The allure of the Amalfi Coast’s natural beauty has been drawing people to the region long before it had a name. Its dramatic charm and idyllic weather enticed ancient Roman nobles to build their villas there, a real estate trend that, overtime, never faded. Today the mountains and sea cliffs are dotted with pastel confections of holiday homes and sumptuous villas, which have elevated the coastline to one of the most fabulous and unique destinations in the world. Its fragile cultural landscape—churches, gardens, vineyards and towns—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 jetsetters each year.
When to Go
The best time to explore the Amalfi Coast is between May and October. The sea is warm, and hotels, restaurants, boutiques, and cultural sites like Ravello’s Villa Cimbrone, are operating in the full throttle. June, July, and August can be challenging, as each town is swarming with tourists. You’ll have a difficult time trying to reserve a hotel on the fly or find open tables at restaurants. The influx of people during these months can also result in frequent logjams on the narrow costal highways.
Getting to the Amalfi Coast
Ferry or Boat:
No matter how you arrive to the Amalfi Coast, the journey is always scenic. Depending on the time of year, it’s possible to take fast ferries like Alilauro from Napoli to the main port of Amalfi. The two-to-three-hour journeys are not direct, and many make stops in destinations like Capri or Sorrento before reaching Amalfi’s port. Additionally, boats like the Travelmar leave from Salerno and stop at most of Amalfi’s largest coastal municipalities.
Train or Bus:
Traveling on Trenitalia, Italy’s national train company, is the best for those who can’t stomach a sea commute. Their Freccia Rossa trains from Napoli Centrale to Sorrento are the most direct and efficient. Once in Sorrento, catch a bus to your destination, as many companies like Sitabus depart regularly from the city’s stations. Those traveling from Rome or Naples can opt for one of the new economical shuttle sharing systems like Positano Shuttle. It leaves from both international airports and deposits travelers directly in Positano.
For many, traveling by car is still the most romantic and independent way to get from one destination to another. You can rent a car at either international airports in Rome or Naples, or opt for something more lavish from the Positano Car Service. Their fleet of large and small luxury vehicles will ensure you’re the most stylish tourist on the road.
No matter which means of transportation you choose, you’ll want to make sure that everything is booked well in advance of your trip. The last thing you want it to wait in line only to find out that the service is sold out. Busses, though very frequent during high season, tend to sell out quickly, and train and ferry prices rise incrementally as your travel dates approach.
Make sure to check with your hotel about any provided transportation before booking. Some on the Amalfi coast have their own private car or boat services to shuttle you between Naples and other destinations in the area. Additionally, you may have a hard time finding accommodation outside of the warmer months. Most hotels are seasonal, and only operate between May and October.
For more information, visit the Travel and Leisure website at: https://www.travelandleisure.com/five-things/how-to-travel-to-amalfi-coast