Italy

Cilento –
Spirit and culture

Cilento – Spirit and culture

Dive into the real south italian lifestyle by visiting ancient temples in Paestum, slow down in enchanting Castellabate, feel the deepest blue in Palinuros grotto and end up in the authentic Italian city of Salerno.

  • Salerno, Paestum, Castellabate, Acciaroli, Palinuro, Salerno
  • 6 nights in a luxurious double cabin or master cabin with many amenities
  • Full board with samadhi’s delicious forever-young cuisine, welcome champagne, local wines, soft drinks, water, cocktails, long drinks, and mocktails from our menu
  • Watertoys and snorkeling/diving equipment
  • GEM (guest experience management) service by samadhi’s experienced crew
    tender services en route


Trip schedule

Day 1: Get on board in Salerno (transfer from Naples airport or a city hotel can be provided), welcome on board, sailing to Paestum, visit the impressive archeological sites
Day 2: Sailing to Castellabate, visit the ancient village of Castellabate and the beautiful marinas of Santa Maria and San Marco
Day 3: Sailing to Acciaroli, visit the famous Cilento National Park
Day 4: Sailing to Palinuro, visit the blue grotto – the unknown sister of Capris’s famous grotto
Day 5: Sailing to Agropoli, explore the castle, visit Cirota Palace
Day 6: Sailing to Salerno, farewell. You may wish to add some days to see the beautiful city of Salerno and the Amalfi Coast. (Transfer to Naples city or to the airport can be provided.)

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Destinations

Dive into the real south italian lifestyle by visiting ancient temples in Paestum, slow down in enchanting Castellabate, feel the deepest blue in Palinuros grotto and end up in the authentic Italian city of Salerno.

Day 1

Paestum

Paestum is home to one of the most impressive archaeological zones in Europe. It has been declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO and includes three of the best-preserved ancient Greek temples in the world, as well as an exciting museum that impresses with millennia-old frescoes, ceramics and everyday objects. Among these is the world-famous tomb fresco Tomba del Truffatore (Diver’s Tomb).
Paestum, or Poseidonia, as the city was originally called, was built in the 6th century BC. It was founded by Greek settlers in 273 BC under Roman rule. The city’s decline began after the fall of the Roman Empire. Saracen raids and repeated outbreaks of malaria forced the steadily dwindling population to leave the city.
Today, it offers visitors from all over the world a vivid, true-to-life view of the sophistication of past life in the region.
Rediscovered in the late 18th century, the site was not excavated as a whole until the 1950s. Without the tourist crowds at the more well-known archaeological sites, Paestum offers a wonderful sense of peace. In the spring, the temples are particularly impressive, surrounded by countless bright red poppies.

In the rectangular forum see the basic outline of the large heart of the ancient city.

The domestic housing area and the amphitheatre provide an evocative glimpse of daily life here in Roman times. In the former houses you’ll see mosaic floors and a marble impluvium that stood in the atrium and collected rainwater.

Tempio di Nettuno, dating from about 450 BC, is the largest and best preserved of the three temples at Paestum. The two rows of double-storied columns originally divided the outer colonnade from the cella, or inner chamber, where a statue of the temple deity was displayed. Despite its commonly used name, many researchers believe that temple was actually dedicated to the Greek goddess Hera, sister and wife of the Greek god Zeus.

The basilica (in fact, a temple to the goddess Hera) is Paestum’s oldest surviving monument. Dating from the middle of the 6th century BC, it is a magnificent sight, with nine columns across and 18 columns along the sides. Take a photo of yourself next to one of the columns to make the impressive scale visible.

Paestum museum is spread over two floors and houses a collection of fascinating metopen (bas-relief friezes). The most famous of the many frescoes in the museum is the Tomba del Tuffatore (5th century BC) – the transition from life to death – with the fresco painting of a diver in the air.

