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Insiders Travel Guide to Italy’s Amalfi Coast — Best Seaside Towns, Top Luxury Hotels and Yummiest Restaurants

The Amalfi Coast has held an enduring appeal for visitors to the stunning Italian region.

Throughout the ages, its captivating beauty and pleasant climate have been highly sought after by many, especially the wealthy Roman nobility who established their luxurious villas there centuries ago.

The area’s alluring charm continues to bring in tourists from around the world today, ensuring that it remains one of Italy’s most desirable destinations for prime real estate investments.

Today, the majestic mountains and towering cliffs of the coastline remain dotted with breathtaking historic houses perched high above the glimmering crystalline waters, making it one of the most sought-after tourist destinations in the world.

This spectacular region is also recognised by UNESCO as a World Heritage site due to its unique natural beauty and cultural significance.

If you’re looking for an incredible place to visit, the towns of Positano, Ravello and Amalfi in Italy should be at the top of your list. These three destinations are some of the most popular tourist spots in the area and attract hundreds of thousands of visitors each year.

Whether you’re after stunning architecture, beautiful scenery or a vibrant atmosphere, these towns have it all. So why not join them and experience everything they have to offer?

You won’t regret it!

How to Get to the Amalfi Coast

The Amalfi Coast is accessible (and its area can be explored) in multiple ways: by car, boat, train, ferry or even bicycle. Getting to the Amalfi Coast can be done either by land or sea; once fully arrived exploring it further can be done through a variety of means.

By Head to Salerno, which is situated on the Italian railway network with fast-paced and regional trains that travel through Rome and other locations. Once there, you can board a local train to Vietri sul Mare – the starting town of the spectacular Amalfi Coast – in about 10 minutes.

Take this opportunity to explore one of Italy’s most beautiful places!

Sorrento is conveniently accessible from Naples by taking the Circumvesuviana, a narrow-gauge railway that runs through the outskirts of the city. The journey time is approximately 70 minutes, and this mode of transportation provides an ideal way for tourists to explore this popular region in Italy.

Ferries provide a convenient way to travel along the picturesque coastline from Sorrento, Salerno, and Vietri sul Mare.

Travelmar runs regular services between Salerno and Positano, calling at all the major towns en route. For those wishing to make a direct journey from Naples to either Positano or Amalfi, Alilauro operates a ferry service that is ideal for this purpose.
If you’d prefer to skip using the ferries, chartering a boat is always an option. In any town around the coast of Italy, there are plenty of companies that offer private trips and excursions. If you’re looking to plan ahead before your trip, Positano Boats and Lucibello are two great companies that can arrange everything for you.

The Amalfi Coast is renowned as one of the most iconic road trip routes in the world, boasting spectacular views from its winding roads up high on the cliffside.

If you’re considering driving along this beautiful coastline, car rental companies can be found both in Salerno and Sorrento, although it’s often more economical to opt for a local company.

A word of caution: If you are driving, be aware that the road is quite narrow in some parts and full of switchback curves which may necessitate reversing around. Furthermore, on weekends and during the summer months there can be an excessive amount of traffic. Therefore, it is important to remain vigilant while navigating this route.

However, if you decide to travel midweek and outside the high season, you will find that the traffic is much lighter.

Bear in mind, however, that going by road will take considerably longer than taking a ferry – for example it would take at least an hour from Positano to Amalfi compared to just 25 minutes when travelling by sea.

For those traveling the length of the Amalfi Coast, a private transfer can be arranged through most hotels or Sita Sud buses offer service along that route as well.

Travelers departing from either Rome or Naples now have the option to take advantage of one of the new cost-effective shared shuttle services, such as Positano Shuttle. This service departs from both international airports and key railway stations, providing a direct link between these locations and Positano.

Book it early; regardless of the type of transport you select for your journey, advance planning is important for stress-free travel.

Best Amalfi Coastal Towns to Visit


If you’ve ever had the pleasure of viewing the Amalfi Coast on Instagram, it’s likely that you’ve also come across one of its most beautiful towns: Positano. Its distinct and breathtaking landscape is comprised of brilliantly-colored homes cascading down the cliffside surrounding a small bay, juxtaposed with towering mountain peaks looming in the background. It truly is a postcard-worthy view.

Travelers to Positano will discover a plethora of shops offering traditional, locally-made linen clothes and more vintage, tailored styles. However, the town is renowned for its handcrafted sandals; so make sure you visit Nanà – where Vincenzo Ruocco creates custom sandals while you wait – with assistance from his son Lorenzo and wife Anna!

