Stretching between the Gulf of Naples and Salerno is one of the most beautiful and picturesque coastlines in Italy and perhaps the World. With warm summers and relatively mild winters it is the perfect holiday destination and one that is extremely popular with tourists from around the world. Welcome to a Complete Guide to the Amalfi Coast.
Places covered in this Complete Guide to the Amalfi Coast. – Naples, Pompeii, Sorrento, Positano, Capri and Amalfi Town.
This was the first post I wrote and truly happy to start with such a stunning location. As we were going to cover 2 beautiful and completely different locations on this trip I could only do justice by braking it down into 2 parts. We start our journey in the Amalfi Coast and travel all the way to Roman capital and the Vatican.
Lets start our journey on a Complete Guide to the Amalfi Coast.
How to plan your trip to the Amalfi Coast
Planning our summer break we narrowed down to the Amalfi Coast and Rome this time. Keeping costs in mind as we were looking to travel during the peak season we started booking well in advance.
The Amalfi Coast is one of the most expensive destinations in Italy. With high demand during the peak summer months prices are soaring so make sure to book your accommodation early. We planned our holiday around the 2 most popular destinations in Italy – Starting in the Amalfi Coast and culminating in the capital Rome.
We used 2 different destinations when booking air tickets which can help at times. Fly into the Amalfi Coast and we flew out from Rome.
How to get to the Amalfi Coast
We booked our tickets well in advance (Rule No 1: try and book as early as possible especially if you are looking to travel during the busy school holiday period). Looking at various combinations we found it cheaper to get 2 one way tickets from 2 different airlines. This was my first attempt at using two separate airlines and must say being apprehensive did not face any issues.
The most popular and commercial airport serving the Amalfi coast is Naples, which is well connected with all the major airports in the UK and Europe.
We booked our flights from London to Naples and the return from Rome to London. Next we looked up trains and got some great deals on the Trenitalia, travelling between Naples and Rome. (http://www.trenitalia.com).
Let’s start our journey with a Complete Guide to the Amalfi Coast.
Day 1. Naples & Pompeii
An early flight out of London and we land in Naples to give us a good part of that day. As we got out of the airport there were a few options to travel within the city but as we wanted to make the most of that day we took the quicker but more expensive option of a taxi.
A taxi from Naples Airport to the city centre costs roughly €25 and takes just under 30 minutes.
Early check in agreed with the hotel in advance and we are all set to explore Naples and Pompeii.
Where to stay in Naples
Choosing accommodation in the heart of the city may cost you a bit more but has its merits. You save on transportation costs and can easily walk around. Majority of the tourist attractions in Naples are around the city centre so choosing your accommodation in the city centre helps.
Our hotel was a short walk from the main shopping area so a quick lunch at one of the authentic Napoleon Pizzerias and we were off to discover Pompeii.
Eating in the City Centre
There are a number of restaurants dotted around the city centre tucked away in the narrow lanes which is very Naples (nothing fancy) but the food is absolutely amazing.
They are rustic with a few seats on the street but give you a feel of the local life of Naples. The city centre is quite busy with both locals and tourists and you can easily spend a few hours browsing through the shops and eateries.
Trip to Pompeii from Naples
Our first stop Pompeii.
With limited time in Naples we needed to cover a fair bit so after doing some research we decided to go with the taxi. There are other options like the train and bus but as I was travelling with kids on a fairly tight schedule we decided to use the taxi.
A round trip from Naples to Pompeii including a waiting time of 3 hours cost just under €100.
You can negotiate prices with the taxi drivers who will show you a chart of costs to various tourist destinations in and around Naples. It’s a 30 minute drive from the city center traffic permitting.
Tickets to the great ruins can be bought at the entrance and if you do have any form of a European ID there is a discount available so make sure you carry one. With the discounts the 4 of us paid roughly €25.
How much time do you need in Pompeii.
You can easily spend a whole day here if you want to see Pompeii in detail but a 3 hour trip with kids is more than enough to get a good feel of this historic site.
