To plan our 8-day Amalfi Coast itinerary was not an easy task. The entire Amalfi Coast is a stretch of coastline along the southern edge of Italy’s Sorrentine Peninsula. Colourful fishing villages, cliffs, terraced vineyards, rugged small beaches, hidden hiking trails have made this area super attractive. However, it is impossible to travel the entire coastal area in 8 days.
So the first things we did was to rent a car. The Amalfi coastal roads have narrow stretches, and in some small villages pedestrian, scooters, and cars share the same small streets. Therefore, we considered to rent a small Car (click for the best car rental deals here). The hotels in major coastal towns are super expensive. But in small inland villages, even up-level hotels are also affordable. During our entire trip, we stayed in this apartment Gocce Di Capri Resort with wonderful view of Capri, sunsets, and even Tornado on the vast open sea.
Our ultimate 8-day Amalfi Coast itinerary included following activities:
- Day 1: Arrival at Rome and drove to the hotel
- Day 2: Walk in the rainy Positano
- Day 3: Enjoy the views in Nocelle
- Day 4: Relax at the beach of Marina del Cantone
- Day 5: Visit the famous Villa Rufolo and Ravello
- Day 6: See the enchanting seaside town Amalfi
- Day 7: Hiking to Atrani from Amalfi
- Day 8: Drive to Naples and return our car
Day 1: Arrival at Rome and drove to the hotel
There are two Airports in Rome. We arrived at Leonardo da Vinci International Airport. The Airport has easy access to all car rental companies and the pick up process was very easy. Most rental car companies have their offices in the parking building of the Airport. Everything was pre-arranged and we got our car within 10 minutes.
The drive to our hotel Gocce Di Capri Resort was quite easy and gorgeous. The most part was along the SS145. It took us around three hours to reach the hotel. You can find this hotel at Booking.com or HotelsCombined.com.
In fact, there is no lack of hotels along the Amalfi coast. But you might need to book well advance since most affordable hotels could be booked out months before your trip. You can check here to find the best suitable offer. Or, pick one of the popular and affordable hotels below:
- Hotel Marincanto in Positano centre is suitable for couples.
- Hotel Fontana in Amalfi is just 100 m away from the port, and bus stops so you can immediately start enjoying your holiday.
- Hotel Villa Cimbrone in Ravello is a perfect venue for special events or anniversary.
Day 2: Walk in the rainy Positano
The cliffside village Positano is well-known for its pebble beachfront, steep and narrow streets, and boutiques and cafes. When we arrived there, it was very stormy. The waves were very high and a tourist boat was struggling to get the passengers on board. Because of the bad weather, we were able to find a roadside parking place. Then we rushed into a café near the beach.
Luckily, a few hours later, the sun shone! We could walked on the stairs that cut in the steep cliffs and see the gentle waves hug the small pebble beach.
Day 3: Enjoy the views in Nocelle
Nocelle, a tiny, still relatively isolated mountain village, sits around 443 meters above Positano. It is the highest and oldest village of Positano.
It is the start and endpoint of the scenic Path of the Gods (a trail between Bomerano and Nocelle). Besides, the small mountain village provides stunning vistas of the coastline. As our family always likes to explore the hidden corners without all the touristic hustle and bustle, we spent a whole day in this small mountain village and lost ourselves in the views that are out of the world.
It is possible to visit both Nocelle and Positano in one day. Then you could add other places to your Amalfi Coast itinerary.
Day 4: Relax at the beach of Marina del Cantone
Marina del Cantone is just 10 kilometres away from out hotel. It took us less than half-hour to be there. The small village is a hidden spot and less known by travelers. But, it has two beaches linked by a seaside walking path. A few restaurants offer tasty Italian cuisine at affordable prices. It was mid-October and the water was quite warm. We had a swim in the sea and a lunch with seaview.
