Tighten between Mount Civit in the east and Mount Aureo in the west, Atrani extends along the valley of the river Dragone, so-called because the legend has it that there was hiding a terrible dragon that sputava fire. For the beauty of the alleys, arches, courtyards, squares and features the "Scalinatella", houses, placed one on the other, to the evocative atmosphere of the evening, when the lights are on, Atrani was repeatedly used as a film set for film and TV commercials, becoming part of the most beautiful villages of Italy. The first houses overlook directly on the beach and then gather around the small square with the church of San Salvatore and the stone fountain, rise, finally, toward the valley and climb along the rocky slopes of the hill, crossed by gardens and by cultivation of lemons. Isolated from the traffic, protected by its ancient houses the flowered balconies, la Piazzetta of Atrani access directly to the beach and the sea, through the ancient passage created for rescue boats from sea storms.
The origins of Atrani are still unknown. The archaeological researches have established that in the I century A.D. along the Costa d'Amalfi existed of the Roman villas, which were, however, covered by the material that erupted by Vesuvius in 79 A.D., was deposited on the surrounding mountains and from there, following, was slipped downstream. In the V century A.D., as a result of the barbarian invasions, many Romans who have fled the city took refuge first on Lattari Mountains and subsequently, along the coasts, where created stable settlements. The first documentary evidence of the existence of Atrani is represented by a letter of Pope Gregory the Great to the Bishop Pimenio dated 596. The duchy of Amalfi stretched from Cetara to Positano also comprising Agerola, Pimonte, letters, Capri and the archipelago of the Sirenuse (Li Galli). Within this territory Atrani was a village that boasted the title of town, city twinned of Amalfi and headquarters of the aristocracy. Only to Amalfi and Atrani was reserved the right to elect or depositing the heads of the Duchy. The symbol of his power was a headgear, Birecto, referred the dukes were honored in the palatine chapel of San Salvatore de Birecto Atrani.
The Atrani collaborated to economic and social development of the duchy. Significant were the pasta and the factories of tissues which produced sajette and precious cloths, for which the Atrani detennero the glory between the centers of the coast. They were particularly active in the eastern zone extra-duchy: at Paestum, in Cava de' Tirreni and Vietri sul Mare. The tidal wave of 24 September 1343 submerged much of the coastline and put an end to the splendour of Amalfi and Atrani, already sorely tried by continuous incursions of the Pisani of the XII century. In the years that followed the fate of Atrani were linked to those of Amalfi, whose duchy, now lapsed, was incorporated into the principality of Salerno.
Certainly deserve a visit to the church of San Salvatore de Birecto', the Collegiate Church of Santa Maria Maddalena penitent, the Torre dello Ziro and the cave of Masaniello, not far from the house of the family of the famous head of the revolt of the figs of 1647.