Praiano is a picturesque town situated between
Positano and Conca dei Marini.
Praiano is less famous than the other towns on the Amalfi Coast, but it has always been loved by tourists, since the times of the Sea Republics. In that period the doges of Amalfi choose Praiano as their summer residence.
The structure of the town is that of a typical village of the Amalfi Coast,
the Divine Coast: on this beautiful coastline men had to conquer their space on the steep mountains on the sea.
The structure of the town is that of a typical village of the Amalfi Coast, the Divine Coast: on this beautiful coastline men had to conquer their space on the steep mountains on the sea. The town of Praiano is located at the feet of Tre Pizzi Mountain (1120 over the sea level) and stretches out to Marina di Praia, the charming beach situated at the end of Praia Valley surrounded by high rocks, a real natural port that has always been used since the times of the ancient Plagianum (original name of Praiano). Still today it boasts a Middle Ages tower that belonged to the system of towers once built to defend Amalfi Coast from the Saracen incursions. One of the most typical features of the Amalfi Coast villages including Praiano is the presence of many stairs and the most charming places of this territory can be only reached by staircases.
This is why these places are unspoiled and still preserve their most typical beauty and features, which would be otherwise exposed to mass tourism.
Capo Sottile is in between Praiano and its hamlet called Vettica Maggiore where the small bay called “della Gavitella” lies; unlike the other beaches of the Amalfi Coast and thanks to its particular position, this beach is sun-kissed from sunrise to sunset, also boasting a breathtaking view on Positano and on Capri island. You will also admire there a watch tower built during Spanish period, and a natural cove situated in a grotto called “Fontana dell’Altare” (“The Fountain of the Altar”).
In Praiano there are many interesting shrines showing the inhabitants’ deep faith. To really enjoy all the beauties of the area round Praiano, your holiday here should be completed with a boat trip to the most enchanting spots of this coast reachable only by sea such as the small beaches hidden by rocks, or the suggestive sea caves called ‘Africana’ and ‘Suppraiano’.
History of Praiano
The name Praiano comes from the Latin Pelagium, which means ‘open sea’. Even if there are not many information about this Amalfi Coast town before the Middle Ages, the area was already inhabited during Roman Empire. Praiano belonged once to the Sea Republic of Amalfi and the doges choose it as their summer residence.
Still today it boasts a Middle Ages tower that belonged to the system of towers once built to defend Amalfi Coast from the Saracen incursions: the ‘Assiola’ Tower, also called “Sciola”. In the Angevin period there were two hamlets forming Praiano and Vettica Maggiore, the latter has become a fraction , which later freed from Amalfi and developed a strong maritime economy thanks to a berthing place for ships called “scarricaturo “.
Coral fishing was an activity practiced by the inhabitants of Praiano until the end of 1800. Spinning, flax processing, production of hairnets, in which women were specialized, and brining anchovies were the most thriving local activities.
Monuments – Art
Church of San Luca Evangelista
Church of San Luca Evangelista: this church is dedicated to Saint Luke the Evangelist, the Patron of Praiano, and is realized in Baroque style and boasts a floor made made of XVIII century majolica. Inside there are several wooden and silver statues, such as for example the bust of Saint Luke. There are also some paintings of Neapolitan School.
The Suppraiano Cave: it is a spectacular natural cave with stalactites and waterfalls which can be only reached by sea.
The Africana Cave: a charming natural cave near the famous night club Africana, a night club which has been created among the rocks.
The Grado Tower
The Grado Tower: a watchtower that belonged to the ancient system of towers built to defend the Amalfi Coast from the Saracen incursions.
Walking & trekking paths
Walking & trekking paths: the harsh territory of Praiano offers many paths or staircases leading to charming places with wonderful panoramas and represent a real paradise for trekking lovers. The lack of roads protected this unspoiled nature from mass tourism.
- The Church of San Gennaro: this sacred building is situtated in Vettica Maggiore, a hamlet of Praiano, and was built in 1602 on a former church. The dome is covered by majolica and inside the church keeps precious paintings.
- Small chapels built by the inhabitants of Praiano everywhere on the territory. They are decorated with majolica and frescoes, showing the deep spirituality of these places.
- The Church Santa Maria a Castro: a charming church once belonging to the monastery of San Domenico, situated on the mountain S. Angelo a tre Pizzi, perfectly immersed in the surrounding environment. It dominates the valley boasting a wonderful view of Positano, Capri, and Vettica Maggiore.
The regional agency ARPAC provides the production and publication of data on the state of the bathing water area (according to the criteria fixed controls taken out by the ministerial decree 30 March 2010 implementing the principles and purposes of Legislative Decree 116/2008 transposing Community rules) . On this page you can check the state of the bathing areas along the Praiano Coast : Red Flag obviously means that swimming is not permitted (bathing prohibited) and the blue flag means that the water is clear which all the beaches of Praiano have obtained this category.
Le Praie/la Gavitella Beach
Sandy beach .
Vettica Maggiore beach