LV - Travel logs

5 of the most beautiful fishing villages in Italy

Given that Italy is a boot-shaped peninsula almost completely surrounded by water, it comes as no surprise that the country has many beautiful seaside villages. The five fishing villages below - in order from north to south - are a mix of famous and lesser-known towns. All of them offer beautiful scenery, a lovely atmosphere, and of course, excellent seafood. And we include all of them in Italy Beyond the Obvious itineraries on a regular basis.

Portofino, Liguria

The town of Portofino, on the Italian Riviera, is itself part of a small peninsula with several quaint fishing villages. Portofino is known for its colorful houses, picturesque landscape, and good people-watching. The town has been a destination for VIP travelers and their yachts for decades. In addition to seafood, travelers should taste the local farinata flatbread made with chickpea flour, and pesto, which originates in this area.

We also recommend exploring some of the many hiking trails on the Portofino Peninsula and visiting other nearby towns such as Santa Margherita Ligure, Rapallo, and Camogli (a town named for the houses of the fishermens wives - in Italian, case dei mogli). Travelers visiting in early May should not miss the Sagra del Pescefish festival in Camogli.

Manarola, Liguria

Just an hour down the coast from Portofino, the town of Manarola is one of the five towns of the famous Cinque Terre. The towns (Monterosso al Mare, Vernazza, Corniglia, Manarola and Riomaggiore) are connected by an old mule trail, which today is busy with hikers virtually year-round.

We recommend checking the Cinque Terre National Park website which lists all the hiking trails in the area, including trail closures. The website is also a great source of information on many other paths that are equally beautiful but much less congested compared to the iconic mule trail. But, hiking is certainly not the only way to explore these fishing villages: non-hikers can get from town to town by train, boat, or bus.

Atrani, Amalfi Coast

A couple of hours south of Rome, the lovely town of Atrani is part of Italys iconic Amalfi Coast. This town has a much more local feel compared to many of the busier towns on the Amalfi Coast such as Positano, Ravello, or Sorrento. After a few days in Atrani, you may get to know your local baker or gelataio.

We recommend walking from Atrani to the neighboring town of Amalfi via the pedestrian path that goes through the towns parking garage. Amalfi is another beautiful town with an iconic cathedral and great restaurants, and is a transportation hub for buses and boats. We also recommend heading south to another fishing village, Cetara, famous for its anchovies (which are completely different to those you may be used to, as found on American pizza!).

Cefal, Sicily

The fishing village of Cefal, on the northern coast of the island of Sicily, is a perfect seaside escape. Its known for its 12th century Norman Cathedral, which has twin towers and amazing byzantine mosaics. The town has excellent restaurants, a picturesque trail to the lighthouse, and pretty beaches. Most of all, do not miss tasting local Sicilian sweets in the towns pastry shops.

We often recommend that Italy Beyond the Obvious travelers use Cefal as a base if they want to visit, but not stay in, the chaotic city of Palermo which is just 30 minutes away by train or car.

Polignano a Mare, Apulia

If the Italian peninsula is in the shape of a boot, then the southern region of Apulia is the heel of the boot. Pretty fishing villages are sprinkled all along Apulia's Adriatic Coast. These include Polignano a Mare (pictured), Trani, Otranto, and many others that can be explored on a fun road trip.Unlike the mostly rocky beaches of Liguria and the Amalfi Coast, in Apulia the traveler can find long expanses of pristine white sand. Visitors will notice whitewashed houses in this area of Italy, reminiscent of those in Greece which is just across the sea to the south.

We also recommend heading inland a couple of hours to visit the amazing city of Matera, a UNESCO World Heritage Site and a complex of houses, churches, monasteries, and hermitages built into the natural caves of the area.

Madeline Jhawar is Owner of Italy Beyond the Obvious.

If you would like to be a guest blogger onA Luxury Travel Blogin order to raise your profile, pleasecontact us.

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How I Joined Skillshare and Learned Cool New Skills on the Cheap

The following branded content post is brought to you by Skillshare, a site that I tried out and like a lot. They're a great site for learning and offered two free months for AK readers (click to redeem two months of Skillshare Premium here), so I was delighted to share this with you!

