Located on the eastern extreme of Italy's famous Amalfi Coast, Salerno is a large port city with a well-preserved historic district, long waterfront walkway and vibrant southern Italian atmosphere. In the Middle Ages, Salerno was a center of learning and culture, and became famous as home to the world's first university for the study of medicine, Schola Medica Salernitana.
Today it consists of three main districts: the medieval district, a planned 19th-century district and the post-war district. Although the commercial port is not very attractive, the historical old town is well worth a visit, with a well-preserved, vibrant center full of shops and restaurants.
A plethora of religious and secular sites of interest give tourists much to see, including the impressive Duomo of San Matteo, the Arechi Castle and the pretty Villa Comunale gardens and waterfront. However, Salerno's city atmosphere does not compare with the charm of nearby towns such as Amalfi, Positano and Sorrento, all of which are accessible by local ferries.
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