Monday, June 4, 2012

Beach Camping in Gaeta

This weekend was the absolute best weekend one can have in summer in italy.
i went camping on the beach in Gaeta, a small town a few hours outside of rome
and this is looking down onto the beach. its called: 300 steps...
italians are not imaginative with names.
we arrived to a perfect late afternoon

and struck up our campsite. the sign on the cliff behind us said: caution, falling rocks.
i pretended i didnt understand italian

the sun setting on happy campers. this lot were very happy. i think it was a beach party, they performed music/fire dancing, crazy other things and it seemed that they were actually living on the beach.

violin and accordian players to serenade us  while we sipped water and looked onto the mediterranean lake

for some reason, someone set off some fireworks, you can never escape fireworks in italy it seems

il mare- the sea. in all its glory. Italian are very particular about in what water they swim in. some parts of the coast are dirty and others prized for their crystal clear gorgeousness. This sea, just past Gaeta, that lapped onto our beach is rated the best near rome (1.5 hours out of Rome and inaccessible without a car and some serious calf muscles)

the water was fantastic. either ive gotten really fat or the water in the mediterranean sea has a lot more salt than ours because i can float effortlessly like im lying on a lilo.
the beach we camped on caters for everyone, there are both nude and gay sections.
and commercial sections. something that was very wierd for me and didnt bother the italians is that there are these fish, about 15cm long which follow you around and eat the dead skin off your feet.
i spent the entire time kicking the water, trying to get them to go away.
they swim about 40cm from your feet, eyeballing you. they are not afraid.
other than these fish, there is no sign of life in the sea. fine by me :D
hooray! NO CRABS!!!
spot the cliff hanger. this cliff ran along most of the beach and is the cause of the  nightmarish 300 steps

saturday night we went around Gaeta, dined at a butchery pub place. had an argentinian steak worthy of South african standards, ate hand crafted gelato and a type of pie think its called Tiella or something. that is typical of the town or area. afterwards we left full and happy, drove back, tripped down 300 steps and home to our beachy nest.

it looked so similar to cape town, it almost felt like i was home :)

view of the bay of with 2 towns, looking from Gaeta to Formia in the distance

each town in italy has a patron saint and once a year  they celebrate this saint. it happened to be the very night that i found myself in Gaeta. lights, fun park, sweets galore and lots of music, dancing and noise. lots of fun!

super conscious people parading and recanting some strange prayer. i was both curious and creeped out. maybe they were glaring at me for robbing the procession of its sacredness. anyway as a tourist armed with a camera im immune to the suggestive glares of Italians.
something beautiful about italians. there was a band playing italian 'golden oldies' and all the golden oldies were twirling around the dance floor in pairs. each song played a different dance and they knew them all. Attilio commented that it was reassuring to see old people dancing and know that when youre older, life is not over... somebody teach me quick!

there was a party for every age group. in this earblasting area for the cool people, the coolest people walked in the centre of this spinning ride. the fans seated around the edge watch these guys while they try push each  other into the middle. being in the middle isnt hard, its getting in and out while spinning

some even jump around inside!

Now listen South Africa, we have been seriously missing out here. this is a ride where you sit in swings  that as the carousel spins faster, you get higher and then you come down and yay, that was a nice swing. No, the Italians have totally licked us on this one. they have made it into a game...
you teamup with a partner. the one on the swing behind, at the beginning runs and pushes his buddy in front, the aim is to swing as high as possible before anyone else by, pulling empty chairs, pushing and kicking and any other way you can so that you push your partner high enough to..
grab this dangling jobby! how much more cool is that!!!! any no-one worries about chairs flying around, its like airbourne bumper cars on a mild scale

of course there are fun fair games, here you thriw balls in the holes and each sunk moves you horse at the top, the fastest wins. of course there were also lots of sweets. 2 kg chunks of nougat  and slabs of  caramelised almonds!!!.
...which i did not buy because im on diet.

"I must down to the seas again
For the call of the running tide,
Is a wild call and a clear call
That may not be denied."
thanks John Masefield

heppy campers

dancing in the moonlight
how lucky for us, it was 2 nights away from full moon 

Sunday morning. life is good when you wake up to a view like this and know that you  are forced to do nothing but sit on the beach or loll in the Mediterranean sea.

what a great weekend thanks to Attilio and Francesco
Bye Gaeta, and delicious napolitan style pizza! see you and your sparkling waters soon!

1 comment:

Ben Winfield said...

Beautiful! Nice tent by the way ;)