You can opt to take a trip to Mount Vesuvius which we didn’t as it was 36 degree C and included a lot of walking.
Out tour of Pompeii included a small break in the centre of the ruins which houses a cafe. The cafe serves snacks, hot and cold drinks and ice creams.
We returned to the hotel in the evening and were ready to discover the city of Napoli.
We did not spend too much time here as there is not much to see or do in Naples city itself. A relaxed walk around the city centre followed by a lovely Neapolitin pizza at Rosati.
Rosati is one of the popular pizzerias that has been serving the popular Neaopolitian Pizza for many years .
You cannot come to Naples and miss the Napoli pizza.
Day 2. Naple to Sorrento
There are many ways to get to Sorrento from Naples (Ferry /Train /Bus or Taxi). If you are travelling on a budget then surely the train or bus is more pocket friendlyway. Having read a few blogs and articles on the train journey we decided to avoid this and went with the more relaxed option of the taxi. You can negotiate rates with the official taxis and we managed to get a great deal for just under €100 from Naples to Sorrento.
The road trip from Naples to Sorrento is very scenic and takes just under 2 hours.
For help with the train timetables and fares please refer to link below. http://www.sorrentoinsider.com/en/naples-to-sorrento-train-schedule.
We left Naples after breakfast and reached Sorrento in the afternoon just in time for check in.
We checked into our lovely boutique hotel a short walk from the main square and a great location again. The main street of the city runs through the heart Sorrento with shops/cafes/restaurants/ice cream parlors and even a cinema.
A relaxed lunch followed with some chilled Limoncello at the famous Fauno Bar and Restaurant in the heart of the square and yes comes highly recommended.
We walked around the city and returned to the hotel for the kids to have a quick swim in the pool and some time for us to relax and enjoy the Sorrento sun.
Evening in Positano.
We decided to spend the rest of the day and evening in the picturesque town of Positano. If only I knew before how beautiful this little town is I would surely planned more time here.
Headed for the bus station which in the town centre and few steps away from the Sorrento train station.
Bus from Sorrento to Positano
The cheapest way to travel around the Amalfi Coast is by bus. Bus fares from Sorrento to Positano is under 5 Euro.
The CITA buses go all the way from Sorrento to Amalfi and Ravello. Just be mindful that the buses can get very crowded and uncomfortable in the peak hours. The buses are used by both locals and tourists and can get really hot during the summer months even though they are air conditioned. You could be standing for most part of the long journey and must say this was not very pleasant. Try and use the buses off peak hours.
The normal journey should not take more than 40 minutes but during the peak summer holidays you could get a fair bit of traffic which could increase this to over an hour easily.
I must admit once you get off the bus and get that first glimpse of Positano you forget all about the journey.
We spent the evening walking round the narrow lanes and market stalls all the way to the beach. It is a steep walk down hill but one which you will enjoy going through the shops and admiring the beauty of this fairytale town.
There are some unbelievable views from the beach of the town literally carved into the mountain.
The different coloured houses add to the beauty of this gorgeous town. We had a lovely dinner in one of the many restaurants dotted along the beach and I would highly recommend this.
A bit of local shopping and WE finished off with a Gelato, which you just can’t miss when you are in Italy.
Some great souvenir shops and not to miss the locally made Limóncello.
I could have easily spent a few days in Positano alone so if you can please do so.
You could use Positano as a base to travel around the Amalfi coast with some good transportation link to most of the cities.
Positano is undoubtedly one of the most beautiful places I have visited in my life.
Day 3. Capri & Anna Capri
A good night’s rest and we head to the picturesque island of Capri. There are plenty of ferries and private boats that you can use to get to this island from Sorrento.
How to get to Capri from Sorrento – Ferry from Sorrento to Capri.
We headed to the Port in Sorrento which is situated at the bottom of the hill. You can get to the port by either walking down or using a passenger lift.
