Are you planning a trip to the Amalfi Coast and now you are trying to decide where to stay in Amalfi Coast? The Amalfi Coast is dotted with spectacular views, seaside cliffs, and sumptuous villas, which have elevated the coastline to one of the most fabulous and unique destinations in the world.
Its cultural landscape include churches, gardens, vineyards and towns that are divided into thirteen different municipalities, and were listed as UNESCO World Heritage sites in 1997.
Positano, Amalfi, and Ravello are the area’s top destinations, attracting thousands of travelers each year.
When you think of the “Amalfi Coast“ you probably think of Beyonce and Jay Z and chartering a Luxe $900,000-a-Week Yacht for her Italian birthday vacation but I am going to help plan the perfect Amalfi Coast vacation without breaking the bank.
As far as road trips go, it doesn’t get more cinematic than the Blue Highway, the 43-mile-long “road with 1,001 turns” that skirts the southern tip of Italy’s Sorrentine Peninsula.
The Amalfi Drive strings together the peninsula’s seaside towns, which, from the glamorous beaches of Positano to the tucked-away villas of Ravello, are every bit as scenic as their pictures.
While the drive itself may not take long, you’ll find yourself stopping around each bend to capture one Instagram-worthy moment after the next. Here’s a week-long itinerary that maps out all the must-sees while exploring the Amalfi Coast and the best day trips from Amalfi.
Pack your bags because I will help you figure out the following:
- How to get there?
- Where to stay in Amalfi Coast?
- Best Tours of Amalfi Coast
- Should you take day trips?
- What is the best time to visit Amalfi?
- How many days should you stay on the Amalfi Coast?
- Is Amalfi Coast Expensive?
While you can explore the Amalfi Coast in one day it will be rushed and you will not be able to see some of the famous towns like Ravello, Praiano, Positano or Minori.
I recommend staying a minimum of 3 days in the area, but if you want to take your time and really immerse yourself in the culture it’s best to spend at least 5 days on the Amalfi Coast.
Praiano, Sorrento, Capri, and Amalfi Coast – 5 Day Itinerary
If you’ve been scrolling Pinterest for hours gazing at dreamy photos wondering if the Amalfi Coast is really as beautiful as the photos and I can say unequivocally YES!
The Amalfi Coast is even more breathtaking in person and just imagine each morning stepping out on your balcony and enjoying breakfast with the Mediterranean as your backdrop.
It felt like I was in a dream from the food, wine, limoncello to the beautiful people made this the vacation of a lifetime so if you want to visit Amalfi Coast keep reading my guide.
I suggest settling in on one central location for your stay on Amalfi Coast and I recommend staying in Praiano.
Where To Make Your Home Base on Amalfi Coast
I suggest basing yourself in Praiano, Italy if you’re planning to explore multiple towns on the coast. Praiano is easily accessible by train, bus or private car plus Praiano has some of the best views on the coast.
If you are not afraid to explore the long windy roads along the Amalfi coast click here for the best car rental deals or which organized tours to take to see the coast.
Pro Tip: Rent a car for the day and drive along the Amalfi Coast! It is not as scary as some might suggest, in fact, the windy roads are what I loved the most.
Day 1: Praiano + Positano
Praiano and Positano’s pastel-colored buildings and secret coves have seduced everyone that has laid eyes on the coast.
Post up in one of the most famous hotels on the Amalfi Coast, the 58-room Le Sirenuse or the 25 room Hotel Onda Verde which is nestled along the rugged coastline overlooking the sea among olive and pine trees, oleanders and bougainvilleas narrow steps leading to the sea.
Start with Praiano, where you will see picture-perfect sights from the beach to colorful houses clinging to a mountainside.
Rows of boutique stores offering custom-made linen dresses, handmade sandals, indulge in pizza and fresh gelato while you wait on your custom shoes to be made.
Once you’ve wrapped up shopping which can easily last hours I suggest making reservations at splurge-worthy dinner at the Michelin-starred eatery, Zass.