When venturing to Italy, why not take the opportunity to learn how to cook like an Italian chef? At the renowned Buca di Bacco hotel, visitors can join in on cooking classes which are held every day.

Here you’ll be able to help professional chefs prepare some of the most delicious regional appetizers and main courses; a truly unique experience that’s sure to make your stay even more memorable.

Positano is a breathtaking coastal town that recently welcomed one of its most remarkable attractions: Mar, the Roman Archeological Museum. Located beneath the bell tower, this incredible museum opened to the public in 2018 and features an awe-inspiring Roman villa.

Although only one room has been fully excavated so far, it is certainly worth visiting due to its spectacular frescoes and vibrant colors. A visit to Mar will undoubtedly be an unforgettable experience for anyone who relishes uncovering ancient history.

Positano is the endpoint for one of Italy’s most spectacular and breathtakingly beautiful hiking trails. Known as the Path of the Gods, this gentle five-hour hike takes you on a remarkable journey that winds its way through majestic mountains high above the shimmering sea.

It starts from Bomerano, located west of Amalfi, and ends at Nocelle, just above Positano. This awe-inspiring trail will leave you with memories that last a lifetime.

Where to Stay in Positano

Book a room at the luxurious, four-star Hotel Poseidon and experience Positano’s renowned bohemian flair in all its glory. The family-owned property has been open since the 1950s and still offers visitors a laid-back, homely atmosphere to this day. Make your stay memorable by immersing yourself in the vibrant charm of this stunning location.

Perched atop the bustling center of Positano, these vintage-style rooms are spacious and provide stunning vistas of both the town and sea from their private balconies. Although it is removed from the hustle and bustle of tourists, it only takes a short walk to be amongst all the action of this picturesque Italian village.

If you’re looking for a unique experience right in the heart of it all, try the enchanting Hotel Palazzo Murat. Although it doesn’t boast the stunning views that can be found at some of the more luxurious hotels, its sizeable private courtyard is a beautiful place to relax with an evening cocktail.

The area is lushly planted with palms and fragrant blooming vines creating a romantic atmosphere for candlelit drinks.

Le Sirenuse is an iconic Positano landmark, tucked away on the cliffs across from the Poseidon and slightly lower down. It’s a sight to behold, with its stunningly beautiful tiled walls and vibrant lemon trees adding a splash of color to the area. Moreover, there is plenty of art dotting the property that further enhances its already picturesque atmosphere.

Where to Eat and Drink in Positano

At Michelin-starred restaurant Zass in Positano, the renowned chef Alois Vanlangenaeker artfully crafts culinary creations using fresh ingredients sourced from the property’s own gardens and local farms, as well as pristine seafood freshly caught each day.

His unique dishes are a testament to his passion for creating delicious meals with an eye for aesthetics.

Il Tridente at Hotel Poseidon may not boast a Michelin star, as the owners have chosen to keep the atmosphere relaxed and familial. However, its exceptional cuisine is worthy of recognition.

Guests are invited to indulge in local dishes such as the incomparable shrimp carpaccio, served on exquisite crockery hand-painted in Vietri sul Mare. This unique culinary experience ensures guests will be delighted by their visit to Il Tridente.

Head to Da Vincenzo for a taste of traditional Italian cuisine. This family-owned restaurant has been around since 1958, offering an array of regional seafood and pasta dishes that you won’t find anywhere else. Among the many delicious options are braised beef rigatoni and chargrilled octopus; both are sure to tantalize your taste buds.

Le Tre Sorelle, an affordable dining destination situated on the picturesque beachfront, has been pleasing customers with its delicious traditional Amalfitano cuisine since 1953.

This eatery offers diners a consistently good experience and is widely regarded as one of the best places to enjoy authentic Italian dishes in a relaxed atmosphere at reasonable prices.


Of all the picturesque coastal towns located south of Sorrento, Amalfi is by far the most popular among tourists.

This is mainly because it serves as a major hub for various types of transportation such as buses, boats, and ferries that travel between numerous islands and cities in the area. As a result, it has become an essential stop for anyone looking to explore this region of Italy.

The throngs of people can often be daunting, but if you manage to make a trip to the ancient Duomo di Amalfi situated in the town, it will be worth your while.

This ninth-century church is one of Italy’s most remarkable gems and features an eclectic mix of architectural styles such as Arab-Norman, Romanesque, Byzantine and Rococo designs. A visit to this grand edifice is sure to leave an indelible impression on any traveller who takes the opportunity to witness its magnificence.