Tenuta Vannulo The first organic producer of bufala milk and cheese, Tenuta Vannulo, is a 10-minute drive from Paestum. It makes its mozzarella exclusively from buffalo milk, unlike most producers who combine it with cows’ milk. Farm tours (also in English) are available and should be booked two to three days in advance. Visits culminate in a tasting.

Where to eat

Nonna Sceppa via Laura 45, 84063 Paestum
Seek out the superbly prepared, robust dishes at Nonna Sceppa, a friendly restaurant that’s gaining a reputation throughout the region for excellence. Dishes are firmly seasonal and concentrate on fresh seafood. Other popular choices include risotto or spaghetti with lobster.
Recommended by the Michelin Guide.

Tre Olivi via Poseidonia 291, 84063 Paestum
Overlooking the lush subtropical gardens, the elegant dining room serves classic southern Italian cuisine and local specialties: buffalo mozzarella, Gragnano pasta and freshly caught fish.
Recommended by the Michelin Guide.

Day 2

Castellabate

South of Paestum is the former fishing village of Santa Maria di Castellabate. This typical southern Italian village is characterized by pink and ochre-colored weather-tanned houses, which are mostly framed by traditional green or blue shutters. The endless golden sandy beach of Santa Maria stretches for many kilometres, which also means a lot of space for sun-seekers in midsummer. The medieval town of Castellabate, 280 meters above sea level, is one of the most charming historical towns on the Cilento coast. The summit, reachable from the coastal town of Santa Maria, is characterized by the wide Belvedere di San Costabile, from which one has a magnificent view of the coast. This is flanked by the ruins of a castle from the 12th century, in which only the defensive walls stand, accompanied by a local art gallery. The surrounding labyrinth of narrow alleys is interrupted by old arches, small squares and pretty palazzi. The lively heart and soul of the city is the central Piazza with its breathtaking panoramic view of the Valle dell’Annunziata.
From Castellabate we head south to the pretty little harbour of San Marco di Castellabate, overlooked by the beautiful ivy-clad Hotel Approdo. It was once an important Greek and Roman port, and the several graves and other relics discovered there can now be seen in the Paestum Museum. The area between Santa Maria di Castellabate and San Marco is a popular diving area. The beach of San Marco is a continuation of the sandy stretch of Santa Maria di Castellabate. It ends in the enchanting harbor of San Marco from where you can reach the picturesque Punta Licosa by boat.

The Castle of Abate was built in 1123 by Costabile Gentilcore. The village that sprung up around it took its own name, Castrum Abbatis, which means Castello dell’Abate, and was subsequently shortened to Castellabate. Little by little, Castellabate became the richest barony of the whole Cilento region, and the castle was a protective garrison for the populations around the area, who would flee to it in hard times.

Santa Maria di Castellabate is an unspoiled seaside delight. It is the ideal southern Italian destination: rugged hills cascade down to the pristine waters of the Gulf of Salerno; honey-colored beaches are dotted with colorful parasols; a long shop-lined corso provides an ideal stroll; and the piazza and waterfront offer pleasant restaurants, cafes and gelaterias.

Palazzo Perrotti is a landmark right on the seafront, an old castle complete with a round tower that provides a beautiful backdrop to the small sandy spot in front of it. Sunset is particularly beautiful at this site. At the fishing pier is the “Porte le Gatte”, a beautiful stone arcade fronting the water. You’ll find fishing boats moored at the pier and resting ashore for painting. Fishermen still mend their nets on the beach here.

San Marco, a warm and welcoming fishing port town, offers remnants of the ancient Roman and Greek presence: the archeological finds from here are now are exhibited in the Museum of Paestum. Just behind the small port you’ll be able to admire the ruins of the old Greek-Roman port, not to mention the presence of some ancient patrician villas.

