Positano Beach and How Much is That Beach Chair?

Written By: Kim - Aug• 17•11

Our water view villa was awesome. Both bedrooms and the kitchen/living room are equipped with individual air conditioners. Not traditional wall units like you would find in the USA, but the concept is the same.  After freezing out my husband the first night, we decided to sleep with the patio doors open the second night. When you live in a town on the main route, you get a lot of road traffic and Italians love to use their horns. It was a restless night.

We grabbed the bus and headed to Positano to see what the town offered. We wore our bathing suits, just in case. We waited for 40 minutes for the bus, which arrived with many folks. The bus driver stopped at a bus maintenance station to refuel; with the engine running. Is there an Italian equivalent to OSHA? Yikes.

We arrived at our destination which was the town center. Bustling with tourists and cool shops, we made our way down to the beach. A real beach with sand, but plenty of rocks too. Oh, my aching feet…

©Mike Howard

Luckily there was only two sets of stairs and the rest of the footpath was slopes of stone sidewalk. One leather shoe store smelled entirely of leather. Yum.

The public beach was not so public. You either bring your own towel and sit in the rocky sand or you rent beach chairs. The beach chair rental for the four of us was 45€ but we did it anyway. The ticket gave you all-day access and you were allowed to bring in your own food and drinks. I would like to see American beaches try this: revolts would be everywhere.

Italian women, as I mentioned in my previous blog post, have a style about them you can’t help but notice — in a good way. Beach attire is no different. There are no cutoff jeans at Italian beaches. Every woman wears a bikini, even if her stomach is not flat. But just do you know, most of these women are in excellent shape. Fast food is a panini. All you can eat is the fruit stand. The swimwear coverups are lovely linen and cotton-blend sheer designs. V-necks, sleeveless, tank style it doesn’t matter. Terrycloth is not a style option. I saw very few sarongs, but the one I did see were fashioned nicely.

After we ate lunch and I got pulled under a few times by the waves, I decided that the beach chair suited me just fine. After an hour of people watching which included my family in the water, I trekked up to the shops. Since we came with no beach towels in hand, I found two great ones for the kids. The material is super absorbent without adding bulk. They are also soft enough to be used as a wrap or blanket when necessary. Perfecto!

I found one of those inexpensive linen stores and after trying on three Positanos pezze, found the right one. The goal here is to remain stylish even while beach messy. Men and boys are not allowed in any stores or eateries without a shirt on.

Positano Beach as seen from the main highway. ©Mike Howard

The bus ride home was like riding in a sardine can on wheels. After waiting for almost 90 minutes (again because we did not understand the bus schedule), our bus arrived. As we tried to get on the bus the driver said we had to wait at our stop…..250 yards away. So we waited another 30 minutes and presto, the bus showed up with everyone in Praiano on their way back home.

But, as I watch the lights on the Almalfi Coast come alive again tonight and enjoy the pleasant low humid weather, I am reminded of why we came here. To. Experience. Something. Different.

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