The views of Positano and Praiano are absolutely beautiful and the food is just as amazing as the views so Zass should definitely be on your culinary bucketlist.
Day 2 – The Isle of Capri Itinerary
A trip to the Amalfi Coast without exploring Capri and the Grottos is a wasted trip. Capri is the shining star of the Amalfi Coast and is synonymous with the rich and famous and it is easily accessible from the towns along Amalfi coast.
Capri is is a popular day trip destination for those who are staying in Praiano and Positano but it is not a bad idea if you can afford to stay on the island to do so but it can get pretty expensive.
Capri has been visited by everyone including Emperor Tiberius and Jackie Onassis but I repeat DO NOT be like me and get carried away with shopping because for a quick moment I thought I was Beyonce and the hubby Jay Z.
How To Get To Capri
You can get to Capri by ferry, smaller public boats, or rent a private charter boat. Most visitors take the ferry so take look at the ferry schedule and check the times based on where you are coming from and please note the last ferry leaves Capri at 6:00 p.m. so do not be late or you will be left.
The schedule does change based on time of year so please make sure you have your times correct.
- Positano: 30 minutes/~20 Euro – $22.16
- Amalfi: 50 minutes/ ~23 Euro – $25.48
- Sorrento: 20 minutes/~20 Euro – $22.16
- Naples: 60 minutes/ ~22 Euro – $24.37
- Salerno: 120 minutes/~25 Euro – $38.78
What To See in Capri
If you want to see some of the most amazing views Capri has to offer I suggest going to Villa San Michele. Villa San Michele was built in the early 20th century by Axel Munthe, a Swedish physician.
Today Villa San Michele is a museum and Swedish cultural institute that was named one of the Top 10 gardens in Italy. (Ticket cost: €7).
Top Things To See In Capri:
- Augustus Gardens
- Villa San Michele
- Faraglioni Rocks
1. Blue Grotto a “Must See”
The Blue Grotto is a total tourist trap but who cares! If you are visiting Amalfi you should spend the $15 or whatever it is to go to this cave!
You will get tired of telling people you didn’t see the blue grottos if you don’t spend the hour or so checking them out.
The Blue Grotto was on the top of my bucket list as it should be on the top of yours: The grotto is a cave located just off the sea, where the water turns a dazzling and luminescent color of blue.
You can arrange a tour at your hotel and I suggest booking in advance.
2. Inside The Blue Grotto
The Blue Grotto is a cave inside the side of a mountain and can only be reached by squeezing through a narrow opening.
Once we began to enter the Grotto we had lay down but after we entered a calm came over us and the water is illuminated by the sunlight outside of the Grotto.
We spent about 5 min inside the Grotto. Again, Is it a tourist trap? Yes! Should you go anyway? Yes, why not?
3. Augustus Gardens
After you had enough time wandering around town and getting a feel for Capri it is time to head to a few noteworthy attractions.
First up are the Augustus Gardens. Here you will be able to walk through a garden filled with a variety of different plants and flowers, as well as take in some spectacular water views of the Faraglioni Rocks out in the distance.
It really is just a beautiful place to relax and enjoy.
4. Villa San Michele
After grabbing some lunch around the area next up is Anacapri, a bit west of the Capri town. To get there is pretty simple – you can either hop on a bus from near the Piazzetta or grab a taxi.
It should only take about 15 minutes to make the drive. The first thing you will do when you get to Anacapri is walk to Villa San Michele.
Once the home to Swedish physician Axel Munthe, it is now open to the public to explore. You can spend time roaming around the estate, which includes the main villa, gardens, terraces, artwork and some more great views.
It will cost 8 Euro to enter San Michele and it is definitely worth it.
Day Three – Day Trip To Pompeii
Don’t miss Pompeii if you are visiting Southern Italy. The town/city of Pompeii dates back to 500BC. From the arenas to the people frozen in time, it’s just amazing!
The Roman town of Pompeii was destroyed in 79AD when the volcano of Vesuvius erupted, causing the town to be wiped out and buried under ash.