Once a powerful maritime republic in the Italian peninsula, Amalfi used to compete with Venice and Genoa for supremacy. While modern-day tourists may find a plethora of shops selling identical lemon soaps, limoncello and Amalfi tea towels, there are still plenty of fascinating remnants from its historic past just waiting to be discovered.

The Museo della Carta is an institution devoted to the unique and ancient handmade paper industry of Amalfi. Located inside a 13th-century paper factory, it has been in continuous operation since the Middle Ages, serving as a testament to the craftsmanship and innovation of generations past.

The museum provides visitors with insight into this timeless art form and serves as an important reminder of both Amalfi’s rich history and its contribution to modern advancements in papermaking.

Of course, Amalfi lemons are abundant and ubiquitous, but the best way to truly appreciate them is by experiencing the unique Amalfi Lemon Experience. The Aceto family have been cultivating their lemon groves in the verdant hills just above town for a remarkable six generations, providing an exquisite glimpse into local tradition and culture.

Visitors to the farm are invited to take part in a variety of activities, including limited tours of the lemon groves, picnics and cooking classes with the family.
These experiences provide guests with a delightful opportunity to appreciate the stunning beauty of nature while gaining an insight into the demanding yet essential labor required by farmers as they cultivate their crops on mountain terraces, all done by hand.

Where to Stay in Amalfi

Perched atop the breathtaking cliffs of Amalfi, the NH Grand Hotel Convento di Amalfi offers a truly remarkable experience to its guests. This stunning 13th-century monastery has been converted into a luxurious white palace and is situated just a five-minute walk away from the city center.

The hotel boasts an impressive range of amenities, including two restaurants, a pool area, a gym and even a spa – offering true relaxation for all who visit. For those traveling by car, there is also on-site parking available allowing you to explore the region with ease.

Hotel Santa Caterina is a perfect place to escape the hustle and bustle of summer crowds.

This exclusive property offers a beach club with an inviting pool and sun deck boasting stunning views of the town. The limited number of rooms and suites, many featuring small terraces with spectacular sea vistas, create an atmosphere that is both secluded and intimate.

Borgo Santandrea is the latest addition to the neighbourhood, having opened its doors in 2021.

Situated just over two miles away from town, it is located near Conca dei Marini and offers an innovative, contemporary interpretation of classic Amalfi style. It boasts a remarkable elevator that takes guests down the sheer cliff face to a secluded beach with its very own restaurant.

What to Eat and Drink in Amalfi

At the luxurious Grand Hotel Convento di Amalfi, Kyushu offers a remarkable respite from the typical Italian cuisine, with Chef Julian Marmol at the helm. His delicious culinary creations feature locally-sourced Mediterranean ingredients, which he artfully combines to create modern and inspiring Japanese plates that will tantalize any palate.

For over a century, Amalfi locals have been patronizing Trattoria da Gemma and there’s undoubtedly a good reason for that.

A delightful afternoon could easily be spent savoring the delicious offerings on their tasting menu, featuring fresh ingredients sourced from local providers. Delicacies such as tuna carpaccio, roasted provola cheese, and homemade pasta will ensure you experience an unforgettable culinary journey.

Be sure to indulge in some of the local pastries when visiting Amalfi. Pasticceria Pansa, founded back in 1830, is one of the most renowned bars in town. Delizia di Limone is a classic favorite among locals and tourists alike; it’s a heavenly combination of a sponge case filled with luscious lemon cream and topped off with an exquisite lemon sauce.


If you visit Ravello, perched high in the mountains above Amalfi, and don’t take the time to explore Villa Cimbrone’s magnificent gardens for one or two hours, then you are missing out on a truly unique experience.

It would be a shame to pass up the opportunity to traverse through this exquisite oasis of beauty and enchantment.

From Ravello’s magnificent central piazza, signs will guide you to the illustrious and historic gardens that form a part of an 11th-century palatial estate perched upon the stunning coastal cliffs.

It is no surprise that renowned writers such as the widely experienced Gore Vidal have declared it to be the most exquisite place they have ever seen in their travels.

Within the ancient heart of Ravello, one can find the magnificent Villa Rufolo, a breathtaking representation of regional 13th-century architecture. Its divine Italianate gardens offer spectacular views of the azure waters below and in summer, they become an outdoor auditorium for extraordinary concerts.

Where to Stay in Ravello

The Caruso–a Belmond Hotel with 50 rooms and suites boasting details such as vaulted ceilings and 18th-century frescoes–stands out amongst all Ravello accommodation due to its spectacular views of the coast, valleys, mountains, oceans, and ancient towns.