We did not buy tickets in advance as there are plenty of companies at the marina offering last minute deals with regular ferries that leave every 30 minutes. We got on to a fast ferry which took us to the island in around 45 minutes.
Return fares from Sorrento to Capri by ferry is roughly €30.
As you approach the Island you get a feel of the beauty and the popularity of this island. Capri is a millionaire’s playground with yachts dotted around the island and is a view by itself.
Once you land on the island you have plenty of shops and restaurants lined across the marina. This is where you can have a quick bite/drink before you head up to the main town located at the top of the hill.
There are a few option you can choose from to get to Capri town from the Marina. Bus / Taxi or the more picturesque mode of transport the funicular. I would suggest this as it offers some stunning views.
The taxis are rather expensive on the island but they are straight out of a movie and none you have seen before.
Round trip cost on the funicular is under €10 per person.
You get beautiful views of the sea and the island on the way up so keep your camera ready.
After you reach the top there are plenty of shops and restaurants and places to buy souvenirs. There are some high end designer shops if you fancy.
In the middle of the town is a bus station where you can take a bus or get a taxi to go further up to Anacapri (a must). This time we decided to go with the taxi and with that open top this was a ride of a lifetime.
Taxi Ride from Capri to Anacapri is about 20 minute and will cost you €25. Avery scenic drive which offers you great views of the island
Things to do in Anacapri
Once you reach the town centre it looks like a set out of the movie. Anacapri is a small little town lined with whitewashed houses covered with colourful flowers and small shops and cafes.
We walked along the narrow lanes and had a snack at this family owned pizzeria. It was very basic with no seating but seemed famous as there were plenty of locals and tourists getting their share of the delicious pizza.
You could easily walk around the town for hours admiring the beauty and the surprises at every corner.
Spending a few hours here is not enough but we had to say our farewell and headed back to Capri.
Things to do in Capri
Capri is much bigger and lots more tourists here. It’s beautiful yet swanky with a lot of big labels dotted around the main square.
We wondered around the streets and before we knew it was time to move on.
Capri is perfect to walk around and is very beautiful. Small whitewashed houses with colourful flowers, small cafes offering some traditional delights and designer boutiques.
Boat trip around Capri Island.
Next we took a boat to go around the island which was recommended when I read about the must do’s.
There are a few sites including the famous Blue Grotto which we skipped. The over an hour wait for a 3 minute boat trip into the Grotto did not appeal to me with kids.
You can hire a private boat or use one of the larger ones to go around the island.
We opted for the larger boat which cost us €15 per person for a 2 hours trip around the island.
The views are mesmerising and a must if you visit Capri.
Once we were back on the island we had a late lunch at the marina and must say it’s nice to just sit here and see the world go by.
As we sat and enjoyed the views the kids were busy splashing around in the water before it was time to say goodbye to Capri.
Back on the boat and we headed to Sorrento.
Day 4. Trip to Amalfi town.
Day 4 and there is more to see and do along the Amalfi coast. Today we head to the historic town of Amalfi.
How to get to Amalfi from Sorrento – Bus from Sorrento via Positano
We decided to take the bus again which took an hour and a half. A late start this time and we avoided the rush hour and would recommend the same. However the last 30 minutes of the ride is a winding uphill journey so if you do suffer from travel sickness suggest you take some medication.
The buses pass through Positano and once you start the climb the views are breathtaking.
The bus station in Amalfi town is located in the heart of the old town, very close to the marina where you can get ferries to Sorrento and Naples.
Things to do in Amalfi Town
We headed towards the town centre which has a beautiful piazza near the famous Cathedral.
The main attraction of Amalfi town is the Amalfi Cathedral, a medieval Roman Catholic cathedral in the Piazza del Duomo.
A great place to relax and watch the world go by from one of the many cafes dotted around the piazza.
There are shops dotted around the centre if yo want to shop or simply walk around the narrow lanes of the old town.
As the Mrs. decided to sample the local shopping it was time for me to head to the beach with the kids.
