Explore this sea cave where the water glows green and a manmade work of art can be seen below the surface.
Explore the stalactite and stalagmite encrusted interior of the Emerald Grotto, a sea cave partly filled with water. The name comes from the green-blue light that bathes the cavern. The visual spectacle is created as sunlight passes through the sea in the underground cavity near the entrance. The water filters the light so that green wavelengths are reflected on the cave walls.
The grotto is small, consisting of one chamber. It measures approximately 147 feet (45 meters) by 104 feet (32 meters). At its highest point the ceiling reaches 78.8 feet (24 meters) above sea level.
You can only venture inside the cavern by boat. A guide will take you on a rowboat that can hold up to 20 passengers. Each trip lasts for 15 to 20 minutes.
The best times to visit are between 12 p.m. and 1 p.m. when the sun is at its highest point and the emerald effect is at its most intense.
Once inside the grotto give your eyes a few seconds to adjust to the light. Look up and across at how the light reflects off the stalactites and stalagmites and forms patterns on the cave walls. Some of the stalagmites are more than 32 feet (10 meters) high. Look down below the surface of the water to see the subaquatic nativity scene. It is made of clay from Vietri and was created by local artisans in 1956.
This was once a dry grotto but rising sea levels 6,000 years ago partially submerged the cave under water.
The Emerald Grotto is situated in the bay of Conca dei Marini, approximately three miles (five kilometers) west of Amalfi. It can be reached by boat from all towns along the Amalfi coast. Alternatively you can drive or take the SITA bus. To reach the grotto from the parking lot or bus stop, take the stairs or elevator down to the sea.
The Emerald Grotto is open daily and there is a small admission charge. During bad weather the boats will not operate and the cave is inaccessible