Walking the Path of the Gods has been in the back of my mind ever since I heard about the experience a few years ago. Since I am not a hiker, I initially dismissed the idea as being out of reach. But the more I read about it and saw photos of the incredible views from 2000 feet above sea level on the Amalfi Coast, I reconsidered and decided to go for it while I was in Positano to write. It would be only one of two excursions I did while spending two weeks relaxing and writing. So this past October, the idea became a reality and I am thrilled that I decided to undertake this challenge.
The so-called “path” in reality is a mountain path that consists of little more than dirt covered with numerous gnarled tree roots, and in quite a few areas, engages in rock-climbing.
I must caution though, that this hike is definitely not for the faint of heart or for those that aren’t somewhat fit.
I wondered why I saw a banner along the way, which said #Climbwithgods and the more I advanced on the trail I certainly understood.
I enjoyed the quiet solitude as I walked along, listening to the chirping of the birds and feeling the cool fresh air on my face.
Occasionally I would catch a whiff of mint or rosemary in the air and saw quite a few grape vines, most of which looked as if the harvest was already over.
I was on my own but every once in a while a group of serious hikers would pass me; some were Italian, others were German, and one group was from France.
An American named Sarah was part of the French group and she graciously offered to take my photo at one of the best views, the place where you can choose to continue toward Nocelle and Positano, or toward Praiano.
It was nice to talk to an American for a few minutes. Most of the other hikers I met that day were European.
A sign along the way with the words, Benvenuti sul sentiero degli Dei, was a welcome sight and encouraged me to continue along. The little green Ape next to it made me smile.
I found it more than a coincidence that while I came to Positano to write, many famous writers also fell in love with the Path of the Gods,and one of them was D.H. Lawrence. He wrote, “Is this the view that from on high along the Path of the Gods, opens to our sight: it is the picture of the great loop of the Amalfi coastline that looks towards the west, towards the Island of Capri, that precipitous coast, steamy, hot, with the crystalline mountains where the gods of today are forsaken and you find a lost self again. Mediterranean, before you.”
The yellow wildflowers and the terraced vineyards balanced the rugged rocky walls seen along throughout this adventure. In some areas where the path was not so clear, a small red and white marker painted on a rock or a piece of wood, showed the way.
The most challenging part for me was the rocky areas where I literally had to climb on my hands and knees to traverse the trail. Also the steep dirt path made it difficult to walk without my feet twisting and slipping. I think I almost lost my footing a dozen times and was saying Hail Marys the more I progressed, particularly near the end. I had decent shoes but not hiking boots which may have made a difference. I hate to admit it but I actually did take a fall at one point and scraped up my arm pretty good but nothing major.
When I could see Positano below I realized how much I enjoyed this walk and took my time to savor the moment and shoot some photos.
The 7.8 kilometer walk from Bomerano to Nocelle is supposed to take 3 hours and it took me 4 only because I enjoyed it and didn’t rush through. I took my time and would recommend everyone to do the same and be in the moment with nature.
I recognized the picnic table at a high point on the trail from a blog I had read, and decided to take a little break here and appreciate the natural beauty that surrounded me.
I could see as far as Capri and it was incredible.
Truly this day was a highlight for me and I feel so good that I decided to take on the challenge. It was totally worth it!
I’d love to hear your from you, so please share your thoughts and leave a comment.
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Wonderful story and wonderful images!
Thanks so much, Kathy
Thanks for sharing this nice trip. Even if it seemed to be a bit difficult in between, the views from top are amazing.
Thank you so much, Ursula…Absolutely, this was totally worth it…I highly recommend as long as you are fit enough and have good shoes
Oh my goodness! I am definitely going to do this next time I am down there! Thank you Margie xx
I highly recommend it Annemarie! Thanks
Hi Margie, I plan on walking that in October when we visit Italy for my 50th birthday!! Can you tell me where exactly you started? I am trying to figure out the best way to walk it. Just curious, your thoughts. Thanks!!
The Path of the Gods looks very similar to the trail between Monterosso and Vernazza in the Cinque Terre. I walked there alone in 2010. I was pretty fit and wearing hiking boots, but it was hard going in spots for sure. Well done!
Grazie, Orna…Yes the hike in the Cinque Terre is rugged…I did that part too and was never so glad to be finished…I wasn’t as ft then as I am now
I enjoyed reading your post. It really takes me back there. We have walked this path a few times in the last three years and will be back there again next month. It truly is one of my favourite hikes. We stay in Praiano and hike up there a few times during our stay. The whole area is breathtaking.
Our Positano Itinerary [Positano Series: Part 4] - Italian at Heart
[…] Path of the Gods, but it was just so hot that we all preferred to swim and hang out on the beach. Margie in Italy has a beautiful post about her experience hiking the Path of the Gods if you’d like to read […]
Hi Margie! I absolutely loved reading about your experience hiking the Path of the Gods. Italy + writing + hiking by the sea sounds like an absolute dream! I definitely want to do this hike next time I’m in Positano, but I’m sure it is probably going to trigger my fear of heights/vertigo! But there’s no better place to conquer my fears. 😉 Where did you start the hike? I saw a trailhead above Arienzo beach near where we stayed, but if I recall correctly, I heard that it’s better to take a bus to the main trailhead in Nocelle (I think)?