If you are a history buff like my hubby visiting Pompeii is the closest you will get to traveling back in time and tracing the exact steps as the ancient Romans.
How To Get To Pompeii
It’s extremely easy to reach Pompeii from Praiano. I suggest purchasing a tour from Viator and take the hour bus ride from your hotel to Pompeii.
The bus picked us up directly in front of Hotel Onda Verde and we were able to relax and enjoy the views of Amalfi but be prepared for the windy roads because those buses hug the edges of those cliffs without any guard rails.
Guided Tour vs. On your Own
We took a guided tour because we wanted to really understand and learn all the secrets of Pompeii. We walked the ancient Roman streets to see the structures that have been preserved under ashes from Mt. Vesuvius.
Our tour guide, Benedetto, was amazingly knowledgeable. A Ph.D. archaeologist who actually works in Pompeii during the week, he brought a practitioner’s perspective to his narrative and was able to point out numerous things that are not normally covered in a standard tour.
Group Tours in Pompeii
Group tours can be an excellent way to see Pompeii, and there are many tour companies that organize trips to Pompeii.
I suggest taking a private tour vs a group tour because that any given time there were easily 25,000 tourists the day in late May. I doubt very seriously all of those folk paid for a group tour.
If you decide to take a group tour you need to understand it might be 50 to 100 people in your tour and they are walking and talking fast and you will most likely be in the very back not hearing one word. I suggest doing your own and pay for a personalized tour.
Also, the side “streets” in the Park are narrow, and you’ll be blocking the street if you try and stick close to the Guide. Some larger groups left their trash behind and their Guide said nothing about it. And we were nearly run over a few times.
The Heat In Pompeii
I have to tell you Pompeii gets extremely hot! I don’t mean regular hot but the sun feels like it is sitting directly over Pompeii.
Finally, make sure you wear shoes that are made for traveling! This is not the time to be cute – the Roman cobblestones and pavements will kill you if the sun doesn’t kill you first.
Day Four – Amalfi Coast Itinerary By Car
After a lavish breakfast at Hotel Onda Verde, I suggest renting a convertible, letting the top down and just get lost on the scenic drive to Amalfi. The views along the coast are unbelievable.
Amalfi is the largest town along the Amalfi Coast located halfway between Salerno and Sorrento.
If you are vacationing in Amalfi during the late spring or summer you will enjoy beach hopping from Amalfi to the town of Atrani which is a small fishing village whose beauty froze in time from its covered passageways and quaint homes carved into the cliffs.
We decided to spend the day exploring Positano and slowly taking in the scenery of the romantic and colorful small towns that sit along the coast enjoying the smells and taste of local limoncello, ceramics and of course linens.
If you are in Italy, you might as well learn how to cook as the Italians do so please sign up for cooking lessons through Viator and learn simple but yet delicious southern Italian dishes.
Cooking classes typically prepare regional appetizers, first and second courses, and a dessert.
If you are not interested in the cooking classes and just want to eat pizza, pasta, drink limoncello or just sip on a glass of wine that is ok as well.
We wandered down side streets, alleys, and stairways to uncover beautiful views and sipped on Limoncello while I snuck in a bit of shopping.
After shopping all day and exploring the coast take a break and grab a slice of pizza before continuing on your exploration of the coast.
Stop by the Museum of Paper, Museo della Carta, which is housed in a 13th-century mill, take a hike through Valle dei Mulini, where you will pass beautiful waterfalls along the hike.
For dinner, take a seat on the terrace of Lido Azzurro, which hovers over the port and enjoy super fresh fish, shrimp scampi or lobster. After dinner and on your drive back to Praiano stop by the small village of Conca dei Marini, home to the shell-shaped Santa Rosa sfogliatelle pastry.
Day Five -Ravello
Ravello is home to Italy’s second-oldest music festival, held in the summer months which is when Amalfi is the most crowded but it is a glamorous hideaway in the hills. Ravello is less touristy Positano but well worth the day trip.
