15 Best Things to Do in the Amalfi Coast (Italy)

Written by Jan Meeuwesen
Updated on
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The Amalfi coast is one of the most renowned tourist destinations in the whole of Italy and draws thousands of tourists annually. This stretch of mountainous coast sits in-between Naples and Salerno and encompasses the arm of the Sorrento Peninsula. The coastline includes some absolutely gorgeous towns that hug the mountains, some sublime beaches and jaw-dropping scenery. Transport to the Amalfi Coast is well developed and there is a regular bus and train service that travels to most of the popular destinations. Furthermore there is a multitude of high-quality hotels, world-class restaurants and amenities if you wish to base yourself here.

If you want to visit the Amalfi coast you will be in for a treat – this region has some picture perfect towns full of multi-coloured houses such as Positano, Praiano and Amalfi itself. Furthermore there are some absolutely fantastic beaches, coastal walks and mountainside villas. Moreover, aside from the coastal towns and mountain, the Amalfi Coast has a selection of interesting Islands such as Capri and Sirenusas that provide ample opportunity for exploration.

Let’s have a look at the best things to do in the Amalfi Coast:

1. Visit the town of Sorrento

SorrentoSource: Balate Dorin / shutterstock

Sorrento is a town on the northern arm of the Amalfi Coast and is renowned for its beautiful scenery and its range of gorgeous buildings and coastal walks.

In terms of economy, Sorrento relies heavily on tourism, but it is also known for its production of Limoncello.

The cathedral of Sorrento is a beautiful structure that was first built in the 11th century – this is definitely worth a visit.

Furthermore, Sorrento has two gorgeous ports full of fishing and sailing boats and a series of public parks.

If you are interested in history, the town also features the Correale Museum and the Museo della Tarsia Lignea – both of which provide some fascinating artefacts and displays.

Sorrento really is a gem on the Amalfi coast and a trip to this region would not be complete without a stop off at this historic town.

2. Admire the pastel coloured houses of Positano

PositanoSource: lukaszimilena / shutterstock

Positano is often considered to be one of the most picturesque towns on the Amalfi coast and it is easy to see why when you look at the beautiful coloured houses that lie the mountainside.

This town is located on the southern arm of the Amalfi coast and is accessible by bus.

This town is best viewed from the sea – if you can, take a boat out and try to take in the whole of Positano from the waters – the panorama of the houses and mountains is sublime.

The beach of Positano is the perfect place to relax and you can find a plethora of quality cafes, restaurants and bars on the winding streets.

3. Take in the gorgeous views from Praiano

PraianoSource: artem evdokimov / shutterstock

Praiano is located in-between Amalfi and Positano and is a less visited town that allows you to escape from the crowds of the other well-known coastal spots.

This town hugs the mountainside and is a typical Amalfi scene – the houses are staggered on the Cliffside and the road leading through Praiano winds back and forth until reaching the small harbour.

The views from the enchanting town are absolutely stunning and you can see out to sea for miles.

Consider walking down to the enclosed harbour and beach and taking a dip in the warm waters, or enjoying a delicious ice-cream from one of the stalls.

4. Visit the town of Amalfi

AmalfiSource: EGUCHI NAOHIRO / shutterstock

Amalfi is the main town of this beautiful region and is often packed full of tourists.

As with the other coastal towns in this region, Amalfi is truly stunning and its plethora of multi-coloured houses and shops are wonderful to behold.

Amalfi is actually larger than most settlements here and due to this fact it has its own cathedral.

This cathedral is a major attraction and the Piazza del Duomo is one of the main places to visit in Amalfi.

The front façade of the cathedral is magnificent and covered in an opulent striped stonework pattern.

If sight-seeing is not your thing, you can head on down to the promenade, browse through the shops and take a walk along the beach.

5. Head up to the heights of Ravello

RavelloSource: Leonid Andronov / shutterstock

If you want the best views of the Amalfi Coast then you must head to Ravello.