Punta Licosa and Punta Tresino The enchanting gulf between these two protective points offers a collection of golden beaches and interesting sea cliffs, making Santa Maria, San Marco and Lago beautiful pearls in a spectacular seascape. Here you’ll find an intriguing blend of history, mild climate, and vibrant colors of the turquoise sea and the verdant green nature, mingled with southern hospitality. Combined with the genuine flavors of the simple but delicious Cilento traditional cuisine, living blue sea and inland trails, you have all the elements of a relaxing vacation.

Where to eat

Da Andrea via lungomare De Simone 15, 84072 Santa Maria
Accompanied by the roar of the waves on the cliffs, you can enjoy Mediterranean cuisine with typical fish specialities and a select selection of wines.
Recommended by the Michelin Guide.

I Due Fratelli via Sant’Andrea, 84072 Santa Maria
The “two brothers” have been running this cozy restaurant with a modern ambience for many years, offering Campanian cuisine, mainly fish and pizza on weekends.
Recommended by the Michelin Guide.

Day 3

Acciaroli

Acciaroli is located on a small strip of land that juts out into the Tyrrhenian Sea. Year after year, the area is awarded the Blue Flag for clean, crystal-clear sea. The town is located in the coastal area of the Cilento National Park.
With its narrow streets and Arabic influence, Acciaroli can be described as a beautiful fishing village with colorful houses, friendly and hospitable people, rich history, and characteristic small shops.
At the end of this lake-washed stretch of land, you can see the small Church of the Annunciation and the three original Saracen towers. The tiny harbor of this picturesque town, where Ernest Hemingway had a short, charming stay, has clear, deep blue waters, offering with boat trips directly from the wharf.
Acciaroli is one of the least touched villages in terms of modern development. Thus, a characteristic historic coastal village has been maintained with an economy based mainly on fishing. Another feature is the year-round mild climate that allows sunbathing from April to October. Pay particular attention to the intense scent of the rare water lily on the so-called “golden beach” of Acciaroli. The Mezzatorre beach is one of the best known in the area and is appreciated by Italians and foreign tourists alike.

Pioppi, just a little south of Acciaroli, is a small picturesque village with an untouched light pebble beach and a handful of shops and restaurants.

Marina di Casal Velino is a pleasant stop with a small, pretty harbor, offering many ice cream parlors and pedal boats.

Ascea Further southeast and well-known as the home of the philosophers Parmenides and Zeno of Elea as well as the famous Eleatic School of Philosophy, lies Ascea, a sprawling archeological site that boasts some impressive Greek ruins. The city is surrounded by a 5-kilometer-long beautiful sandy beach, which invites you to swim.

Elea was founded by the Greeks in 540 BC who fled the Persian invasion of Ionia on the west coast of present-day Turkey.

For several centuries, Velia-Elea has been the center of culture in philosophy and medicine. In 88 BC, the village became Roman and then sank because its two ports were covered with sand brought by the sea. Ancient Velia thus disappeared from history, and only in early 1900, the archeological excavations began. In the 1960s, the excavations brought to light the remnants of the village with the Porta Marina Sud and the Porta Marina Nord, the two doors that allowed access to the city, and the magnificent Porta Rosa (Pink Door), connecting the north and the southern quarters of the village.

Where to eat

Perbacco contrada Marina Campagna 5, 84066 Pisciotta
Fancy a culinary journey through the Cilento? From delicious fish antipasti to juicy main courses, to fine wines, the Perbacco offers everything a connoisseur’s heart desires.
Recommended by the Michelin Guide.