Once one of the largest and most expensive villas on the Amalfi Coast, the Moorish-style Villa Rufolo, built by a merchant family in the 13th century, is now home to gardens as impressive as Versailles.
If you decided to take a day trip to Ravello park your car and rent a bike for a few hours and cruise the vineyards of Maria Cuomo where you can indulge in a tour and tasting.
After five days of exploring the beautiful towns along the Amalfi Coast, we decided not to stay out too late spent our last night hanging out on our balcony admiring at the amazing views of Praiano, Italy while drinking Vodka tonics, Limoncello and playing Uno!
Not the regular Limoncello but Crema Limoncello! It is so creamy and delicious!
What I loved Most About Amalfi
Lemons and More Lemons
I was in absolute awe of the lemons in Amalfi!! Lemons everywhere.
I can’t think of a better way to end our trip.
If you find one of the towns really resonated with you, you can take this time to revisit one the towns or do like we did which was nothing.
Your five-day Amalfi Coast itinerary is best planned but make sure you leave time for unplanned adventures.
5 Drop Dead Stunning Hotels On The Amalfi Coast
Italy’s Amalfi Coast looks almost mythical—the dizzyingly high coastal roads, the sweet-smelling lemon groves and colorful villages that cascade down cliffsides towards the sea.
The Amalfi Coast has some of the most gorgeous hotels and many are built in former palazzos and Include Michelin-starred restaurants, glamorous pool scenes and unparalleled ocean views. Below are my top picks for the best hotels on the Amalfi Coast.
1. Hotel Onda Verde, Praiano
If you, like me, you want luxury accommodations in Praiano – look no further than Hotel Onda Verde. This boutique hotel is perched on the side of a mountain, overlooking the Mediterranean Sea. Hotel Onda Verde is perfect for couples!
The views are breathtaking, the free breakfast was great and there was not a lot of tourists in this part of the Amalfi Coast.
2. Hotel Santa Caterina, Amalfi
Couples walking hand-in-hand through citrus groves and terraced gardens. A 1904 villa, dripping with bougainvillea, whose rooms are filled with family heirlooms, local antiques, and balconies with sweeping views.
Two glass elevators that drop 10 stories through bedrock to a private beach and saltwater swimming pool. Hotel Santa Caterina know each guest by name and provides that personal touch that not many hotels still provide today.
Seat yourself at the thatched-roof open-air restaurant, Al Mare, which overlooks the pool and relax or people watch.
Check Prices for Santa Caterina in Amalfi, Italy
3. Le Sirenuse, Positano
Le Sirenuse is a dream come true and the photos just doesn’t due this property justice. This 58-room family-run palazzo is just as romantic and luxurious as it was back in the day.
There are colorful handmade tile floors, curated antiques, Tyrrhenian Sea balcony views and gorgeous restaurant on the property.
Check Prices for Le Sirenuse in Positano, Italy
4. Belmond Hotel Caruso, Ravello
This former 11th-century palazzo turned 43-room stunner, the hideout of choice for stars like Jackie Kennedy and Humphrey Bogart, occupies the highest point in Ravello—on a limestone bluff with unobstructed views of the sea.
Every angle here is Insta-worthy, from the building’s colorful frescoed ceilings and Moorish arches to the rooftop infinity pool, whose waters appear to melt into the horizon.
The guestrooms are just as eye-catching, with their mosaic-tiled floors, ancient stone walls, and private gardens.
RELATED: 9 Things Not To Miss in Pompeii
Check Prices for Belmond Hotel Caruso in Ravello, Italy
5. Capri Tiberio Palace, Capri
Milanese designer Giampiero Panepinto worked a miracle when he transformed this former Marriott into one of Capri’s most fabulous stays.
Every detail at Capri Tiberio Palace appears as if it was always so, from the soothing blue-yellow-coral color palette, majolica tiled floors, and travertine bathrooms in its 60 guest rooms to the various vintage statement pieces scattered throughout the hotel.
