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The Amalfi Coast is one of the most popular tourist destinations in Italy, especially for celebrities. Its rugged coastline and breathtaking villages have captured the hearts of many travelers and leave them coming back for more. Not only is the region steeped in rich history, it is also famous for its lemons. The Amalfi Coast natives know how to create delicious dishes and drinks with this tart fruit, from lemon-inspired dishes to limoncello. There is so much to see and do in this region that we here at Road Affair have compiled a list of the best things to do on the Amalfi Coast. This way, you can spend less time planning and more time packing for your vacation!
The ancient city of Pompeii is one of the most popular attractions in the region, and for good reason. The city was destroyed when Mount Vesuvius erupted in 79 CE, and the lava and ash from the eruption preserved it. It wasn’t until the 18th century that the site was discovered and found to be in incredible condition, almost as if it were frozen in time.
Today, visitors can tour this UNESCO World Heritage Site and walk the same cobblestone streets the citizens of Pompeii did nearly two thousand years ago. There is much to discover here, including old Roman baths, temples, an amphitheater, and frescoes and other works of art that have miraculously survived. Some of the most impressive artifacts at Pompeii are the casts of citizens who were killed by the eruption. These are the remains of humans who died in the cataclysm, calcified under layers of ash and lava. You can see some of the casts of people and animals on display at the site.
There are a few ways to explore Pompeii. You can opt to guide yourself around with an audio guide, or you can book a small group tour with an archeologist. For more information on how and where to buy tickets to Pompeii click here.
Take a Cruise to Capri
Capri is one of the most famous islands in Italy, and it is where celebrities often vacation on luxury yachts. The island is located just off the Amalfi Coast, making it an ideal day trip for those visiting the region.
Capri is also known for its breathtaking natural landscapes, boutique shops, and incredible cuisine. The best way to experience this Amalfi Coast attraction is with a boat tour from one of the towns along the coast. GetYourGuide offers a few full-day tours, like this boat tour from Amalfi and this boat tour from Sorrento. Both tours will take you around the island and allow you to disembark on Capri so that you can explore and shop for a few hours on your own.
Tour a Winery
No trip to Italy is complete without a winery tour! Although the Amalfi Coast isn’t particularly known for its grapes, this is still a must-see on the Amalfi Coast.
There are a few wineries throughout the region that tourists can visit. If you’re looking for one near Amalfi, check out Casa Vinicola Ettore Sammarco Ravello. For wineries near Sorrento, head to Winery De Angelis or Cantine Stinca. A winery tour and tasting is the perfect way to spend an afternoon with your partner or with friends, especially if it’s hot out!
Spend a Day in Amalfi
There are plenty of small towns and villages all along the Amalfi Coast, but the most famous is Amalfi.
Here, you will find tons of souvenir shops filled with limoncello and other trinkets, as well as boutique shops to wander through. Visitors can spend some time at the beach lounging in the sun or head to one of the museums in town, like the Museo della Carta, where visitors can learn about the history of paper production in the region. The town itself is quite beautiful and includes attractions like the Cattedrale di Sant’Andrea, the Torre dello Ziro, and the Diocesan Museum of Amalfi.
Hike the Path of the Gods
If you’re looking for fun and free things to do on the Amalfi Coast, then hiking the Path of the Gods is for you.
Il Sentiero degli Dei is one of the region’s best hiking trails, offering jaw-dropping views of the countryside and the Mediterranean Sea. This eight-kilometer trail winds through different terrains and takes between three and five hours to complete. There are a few different routes you can take. Most hikers choose to start in Bomerano, which is easily reached by bus. The starting point for the trail is located right across from the Bomerano Centro (Piazza P. Capasso) bus stop. From here, you can easily follow trail markers along the path. You can also start the hike from Praiano, but beware: You do have to hike up a fairly steep staircase to link up with the trail. To find the starting point in Praiano, search “Path of the Gods Sentiero degli Dei Praiano” in Google Maps.