The awe-inspiring Hotel Villa Cimbrone is a 12th-century structure that sits atop the spectacular sea cliffs, surrounded by its renowned and majestic gardens.

This breathtaking building offers visitors an unforgettable experience and the opportunity to explore its history and atmosphere. With picturesque views of the Italian coastline, it truly is a remarkable place to visit.

Palazzo Avino exudes a classic, regal atmosphere. Its luxurious rooms and suites are adorned with 18th- and 19th-century furniture, ornate antique rugs, and plush heavy curtains. The hotel’s clubhouse is simply spectacular; it is constructed directly into the cliffside, complete with an onsite restaurant and bar that overlooks the pool area.

What to Eat and Drink in Ravello

Il Flauto di Pan, located in the stunning Hotel Villa Cimbrone, is one of the most sought-after eateries along the Amalfi Coast. Tourists from far and wide come to this majestic place just for a chance to savor its flavorful dishes; so much so that there’s usually a line up of people waiting for a table.

Chef Lorenzo Montoro is the masterful figure behind this prestigious Michelin-starred restaurant, sourcing only the freshest ingredients from the surrounding countryside to create his exquisite 10-course tasting menu.

Although it may be a bit pricey, you can enjoy unparalleled gastronomic delights as well as stunning vistas of the ocean from its garden terrace – making it truly worth every penny.

Piazza Vescovado, Ravello’s picturesque square, is the perfect spot to take a break and soak up the atmosphere. With its stunning cathedral towering above it, this tranquil space provides visitors with a pleasant respite from sightseeing.

An array of charming cafés line the perimeter of the plaza offering delicious Italian refreshments such as coffee, gelato, or granita for those looking to refuel or relax in the shade.

Vietri sul Mare

Sold all along the coast, Vietri’s brightly colored, hand-painted plates and bowls have their own museum outside town – Museo della Ceramica – dedicated to the tradition.

Strolling through the streets, you will be captivated and overwhelmed by a kaleidoscope of tiles – from donkey-shaped designs adorning each house number to magnificent portraits of saints painted over strips of tiles on walls, as well as intricate mattonelle tiles that have been embellished with traditional patterns for generations.

Solimene is the main manufacturer, located in a colossal warehouse store that looms over the town, with its exterior covered in tiles resembling those of a Gaudi building you might find in Barcelona. Its size and ornate design make it an unmistakable landmark throughout the region.

Mirkò is a modern artist selling high priced artwork internationally (New York) as well as smaller, more affordable tiles in his hometown shop. Taking Vietri tradition to new levels of creativity, his pieces cost thousands and are widely appreciated.

Where to Stay in Vietri sul Mare

No five-star hotels can be found in Vietri; its inhabitants are attuned to traditional hospitality. Hence, opting for a locally run bed-and-breakfast here gives the chance to experience authentic southern Italian gusto.

Located in the heart of Vietri Centro, two doors down from an iconic family ceramics shop, lies B&B Vietri Centro.

Expertly designed by owner Fausto Salsano in a remarkable 18th-century palazzo, this B&B is sure to add a special touch of charm and elegance to your stay. Every room is uniquely styled with pieces crafted by local artists and ceramicists; you cannot possibly go wrong choosing this lovely accommodation!

What to Eat and Drink in Vietri sul Mare

In Vietri, life centers around the majestic Belvedere, and there’s no better place to savor its beauty than Ristorante Sud Est.

This relaxed pizzeria offers a delicious selection of Neapolitan-style pizza, fresh seafood dishes and scrumptious pasta options. It is the perfect spot to enjoy a delightful meal while admiring the awe-inspiring view of the Belvedere.

Best Time to Visit the Amalfi Coast for Good Weather

The weather on the Amalfi Coast is at its most desirable in May, when it’s warm but still sufficiently cool to be able to explore the dizzying towns. During this period you can also witness wildflowers bursting into bloom along the roadside, making for a pleasant and picturesque sight.

September, June, and October are beautiful, as the sea is warm enough to enjoy a swim. Although popular among the tourists during July and August, the oppressive humidity adds to their too-hot conditions.

Best Time to Avoid the Crowds

It is important to bear in mind that the Amalfi Coast will always be somewhat crowded; however, if you visit during the midweek period in the months of May, April, and September – when prices tend to be lower – it will be much less busy. This is particularly true in the evenings when most day-trippers have already departed.

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