Amalfi Coast is a dream place which once you are there becomes real and when you’re gone you remember it as the beckoningly dream. Let me help you enjoy every piece of it while you’re there and show you why Amalfi is the most memorable destination in Italy.
What Makes Amalfi the Most Memorable Destination in Italy
Amalfi is the town that gives its name to the coast. Amalfi Coast is a 50-kilometers coastline from Salerno to Sorrento. Located in Southern Italy, 70 km away from Naples. There are 13 towns spreading across a strip of land kissed by the sun and surrounded by the sea. We managed to visit two towns Amalfi and Atrani on a one day and a half spent on the coast. But we know we all want to visit it again.
Amalfi history, monuments and natural settings allowed it to be declared as a “World Heritage site” by UNESCO. And while there are plenty of places to visit in Italy, Amalfi has a vertical landscape, characterized by a picturesque labyrinth of stairways and narrow alleys, connecting the two main elements of this landscape: the mountains and the sea.
When you walk through the city gates you are welcomed by the Cathedral of St. Andrew in Piazza Duomo. It’s imposing staircase is a popular place for wedding pictures or it’s a perfect resting point for tourists.
It’s a small town, however it has Paper museum where you can see old presses to make a handmade paper. We didn’t have time to visit the museum itself, but we visited the paper craftmens shop “La Scuderia Del Luca”. There you can buy handmade cards, order wedding invitation cards, find antique cards and old initial stamps and sealing wax. I was dreaming about it for a long time, so I got one for myself.
We spend a lot of time walking through the narrow alleys scouting for the best restaurant to eat. And oh boy, you can spend hours walking around Amalfi and you’ll always be surprised what you can find around the corner. This way we found a cozy restaurant with lemon trees – “Donnastella Pizzeria Lemon Garden” That was a perfect place to celebrate my mom’s birthday, because we made a trip to Italy to celebrate it. It’s also a special place for romantic dinners I can imagine. There were many couples coming to the restaurant for a dinner for two.
Enjoy the Italian Culture
I always say that the best way to experience Italy is through food. You must try local pastries which are called sfogliatella. It’s a shell shape filled pastry sometimes called a lobster tail in English. The best cafe to enjoy it and your morning coffee is “Pansa” in the main square – Piazza Duomo. You can also find a huge variety of other pastries there.
If you come in the morning you’ll see many Italians with their dogs coming for their morning espresso to this cafe. Dogs are tempted by the smell, because the pastries are baked inside the cafe.
Another obvious thing you must try in Italy is pizza! I won’t go into details for this one, because Italians have many varieties of it. My advice for you is to try as many pizzas as you can. 😉 You should also enjoy bruschettas and Melanzane parmigiana – baked aubergine.
Take a Swim in the Mediterranean Sea
The coastline in this area is stony, but regardless there were still a lot of people enjoying the beach: sunbathing and even swimming. So you can still swim in the sea in early Autumn. Unfortunately I forgot my swimsuit and had to enjoy emerald green water from a distance. However it was still beautiful and super photogenic.
Visit the Nearby Town – Atrani
There are few ways to get to Atrani from Amalfi, you can take a bus, your own rented transport or walk there. Bear in mind the buses do get very busy and are not always very frequent and if you have your own transport you will need to find a parking spot, which is not an easy job in Amalfi coast. 😮 So we have chosen the easiest and most suitable transport for us – walking. We walked by the main road to get there and it offered stunning views of Amalfi walking away from it and Atrani when approaching it. This walk takes about 15 mins and you can also enjoy the sea views, but be careful with the drivers as the roads are narrow.
We have then arrived to the main square of Atrani, it is much smaller than Amalfi but it is just as charming! We had lovely lunch there and then continued on exploring the narrow streets slowly climbing up towards the mountains. There is also a way leading to Ravello, but unfortunately we ran out of time and will have to come back for it next time 🙂
Atrani is also connected to Amalfi through the labyrinth of stairways. So we chosen a different option on the way back and walked back through the tiny narrow “streets” between the beautiful houses. It was a lovely walk and you get to enjoy the architecture. Don’t worry there are some arrows to point you towards Amalfi so you don’t get lost and the walk is only about 20 mins, not counting the time you take for taking picture.
Time to Visit Amalfi Coast
We visited Amalfi in early October and the crowds weren’t so big to disturb the peacefulness of the place. The crowds are far greater during the summer and late spring, but it’s also the hottest season.
Italy is the best place to visit in Autumn when the breeze gets cold in other parts of Europe and tourists invade the lesser part of the country.
If you follow a lot of bloggers on Instagram, I’m sure you’ve seen more than one person recently travel to Positano (the most recognizable town of the Amalfi Coast.) Similar to Tulum or Cartagena, I feel like the Amalfi Coast is having a moment as a travel “hot spot” especially with those of us who are #allaboutthegram.
If you’re skeptical of the dreamy photos and rave reviews from folks like myself – please don’t be! Believe it or not the Amalfi Coast is even more breathtaking in person. Each morning stepping out onto our balcony and seeing the water and views of Positano, I felt like I had to pinch myself because it didn’t seem real. Everything from the food, to the kind local people and beautiful scenery contributed to this being my favorite trip to date.
Transportation to Amalfi
The closest main airport is in Naples. So you’ll probably travel from here to Amalfi. You can either take a train from Naples to Sorrento (what we did to arrive to Amalfi and this our post about Sorrento) or to Salerno (this was how we came back to Naples to take our flight) and then take a bus or taxi which will take you through the only one road along Amalfi coast. The third option is to take a tour with a driver and he’ll pick you up from your hotel in Naples!
Both of the options are great. If you choose the first option, it’s longer, but you get to visit Sorrento. Which is worth your time. You could also take a day trip to Sorrento, so have a read about another beautiful place to visit. If you choose to go through Salerno to Amalfi it would be faster, but we did not stay there to explore and have only seen a massive harbour so it did not leave us a great impression. For the transportation we actually enjoyed a mix of both options, coming one way and leaving the other. It meant although we did not get a chance to visit each and every town and village of Amalfi coast, we got to see it on the journey and the views are absolutely breathtaking.
There are buses that run up and down the coast and you can catch a bus to pretty much any destination on the Amalfi Coast. No matter which means of transportation you choose, you are in for a scenic journey as you make your way from one gorgeous corner of the coast to another.
When are you planning your trip to Italy? Share it in the comments 😉
Thoughts and photos by Eisve Treciakauskaite