Favourite Holiday Destination: The Amalfi Coast

The Amalfi Coast conjurs up images of crystal blue waters against a rugged mountain backdrop with citrus trees, flowers and olive groves dotting the beautiful coastal villages of Sorrento, Positano, Capri and Amalfi. The ocean is so vast and the ambience so peaceful that you can unwind and recharge from the hustle and bustle of city life which will seem so far away. These beautiful coastal villages are famous for Limoncello, delicious, freshly cooked seafood and great scenery. Like to hear more? See below for our first had experience and tips for the Amalfi Coast!

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Getting there: The Amalfi Coast is reachable from both Nalamfi-coast-mapaples and Rome, with Naples being closer.  We travelled to the Amalfi Coast from Naples and there are three options for getting there:

  1. The ferry: Cost: Approx EUR 12 per person 1 way to Sorrento. This is by far the preferred option, reaching Sorrento, the gateway to the Amalfi Coast in 35 minutes, as well as avoiding the pick pocket ridden train from Circumvenstia. There are roughly four daily ferries between Naples and Sorrento during the Summer months  and they depart from Port Belverdere.
  2. Train from Circumvesuviana: Trains depart every half hour from Stazione Napoli Centrale on Piazza Garibaldi and the journey takes between 45 minutes to 1.25 hours and costs EUR 4. It is nortorious for pick pockets so watch your belongings
  3. Coach from Naples to Sorrento: Coaches depart from Naples International Airport and cost EUR 10 per person 1 way, with the journey taking approximately 1.25 hours.

Below is a guide of our handpicked favourite spots in The Amalfi Coast

Capri:

Perhaps the heart of the Amalfi Coast and therefore the busiest place, Capri has plenty to offer a wide range of tourists. With its panoramic views, coastline dotted with outdoor cafes, unique historic sites, beautiful flora and designer shoes and handbags plus unique souvenirs such as limoncello and colourful homewares for shopaholics, Capri has so much to offer visitors. Why make the most of it and not book a tour. various tour options are available, to suit your travel style, including the Full Day sightseeing tour, which takes you to all the key sites of Capri in an air conditioned coach and includes lunch. Capri Walking Tour are also available, as are private boat tours of the grottos. You could also do a cruise from Sorrento.

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Things to do:

Grande Marina: This is literally the “main port” where ferries depart and arrive to and from Capri to other parts of the Amalfi coast. Private boat tours of the Amalfi Coast are available here, as is the bus which takes you to the several key attractions around the island, including Piccolo Marina, the historic centre of Anacapri and the Gardens of Augustus. There are also several shops featuring designer shoes and handbags as well as local specialities such as limoncello, homewares made out of shells.

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Funicular: Be sure to take the funicular to Anacapri for breathtaking, panoramic views of Capri. There is a bus from the Marina Grande (which costs around EUR 1.80 per person one way) which takes you to Ana Capri where you can enjoy a cable car ride and the breathtaking views of the island. The cable car trip costs EUR 8.00 for an adult return ticket. There is a nice bar where you can sit and enjoy a cold beverage while you enjoy the view.

Take a Private boat tour where you can explore the rugged caves of the blue and green grottos.

Another must see is the Gardens of Augustus, which were established by German industrialist Friedrich Alfred Krupp in the 20th century, in order to build his mansion. The gardens were initially named after him and were renamed the Gardens of Augustus in 1918. There are spectacular coastal views from the gardens, which feature terraces and flora such as dahlias, geraniums and brooms. The gardens are featured in the walking tour and can also be accessed via the bus.

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Piazza Umberto is Capri Town Centre, with speciality boutiques featuring jewellery, paintings, designer shoes and souvenir shops featuring the region’s famous limoncello, shell crafted goods and colourful homewares. There are several restaurants, bars and cafes for you to enjoy a tasty meal or cold beverage.

Marina Picolla: Literally the “Small port”, this pretty little oasis on the south east side of Capri, overlooking the Faraglioni sea.

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You can also do an Italian cooking class in Capri and impress your friends back home with your authentic Italian cooking !

Sorrento:

Sorrento is the gateway to the Amalfi Coast and once there, other towns such as Amalfi, Positano and Capri can easily be accessed by ferry. Although only a 35 minute ferry ride away from the crowded, chaotic city that is Naples, Sorrento is a beautiful Italian coastal town, with quaint little cafes and restaurants and citrus trees lining the streets and along the waterfront and hundreds of little shops selling an eclectic mix of things ranging from the region’s famous Limoncello, to different types of pasta, olive oils, wines and sauces, beachwear, jewellery  and shells.

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Where to stay: There are several options in Sorrento, including hotels, serviced appartments and Bed and Breakfasts. We stayed in a Bed and Breakfast and the advantage of this, in particular, in a country like Italy, is that you get the personalised touch and get to experience Italian hospitality. We stayed at Parque Verte Bed and Breakfast, a delightful family run Bed and Breakfast run by Fransesca and Luigi with spacious, light and bright rooms with additional amenities such as kitchen facilities. Fransesca was warm and friendly and always willing to help and give us information. The breakfast is very generous-includes a serving of fresh fruit (fresh figs at breakfast made my morning!), the option of a hot breakfast eg bacon & eggs, pastries, and delicious coffee. It is a 25 minute walk from the port and about a 10-15 minute walk from the city centre.

Eating out:

Sorrento city centre has delightful cafes, pizzeries, trattorias and gelaterias, so there is no shortage of excellent food in Sorrento. Eating out is inexpensive, with pizzas costing EUR 5 and peronis costing EUR 2. There are several lovely restaurants on Via Giulliani, including L’Antica Trattoria, which offers a 3 course set lunch menu for EUR 19 per person in a lovely garden setting. Their entree of zucchini flowers was delicious, as  was their main course of sea bass there canoli is delicious and beautifully presented. Next door to this restaurant is another restaurant which has extremely good, friendly service and does a lovely spaghetti with mussels. In the town centre is also a restaurant called Itali.co Sorrento and The Palms Sorrento and The Palms Sorrento has a lovely setting with amazing views. Along the waterfront in Via San Cesareo Sorrento are several small seafood restaurants, selling delicious, fresh and reasonably priced seafood.

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Things to do: Sorrento has lots of shops and markets, with regional specialities including Limoncello, colourful pasta, olive oil, brightly colourful, summer clothing, footwear and kitchenware. This coastal town is great for exploring and you can descend to the bottom and explore the picturesque coastal village of Campania. Tasso Piazza has several shops, restaurants and cafes. You can also take a walk down to the marina.

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About Annabelle

I, Annabelle Peters, was born in Spelthorne, London's outskirts, to father, Bruce Surrey, London, and mother Evelyn, born in Mozambique, Africa and raised in Goa, India, both places which were under Portuguese rule. My sister Cristobel was born 3 and a half years later, in 1986. At the age of five, we moved to Sydney Australia, where we remained for 25 years. I attended highschool at Brigidine College St Ives, which I graduated from in 2001 and completed my Bachelor of Commerce at the University of Sydney in 2005, followed by the CPA Program in 2008. Growing up, we did a lot of travelling as a family, a trend which has so far continued for the rest of my life. I think the combination of my mixed origins, together with my father's lengthy and successful career in the travel industry have fueled my passion for travel. In July 2015, I made the decision to do what many Australians do: a stint in London, combining international work experience with travelling around Europe. This journey has taken me to many countries and I would love to share this experience with you all.

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