Day 4

Palinuro

A sober beauty characterizes the village of Pisciotta, set like a splendid jewel into the Cilento National Park.
The village is located on a hilltop covered with olive groves, stretching out into the emerald sea.
The village has preserved intact the medieval urban plan: the castle on top and small houses leaning one on top of the other in order to defend themselves from pirates.
Under the olive trees of the green hills and the crystal clear blue sea, Palinuro has always fascinated travelers of all times, as Virgilio tells of a steep promontory in the Aeneid verses.
Among the most beautiful beaches of the Cilento are the beaches of Palinuro, wide and sandy, as well as Blue Flag beaches. The most famous beaches of Palinuro include Saline Beach, Dune Beach, the beach of Arco Naturale, and the beach of Buondormire, which can only be reached by sea.
Be sure to visit the caves of Capo Palinuro, which are in no way inferior to the Blue Cave of Capri.
The Capo Palinuro lighthouse is the second highest in Italy, standing at over 70 meters. It is especially worth a visit because of the magnificent panorama that opens in front of you.

Pisciotta is a beautiful medieval town that sits high above a ridge. Go straight towards the central Piazza Raffaele Pinto with its terraced bars and benches used by locals to meet and gossip. Be sure to visit the Marina di Pisciotta with its fish restaurants and cafes. Walk to the end of the promenade and observe the multi-colored stones and pebbles on the beach, shimmering in shades of mauve, gray, cream and ocher.

The imposing Church of St. Peter and Paul dates back to the 16th century and preserves precious works of art. Particularly noteworthy is a wonderful painting of St. Francis, miraculously saved from the fire set to the convent by the Turkish in 1640.

The Palazzo Marchesale Pappacoda, built over the ruins of an ancient 12th-century castle, is worth a visit, too! You’ll be able to notice the old castle’s remains here and there, among partially modern constructions currently used as normal houses.

Palazzo Francia is a notable building erected in 1600, with a lovely sandstone portal, and Palazzo Lancellotti, which belonged to the Bishop Lancellotti in 1700.

Cape Palinuro The numerous bays and over 80-meter-high walls make the Cape Palinuro a scenic feature. The bizarrely hollowed out, rocky coast houses not only the natural stone arch, but also numerous caves.

The Grotta Azzurra (Blue Grotto), which is in no way inferior to the cave of Capri, enchants visitors with its bright blue sea color. In contrast to the grotto in Capri, you can typically enjoy this one in perfect peace, away from other tourists.

Where to eat

Angiolina via Passariello 2, località Marina di Pisciotta, 84066 Pisciotta
If you have opted for this quiet little place with the beautiful outdoor area (summer only), you should definitely try the anchovy dishes, which are caught with the typical, closely meshed Menaica net. The card also offers other Campanian specialties.
Recommended by the Michelin Guide.

Da Carmelo località Isca, 84064 Palinuro
On the edge of the town on the state road to Camerota lies this spacious restaurant, where the chef prepares tasty dishes using the finest ingredients from the sea.
Recommended by the Michelin Guide.

Day 5

Agropoli

Agropoli is a pleasant and – apart from the busy summer season – quiet town. While the modern city is a maze of shopping streets, the historic city center is characterized by intriguing, narrow streets lined with old churches and a castle with stunning views.
The city was inhabited since the Neolithic period, first by Greeks, then Romans, followed by the Byzantines and the Saracens. In 915, Agropoli fell under the jurisdiction of the bishops and was subsequently governed by feudal lords. In the 16th and 17th centuries, it was the target of raids from North Africa, and the population dropped to a few hundred. Today, the city has more than 20,000 inhabitants and is a worthy destination on the coast of the Cilento.
The shores of Cilento have always been endangered, such that they were already dominated since the 9th century by a series of coastal towers. In the 16th century, Don Pedro Alvarez began to strengthen the security measures and equipped the tower San Marco with cannons. The imposing tower has a circular shape with a cone-shaped base, which is characterized by thick walls.
The port area has been inhabited since the beginning of 1800 with the construction of 800 houses inspired by Byzantine architecture. It was once a small natural harbour that was a haven for sailors.

St. Francis Convent The coastal tower, located next to the Franciscan monastery, is in a strategic position that allows for easy communication with the castle, the tower of St. Mark and the Trentova-Tresino tower. The convent, completed in 1230, contains the Chapel of the Rosary and in 1800 welcomed the friars of the monastery of Teggiano.