Day 5: Visit the famous Villa Rufolo and Ravello
Ravello is just a few kilometres east of the graceful town, Amalfi. Founded in the 5th century, it was a shelter against Barbarian invasions when the Roman empire fell. Then, Ravello became an important port of the Maritime Republic of Amalfi in the 9th century. The inhabitants were involved in maritime trade with the Orient, and that gave it wealth and status. Those new merchants of that age had built castles, villas, churches, and civic buildings to present their wealth.
We did a few things there, such as spending several hours in villa Rufolo, having a pleasant lunch at the Garden Restaurant, and walking to the Ravello’s hidden neighbourhood.
Day 6: See the enchanting seaside town Amalfi
Amalfi is an enchanting seaside town on the Amalfi Coast. Its colourful houses, the amazing views of the sea, the good climate for almost the entire year, have made the Amalfi the dream summer place for many travelers, including our family.
While the information about Amalfi Coast is available everywhere on the website, we found it quite difficult to get detail information about things to do in the Amalfi. Originally, based on limited information, we only planned to spend half a day there. But in the end, we spent our entire day there. The main activities we have done in a day are such as beach walk, stunning at the colourful marina, visiting the landmark Saint Andrew’s Cathedral, and Lost ourselves among Amalfi’s traditional streets and alleys.
Related post: Amalfi, the Enchanting Seaside Town on the Amalfi Coast
Day 7: Hiking to Atrani from Amalfi
Atrani, a fishing village, is linked to its graceful neighbour, Amalfi. The total area of 0.12 km² and around 1000 inhabitants make it the smallest village in Italy. Atrani is isolated from main road traffic because it is protected by its houses placed one upon another. Therefore, its ancient character as a small fishing village is well preserved and intact.
As with most villages along the Amalfi coast, steep streets, narrow alleys, and pretty houses are the charms of the village. However, tourists overlook it easily when visiting the Amalfi Coast.
It was not on our original Amalfi Coast Itinerary. When we visited Amalfi, we accidentally discovered this village because we parked our car in Luna Rossa parking house, which links both Amalfi and Atrani. In the usual case, tourists can reach there via SS163. But on the top of the parking house, there is a cliff walkway to Atrani. The walkway is a very impressive and scenic route. It is the best way to explore Atrani.
You can combine Amalfi and Atrani in one day, since the hiking trail is very short.
Day 8: Drive to Rome and return our car
The highway to Rome was quite empty on the Saturday morning. Arrived at Rome Leonardo da Vinci International Airport quite early, we were able to return our car on time to avoid punishment. The drop-off place is also in the same building, where we had picked up our car. Since we bought the full coverage, the staff just examined our car roughly and signed off the return process.
Add some popular tours to the Amalfi Coast Itinerary
The Amalfi Coast drive is one of the most stunning drives in Europe. When we were driving, we had to keep our eyes on the road instead of the scenery.
The narrow road winds along the coast for 80 km, some places only allow one car to pass, other places have low or non-existent safety barriers between us and the rocks and sea below. But if you join a tour, you could enjoy the spectacular views without having steel nerves.
Tours start from many major towns. You can check here to find the best offer that suits your budget. Some of the popular ones are:
- Amalfi Coast Tour-All Inclusive from Naples
- Capri and Anacapri Full-Day Tour from the Amalfi Coast
- Pompeii & Amalfi Coast Day Tour from Naples with Lunch
- Amalfi Coast Full-Day Semi-Private Excursion from Sorrento
- From Rome: Amalfi Coast & Pompeii Full-Day Small Group Tour
How to reach Amalfi Coast
The nearest Airport is in Naples. Trains from the Naples central station go to one of the major towns, such as Amalfi, Positano, Sorrento, and Ravello. If you arrive at Rome, there are trains from Rome to Naples central station as well. Some trains are faster and more expensive than others, so know which one works best for your travel schedule before you buy your tickets.
You can also rent a car at the Naples Airport, or at Rome Airports like we did. Alternatively, you can also rent a car in Sorrento.
Between the ports of Naples, Sorrento, Capri Island, and other Amalfi Coast towns ferries run during the summer seasons. Plan to purchase your tickets well in advance, especially if you’re traveling during the peak summer tourist months.