Beaches in the Amalfi Coast – Complete Guide to the Amalfi Coast.
Like most of the other beaches in the Amalfi they are pebbled but with crystal clear waters.
The only sad thing is that most of them have been privatised so you will need to pay a fee to use them. You can hire beach chairs and umbrellas here but they all come at a price and to give you a flavour we paid €32 for 2 chairs and an umbrella.
We spent the next few hours here enjoying the sun and the water. Plenty of kids around and once we had our fair share of the beach we decided to walk around the city.
It is very busy in July so be mindful there are long waiting times at the restaurants in the city centre. A lot of walking if you want to see the whole town wear comfy shoes.
Getting our share of the souvenirs it was time to head back to Sorrento and this time we decided to take the ferry. (€60 for the four of us.)
Some good travel tips that might help you plan your holiday better.
Ferry from Amalfi to Sorrento via Positano
I must admit that this was one of the most scenic ferry trips I have ever taken. On the way to Sorrento it makes a stop at Positano where you will surely use your cameras as the views when you leave Positano are just jaw dropping.
Day 5. Sorrento and back to Naples.
Our last day in Sorrento and we decided to wander around the city for one last time. We walked through the lanes into the main square (Piazza Tasso) and visited the Chiostro di San Francesco.
After spending a few hours walking around the town it was time to say our goodbyes to Sorrento and head back to Naples.
This is where we start our second leg of the holiday with a train ride to Rome.
I had pre booked a taxi from the city centre the previous night and yes you can negotiate rates with them.
Taxi from Sorrento to Naples station cost us just under €100 for a minivan. Once again the train and the bus are cheaper options.
It took us just over an hour to get to Naples main train station from Sorrento.
A quick look around the station, a coffee and it was time to wiz off to Rome on the high speed train.
Hope you enjoyed our Complete Guide to the Amalfi Coast.
Please follow us on the next leg of this journey where we discover Rome and the Vatican.
Hotels Used on this trip
Renaissance Naples Hotel Mediterraneo
Hotel Capri Sorrento
Must Do – Complete Guide to the Amalfi Coast.
- Walk the streets of Sorrento
- Admire the coloured houses of Positano.
- Walk the steps of the cathedral @ Amalfi town.
- Sip on a Limenchello
- Visit the Cathedral Duomo @ Sorrento
- Take a trip to the gardens of Ravello.
- Enjoy the beaches of Sorrento, Amalfi and Capri.
- Visit the ruins of Pompeii
- Take an old fashioned taxi ride in Capri.
- Take a boat tour into the Grotta dello Smeraldo
- Enjoy a boat ride around Capri.
- Walk along the Piazza Tasso in Sorrento town.
- Wonder around Mariana Grande and Piccola in Sorrento.
- Have a Napoli pizza @ Caffe Rosati in Napoli.
- Treat yourself to a gelato
- Admire the blue waters of Capri and the yachts in them.
- Spend an evening in Positano.
Very well written. Gives an good overall idea of how to holiday there, especially with kids !
Love the photographs on the blog, and the posts are full of incredibly useful information for anyone travelling to these places, both on your best options for getting there, as well as things to do, see and eat. Well done!
Never been to that side of Italy yet. But Neaples and Amalfi coast are high on my list.
Thanks for this article, I like the beautiful pictures. This has been for a while on my bucket list. Keep it going and happy travels.
While visiting your blog your tag line made me grin ‘Im happier when I travel’ Then the other description touched me, “Don’t tell me how educated you are,tell me how much you travelled.” So true.
And further to your post on Italy travel. Beautifully written adorned with stunning pics, I enjoyed greatly.
Love your blog and writing style! 🙂 This posts brings back my memories of beautiful Italy
This is a must-do trip for me. I spent a few days in Milan in college but that wasn’t really a full experience. I’d love to get to Rome. Hopefully soon! Thanks for the must-eat list!