This town can be found on the top of the mountains in-between Amalfi and Maiori and is much more relaxed and reserved than the other busy tourist locations.

A main attraction of Ravello is the Villa Rufolo – this Roman Villa offers possibly one of the best views available and is a fantastic place to simply relax, enjoy the views and bask in the gorgeous sun.

Ravello also has a range of restaurants with outdoor terraces that provide a romantic setting for an evening meal, and the Piazza Centrale is worth a visit to see the Cathedral and the Ravello Art Gallery.

6. Enjoy the beaches of Maiori

Maiori BeachSource: Galina Mikhalishina / shutterstock
Maiori Beach

Maiori and Minori are two neighbouring towns only a short distance from the town of Amalfi.

If you want to relax on a beautiful beach and rejuvenate your mind and soul, Maiori is the best place in Amalfi to visit! The beach is split into two sections and both the left and right hand sections contain beautiful sands that meet with the clear Mediterranean waters.

There is a range of amieneties for those who wish to spend a day here, and the main Corso Reginna has a myriad of shops, stalls and cafes where you can stock up for your day of relaxation.

Don’t forget to head across to the smaller Minori along the coastal SS163 route and explore this gorgeous town too.

7. Watch the fishing fleets at Cetara

CetaraSource: Cenz07 / shutterstock

Cetara is one of the most authentic and unspoiled villages on the Amalfi Coast.

This small settlement has not been effected by tourism and retains virtually all of its original charm.

If you want to see what the towns of Amalfi looked like before the area became saturated with tourist attractions then this is the place to visit.

Furthermore, Cetara has the only fishing fleet that still operates in this region and you can watch the fishermen in action in their small brightly coloured boats.

Aside from the fishing activities, Cetara also has a range of high quality restaurants that serve delicious fresh seafood.

8. Take a boat tour into the Grotta dello Smeraldo Cave

Grotta dello Smeraldo positanoSource: As minhas andanças / Flickr
Grotta Dello Smeraldo

The Emerald Cave is a natural phenomenon that is one of the most beautiful caves in the whole of Italy.

Located in-between Amalfi and Praiano, the Smeraldo Cave is one of the few caves in the world that is bathed in a natural emerald light.

The effect is simply amazing and the colour of the water and the cave itself are gorgeous.

The cave is accessed via an elevator on the SS163 route and then you can climb on one of the boats for a guided tour of this superb natural subterranean environment.

9. Walk through the Centro Storico of Salerno

Salerno, ItalySource: Gabriela Insuratelu / shutterstock
Salerno, Italy

Salerno is easily the largest town on the Amalfi Coast and sits right at the eastern edge of this region – some people consider it to be part of the Amalfi coast, others do not; regardless of its status, Salerno is undoubtedly a great place to visit.

This town has a wonderful mix of old and new – you can wander the streets of the Centro Storico and see some beautiful architecture, but you can then head into the downtown area and enjoy a night out in a range of pubs, clubs and bars.

Salerno also has some beautiful beaches and a gorgeous harbour and port.

Finally, Salerno actually has brilliant transport links to Rome and Naples so is easily accessible from other parts of Italy.

10. Take in the gorgeous waterfalls of the Valle delle Ferriere

Valle delle FerriereSource: Naples photo / shutterstock
Valle Delle Ferriere

The Ferriere Valley is a protected area in the province of Salerno and is a wonderful region to explore for those who enjoy hiking and the outdoors.

Throughout this region you can find some absolutely stunning natural scenery and there is a myriad of hiking and cycling trails that wind through the luscious forests.

This protected area is little travelled and you will not encounter the usual bustle of tourists found at the busy coastal towns of Amalfi.

Furthermore, the trails present some interesting view points and allow you to see some of the towns from unusual angles that are not normally seen.

11. Visit the Island of Capri

CapriSource: mikolajn / shutterstock

Capri is a truly magical place and one of the most popular destinations on the Amalfi Coast.

