Amalfi Coast Travel Guide & Itinerary

sunset behind positano with colourful houses on a mountain

The Amalfi Coast is straight out of a dream. There’s a reason why it’s one of the most popular holiday destinations. Its pastel-coloured buildings sit atop rugged cliffs overlooking beautiful beaches and breathtaking views. As you make your way on the coastal road, you’ll pass by countless lemon groves, vineyards and a view of endless boats.

I have too many photos to share, so I figured I would share our overall itinerary and ultimate tips in this post. I plan on doing a few more detailed blog posts of all the places we visited.

atrani amal coastir

Our Itinerary

Upcoming Blog Posts

Day 1 – 3: Sorrento
Day 3 – 7: Amalfi & Atrani (blog post here), Ravello (blog post here), Positano

Getting To The Amalfi Coast

Getting to the Amalfi Coast is actually easier than it sounds. There are several options, so choose the one easiest for you! The closest airport to the Amalfi Coast is Naples. Rome is also another airport you can fly into if it’s cheaper than flying into Naples. You can either take a bus or train from both Rome and Naples.

From Rome

Train

You can take a direct high speed train from Roma Termini station to Salerno or Sorrento. You can buy tickets online. If you don’t buy tickets in advance, you can easily them at the the train station kiosk on the day-of.

Omio and Rome2Rio are also 2 great websites to see all your transportation options with or without transfers.

Bus

We took a direct bus from Roma Termini and it was extremely easy. I’d highly recommend this option if you’re like us and just not into transferring with all your luggage. We booked last minute during peak season, so there weren’t any direct trains that were in our budget.

We booked online through the bus company Marozzi. It cost only 19 euros per person. From Roma Termini, the journey takes 3-4 hours depending on traffic. Furthermore, it makes 1 bathroom stop, so you don’t have to worry about holding it in! Take the early morning 7am bus as the ticket prices jump to 54 euros per person if you take a later bus.

From Naples

Check Omio for direct bus or train options! The journey time is only 1 hour and 30 minutes and costs 35 euro per person.

By Private Car

You can also a hire a private driver to get you to Amalfi. It’s the most convenient, but expensive option. It’ll cost you up to 120 euros one way. Amalfi Car Service is known to have a great reputation if you’re looking at the private car option.

Where To Stay / Where to Set Up Base

This is probably the most difficult decision to make when planning your Amalfi trip. If you look at a map of the Amalfi Coast, all the coastal towns are spread apart. You can choose to base yourself in one town and easily make day trips to all the towns. Since we knew that our main goal was to visit Amalfi, Ravello and Positano – we stayed in Sorrento for two nights, then based ourselves in Agerola (more info to follow) for the rest of our trip.

The charming coastal town of Sorrento can be explored easily by foot in one day, so you can choose to spend 1-2 nights here or just make a day trip from one of the other towns.

amalfi coast positano

Travel Times + Distance

To put it in perspective, here are the one – way distances + travel time by bus to help you make your decision. All these times includes traffic during peak season. The journey time might vary if you’re visiting during off or shoulder season.

Sorrento to Positano: 15 kilometres. 30 – 40 minutes by bus.
Sorrento to Amalfi: 30 kilometres. 1 hour 15 – 30 minutes by bus.
Positano to Amalfi: 16 kilometres. 30 – 40 minutes by bus.
Amalfi to Ravello: 6 kilometres. 15 – 20 minutes by bus.
Amalfi to Agerola: 16 kilometres. 40 – 45 minutes by bus.

Where to Stay

Make sure to book accommodations well in advance, especially if you’re visiting during the summer peak season. I’m talking booking several months ahead, since they book up fast and it gets quite expensive. If you can afford it, I’d highly recommend staying in Positano, Praiano (town beside Positano), or Amalfi.

If you’re on a budget, stay in Sorrento or Ravello.

If you’re really on a budget, stay in the beautiful, mountainous town of Agerola.

Agerola (Our Base)

Agerola is described as “the splendid terrace on the Amalfi Coast and a destination for hikes and food lovers.” I couldn’t agree more. It’s home to the famous “Path of the Gods” hike. The 2 and half – 3 hour journey takes you to Positano via a spectacular hike through the Lattari Mountains overlooking the sea. Agerola a mountain village known for its breathtaking landscapes, food/wine culture, agriculture and ancient history.

houses in the mountains agerola

The accommodations here are significantly cheaper than if you were to stay in any of the coastal towns. If you want to save costs and are willing to make the bus trek to Amalfi each day, then I’d highly recommend staying in Agerola.