Yes Kelly, that’s exactly what I did…only in reverse. I took the bus from Positano to Amalfi where I caught a bus to Agerola/Bomerano I took the bus to Bomerano/Agerola and hiked to Nocelle. From there I took the bus to Positano. I’d encourage you to do it. It’s an u forgettable experience! And yes, you will be facing your fear of heights and may even overcome that fear by doing this!!
Suzette | TrySomethingFun.com
Thanks for sharing Margie and I applaud you for taking on the challenge! The views up there (and the fresh pressed citrus juice stands along the way) make it all worth it! Having just been on the path myself, it’s worth mentioning that near Nocelle the path is easier and even a few minutes along the trail you’re sure to have some incredible vistas. In other words, it’s still very attainable if you can’t walk the whole trail 🙂
How fun Suzette that you were just there too! Yes, the views…priceless! Thanks for sharing.
Stacy di Anna Pollard
Such a lovely post in so many ways, Margie. I’m so impressed with your stamina! Not sure if I’ll ever walk that path myself, so thank you for taking me there with you through this piece.
Thank you Stacy..we encourage each other!
Wonderful post, Margie! I hope you’ve recovered from your spill. I enjoyed hearing about the entire adventure and seeing your beautiful photos! Thank you for sharing.
I appreciate that Victoria…I am fine…it was just a few abrasions that have long since healed..I’m glad you are enjoying my blog…You seem to be doing well with all your books and blog posts!!
Lovely, lovely, Margie, your smile says it all. Bliss and beauty . . . perfect preparation for writing your romance novel. I took a couple similar walks near Portovenere on the Ligurian Coast in ’14, followed path with handmade signs pointing toward the Cinque Terre. A few small farms, goats, chickens, small vineyards. Could have walked all the way to Rapallo . . .
Thank you Jack….I know you have experienced what I have by hiking i the Cinque Terre, another gorgeous place. Hope you books are doing well…What is the latest on the movie?
By the way, my novel isn’t a romance novel; it’s a psychological thriller…Hopefully to be released this spring after the editing process.
JAVINNO T. PURICELLI
Marg, you’ve truly brought tears to my eyes this morning Hon, as you stand there looking so acutely astute, with the back drop of the Amlfi Coast… capturing such Breathtaking views.
And furthermore, you being able to see Capri and Positano is an added treat, depending on which angle you view from at this height.
This is indeed and Extraordinary Experience Marg, that I’m glad that you’ve had the chance to explore from the Path of The GODS.
Marg as always Hon, you really do look Gorgeous indeed and I’m very Happy to see you having such a wonderful time..
grazie per la vista, che sono davvero mozzafiato!!
Thank you Javinno…So glad I could make you smile! I hope that you can experience this beautiful place in Italy one day too
Thank you for sharing! What an incredible adventure! Thank you for the photos, I feel as if I was there on the hike with you.
Thanks so much Catherine…You made my day!
Wow, what amazing views! Great post and great job taking on the challenge!
Thanks Tony…I bet you’d enjoy it too…Will you be on the Amalfi Coast in the spring?
I will, will be staying 5 nights in Nerano!
What an adventure!! I was in the Amalfi coast twice and never hears of this hike.
Thank you Anne…Amazing how much of Italy is not on the main tourist radar.
It is a beautiful place,so glad you decided to do it.
Thanks so much Leisa…I’m glad too!
Grazie mille, Francis!
Wow wow wow. That is amazing!! Bravissima Margie! 🙂 Spectacular views <3
Grazie my friend. I hope that one day soon you might visit the Amalfi Coast and take on this adventure. I know you could do it and would love every moment.
I think this is the most beautiful area in Italy, and that is saying something.
Thanks Debra..and yes that is saying something especially since you live in Tuscany and have traveled throughout Italy!
Margie, that was a wonderful story. You were very brave to consider that walk. It sounds quite difficult. What great memories you must have and I’m sure you are very happy you made that decision. Good for you.
Thank you Barbara,
I enjoyed the challenge and having hiked some of the Cinque Terre trails, I must say that this was even more difficult. The difference though is that I was in better shape, fitness-wise this trip. Thank you.
Kickin' It With Rae
Wow…..just amazing views. And you are amazing for taking this on by yourself. But I imagine the time to reflect and take it all in, might be best done alone? So wonderful that you had this experience and breathtaking memories to cherish. Brava Margie!!
Thank you Rae,
Yes I did enjoy the solo experience mixed in with meeting others along the trail. I feel fortunate that I was able to do it this trip!
So glad to see you did this hike during your time there, My husband and I along with our 2 college aged sons walked the section between Praiano and Positano during our 4 days in Praiano last May. We found parts to be a challenge but so worth the time as it gives you such a different perspective of the otherwise touristy coast and rewards you with jaw dropping views. Bravo to you for doing it alone!
Thank you Carrie for your feedback. And Congrats to you and your family for doing the longer walk from Praiano. I am sure you will have memories from that experience forever.
Looked a lovely walk. The views in your photos are fabulous
Thank you Helen,
I’m sure you would have enjoyed it too. Glad you are enjoying my photos from this beautiful location
Congratulations – you must feel a real sense of accomplishment – plus, you have all these great photos to show for it!
Thanks so much Karen. Yes it was a real sense of accomplishment for sure. I’ll never forget that day