AN EPIC 5-DAY AMALFI COAST ITINERARY

The Amalfi Coast is one of the world’s most beautiful travel destinations. This coastal paradise is located in southern Italy just a short distance from Naples.

The whole area is brimming with blue water beaches, soaring mountain ranges, and idyllic villages. A 5-day Amalfi Coast itinerary gives you just enough time to explore and taste the beauty of one of Italy’s most magical destinations.

And while you are enjoying the area, make sure to experience the 8 essential things to do in the Amalfi Coast. 

Capri coast with boats

The Amalfi Coast is a very popular summer holiday destination that attracts tourists from around the world. This 50-kilometer stretch of coast is dotted with small towns and villages that are perfect for exploring.

Every Amalfi Coast town is different in its own way and offers something unique to explore. Once you visit you will surely understand why this is one of the worlds most popular travel destinations.

This 5 day Amalfi Coast itinerary covers the top places to visit and the best sights to see while exploring.  Use this post as a guide for your visits to the coast and prepare to fall in love with the coastal gems that make up this magical place.

5 DAY AMALFI COAST ITINERARY

Day 1: Positano

Positano is the gem of the Amalfi Coast. It is the most famous and visited village in this region and for good reason.

The city is famous for its pastel coloured houses, vivid blue water beach, and stunning views. Falling in love with Positano and its unmistakable charm is easy, and upon arrival you will be charmed.

This is the perfect first stop on your Amalfi Coast itinerary to start off strong in one of the coasts most famous places.

In addition to its beauty, there are also a ton of amazing things to do in Positano. Spending some time soaking up the warm Italian sun amongst the stunning scenery of Positano is almost dreamlike.

Homes with views on the Amalfi Coast

Positano is also the perfect place to explore and hike! The views of the city are stunning from different angles. Spending time exploring the city’s winding streets and colorful plazas is the perfect pastime.

If you are a hiker, don’t forget the Path of Gods hike that offers a beautiful panoramic view of the coast.

If you’re a foodie, even if you’re not, don’t miss savoring the amazing local delicacies at the best restaurants in Positano.

After exploring Positano’s winding streets and colorful plazas, head down to the main beach, Spiaggia Grande, to relax for the afternoon.

The black sand beach is one of the most popular spots with its stunning views of the Tyrrhenian sea and the pastel cliffs dotted with houses.

The main beach has several beach clubs with bars and restaurants, so you can get food and drinks without losing your spot.

As the afternoon winds down, take a short walk over to Music on the Rocks, a famous nightclub built into the cliffs overlooking Positano.

Dance the night away or sip drinks on the outdoor terrace. This is one of the best places to experience the energy and nightlife of Positano.

End the night at one of Positano’s seaside restaurants, like La Pergola, for dinner and drinks. Watching the sunset over the sea is the perfect way to cap off your first day in this beautiful Amalfi Coast town. Sit back and appreciate the twinkling lights on the cliffs after the sun goes down.

Try to catch the 9pm concert at Positano’s main church, Santa Maria Assunta, which will be lit up on the hillside. The concerts feature local musicians and are a favorite with visitors.

Afterward, stroll through Positano’s main streets and piazzas which come alive at night before retiring to your hotel.

Day 2: Amalfi & Ravello

Just a short distance from Positano is the beautiful city of Amalfi, and above that Ravello. Amalfi can be reached by car or by ferry from Positano. It takes about 20 minutes to get there. Amalfi is a colourful, historic coastal town with beautiful scenery. 

These cities are the perfect second day destination due to their close proximity and diverse offerings. Amalfi is located along the shoreline of the Amalfi Coast and Ravello is located high in the mountains above. Visiting both in one day is easy and perfect.

After exploring the winding streets of Amalfi and taking in the sights of the UNESCO-listed Duomo, make your way to the main beach to relax.

The beach here is less busy than in Positano making it the perfect place to let go and relax. It is located right in the heart of town, overlooked by colorful buildings and cliffs cascading down to the sea.

Stake out a spot on one of the sun beds and umbrellas available to rent and spend the afternoon swimming in the beautiful blue waters of the Tyrrhenian Sea.

The laidback atmosphere here is the perfect place to unwind after the hustle and bustle of Positano.

In addition to the lovely beach, the city is full of interesting architecture and gelato shops offering all kinds of tasty treats.

Amalfi coast view

When you’re ready for a change of scenery, hop on the public bus for the short ride up the cliffs to Ravello. The road journey offers spectacular views of the famous Amalfi Coast towns stacked up against the steep coastline.

Arriving in Ravello feels like stepping back in time to a more elegant era. Stroll through the peaceful gardens of Villa Rufolo, once home to Wagner, with their dazzling views of the sea hundreds of meters below.

