Due to the physical landscape of the Amalfi Coast, it can be challenging to get from Point A to Point B. Luckily we know the Amalfi Coast like the back of our hand, so we will give you to top tips on how to not only get there but once there, how you can get from one town to the next.
Brandon’s Travel Tips:
Consider bookmarking this article into an “ Amalfi Coast” folder in your browser. This way you can circle back to it while planning your trip. Whether you are in Naples or taking a day trip from Rome to Mt. Vesuvius, take a look at these articles below for your trip and check out our Pompeii and Mt. Vesuvius day trip from Rome and let us do all the heavy lifting.
- Top Beaches along the Amalfi Coast
- 15 Foods to try on the Amalfi Coast and Where to eat them
- Top Attractions & Things To See Around The Amalfi Coast
- Visiting Pompeii: Everything you need to know
Amalfi Coast Overview
The Amalfi Coast is located in a small corner of Southern Italy between the Gulf of Naples and the Gulf of Salerno in the Province of Salerno. The region is a 1.5-hour drive to the south from Naples, the closest big city.
The actual coast is about 30 miles ( 50 km) long and follows a winding two-lane road with the sea on one side and mountains on the other. As you can imagine, with only a winding two-lane road, there are not many options for getting around, but we will explore them all below.
So the Coast is really broken down into a few main cities with many smaller ones. I will get more into the individual towns below, but just as a precursor the cities are the following:
- Sorrento – While many do not include this in the coast, I would say that this is the beginning town and is a general departure town for the coast.
- Positano- From Positano, it is officially the Amalfi Coast. This is the first town you will encounter after Sorrento
- Praiano- The little cousin of Positano which is also much quieter.
- Amalfi – Yes, there is actually a town called Amalfi as well. Known for its church
- Ravello- The furthest town and the only one not on the water. This town is perched above the cliffs overlooking the coast
- Capri- Probably the most beautiful island on the planet. Since it is an island, the only way to get there of course is by ferry or private boat
Popular Tours of Pompeii and Capri
Getting to the Amalfi Coast
Most people will usually get to the coast by a combination of train and car. The train service will only take you as far as Sorrento. After that you can only reach the other picturesque towns by car, public transport, horse or mule.
Coming from Rome
When arriving from Rome you have three options.
Option #1- You hire a private driver to pick you up at your hotel in Rome and drop you off at your hotel along the coast. This is an ideal option for most since you don’t need to think about anything. You sit down in the car and led by your modern-day Roman Charioteer to your destination. It will take you at least 3.5 hours from Rome to Sorrento. If you are going to Positano or Praiano, then add another hour to that.
- Pro’s – Easy and no thought process | Can make stops along the way | Freedom
- Con’s- Very pricey | Can get caught in never-ending traffic
Option #2 – You take the train to Naples Central Station and then a smaller, local train to Sorrento. At this point, if you are only going to Sorrento, then your trip is done. If you need to go to towns further along the coast, then a taxi will be your best bet. A taxi will cost around 40€ to get you from Sorrento to Positano. If you are going further down the coast, then add around 10€- 15€ per city. The total trip to Sorrento by train will take around 2.5 hours.
- Pro’s – Fairly inexpensive | Fast | No stress about traffic | Fun adventure
- Con’s- Have to lug around your luggage | Could get lost
Option # 3 – You could take our Rome to Pompeii Day Trip with Stunning Sorrento. We would pick you up in the morning and you would tour the UNESCO ruins of Pompeii and then be taken to Sorrento. If you are staying in Sorrento then you have already arrived at your destination. If you have to go further along the coast, then jump into a taxi and follow the steps of option #2.
- Pro’s – Fairly inexpensive | You acquire knowledge of Pompeii | Dedicated Tour Leader for the day
- Con’s- Nothing
Once you are in the Amalfi Coast
As I mentioned earlier it is possible to take a local train to Sorrento. Once you are in Sorrento, your only options are by taxi, private driver or public transport. There are no Ubers in the Amalfi Coast. To get a better idea of where you can take an Uber in Italy, read Is There Uber in Italy.
There are buses by the company SITA that run from Sorrento to Amalfi every day of the week starting at 6 AM until 10 PM. You cannot buy a ticket on the bus but can buy them either at the train station or any bar or tabacchi. They also have storage below for your baggage. The buses tend to run every 15-30 minutes. The price ranges from 1.50€ to 5.50€ one way depending on where you are going. Make sure to check the SITA site for hours as they could change.
Useful Tip: If you are traveling from Sorrento then make sure you sit on the right-hand side so you can take advantage of all the beautiful and panoramic views.
There are also ferries that run in the summertime that depart from Salerno and end at Positano and vice versa. The ferries vary with some of them hugging the coast and some of them going to Capri, while others go all the way to Sorrento and vice versa of course. The price also varies between 8€ to 15€ depending on where you are going. You can buy tickets directly at the pier of departure. This way also allows you not to worry about traffic and enjoy the coast by the sea! Make sure to check the ferry site for hours as they could change.
There are taxis along the entire coast from Sorrento to Ravello. The pricing varies greatly depending on where you are going, but expect to pay at least 40€ from Sorrento to Positano. That trip could cost more if you have lots of baggage and more than 2 people in the taxi. The obvious benefits are the freedom to not have to wait for others and you can get fast from point A to point B.
However, bear in mind that traffic can be insane during the summer months and especially on the weekends, so your trip could take almost as long as if you going by bus. Make sure that you don’t, under any circumstance try and negotiate a price with the taxi driver. Always tell them to go by the meter, because in negotiating a price, you will always lose out.
Renting a car will give you maximum freedom along the coast. There are also quite a few areas where you can stop for awesome panoramic shots along the way. You can rent a car from Naples train station and hit the road. However, bear in mind that driving in Italy is a bit crazier than back home. Also, the roads are winding and quite narrow and remember that there is only 1 road for the whole coast. If you get easily car sick or are not a really good defensive driver, then it’s probably better to let someone else handle the wheel to get you to your destination.
This is by far the most luxurious way to travel around the coast. Whenever people ask me, I tell them that the best way to see the Amalfi Coast is from the water. If your budget allows for it, rent a private boat, or take a tour to show you all the splendors that this magical place has to offer.