Hit the mojito bar on the roof deck before dinner at Terrazza Tiberio.
Check Prices for Capri Tiberio Palace in Island of Capri, Italy
Where To Eat & Drink in Praiano
- Voce ‘e note grill & sunset bar+ Best Sunset Bar
- Il Pirata Restaurant + Best Restaurant with a view
- Villa Corallium + Best 5 Star Restaurant
- Criscito’S + Best Hidden Gem
Click Here to Watch My Video
Tips For Visiting The Amalfi Coast
When To Visit The Amalfi Coast
The best time to visit the Amalfi Coast is in the spring and fall, specifically in May and September. During these months it’s less crowded and temperatures very comfortable, with highs in the 70s and 80s.
While summer may sound like the ideal option, remember both domestic and international travelers flock in droves to the tiny towns that line the Amalfi Coast, making impossible to really explore the coast.
Winter travel is great if you are on a budget, but the downside is most of the cafes and restaurants close for the season.
I also recommend the fall months as a great time to visit because the weather in the Amalfi Coast is still relatively warm.
How To Get To Amalfi Coast
The Amalfi Coast is located to the South of Naples. The main and closest connection points are Naples, Salerno, and Sorrento.
The first city you will reach is Positano and continuing along the Highway 163 you reach Praiano, Amalfi, Minori, Maiori, Cetara and Vietri Sul Mare.
Rome To Amalfi
Traveling from Rome to Amalfi Coast can be a very long and exhausting day so make sure you plan appropriately.
If your plane lands in the afternoon, consider the option of spending a night in Rome or Naples before you travel to the Amalfi Coast.
Rome Airport To Amalfi
From the airport take the Leonardo Express, train to the city’s main Roma Termini railway station. From here you can take a train to Naples or Salerno
There are different types of trains from Rome to Salerno when you are deciding when To Visit The Amalfi Coast
- Eurostar Freccia Rossa (TAV) is definitely the most comfortable option but also the most expensive. In about two hours you’ll be at the station of Salerno. Trains leave every hour for this category and they are on time so do not be late! It costs about 40€.
- Intercity: are mid-range trains and connect Rome to Salerno in about three hours. It costs about 20€.
- Interregional: trains that stop at every station and every town. It takes about 4 hours to go from Rome to Naples. The ticket costs 10,00 Euro but I would only recommend taking the Interregional if you are on a really tight budget.
Once you arrive at Salerno Station from Rome, follow the directions to Tourist Port, near “Piazza della Condordia” (it is almost directly in front of the train station) and from there take the ferry to Amalfi or other towns along the coast.
Everything was smooth sailing for us because we were able to spend the first two days of our trip in Rome doing the typical tourist stuff.
You will be in Amalfi in about 40 minutes once get on the ferry. In Amalfi, you will find the bus stop SITA headed to all destinations on the Amalfi Coast.
How To Get To Amalfi From Naples
If you land at Naples Capodichino, to reach the Amalfi Coast you’ll have to get to the town of Sorrento.
- Curreri bus to Sorrento immediately outside Terminal 1. It costs about 10€ and you pay directly to the driver.
- Buses to the center of Naples “Alibus”, to be taken outside Terminal 1, which takes you to Naples Central Station (Piazza Garibaldi). The ticket costs about 3€ and can be purchased directly on board.
Once at the station you have two choices:
- If you want to reach Sorrento, take the Circumvesuviana, the local train that is situated on the lower level of the station. From there, take the train that in about an hour will take you to Sorrento. Once you reach the local train station to Sorrento, you have to take one of the SITA buses that connect the Sorrento Peninsula to the Amalfi Coast.
- If you want to reach the Amalfi Coast towns of Maiori, Minori, Ravello or Salerno, take a regional train to Salerno which will take about 40 minutes, and from there take a ferry from the tourist port or Sita bus from the main station.
When Not To Visit the Amalfi Coast
The Amalfi Coast is not at its best in summer, when coastal towns are crowded with tourist and the heat is unbearable. The optimum times are May-June and September-October.