The Castle The castle has a triangular shape with three circular towers and stands on the highest point of the headland. Around the walls lies a deep and wide moat which today is only visible on the side of the village and disappears while on the eastern side of the castle due to agricultural work and past landslides. The inner part of the castle is composed of a central square, which is nowadays used as on open air theater, and on the northern side by the “French Room”.

Cirota Palace The palace was built in 1892 by Cirota family and used purely as a summer residence. It has repeatedly changed its vocation, finally becoming the “Civic Palace of Arts” in 2011. The palace’s ground floor houses the archeological museum, which is devoted mainly to the history of the peoples who inhabited the coasts of the Mediterranean.

Old Portal and the Scaloni The portal, still well-preserved today, is the historic entrance to the old city.

Annunciation Chapel The Cappella dell’Annunziazione belongs with the tower of “Mainenti Palace” and is open only for special occasions. It was built around 300 AD has a circular shape with two entrances: one from the courtyard and one from the street. Inside there is an altar that dates back to 1875 and contains painted panels and two niche statues representing the Virgin of the Sacred Mountain and Saint Lucia.

Where to eat

Il Cormorano via C. Pisacane 13, 84043 Agropoli
Offering local atmosphere in a new restaurant with well-maintained ambience, this restaurant allows you to enjoy fresh fish in summer.
Recommended by the Michelin Guide.

Il Ceppo via Madonna del Carmine 31, 84043 Agropoli
This is a pleasant restaurant with an open pizzeria in the evening. Comprised of three classic dining rooms in a rustic style, with white walls and terracotta floors, Il Ceppo offers a tasty seafood cuisine.
Recommended by the Michelin Guide.

Day 6

Salerno

Salerno may initially seem like a bland big city, but the place has a charming, if gritty, individuality, especially around its vibrant centro storico (historic center), where medieval churches share space with neighborhood trattorias, trendy wine bars and boutiques. The city offers various urban-regeneration programs centered on this historic neighborhood, which features a tree-lined seafront promenade widely considered to be one of the most beautiful in Europe.
The capital of Campania’s southernmost province, the lively port of Salerno is much less chaotic than Naples and is well off most travelers’ itineraries, giving it a pleasant and relaxed atmosphere. During medieval times, the city’s medical school was the most eminent in Europe.
From Salerno it is easy to head to the famous Amalfi Coast with its gems like Ravello, Amalfi or Positano.

Duomo Salerno’s impressive cathedral is widely considered to be the most beautiful medieval church in Italy. Built by the Normans in the 11th century and later esthetically remodeled in the 18th century, it sustained severe damage in a 1980 earthquake. It is dedicated to San Matteo (St. Matthew), whose remains were reputedly brought to the city in 954 and now lie beneath the main altar in the vaulted crypt.

Castello di Arechi is Salerno’s most famous landmark. It is dramatically positioned 263 meters above the city. Originally a Byzantine fort, it was built by the Lombard duke of Benevento, Arechi II, in the 8th century and subsequently modified by the Normans and Aragonese, most recently in the 16th century.

Museo Archeologico Provinciale The province’s restored and revitalized main archeological museum is an excellent showcase for a collection of mesmerizing grave artefacts from the surrounding area, dating back to cave dwellers and the colonizing Greeks.

Museo Pinacoteca Provinciale Art enthusiasts should seek out the Museo Pinacoteca Provinciale, located deep in the heart of the historic quarter. Spread throughout six galleries, the museum houses a collection dating from the early Renaissance right up to the first half of the 20th century.

Museo Virtuale della Scuola Medica Salernitana Established around the 9th century, the school was the most important center of medical knowledge in medieval Europe, reaching the height of its prestige in the 11th century. In Salerno’s historic center, this small museum shows videos and touch-screen technology to explore the teachings and wince-inducing procedures of Salerno’s once-famous, now-defunct, medical institute.

