The closest airport is the Naples airport, located about 1-2 hours from the coast depending on what town or area you decide to stay. The airport is decently sized and seems to have a fair amount of flights going in and out daily. Unfortunately, there are no closer airports and thus, it does require a bit of extra effort to get all the way to the coast. If in Italy, there are trains and buses from other towns as an option. I would not recommend driving as many towns have restricted zones where only permitted vehicles can drive, but these areas are not easily identified. The roads near and in the Amalfi Coast are also very windy and single lane roads and parking is scarce (usually just roadside parking). In order to get to the coast, there are a few different options:
There is a bus (Curreri) that goes directly from the airport to Sorrento bus station. This costs 10 euros/ticket.
From the airport, you can catch a taxi from the airport to the train station (about 20 euros to the central train station) or can take the shuttle bus that goes to the train station. At the train station, you then catch the Circumvesuviana train (about 3.50 euros / ticket) from Napoli Garibaldi Station to Sorrento main station. The trip lasts about 1 hour and the train station is near the center of town. From here, depending on where you are staying, you can take a bus to other areas on the island, stay in Sorrento, or take a taxi.
To cut down on travel time and simplify your journey, consider booking a private transfer. We stayed in Praiano, about 30 minutes past Sorrento (1.5 hours from Naples) and the transfer was 120 euros. For some shorter distances, the transfer costs were lower. The private transfer is also convenient if you arrive late at night and other transportation options are not feasible.
Take the shuttle bus or taxi from the airport to Mole Beverello port in Naples and then catch the ferry to Sorrento. The ferry takes about 40 minutes and costs about 13 euros
The option I would recommend the least considering the roads, travel distance, and parking availability. Once on the coast, a car may give you flexibility to get between towns but parking is a nightmare during busy season and the roads are thin and winding.
The towns on and near the coast are a bit spread out so you will be largely dependent on various forms of transportation if you wish to see different areas. The main ways to get around are by bus (SITA), ferry, taxi, or scooter. There is a train from the airport to Sorrento, but there are not trains along the coast.
Tickets must be purchased in advance and not on the bus itself. Once you board the bus, there will be a little machine to validate your ticket. You can buy tickets from tabaccheria shops. A single ride is just over a euro, or you can buy different 24-hour day pass options between 8 and 12 euros depending on the distances you plan to travel by bus.
We used the bus early in the morning as we were advised that in high season, the bus can get very packed. It worked very well to go from Praiano to Positano in the morning, but you should check the schedule and plan ahead if possible. There are two main bus routes for the SITA bus – from Sorrento to Amalfi and Amalfi to Salerno (and their reverse routes). Buses make stops in all the main towns between the end locations
Amalfi, Capri, Sorrento, and Positano are all connected by ferries. There are different companies offering ferry services and the time and frequency changes by season so be sure to check the schedule. There are also some ferries that go all the way to Naples. The ferry from Positano to Capri takes about 40 minutes and costs around 20 euros one direction. Some recommend booking ferries in advance in high season as they can sell out, especially on weekends
These can get a bit expensive if you are traveling long distances, but are good for shorter distances or with a group to split it with, especially in high season. We used this a few times because we valued our time and also heard that many buses were packed full at peak times. Nevertheless, they can be hard to grab sometimes and are often full so do not expect to grab the first taxi that drives by.
I would not recommend renting a car as the roads are winding. Parking can also be an issue, especially in Positano as most places are just roadside parking. On the other hand, if you have experience with scooters, it can be a good option but would not be somewhere I would want to learn to ride a scooter due to the single lane roads, crazy drivers, and overall cliffside turns. The benefit of scooters are that they give you more flexibility in hopping from town to town and are much easier to find parking
There are many options on where to stay on the Amalfi Coast. It depends largely on what you are looking to do, flexibility, budget, time of year, and priorities.
