly blue that it was not possible to tell one from the other." (Gore Vidal)
    - "Near Salerno, leaving the coast, we had reached Ravello. There, the more biting air, the seduction of the rocks full of ravines and surprises, the mysterious depth of the precipices, increasing my strength and joy, fostered new impulses. Closer to the sky than far from the shore, Ravello rises on a craggy crag opposite the flat and distant shore of Paestum." (André Gide)

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