This island sits just off of the western edge of the Amalfi Coast and can be reached via regular ferries from several of the coastal towns.

Capri is known for its gorgeous landscapes, its array of beautiful beaches and its superb mountain views.

Consider taking a boat trip from Positano to explore this magical place and ensure you stay through until the evening.

At night, Capri has a vibrant nightlife and the main square has a handful of bustling bars and a superb atmosphere.

Also consider taking an organised trip to see the famous Blue Cave Grotto – this cave complex is absolutely stunning and a boat trip through this subterranean world will surely impress.

12. Take the scenic train journey

Amalfi TrainSource: Cimacapi / Flickr
Amalfi Train

The northern part of the Amalfi coast has its own train-line known as La Circumvesuviana Line.

This railway runs from Naples to Sorrento and is a great way to admire the amazing scenery of this coastal region.

Furthermore, La Circumvesuviana is one of the most efficient ways to travel from Naples to Sorrento and the ticket prices are reasonable too.

This train line starts at Naples and passes some fantastic scenery including the monolithic Mount Vesuvius.

Try and get window seat on the left hand side to ensure you can look out towards the Mediterranean Sea.

13. Enjoy a boat ride from Amalfi

Amalfi BoatSource: Inu / shutterstock
Amalfi by Boat

One of the most relaxing ways to view the Amalfi coast is to take an organised boat tour.

By taking a boat tour, you can see a large section of the coast and you do not have to worry about catching a bus or train, or walking up the winding coastal paths.

Furthermore, from a boat, you can view the many towns such as Amalfi, Minori and Positano in all their glory – there is nothing quite like seeing the multi-coloured houses rising against the side of the cliffs and admiring the luscious green landscapes of this beautiful region.

A boat tour is a photographers dream and one of the best ways to see a good variety of what the Amalfi coast has to offer.

14. Travel to the Sirenuse Islands

Sirenuse IslandsSource: Gwendolyn Stansbury / Flickr
Sirenuse Islands

This small island chain can be found off the southern Amalfi coast in-between Capri and Positano.

They are part of the Campanian Achipelago and are named are the mythological Sirens who are supposed to have lived there in antiquity.

The chain includes the islands of Isca, Vetara, Gallo Lungo, La Castelluccia and La Rotonda.

Lungo is the largest island and once housed a monastery and a prison – today you can see the Aragonese Guard Tower.

Although you cannot step foot on the island, the surrounding waters are perfect for swimming and snorkelling.

A boat trip around this charming island chain is a fantastic activity and will give you the chance to see some amazing scenery and aquatic habitation.

15. Visit the charming town of Furore

Furore BeachSource: fokke baarssen / shutterstock
Furore Beach

Furore is a town that is often overlooked but it has a great deal of attractions and is a fantastic place to visit in the central section of the Amalfi Coast.

The roads leading up to Furore are quite spectacular and rise past dramatic limestone cliffs and row upon row of terraces packed full of gorgeous vines.

Within the confines of this town you can find a selection of beautifully painted murals decorating the walls of some of the houses and shops.

These murals have been hand painted and show some colourful depictions of life on the Amalfi Coast.

Furthermore Furore offers some brilliant views out to the sea and of the surrounding coastal towns and cliffs.


15 Best Things to Do in the Amalfi Coast (Italy):

  • Visit the town of Sorrento
  • Admire the pastel coloured houses of Positano
  • Take in the gorgeous views from Praiano
  • Visit the town of Amalfi
  • Head up to the heights of Ravello
  • Enjoy the beaches of Maiori
  • Watch the fishing fleets at Cetara
  • Take a boat tour into the Grotta dello Smeraldo Cave
  • Walk through the Centro Storico of Salerno
  • Take in the gorgeous waterfalls of the Valle delle Ferriere
  • Visit the Island of Capri
  • Take the scenic train journey
  • Enjoy a boat ride from Amalfi
  • Travel to the Sirenuse Islands
  • Visit the charming town of Furore