Hiking and trekking in the Valle delle Ferriere, the valley of the ironworks between past and present

Amalfi Coast

Worldwide Amalfi is known for its glorious past and its sea, but few know the nature reserve "Valle delle Ferriere”. Due to its special geographical position, among the mountains of Scala, the reserve is protected from cold north winds through the rocky ridges, but open to hot-humid southern winds and subject to high rainfall distributed over three months. It thus kept unchanged over time its microclimate keeping intact plants of past times. Botanists, in fact, know this natural reserve for the presence of a rare plant in Europe,valle delle ferriere the Woodwardia radicans (https://it.wikipedia.org/wiki/Woodwardia_radicans), a so-called living fossil appeared on earth in the Tertiary. In addition to this important example of pre-glacial plant, this nature reserve is also the habitat of several species of orchids, and of the small carnivorous plant "Pinguicola hirtiflora (https://www.meditflora.com/flora/pinguicula_hirtiflora.htm ) whose meal consists of small insects. The valley is also inhabited by small animals among which must be recorded the "spectacled salamander” (https://it.wikipedia.org/wiki/Salamandrina_terdigitata).

The trekking route into the “Valle delle Ferriere” is of minor difficulty with a duration of about three hours and a drop of 500 meters down and 250 m up. The “Valle delle Ferriere” can be reached through a wonderful path along the river Rio Canneto. The departure is from San Lazzaro, in Agerola at 630 m height, and from there follow the direction to the castle ‘Castello Lauritano’ and the trail to Mount Murillo (849 m) and continue for the ancient Paper Mill Valley, crossed by the river Rio Canneto. The route is easy and not particularly tiring, winding through beautiful forests, springs, small waterfalls and the rapids of the Rio Canneto, once driving force for the old paper mills, where once the famous paper of Amalfi was produced, and still very much requested still today, and which can be viewed in the Museum of the Amalfi Paper. In the valley the ruins of the mills of the twelfth century can still be visited. The landscape is unspoilt and descends into the valley with breathtaking panoramic views, through the Mediterranean bush and terraces of lemon trees and vineyards. Halfway we meet the old ironworks, giving the name to the valley, which supplied iron to the ancient Maritime Republic of Amalfi.

An alternative route, starting from Atrani, a picturesque Saracen village on the outskirts of Amalfi: This path is for trekking lovers and leads across the ancient village, passing through the valley of the river Dragone, to the location of Pontone where you can admire the tower ‘Torre dello Ziro’ and the remains of the Cathedral of St. Eustace. From here we head towards the Nature Reserve of Valle delle Ferriere, and then the route to Amalfi is the same as above.
The ease of the trails does not require special equipment or facilities, but long trousers and a pair of comfortable shoes suitable for walking in the mountains are recommended. Be careful and do not forget the camera, water, sunscreen and a hat.



  • l'argine fiorito

    L'argine Fiorito


    The Argine Fiorito hotel is the ideal hotel for those who love nature. It is located in the valley dug by the stream Dragone and about 50 m. from the beach of Atrani. From the structure you can easily reach the most interesting paths of Amalfi ...