It was a fine and warm day of late September my family and I decided to spend our Sunday in a different way. In one of her rare, but very clever, strokes of genius, my mother suggested going to Villa Cimbrone in Ravello to see the famous Terrazzo dell’Infinito (Terrace of Infinity). So off we went, and man was it worth it. Luckily we reached Ravello by car, although I must say that it does seem quite difficult to get to this little town by public transportations. Either way, Villa Cimbrone is one of those magnificent places that instantly rewards your efforts thanks to its charm and to the astonishing Terrace of Infinity.
Truth be told, you can only visit the gardens of the Villa, since the latter has been turned into a hotel in the second half of the twentieth century. As many things here in Italy, the history of Villa Cimbrone dates back to many centuries ago. However, we must thank a very wealthy Englishman in the name of Ernest William Beckett, Baron of Grimthorpe, who bought the villa and turned it into the precious jewel it still is today. More importantly, besides money, old Beckett had a really fine taste when it comes to building gardens and belvedere since the Terrace of the Infinity alone transforms the visit into an incredible experience.
The Terrace, decorated with Roman-style statues along its fence, overlooks the sea and the Amalfi coast. The Terrace offers the opportunity to “embrace” the Mediterrenean with the eyes, to feel part of the union between the sea and the sky, to see all different shades of blue at once. The whole garden with its majestic Ally of Immensity (Viale dell'Immensità), after all, is designed so that you reach the Terrace of Infinity with strong expectations and almost anxiety. I can honestly say that not only I didn’t feel any “expectations vs reality” delusion, rather in this case reality was even much better than what I had in mind. Not even the usual selfie-obsessed couple had the power of destroying that moment. The view from Terrace of Infinity is, without any doubt, one of the most beautiful sceneries you’ll ever see in your life.
Other famous persons shared the same view. Virginia Woolf, John Maynard Keynes, D.H. Lawrence, T.S. Eliot, Winston Churchill, Greta Garbo, Al Gore, these are just some of the names of people who stayed in Villa Cimbrone and feel in love with the Terrace of Infinity. Well, can you blame them?
Since looking downward is not for the faint of heart (the Terrace is 1200 feet, around 365 meters above the sea), you will definitely find solace in the equally astonishing gardens boasting temples, statues and other classic-like architectures, not to mention the many species of flowers and trees that do the lion’s share in giving this incredible place its aura of “timelessness”.
If you plan a visit to the Amalfi coast, you should absolutely write the Terrace of Infinity in Villa Cimbrone, Ravello on your “To Visit” list!
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