Located just off the Amalfi Coast, Sorrento is the largest town and one that many people use as a hub to visit different towns. Its location and access to buses and ferries make it a default location for many when visiting the Amalfi Coast. It lacks the charm other towns have, but provides ease and convenience and is often the most affordable with more options.
Best for easily accessing all of the Amalfi Coast towns
First town on the Amalfi Coast and a very picturesque cliff-side town. Also likely one of the most expensive options
Best for the picturesque views and the typical Amalfi Coast travel experience
This is a smaller, much less touristy town about 20 minutes from Positano. This is where we stayed and I would stay here again in a heartbeat. Despite being there in busy season, the town did not feel over crowded at all and had a very local feel. Our airbnb hosts were phenomenal and we stayed up the hill a bit with a gorgeous view over the water and coast. It is a very convenient location as it sits between Positano and Amalfi, making it possible to take a bus, ferry or taxi around. It was also much more affordable than Positano.
Best for a less touristy feel, more affordable option and easily accessible to the main Amalfi Coast towns
Beautiful hotel in Praiano with exceptional service and views. We stopped in here for a drink and bite to eat next to the water, but did not stay here. The hotel is definitely on the expensive side, but worth looking into if you are splurging or visiting in off-season.
Island off the coast that requires a ferry to get to from one of the towns and is also known for being more expensive. I would not have wanted to stay here due to the amount of time it would take to travel from the airport to get to Capri and the extra effort required to visit any of the coastal villages as it requires a ferry every time.
Best for a luxurious and relaxed vacation, without a focus on visiting all the Coastal towns
Largest town actually on the Amalfi Coast
Best for a larger town feel with an assortment of restaurant and shopping options
Smaller hillside town. This is another town we considered, but it sits on the outskirts and would have required a fair amount of traveling to get to other areas that we wanted to see.
Best for a quieter getaway
The picturesque cliffside town of Positano is often the main town captured on postcards and associated with the Amalfi Coast. The views from above Positano, down on the beach and out on the water are all gorgeous.
Lounge at the main beach, but note that the chairs are all very close to each other and the beach gets very busy. Chairs cost about 13 euros for the day, but good to have if you are staying the day as it is a pebble beach
10 minute walk from Spiaggia Grande, and often less crowded with more beach space as it does not offer the picturesque famous Positano view
Wander the cute streets in Positano with galleries, cafes, boutiques and restaurants
Get out on the water whether it’s swimming, paddle boarding, or boating
Consider having lunch on beach and grab paninis to go at a local shop nearby
This is a must! By far the highlight of our trip. Blue Sea Capri offers a 3 hour boat tour on an Apreamare Gozzo (great size and was plenty spacious for two and would have been good for four as well). You can book a private tour and specify the number of people, but the price is per boat. The 3 hour tour costs ~250 euros and the boat captain was wonderful.
On the tour, the captain took us all the way around the island, with the opportunity to jump in and swim multiple places. We saw different grottos (note: we could have gone to see the Blue Grotto as well, but opted not to as the boat captain noted it would be about an hour wait). We swam in peaceful, beautiful areas. He took us to various caves, showed us different aspects of the island of Capri, and drove under the famous Faraglioni Rocks. The tour departed at 2 pm and got back right around 5.
Take the funicular up from the base for an area to walk around with shops, restaurants and a nice view
The highest town area in Capri and takes some time to get all the way to the top. First you start at the base of the island and either take a bus, taxi or funicular up a level to Capri town. The funicular is very easy and rather quick so I would recommend the funicular. Then you can take another bus or taxi up to Anacapri and have to go up a ways before getting there. Once you arrive in Anacapri, its more shops and restaurants to wander through.
There is also a single chair lift that can take you to the highest point on the island, offering a panoramic view over the water
Gardens with views of Faraglioni
Cave famous for the color of the water in the cave when the sun hits the water. There are little boats that take you in small groups inside and you must lay down to enter. It costs about 13 euros per person to go inside.
