The Athena Trail passes through an area of particular interest for its historical importance, for the wild look that nature preserves, and the wonderful views it offers.
From the little square of Termini, piazza Santa Croce, head down Via Campanella. After about 200 meters, at the crossroads, turn right towards the ancient Via Minerva, a Greek-Roman mule track built in the fourth century B.C. and still partially paved with Roman paving.
Crossing the north side of the Promontorium Minervae, which separates the bay of Naples from the gulf of Salerno, the vegetation becomes gradually sparser and you begin to glimpse the island of Capri, while on the right appears the Torre di Fossa di Papa.
Finally, the tower and the lighthouse of Punta Campanella appear: the tower, in gray tuff, stands on the site that probably housed in ancient times a temple dedicated to Athena – Minerva, founded by the Greeks and later inherited by the Romans. The presence of a temple is attested by the archaeological ruins still visible around the tower.
Seen from here, Capri appears so close that it seems you can touch it.
From Punta Campanella continue towards Monte San Costanzo, the highest hill in Massa Lubrense, following the white-red trail of the Italian Alpine Club (C.A.I.) indicateing the Alta Via dei Monti Lattari. Thus you cross the southern slope of the promontory, leaving the island of Capri behind; on the right, the view opens onto the Bay of Ieranto.
Once you reach the small pine forest, which offers a pleasant shaded area, a limestone staircase leads in a short time to the top of the mountain. From the white church of San Costanzo, dating back to the second half of the sixteenth century, the panorama opens to 360 degrees on the whole landscape that includes the territory of Massa Lubrense, from the bay of Naples to the gulf of Salerno, with the imposing Vesuvius, the islands of Capri, Ischia and Procida.
To go back to Termini, the ancient path that intersects the curves of the main road is shorter but steeper and quite bumpy; it will end just before the junction with via Campanella.
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Bay of Ieranto
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