Learn How to Make Gnocchi
If you love food (who doesn’t!) and are wondering what to do on the Amalfi Coast, then why not take a cooking class?
Italy is known for its exquisite cuisine, especially its pasta! Spend an afternoon learning how to make pasta like a local with this five-star cooking class from GetYourGuide. The class is held just outside of the town of Amalfi and starts with a stroll through the lemon and olive groves to the garden, where you’ll collect fresh vegetables and ingredients for the meal in wicker baskets. You’ll then be guided through the making of a four-course traditional Italian meal. Afterward, everyone gathers to dine with local wine, limoncello, and espressos.
Take a Boat Tour to the Grotta dello Smeraldo
Capri isn’t the only place to visit on a boat trip. The Grotto dello Smeraldo is a beautiful tourist attraction on the Amalfi Coast where visitors can take in the emerald green waters and stalagmites of the cave. Unfortunately, you can’t swim in the grotto, but you can take a boat trip into it. There are plenty of boat trips leaving from Amalfi, or you can opt to book a private boat trip. We recommend this five-star private tour from GetYourGuide.
Calling all adrenaline junkies! Do you want to enjoy stunning panoramic views while flying through the coastal sky? Then make your way to Zipline Italia in Furore.
This exhilarating experience is perfect for all ages. There is no skill or strength required; all you have to do is fasten your harness and get ready for the most freeing flight of your life! Visitors have the option to zip-line alone or with a partner, child, or friend. The zip line runs from Furore all the way to Conca dei Marini and lasts about a minute. Afterward, visitors can opt to purchase a video or picture of their experience!
Explore Mount Vesuvius
Take a day trip to Mount Vesuvius to explore the famous volcano that destroyed and preserved Pompeii.
Mount Vesuvius is Europe’s only active volcano, so this is an attraction you don’t want to miss out on. Over the last 17,000 years, this volcano has erupted eight different times, the last time being in March of 1944. The active volcano sits on top of a magma layer that runs 154 miles into the ground, and there is a good possibility it will erupt again. There is no need to worry yet, though, as experts at the Vesuvius Observatory constantly monitor it.
The best way to visit Mount Vesuvius is with a guided tour so that you can learn more about the volcano and its history. It is also possible to explore the volcano on your own. You can find day trips to Mount Vesuvius from many of the towns on the Amalfi Coast on GetYourGuide. Many of the tours also group Pompeii in the itinerary.
Once you arrive at the top of Mount Vesuvius, you’ll definitely want to hike up to the crater. There are a few different trails leading around the volcano, but the easiest and most popular is Trail 5 (il Gran Cono). After ticking “climb a volcano” off your bucket list, head over to the souvenir store to shop for gifts.
Spend a Day at the Beach
The weather along the Amalfi Coast is perfect for spending a day at the beach.
There are many beaches along the coast to visit, some more famous than others but all offering dazzling turquoise waters. One of the most famous is the Marina Grande Public Beach in Positano. This Mediterranean oasis is a celebrity favorite and has plenty of sun loungers, restaurants, and even a disco. Other great beaches that are less packed than those of Amalfi and Positano are Spiaggia di Atrani and the Fiordo di Furore.
If you’re looking for an area to swim off the beaten path, then check out Bagni della Regina Giovanna, also known as the Baths of Queen Giovanna. This rocky swimming pool tucked away from the sea was the personal swimming pool of Giovanna D’Angio, the Queen of Naples, in the 14th century.
Spend a Day in Sorrento
If you’re looking to do some sightseeing on the Amalfi Coast, then make sure to put Sorrento on that list of places to go!
This stunning coastal city is the perfect place to spend the day shopping and exploring. Sorrento has plenty to offer tourists, from spectacular museums like the Museo Correale Sorrento to beaches and boutique shops. Visitors can tour one of the many churches as well, like the Cathedral of Saints Philip and James, which is filled with stunning frescoes.
End your day in Sorrento with a cocktail at one of the many rooftop bars while watching the last light of sunset softly outline Mount Vesuvius on the horizon.