Nearby Villa Cimbrone provides another quiet sanctuary. The Moorish architecture of Ravello’s villas and towers creates a romantic atmosphere unique on the coast.

Ravello is located 365 meters above Amalfi along the rugged cliffs of the region. It is quite different from all the other cities along the coast because it is not a beach side town.

It is a Moorish-style town that looks and feels like something from a Shakespearean play.

The best thing about Ravello is the cliff side gardens which offer spectacular views of the coast and Tyrrhenian Sea.  If you are looking for a romantic Italian experience along the Amalfi Coast, head to Ravello.

As the day draws to a close, make sure to catch the sunset over the Gulf of Salerno before descending back down to Amalfi for dinner at a seaside restaurant on Marina Grande beach.

Toast to another beautiful day on the Amalfi Coast and the memories made exploring these two gems.

Book your stay at the Locanda Costa D’Amalfi and enjoy an amazing view!

Day 3: Sorrento

About one hour from Positano sits the beautiful town of Sorrento, Italy. After two days in Positano and Amalfi, head to Sorrento to explore the western side of the coast.

Among Sorrento’s many advantages is that it is one of the less expensive places to stay in this region.  That’s why you may want to secure accommodations in Sorrento and use the town as a base to explore the other sights on day trips.

Sorrento is not quite as famous as Positano but every bit as beautiful. Here you will find imposing villas perched on the sides of cliffs,  vineyards, bright lemon groves, and breathtaking cliff side views.

Sorrento is ideal for delving deep into Italy’s rich and extensive culture because the town is known as the birthplace, and main producer, of several classic traditional Italian products such as the popular lemon liquor Limoncello.

Admire the historic architecture flanking the piazza before sampling your first limoncello, the tart local lemon liquor.

Stroll down to Marina Grande, Sorrento’s fishing port, to see fishermen bringing in the daily catch. The smell of seafood wafts from the harborside restaurants.

After lunch, head up into the hills on a short walk to take in panoramic views over the Bay of Naples. The vistas of Mount Vesuvius and the island of Capri in the distance are spectacular.

Spend the rest of your afternoon getting lost in Sorrento’s narrow streets lined with shops selling limoncello, olive oil, ceramics, and leather goods. Pop into small churches and lively local bars.

As dinnertime nears, snag a table at Ristorante Bagni Delfino along the main marina for fresh seafood dishes paired with local wines.

After dinner, consider taking a night walking tour to learn about Sorrento’s history and culture. Stops include the Cathedral of St. Antonino and the Sedile Dominova, an historic meeting hall.

End the night listening to live music in one of the many lively bars in town. Sorrento’s central location makes it easy to take day trips to Positano, Amalfi, and the island of Capri during your stay.

Sorento promenade on the Amalfi Coast

A highlight of visiting Sorrento is sampling this sweet drink while enjoying the view from a cliffside café with the town’s pastel colored homes as a back drop.

Day 4: Coastal Boat Tour

One of the best ways to see the Amalfi Coast is with a boat tour. There is a good selection of tours offering an assortment of adventures.

From casual sailing with wine and cheese, to speedboat adventures to nearby islands, to sunset cruises,  you will be spoiled for choice.

One of the advantages of a boat tours is that you can explore much of the coast in a short amount of time. The view of the coast from the sea is stunning.

A full-day boat tour is a highlight of any Amalfi Coast trip. Along the way, your captain will point out top sights like the picturesque fishing village of Cetara and the famous Fiordo di Furore fjord.

Glimpse celebrity villas tucked away on the cliffs and steer into sea caves like the Emerald Grotto. Many tours make a stop on the island of Capri to see the iconic Blue Grotto, the bright blue sea cave only accessible by rowboat.

After gaping at the magical colors, spend free time wandering Capri Town’s upscale shops and cafes. Grab lunch at a seaside restaurant before heading back along the coast.

One advantage of seeing the Amalfi Coast by boat is the ability to stop and swim in secluded coves and beaches. Bring your swimsuit to take a dip in the crystal clear Tyrrhenian Sea or walk the white sand beach of a fishing village few tourists reach.

As you cruise the coastline, admire the villages stacked high up the cliffs inaccessible by road. In the afternoon, your boat may stop in Amalfi where you can grab a table at a beachside cafe for coffee and people watching.

Or stay onboard and sunbathe on the deck, soaking up the Mediterranean sunshine. Later, toast your incredible day on the water with a limoncello spritz as the sun sets behind the cliffs.

End your day back in your home base of Positano or Sorrento, relaxed after a day at sea exploring the gems of the Amalfi Coast from an entirely new perspective.

