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Hiking trail

Footpath of the Gods - Bomerano (Agerola) to Praiano

Hiking trail · Napoli
Responsible for this content
Macs Adventure Verified partner  Explorers Choice 
  • Derelict House and Signposts
    / Derelict House and Signposts
    Photo: Josiah Skeats, Macs Adventure
  • Houses Wedged into Caves
    / Houses Wedged into Caves
    Photo: Josiah Skeats, Macs Adventure
  • Colle Serra Junction and Viewpoint (2.00km)
    / Colle Serra Junction and Viewpoint (2.00km)
    Photo: Josiah Skeats, Macs Adventure
  • Il Pinnacolo (1.80km)
    / Il Pinnacolo (1.80km)
    Photo: Josiah Skeats, Macs Adventure
Map / Footpath of the Gods - Bomerano (Agerola) to Praiano
300 450 600 750 900 m km 0.5 1 1.5 2 2.5 3 3.5

This hike from the mountain-top village of Bomerano to the coastal town of Praiano provides a long downhill, with never-ending views to the Gulf of Salerno.

moderate
3.6 km
3:00 h
217 m
669 m

The first section of this walk is amongst the mountains. While you might get the occasional glimpse to the sea, your attention will be more consumed by the limestone cliffs pockmarked with caves, some big enough to squeeze a modest shrine of Mary into, others grand enough to wedge an entire stone house into. A tall limestone stack, Il Pinnacolo in Italian, stands sentinel to the ages – though looks like it may topple in a gust of wind - and marks the top of the Colle Serra pass; from here it is downhill to Praiano.

From the Colle Serra you can see the sweeping Gulf of Salerno, a dramatic coastline of cliffs tumbling into the water. Sailors say that during stormy weather the wind whistles along this coastline and produces the Siren’s song; in mythology the Siren was a beautiful half-woman creature, and any sailor unlucky enough to hear her irresistible song, would leap overboard to their death. The small island you see ahead is said to be one such sailor who turned to stone when he hit the water.

Descending from the Colle Serra is like sitting in the front row of the cinema; the sea and sky overwhelm your entire field of view. In the foreground is Praiano, postcard-perfect and with a row of steps that will guide you right into the middle of that picture.  

Author’s recommendation

Make sure your camera is fully charged; photo opportunities abound.

outdooractive.com User
Author
Josiah Skeats
Updated: July 02, 2019

Difficulty
moderate
Technique
Stamina
Experience
Landscape
Highest point
688 m
Lowest point
187 m
Best time of year
Jan
Feb
Mar
Apr
May
Jun
Jul
Aug
Sep
Oct
Nov
Dec

Safety information

There are some exposed and unfenced edges throughout the walk; be careful and remain on the path.

There are several stretches where you must walk on the road as there is no pavement. Walk on the left side facing the oncoming traffic, unless there is a verge separated by line-markings that provides space to walk on.

Much of the path is rocky. Bear in mind these may be slippery when wet, place your feet with care, and use the handrail, where one is provided.

Equipment

Sturdy hiking boots and a waterproof/wind-break layer are required. Walking poles will be a big advantage on some of these ascents and descents.

Ensure your phone is fully charged; if you doubt the battery will last throughout the hike, it might be beneficial to bring a power bank.

Make sure you bring enough water. It is recommended to drink 0.75 litres per 1 hour of hiking.

Tips, hints and links

Points of Interest

Il Pinnacolo and Colle Serra

A precariously-perched pinnacle of rock looks like it may fall over in the slightest gust of wind, and marks the nearby Colle Serra Pass (578 metres above sea level). A plaque on the rock is dedicated to Ettore Paduano, the hiker who discovered the Footpath of the Gods trail and spent much of his life developing it. The Colle Serra Pass marks a transition from the mountain plateau of Agerola to the coastal Amalfi region.