NOTE: Don’t be fooled by Booking.com when it says Agerola is 5 km from Positano. This is referring to if you’re mapping out these towns from a bird’s eye view. Consequently, there’s no direct road from Agerola to Positano. The only way to explore the Amalfi Coast is to take the SITA public bus directly to Amalfi (40 -minute journey), then transfer to the bus of your destination. It’s actually pretty easy and not as bad as it sounds once you’re there! Just start early to maximize your day!

Our B&B – Nido Verde

We stayed in a wonderful, family-owned B&B called Nido Verde for only 60 euros a night. Our lovely owner kindly gave us a tour of his fruit and vegetable garden during our stay. He grows everything from lemons, oranges, strawberries, grapes to carrots, potatoes, herbs and eggs from his chickens. He’s a retired pastry chef that makes his guests breakfast every morning using fresh ingredients from his garden. Their hospitality was amazing and I’d recommend this B&B if you’re interested in staying in Agerola. There’s also a SITA bus stop located in front of their property, which made our commute so easy! There’s also a direct 1h30 bus from the property to Naples Airport for 15 euros/person.

Use my discount code to receive $25 CAD off if it’s your first time using Booking.com!

How To Get Around

Public Transportation – SITA

The blue-coloured SITA buses are the cheapest way to get around Amalfi. Bus ticket prices range from 1.30 euro – 2 euros and can be purchased at most local bars/cafes. In Amalfi, purchase them in advance at the official ticket office! Tickets can’t be purchased on board. After hours, you can purchase them at the cafe to the left of the office.

Amalfi Bus Station Ticket Office

Because we started our days early at 6am, we actually hardly had any issues with not getting a seat on the buses. We were expecting overcrowding + loads of traffic since we visited in July! However, we didn’t encounter these issues. Regardless, be aware that during peak hours (5 – 7pm), it can get super busy and you might be standing for your bus trip or sitting in traffic. It’s common for the driver to stop boarding if the bus gets too packed and you’ll have to wait for the next one.

Check the SITA bus schedule here! NOTE: During the peak summer months, the buses don’t always run according to schedule due to the volume of traffic. It’s quite normal to be waiting for the scheduled bus for up to 15 minutes! Pay attention to the schedule, because the buses don’t run at night.

Car or Scooter

Renting a car or scooter is probably the most fun way of travelling around the Amalfi Coast, since it gives you the freedom to not rely on public transportation. However, just be prepared that you might get stuck in traffic. I’d recommend these options if you’re comfortable navigating around hairpin bends on the road! You can rent one in advance or rent once you’re in town. Here’s a company the official Positano site recommended.

Red City Sightseeing Bus

These red buses cost a little more than the public buses, but you’re guaranteed a seat with air-conditioning. The ride is also shorter, since it makes fewer stops. The prices vary from 5 – 10 euros. We took one from Sorrento to Amalfi, and it was soooo worth it. Click here for the routes and prices.

By Ferry

Travelling by ferry will give you spectacular views from the water, but they are much pricier than buses. You can buy tickets from the kiosks prior to boarding. Check the schedule here and prices for all the ferry routes.

Most Popular Routes & One – Way Prices

  • Salerno – Positano: 1 hour and 15 minutes, 12 Euros
  • Positano – Capri: 50 minutes, 21.30 – 22 euros
  • Amalfi – Capri: 50 minutes, 23.30 – 24.50 euros
  • Amalfi – Positano: 20 minutes, 8 – 10 euros

Some Tips + Things To Know

Ways to Save

The Amalfi Coast is undoubtedly known to be super expensive. However, there are ways to save! As mentioned before, we saved so much money on accommodation by staying outside of Amalfi. Some places can cost you a whopping 25 euros per drink. However, we only chose places to eat where the main dishes cost less than 10 euros and was also rated highly. Just do some research beforehand! Take public transportation to save costs too!

Pack Comfortable Shoes

Positano and the surrounding towns are very hilly, and you’ll be constantly climbing up and down stairs. Make sure to pack really comfortable shoes and ditch the heels!

colourful houses positano amalfi coast

Start Early

I can’t stress this one enough. In early July, the temperatures were in the high 30’s, making exploring (especially hiking up/down stairs) quite unbearable. Start early in the day to avoid the peak heat hours and avoid the crowds. We found even by 8am, it was too hot to stand in the sun for even a few minutes. Take frequent breaks and drink LOTS of water. Invest in a hat beforehand too!

Pay Attention To Bus & Ferry Times

I’ve mentioned this one before, but pay close attention to the schedule. The buses don’t run at night and you might get stuck taking a taxi if you miss the last one! Waiting up to 15 minutes for the bus is quite normal due to traffic.

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