Ride the Cable Car to Monte Faito
Another great activity on the Amalfi Coast is the cable car ride from Castellammare di Stabia to Monte Faito.
This 8.5-minute ride offers visitors sweeping views of the Bay of Naples and the rugged coastline. It leaves from Cable Car Funivia Castellammare di Stabia and drops visitors off at the top of the mountain. From here, tourists can enjoy hikes along many paths or walk for 10 minutes to the panoramic lookout point for pictures.
Explore Villa Rufolo
Villa Rufolo is one of the most beautiful villas along the Amalfi Coast, and it boasts outstanding terraces and gardens.
The villa is located in Ravello, just outside of the town of Amalfi, and dates to the 13th century. During the medieval era, the Rufolo family built this villa to display their wealth and economic power. This isn’t your average Italian villa, though, as the buildings were influenced by Arab and Byzantine architecture, along with the local culture of the time. Today, tourists can purchase a ticket to explore Villa Rufolo. There are many areas to check out, including the main house, the Hall of Knights, the Turkish Baths and, of course, the gardens and terraces overlooking the rocky cliffside villages. This is, hands down, one of the best places to visit on the Amalfi Coast.
Visit Castello di Lettere
Perched on the hill of San Nicola del Vaglia overlooking the Bay of Naples is this incredible 10th-century castle.
Castello di Lettere was built as a stronghold by the Ducato di Amalfi (Duchy of Amalfi) to protect its northern border. It served as a defense for the Lattari Mountains for many years before being converted into a residential complex. Today, tourists can explore the grounds, cathedral, and castle sitting 340 meters above sea level. The views from this stunning castle are absolutely breathtaking, so make sure to bring your camera along!
Tour a Lemon and Olive Oil Farm
The Amalfi Coast is known for its citrus fruits, especially its lemons, so why not learn more about the history of farming in the area with a tour of Azienda Agrituristica La Masseria?
This picturesque lemon and olive farm is located in Schiazzano, about a 20-minute drive from Sorrento and Nerano. This large farm dates to 1898 and offers visitors an interactive tour of the fruit trees, grape vines, beehives, and vegetable gardens, all the while sharing history and stories passed on from their ancestors. Tourists get to sample some of the farm’s products, watch practical demonstrations on techniques for production, visit the peasant museum, and tour the estate’s 18th-century chapel. Other highlights include wine tasting and a guided history lesson on local wine production. Reservations are required, and the tour lasts between two and three hours.
Rent Jet Skis
A fun thing to do on the Amalfi Coast is explore the sea and coastline on your own with a Jet Ski rental.
Jet Skis are an exhilarating way to spend time on the water. Visitors can rent them from a few different places near Sorrento. Sorrento Trips offers fantastic packages for a reasonable price, but drivers do have to have a boat license. Each Jet Ski can seat up to two people. If you don’t have a boat license, check out the tours from Jet Ski Sorrento. Visitors hop on the back with an experienced skipper for a tour of their choice. If you want a tour that will get your adrenaline pumping, check out the sports tour. Other tours offered are a sunset ride or a sunrise ride.
Enjoy Other Watersports in Amalfi
There are plenty of great water activities along the coast to indulge in for people of all ages. From snorkeling to kneeboarding, tubing, and waterskiing, you can do it all with Amalfi Coast Watersport.
The company offers a range of activities perfect for kids, adults, and the young at heart. You can even rent a sea scooter and snorkel to explore the sea life on your own or book a snorkel tour. Other tours and activities offered include wakeboarding, banana boat rides, kayak tours, and cooking classes.
Amalfi Coast Watersport is located in the Lido degli Artisti Beach Club at Il Duoglio Spiaggia. It’s less than a five-minute drive or bus ride from the town of Amalfi.
There you have them, the best things to do along the Amalfi Coast! Whether you’re looking for day trips, high-adrenaline activities, or historical tours, you’ll find them on this list. Now all you have to do is pack for your next great adventure in Italy.