 

Grotta Biscotto

You will pass the Grotta Biscotto, or ‘Biscuit Grotto’ after 1 kilometre. This cliff section is pockmarked with caves and holes resembling the air bubbles in a biscuit. Wedged into the natural shelter of these caves you will discover the houses of industrious locals several centuries old. All that was required to build a house in a cave was one wall and doorway across the entrance; the rest was already done for you!

 

Praiano

Unlike the other villages along the Amalfi Coast, Praiano lacks anything that could be said to be a central or gathering point. Instead, the cafes, restaurants, churches and piazzas are strung along the coastline and concealed in the spider’s web of interconnected alleyways, meaning that only by getting lost do you discover the charming secrets of this village.

 

Food and Drink

Except for a café after 1 kilometre, there are no options to buy food or drink between Bomerano and Praiano, so be sure to bring enough provisions for the hike.

There are taps to fill your water bottles after 1.3 and 2.1 kilometres.

Start

Piazza Paolo Capasso, Bomerano (639 m)
Coordinates:
Geographic
40.629936, 14.540213
UTM
33T 461115 4497779

Destination

Piazza San Luca, Praiano

Turn-by-turn directions

0.00km – To get from the bus stop to the piazza, where this route begins, walk past the ristobar on your left and towards a large map. TURN RIGHT down the narrow lane, marked ‘No Entry’ beside the map, and after 80 metres BEAR RIGHT to remain on the lane and enter the piazza.

0.00km – There are three large trees in the piazza in Bomerano. Start with your back to the middle tree and with the church on your right. BEAR RIGHT of the gelateria, towards the corner of the piazza. BEAR LEFT onto the cobbled street, following the sign for Sentiero Degli Dei (Footpath of the Gods).

0.30km – TURN RIGHT to cross over the wooden bridge, then climb up the stone steps to join the road. After 60 metres TURN LEFT to walk along the road. There are lots of signposts throughout this section. Continue along this road for 470 metres, ignoring all side roads. Peer over the edge to look down on top of lemon groves.

0.80km – The road will pass through a car park, and then CONTINUE STRAIGHT ON along a footpath. Admire the shrine to Mary in a heart-shaped cave. After 30 metres, having passed a section of footpath overhung by cliffs and caves, CONTINUE STRAIGHT ON, ignoring steps on your left and right.

1.20km – You will pass a water tap where you can refill your bottles. Shortly after, the path forks; BEAR LEFT to continue downhill on the rocky slope. Be careful of steep and exposed edges beside you.

1.60km – CONTINUE STRAIGHT ON the main established path, ignoring the rocky track bearing left. After 200 metres you will pass an impressive stack of limestone on your left.

1.90km – After passing a derelict house on your right, and lemon groves on your left, TURN LEFT at the T-junction, and then after 10 metres TURN RIGHT. There will be fantastic views along the Gulf of Salerno ahead.

2.00km – At the bottom of the steps you will reach a T-junction with a tap to refill water bottles. TURN LEFT, following the sign for Praiano. After 50 metres, remain on the established stone-steps, ignoring the gravel path on your left. Some of the rocks have dots of red paint on, to guide you.

2.30km - CONTINUE STRAIGHT ON at the junction, heading downhill, ignoring the gravel path and stone steps. The path continues alongside the train monorail for the next 1 kilometre.

3.40km – BEAR RIGHT down the stone steps following the sign to Praiano and St Luca Church. After 50 metres, CONTINUE STRAIGHT ON to cross over the road and continue down the steps on the far side. There are Sentiero Degli Dei signposts.

3.50km – At the bottom of the path you will reach a T-junction with a flat, paved path; TURN LEFT, then after 5 metres TURN RIGHT to head down a set of steps. These steps will wind downhill to finish in the Piazza San Luca.

Arrival by train, car, foot or bike


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Difficulty
moderate
Distance
3.6 km
Duration
3:00 h
Ascent
217 m
Descent
669 m
In and out Scenic Healthy climate

Statistics

: h
 km
 m
 m
Highest point
 m
Lowest point
 m
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