Sailing the Gulf of Salerno

Boat tours are an efficient way to see more of the coast, particularly the less touristy towns.  You are more likely to discover hidden gems,  secret coves and a more authentic side of the region from a boat.

Enjoying the coast from the water is one of the top things to do in the area and a perfect way to enjoy the beauty that is the Amalfi Coast.

Day 5: Capri

The island of Capri is a luxurious oasis just off the Amalfi Coast making for the perfect day trip.

Capri is a small island made up of rugged mountains, high-end shops, and luxurious hotels and villas. Although not technically a part of the Amalfi Coast, while here, a visit is essential.

This is one of the most popular tourist destinations for the rich and famous in all of Europe.  You’ll be surprised by the mega yachts and imposing mansions visible in this playground for the rich.

Although captivating Capri offers plenty of places and attractions designed specifically for the wealthy, there is also an ample selection of activities for the more financially challenged.

Arrive to Marina Grande and take the funicular up to Capri Town to begin exploring.

Walk under the famous Capri Town archways and admire the high-end shops selling designer shoes and bespoke Italian suits.Make your way to the gardens of Augustus, founded by Emperor Augustus in the 1st century AD.

The cliffside gardens provide stunning panoramic views of the distant Amalfi Coast towns along the sea. Nearby Villa Jovis was the former residence of Tiberius during Roman times.

After grabbing lunch at one of Capri Town’s many cafes, head to the island’s rugged coastline to find the iconic Blue Grotto.

Boats queue up to enter the sea cave’s tiny opening where sunlight passing through illuminates the water in brilliant shades of blue. This natural wonder has attracted visitors for centuries.

Spend the late afternoon wandering Capri’s narrow side streets and picking up souvenirs before taking the chairlift up to Anacapri. From the top, the views of the island and sea are spectacular.

As the sun sets, enjoy dinner at one of Capri’s finer restaurants to soak in the island’s magical ambiance.

Capri’s combination of natural beauty, ancient ruins, and opulent charm make it the perfect way to end an Amalfi Coast trip. Spend the night or head back along the moonlit water after a day exploring this island paradise.

There are also lovely beaches that look like picture perfect postcards.

Capri from a mountain view

Capri makes for a great day trip from the coast or a quick overnight trip to experience a day in this historical island and natural beauty.

How to get around the Amalfi Coast

One of the most common questions people ask before visiting the Amalfi Coast is how to get around.

Since the towns and villages are small there is not a thriving public transportation system to rely on. However, there are several ways to move from city to city.

The first way to get around is by renting a car. You can rent your own car to navigate the winding streets of the coast. This is the most reliable and easiest way to get around. 

However, the roads along the coast are perched high in the cliffs and are very narrow so driving can be challenging if you are not familiar with the road.

Exploring the waters off the Amalfi coast

The second way to get around is by the ferries. There are ferries that can bring you around to interesting cities along the coast in a quick and affordable way. However, most ferries only run in the summer months, or “in” season.

The last way to get around is by public transportation or taxi. With public transportation you will pay much less but you may have to transfer and schedules may not be convenient. 

A taxi will cost you quite a bit more, but it is more convenient.

The best time to visit the Amalfi Coast

The best time to visit the Amalfi Coast depends on your travel preferences. The summer months have the nicest weather, but these months are by far the most touristy.

However, in the summer months from June to August everything is open, and all tours and attractions are in full swing.

In the off season from September to May, the area is far less touristy which is ideal for exploring without huge crowds, but some attractions, tours, and transportation options will be limited, so be sure to plan accordingly.

Where to stay on the Amalfi Coast

With its colorful cliffside towns and gorgeous Mediterranean views, the Amalfi Coast offers many wonderful places to stay during your visit.

The most popular home bases are Positano, Amalfi, and Sorrento given their central locations and abundance of hotels, villas, and restaurants.

Positano is the most well-known destination on the coast, with its iconic pastel buildings cascading down to the sea.

There are luxury cliffside hotels like Il San Pietro di Positano and La Sirenuse that offer breathtaking views from the rooms and terraces. But there are also accommodations in all budgets.

Positano also has rental villas and Airbnbs scattered throughout town. The walkable streets and excellent restaurants make it a great home base.

The town of Amalfi has a relaxed, local vibe with fewer tourists. Here you can get charming boutique accommodations along the waterfront promenade at a lower cost than Positano.

Consider hotels like Hotel Lidomare with sea views or rental apartments in the historic center and other fine establishment for Amalfi accommodations.

Sorrento has good value hotels and B&Bs since it’s a smaller town. Stay along Corso Italia for walking access to the train station and Marina Grande port.