Ah I loved Positano! I was there earlier in the year, your post brings back happy memories =)
Love this, can’t wait to go to Rome <3
Loved your photos! You got some great shots of the city! Also, the water looks so crystal clear! I’ll definitely have to check out that boat tour if I ever decide to visit.
Nice city guide. You really used some great pictures.
Fantastic article! Thank you so much!
Great info and love the photos! Looks like it was a wonderful trip!
We travelled to Naples, Pompeii and Capri on our trip to Italy but couldn’t make it to Sorrento and Positano which I regret because I really wanted to go! Your pictures are lovely. I think 5 days is a reasonable amount of time to spend on the scenic Amalfi coast, given that there are so many lovely towns to explore. Hopefully I will make it to whatever I missed, next year when I go back to Italy. Thanks for sharing your experience!
You must visit Positano if you get a chance ever. It’s a must visit
I haven’t been to this side of Italy yet but it looks gorgeous! I hope to visit when it’s not so crowded with tourists, that beach with all those umbrellas on top of each other is making me claustrophobic! The water looks so clear, my daughter would love exploring and finding treasures. Sounds like a great family trip!
It’s a beautiful part of Italy 🇮🇹 and highly recommend
I enjoyed reading your blog ! Beautiful photos and some informative tips !
Your pictures are so beautiful, I feel like I want to book a trip to Italy right now! Although I will follow your advice and book my trip early in advance. Fortunately I don’t have to travel only during school/summer holidays. Is there really any spot in Italy where you don’t want your camera? Positano looks positively stunning! 🙂
Is stunning and I would love to visit this place again
I want to go to all of these places! I love your photos of Pompei – the ruins look so grand and beautiful. Capri is stunning too, and I’d love to kayak around there (if possible) and get a closer look at all the rock structures jutting out of the water. Great post!
It’s indeed a beautiful destination
Quite a helpful post, and amazing pics. I was planning Amalfi coast, on my recent trip, but wasn’t able to do it. But next time, I am definitely doing the Amalfi Coast and Naples, as well as the southern countryside.
Thank you for tip on how to get to Sorrento. Will definitely take the train since we’re trying to travel on the budget. The train schedule is very helpful.
Welcome. Hope you have a great trip.
Amalfi coast is much in my wish list. I’ve heard so so much about it.
This is the part of Italy I’m hoping to visit later this year or early next year – Naples, Pompeii and Amalfi.
Esp., Pompeii for its gruesome yet fascinating past…. Thanks for all the details & guides…
This is amazing! I’m hoping to get to Italy soon (maybe take my mom as a surprise) in June. This is definitely on my list — have you done Venice and Florence too?
I was first introduced to Amalfi Coast through a Travel Show on Fox Live by David Rocco . I was blon away by the beauty of Amalfi and Positano. Its on high on my life. The landscapes are simply breathtaking and their lemon and the drinks are out of the world. I can’t wait to visit it someday.
It’s amazing. Must visit.
Thank you. Very helpful blog. Would you recommend Sorrento as the best base for the coast? Positano seems to busy. Would you stay in Anacapri? Thanks
I would not stay in anacapri
The Almafi Coast is one destination I have heard so many wonderful things about and this post certainly reinforces that so well. I would love to visit here and explore the whole coast. Everything here seems so beautiful. I particularly understand your comments about Positano on the mainland as well as the Isle of Capri. The photos you took in both locations show how beautiful the surrounds are.
It’s amazing. Hope you can visit soon
Excellent detail! Loved the pictures and sound advice on places to go and things to see.
Thanks much appreciated. Hope u ha e a great trip
I have done central and Northern Italy but missed Almafi Coast. Almafi coast really looks worth visiting with those narrow street walks, colorful buildings of Naples and stunning views of Mediterranean sea. Anna Capri looks stunning and thanks for detailed itinerary.
It is the most beautiful part of Italy as far as a coastline is concerned
I love the pictures you have shared here. Really makes me want to visit the Amalfi Coast. I hope to visit it when I visit to Italy.