Note: caves are not always open if the water level is rougher because the hole to enter the cave gets covered when the water level is too high. There is also often a wait at the blue grotto to go inside so keep this in mind when planning to visit
Quaint town above Amalfi with beautiful coastal views
Note: in order to get here by bus, one must first take the bus that ends in Amalfi and then switch to take a different bus to Ravello
Building marking the historic center of Ravello
Largest town on the Amalfi Coast
Main beach in Amalfi and one of the larger beaches on the coast
Church in the town
Town not far from Amalfi that also has a more scenic and low-key beach
Ancient city with ruins from Mount Vesuvius. When visiting, there are both group tours and private tours available. Keep in mind that in the summer it gets very hot inside when the sun is out and there is minimal shaded area.
It is located not far from Naples airport and conveniently has luggage storage if you decide to stop here on your way to or from the airport. Depending on your departing location, there is a train to Pompeii Scavi (30 minutes from Sorrento).
Only fjord in Italy providing a little beach and picturesque cove
In a country that knows how to eat and drink, consider checking out a cooking class with a local
Check out a local vineyard and signup for a wine tasting
Hike from Agerola to Nocelle (above Positano). There are places to start in Praiano as well, but requires a lot of stairs just to get to the beginning of the hike. The hike is 8 kilometers and takes about 3 hours if you go from one end to the other. The hike is a ton of uphill climbing (feels like climbing a stairmaster in many areas), especially at the beginning from Praiano.
If you can, get up early and beat the heat. The trail is very easy to follow and there are not different trail options leaving you questioning what route to take; simply stay along the edge and do not go inland. The hike provides beautiful views and is a really nice way to get a different experience while on the coast.
This was my favorite dinner on the coast and we casually stumbled upon this spot. I recommend splitting wine and pasta as a starter and then each person can have their own entree. The food was wonderful, ambiance was nice and service was good
Restaurant at ocean level in Praiano that is very well known and has good Italian and seafood. (There are a few other restaurants right near here as well so is definitely worth checking out one of them. The other two are Armandino and Ristorante Franchino)
Located at beach level at the Grand Hotel Tritone. It is a full restaurant but we just grabbed a drink and sat by the water with a view
Café on their terrace that has a beautiful view over the water and of Positano in the background. Great spot for lunch
Bar and restaurant at Hotel Margherita. It is on the roof of the hotel and has a great view over Praiano and the ocean. Great spot for drinks before and after dinner in Praiano.
Cafe right next to the bus stop in Praiano providing an easy place to grab a quick coffee and breakfast pastry before catching the bus
Little restaurant right at beach level on the side near the ferry dock. Grabbed a quick breakfast here, but turned out to be a bit pricey. This is especially common in Positano.
Italian restaurant in Capri town. If you take the funicular up from the ferry port, you arrive at a nice area with lots of shops and restaurants, but definitely busy during high season. This restaurant is off the main path. The space was large and the food was good and not as expensive as expected.
Lots of restaurants right along the pier in Marina Grande. I do not like these types of spots as they are very touristy, owners try to call you in and there are pictures on the menu. Nevertheless, if you have time to kill before the ferry, grab a drink while you are waiting
High season is very busy meaning the main attractions, the towns, the restaurants and the transit are all crowded with tourists. When visiting in high season, make sure to plan accordingly and set realistic expectations. Consider staying in a less touristy town if visiting during busy season.
If you have flexibility when planning your trip, shoulder season is the best time to visit, which includes the months around high season (May and September / October) as the prices tend to be lower and the crowds are more manageable.
If you are picky about location, price or have specific preferences, make sure to book in advance. There were limited options booking a month out in June for a July trip but did find a few great options and landed one in Praiano.
Make sure to allow for enough time to get to the airport if traveling at peak times. The transfer driver noted that the roads on the coast can get very backed up and since they are a single lane, it only takes a few slow drivers or an accident to cause a large traffic jam
The Amalfi Coast is famous for their lemons, and especially limoncello so be sure to have a taste of their after dinner drink.
Transportation and Accommodations
Things to do and see
Food and Drinks