Visiting in winter is an appealing option—the temperature remains comfortable, rain is relatively rare, and luxury hotel rates are at their lowest.
However, be aware that some hotels and restaurants will not be open—always call ahead or check hotel websites just to make sure.
Getting Around the Praiano, Italy
Planes, trains, and automobiles, ferries, buses, and even your feet. On the Amalfi Coast, the options are endless for exploring the towns along the coast.
Let the Top Down and Rent A Car:
Have you ever imagined traveling up the Amalfi Coast with the top down, scarf blowing in the wind, and oversized shades keeping the sun out your face? Traveling by car is still the most romantic way to get around the Amalfi Coast.
You can rent a car at Naples International Airport or opt for something more lavish from the Positano Car Service. They offer luxury vehicles will ensure you’re driving up the coast looking like a million dollars.
Make sure to check with your hotel before renting a car because most will have their own private car or boat services to shuttle you between towns.
Amalfi Coast Towns
First-time visitors to the Amalfi Coast are often confused and unsure where to stay. Take your time and research each city and decide what is important to you when exploring the Amalfi Coast because there are so many things to do in Italy.
We picked Praiano because the views are just as beautiful as Positano but you will pay half of the cost for a room.
- Positano is popular for its central location, its restaurants, and beauty. Despite having 5-star restaurants and charm many find the peak season crowds, prices, and stairs to be a bit overwhelming.
- If you are on your honeymoon and money is not an option I suggest grabbing a top-floor suite at Le Sirenuse.
- Ravello is an enchanting village perched on a ridge high above Amalfi. Most people find Ravello out of the way and only stay for the day.
- Sorrento is convenient for visitors that want to check out of the small town along the coast and Sorrento is a quick trip to Pompeii for those that want to see the city frozen in time. It also marks the start of the 43-mile infamously winding coastal road that runs to Salerno.
- Amalfi is the Amalfi Coast’s largest city, but it still feels quaint and intimate. It is convenient for excursions to Capri and the Grottos. Amalfi is romantically situated at the mouth of a deep gorge and its Duomo is impressive.
Related Post: 7 Things To Do In Florence, Italy
Things Not to Miss on the Amalfi Coast
Highlights of Passports and Grub Amalfi Coast travel guide include:
• Touring the Villa Cimbrone
• Museo Correale (Neapolitan arts housed in an 18th-century villa)
• The Sant’Antonino Festival
• Sagra del Tonno
• Africana Club (fish swim beneath its glass dance floor)
• Shopping at Antonello della Mura
What To Know Before You Plan Your Trip To Amalfi
Flying to Italy can be very expensive and hotels aren’t much better so imagine having everything already paid for before you even get on the plane.
Check out my post on Travel Hacking Tips to help you plan your trip.
Delta Vacations allow you to put down a 10% deposit on the total cost of your trip which will include airfare hotel and rental car.
After you make your initial downpayment you can pay as little or as much per month as you like as long as the entire trip is paid off 30 days prior to your departure date.
By the end of each day, my feet were so sore and I could barely walk because all of the towns are built into the side of cliffs so what seems like a short walk will turn into the hike of a lifetime.
Language Barrier. Praiano and the coastal towns have English speaking staff, therefore, we did not encounter any language barriers whatsoever.
Conclusion To My Amalfi Coast Itinerary
Every nook and cranny of this beautiful coastline could easily be called romantic and the perfect place to reconnect with your spouse and remember why you fell in love.
Your first must-see is the Duomo, the cathedral dominates the main piazza of the town. There is a small fee to enter and see Roman sarcophagi in the cloisters, beautiful religious artifacts, and you will also be able to pay your respect to a saint who is kept in the cathedral. The Duomo is a nice getaway from the crowds.
It is easy to leave a piece of your heart behind after visiting this remarkable stretch of coastline in southern Italy. If you’ve been dreaming of visiting the Amalfi Coast its time to stop dreaming and figure out when to visit Amalfi Coast.
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