Grand Hotel Excelsior Vittoria is an excellent luxury option with cliff views. There are many other accommodation options in Sorrento.

Sorrento is a bit farther from the scenic coastline but more affordable.

What to eat on the Amalfi Coast

The Amalfi Coast is a foodie’s paradise. The place is as famous for delicious cuisine as it is for natural beauty.

The cuisines in the Amalfi Coast feature fresh seafood, local ingredients and traditional Mediterranean flavors.

Some local restaurants offering regional delicacies include Ristorante Marina Grande for an amazing array of local seafood.

Da Gemma specializes in homemade pasta. Il Flauto di Pan, in the heart of Amalfi, is a Michelin-rated eatery offering creative interpretations along with a killer wine list.

For traditional fare, head to Trattoria dei Cartari in the historic center of Amalfi. They serve classic regional dishes while emphasizing local ingredients. Their homemade desserts are a must!

Finally, for the romantic at heart that really want to impress a loved one, go to Lido Azzuro. This romantic restaurant by the sea offers stunning views.

Summary of “why the Amalfi Coast”

There are so many reasons to spend time on The Amalfi Coast. The first would have to be the area’s stunning natural beauty. There is a reason why the Amalfi Coast is a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

The sight of sheer cliffs of the coastline, impossibly blue ocean and lush vegetation amidst colorful picturesque towns spilling onto the sea is breathtaking.

The coastal communities are charming with winding alleyways and little plazas dripping with colorful flowers. There is great shopping for local souvenirs and unique gifts.

The area has a rich cultural history reaching back to prehistoric times. Many Roman Emperors had homes there.

There are many architectural marvels like the Amalfi Cathedral and the villas of Ravello that will stay with you for a long while.

There are outdoor activities to suit every taste. From sailing, diving, snorkeling, kayaking or swimming around the local waters to enjoying spectacular hikes like the Path of Gods and others.

Day trips to historic locations nearby

The Amalfi area is a very good and strategic location to base yourself while you explore other interesting destinations.

Pompeii, Mount Vesuvius and Herculaneum are all conveniently located. They are easy to get to by car or guided tour. These ancient towns provide an opportunity to to learn about the area’s Roman heritage.

How to Get to the Amalfi Coast from Rome or Naples

The jewel of the Amalfi Coast beckons with its colorful cliffside villages, sparkling blue waters, and winding coastal roads. Getting there from Italy’s major cities is half the fun.

Most visitors fly into Naples International Airport, a transportation hub conveniently located near the start of the Amalfi Coast.

After a short 70 minute train ride along the Tyrrhenian Sea coastline, arrive directly in the charming gateway town of Sorrento. Sorrento makes a great base for exploring Positano, Amalfi, and other seaside villages.

Prefer someone else to handle the driving? Hop on a coach bus from Naples to Positano or Amalfi. The 2-3 hour route is filled with spectacular views of mountains cascading into the sea. Just sit back and take in all that beauty.

Coming from Rome? Catch a quick one hour train from Roma Termini Station to Naples Centrale Station. From there, connect onward to your Amalfi paradise.

Or opt for the slightly longer but very scenic train from Rome to Salerno, the southeastern edge of the coast. For door-to-door convenience, book a private sedan transfer from either Rome or Naples airports.

Experienced drivers will navigate the cliffside roads while you relax in comfort. Shared shuttle vans are a budget-friendly option too.

Renting a car is another possibility for intrepid travelers. Navigate the Amalfi highway’s narrow twists and turns to make your own stops along the coast. Just be prepared for the adventure!

With so many easy transportation choices, the biggest decision is where to start your Amalfi Coast explorations. All roads lead to this Italian seaside wonder.

While in this part of the world, be sure to make time to visit other fascinating nearby areas like Southern Italy from Naples to Palermo, Sicily. 

Want to know more about this fascinating and idyllic part of the world? Check out these reference books.

Author bio:

Samantha Karen is the founder of the travel blog Sam Sees World. She is a twenty something traveler on a mission to explore the world to seek the new and unknown so she can document her experiences and inspire others to explore this wondrous world.

Samantha blogs at Sam Sees World. Her social media links include: Pinterest and Instagram. 

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Talek Nantes

This blog was created to inspire your travels and to explore experiences in fascinating locations. What you will find are thoughts on how to immerse yourself in local culture, food, history and people. On your way to these adventures I hope to provide you with useful information to help you get there. Come see the world with me!

Disclosure: As an Amazon Associate I may earn from qualifying purchases. Posts may contain affiliate links. If you click on one of them, we may receive a commission at no cost to you.



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