Where to eat

Re Maurì via Benedetto Croce snc, 84121 Salerno
Although he has never completely given up his passion for pastry, and after many years working in some of Italy’s most prestigious restaurants, Master Chef Re Mauri feels at home in imaginative Mediterranean cuisine. He uses only excellent gastronomic products, for which the region is known. 1 Michelin star

Il Timone via Salvador Allende 29/35, 84131 Salerno
A bustling atmosphere and fast service characterize this always very well-attended restaurant. It is an ideal address at which to eat good, fresh fish, which are on display in the guest room and selected there by the customer.
Recommended by the Michelin Guide.

Activities

Sail an extraordinary yacht, start your day with bodywork and snorkel at the most beautiful reefs.

Crew

Our charming team and our experienced crew will accompany you on your unique journey with samadhi.

Mathias Berger
Captain onboard samadhi Ocean Resort

A native Austrian, Matthias studied hospitality management in the famous Wachau wine region close to Vienna, and then worked in Europe, Australia and Asia for the past 15 years in the luxury hospitality sector for major international hotel groups. In 2009 Matthias participated in the Clipper Round the World Yacht race, sailing from Australia to San Francisco via Singapore and Qingdao in China, crossing some of the largest and most challenging oceans of this world. He continued being passionate about sailing and obtained professional qualifications from the British Royal Yachting Assocation (RYA) and is today certified as a Yachtmaster.

“Samadhi Ocean Resort allows me to combine my two passions of hospitality and sailing, and I am looking forward to welcoming our guest aboard the ocean resort showing them around the most beautiful towns and pristine and exlusive beaches of the Amalfi Coast and Sicily. ”

Matthias holds a master degree in hospitality management, a postgraduate MBA and a RYA Yachtmaster Offshore as well as an Ironman Coaching Certification.

Cabins

Enjoy our 5-star luxury cabins, which are modern, high-quality and made of the finest materials. Feel at home!

Superior cabin

The superior cabins are located in the hulls. Guests will enjoy the contemporary and elegant cabin interior, designed with natural materials and wood elements. Enjoy a tastefully designed ensuite bathroom and luxury organic amenities.

Key Facts

  • Luxurious cabin with
  • Direct ocean views from the cabin
  • Ensuite bathroom
  • Rain shower
  • Direct access to saloon and main deck

Amenities

  • Luxurious organic bathroom amenities
  • hairdryer
  • Guest Experience Manager (GEM) service
  • Complimentary Wi-Fi (subject to availability)
  • 32-inch LCD television
  • SONOS sound system

Our delicious full board includes

  • Daily buffet breakfast
  • Delicious lunch and three course dinner
  • Morning and afternoon snacks
  • Water, coffee, tea and soft drinks all day long
  • Local and international beverages, long drinks, mocktails and cocktails

Master cabin

The master cabin is located in the hull. Guests will enjoy a very spacious cabin with contemporary and elegant cabin interior, a walk-in closet and a desk with a comfortable chair. Enjoy a large, tastefully designed ensuite bathroom and luxury organic amenities.

Key Facts

  • Luxurious cabin with
  • Direct ocean views from the cabin
  • Ensuite bathroom
  • Rain shower
  • Direct access to saloon and main deck

Amenities

  • Luxurious organic bathroom amenities
  • hairdryer
  • Guest Experience Manager (GEM) service
  • Complimentary Wi-Fi (subject to availability)
  • 32-inch LCD television
  • SONOS sound system

Our delicious full board includes

  • Daily buffet breakfast
  • Delicious lunch and three course dinner
  • Morning and afternoon snacks
  • Water, coffee, tea and soft drinks all day long
  • Local and international beverages, long drinks, mocktails and cocktails

Taste

Our menu offers a creative, forever-young cuisine that stresses fresh vegetables, homemade delicacies and seafood.

Additional journeys