I love to learn new things. Scratch that , I crave learning new things, whether it's how to write a new poetry form, how to cook a new dish, or how to do a perfect deadlift.

And while I scratch my learning itch largely by reading, it's not enough. I've been wanting to take some courses lately, and Skillshare has been the perfect introduction into learning more.

Introducing Skillshare

Skillshare is a website filled with more than 15,000 courses. They are taught by video.

Skillshare members can take as many courses as they'd like , and even create a course of their own.

What kinds of courses are there?

Tons , there are more than 15,000 courses altogether. They are courses from complete beginners to hobbyists, professionals, and even advanced courses for experts looking to grow their skill set.

What kinds of classes are there? To start, they have tech classes on mobile development ("How to Make Apps with No Programming Experience") and game design ("How to Create Pixel Art for Games").

In the lifestyle section, there are courses on cooking ("How to Make French Macarons"), and design ("Modern Flowers: How to Design a Stunning Centerpiece").

In the business section, there are courses on marketing ("How to Create Engaging Social Media Content"), freelancing ("How to Start a Shopify Business"), and sales ("How to Create a Sales Funnel That Converts").

Most popular, however, is the creative section, where there are courses on everything from video production ("How to Shoot With Your iPhone and Edit Like a Pro") to art ("How to Create Modern Watercolor Florals") and UI/UX Design ("UI Design in Photoshop From Scratch").

This is by no means an exhaustive list , these classes are just the beginning of what Skillshare has to offer.

How much does it cost?

Premium Skillshare plans start at $10 per month billed annually or $15 per month month-to-month , much cheaper than I expected. It doesn't cost much more than Netflix.

However, Adventurous Kate readers can get two months of Skillshare Premium for free through this link.

My Skillshare Experience , Three Different Classes

I decided to try out three very different classes to give me an idea of how everything worked.

Course #1: Humor Writing: Write Funny for the Internet by Mike Lacher

I've been wanting to take a comedy writing classes for a long time, but I haven't wanted to make the time and financial investment right now. This course, taught by a McSweeney's author, was a fabulous introduction to writing for comedy, using his experience to outline the steps that make your writing funnier and more entertaining.

So much of humor writing is by instinct, but a lot of it can be mapped out by releasing tension almost mathematically. (Most famous was Steve Martin, where he decided to create routines where no tension was released. People hated it.)

Course #2: How to Create a Morning Routine by Derek Franklin

This course, while technically on video, is more of an audio/podcast-type course. For that reason, you could listen to it while cooking or cleaning (which is when I usually listen to podcasts). This is a simple but effective course on steps you can take to create a better morning , something I could definitely stand to do!

More than anything, this course taught me that if you're starting your routine in the morning, you're already too late , you will be so much more productive if you plan your morning the night before!

Course #3: Going Pro with Street Photography by trashhand

I love photography, but I've been in a bit of a rut lately and wanted to learn new techniques. This course is outstanding for any kind of lifestyle Instagrammer who appears in his or her own photos, and that goes for travel bloggers as well. This course is a detailed way of setting up editorial shoots that work well with your location and create great results for both you and whatever brand you're working with.

I always lean away from getting photos of myself, unless I'm traveling with a photographer, but after this course, I'm going to work harder on getting those shots.

The Takeaway

I'll be honest , I'm surprised by how rich the course selection is and the fact that you can learn about so many different kinds of areas with a low risk factor. If you're interested in drawing, for example, it's nice that you can try out a drawing class through Skillshare without investing hundreds of dollars up front.

I also appreciated that you can listen to the courses at up to 1.5x the speed, which cuts down on time and works well if you're paying attention.

Overall, I think Skillshare provides excellent value for money. Which leads me to my next point:

Get Two Months of Skillshare for Free

Want to try it out? I'm giving away two free months of Skillshare to Adventurous Kate readers!

You can access the two free months promotion here.

Should you try it? It's free! Why not? And you never know. This could be the beginning of a career change or the start of a lifelong learning project.

What kind of course have you been wanting to take?