Thanks. Hope you can visit soon
I’ve been to Italy many times and I have to say you did a great job with this article. Your pictures look amazing too. You shared everything one needs to knwo before visiting and you also prepared an awesome itinerary. .
Thanks. Hope it helps people plan. Would live to go back myself. Love the Amalfi coast.
Love to visit Pompeii..
Great place and filled with history
What a wonderful itinerary, I’d love to travel around the Amalfi Coast and see the beaches, the cathedrals and, of course, the food!. Pompeii, Positano and Sorrento are top of my list. Great shots!
Positano tips the list and a must visit once in your lifetime
I have always wanted to visit both Naples & Pompeii. I think I will do it next year. Thanks for the ticket guide too. It was very helpful since I’m visiting Italy again next year with my best friend. I want to also see the good view of the sea on Capri.
It’s a beautiful place and one you will surely enjoy with your friend.
It looks as though you had a wonderful time! We live half the year in Italy, but in the north, and I’m trying to persuade my husband to take me to Amalfi. The best thing to do for me in Napoli is eat pizza, so it’s good you did that too! Positano is incredibly beautiful and serene; a real must see in Italy.
You must experience the Amalfi coast. The pizza really a not to miss in Napoli.
I really enjoyed reading through your suggestions for the Almalfi Coast. I have not been there yet, but it is high on our family’s bucket list. I’ve always loved seeing photos of the colored buildings in Positano! They are truly beautiful, and it sounds like you had an awesome time there. When we do go, it sounds like we should look into the ferry around Sorrento. That looks really incredible!
It’s a beautiful destination and I hope you can visit it with your family soon. Ferry is the better option.
I only managed to see a tiny bit of the Amalfi Coast when I visited Italy and I made a vow to go back one day. I’m still waiting for that one day, but this post has brought it to the front of my mind again. That’s also a really useful tip about booking the flights as two separate ones to make it cheaper. I did spend two nights in Naples and I ate at the same restaurant, Rosati! To date, it’s THE BEST pizza I’ve ever eaten.
Hope you can visit it again soon
Italy is one of my favourite countries in the world and have visited it several times but I have deliberately stayed away from Amalfi Coast because firstly I think it’s very touristy and I am more into offbeat and calm places, and secondly I think it’s very expensive. However, it does look stunning and your pictures are a proof, why so many people visit it. I wholeheartedly agree with your first rule of booking as early as possible, especially if you are looking to travel during the peak season.
You can still get some affordable holidays in Amalfi if you plan ahead It’s definitely worth a visit once in your lifetime
Next time definitely visit Mt Vesuv as well. I did it 18 years ago and it was one of my favourite trip ever. we did the vulcano trekking in Sicilly as well.
Did visit Pompei but couldn’t make it to
Mount Vesuvius unfortunately
I’ve heard a lot about the Amalfi Coast and now I know all that hype is so true. With so many picturesque views, relaxing beaches, rich history and fascinating ruins, the city oozes a unique charm. The great ruins of Pompeii seem to be my kind of place. Being a history buff, I can spend hours exploring them. The city of Positano looks so magical – It’s difficult to take your eyes off those incredible views. And so are those scenic views of Capri. You guys are lucky to enjoy the magical beauty of such wonderful places. Amalfi Coast is definitely on my bucket list now.
Thanks and yes it is indeed a beautiful destination and one you must visit
I absolutely love Italy but have never been to the Amalfi Coast. The ferry to Capri sounds like an adventure itself, ferries are one of my favorite ways to travel because of the awesome views they offer. Sounds like booking early is key for this region, especially during peak times. And I totally agree with you, the views leaving Positano are jaw dropping, it’s no wonder everyone has their camera out!
One of the most beautiful destinations for sure and the views leaving Positano absolutely stunning. Hope you can visit soon.
I love all these fantastic holiday destinations Amar. Your children must be having wonderful adventures they’ll remember forever.
Thanks. It’s giving them a very different view of the world.
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