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shannoniam Mar 2nd, 2007 04:30 PM

Amalfi Coast Question
Hello Everyone,

Looking to spend four nights and four days in the Amalfi Coast and am trying to determine whether to stay in Sorrento or Positano. Mostly looking to be walking distance to town and activities, dining, etc. Definitely want a high room with a lovely view...any suggestions? Willing to spend $250-$300/night. Also, should we have a car or rely on drivers? Where do we pick up the ferry to Capri?

Many thanks,

TravMimi Mar 2nd, 2007 04:40 PM

Sorrento is a perfect base. Hydrofoils to Capri, Ischia and Naples and trains to Pompeii. You can bus to Amalfi. Sorrento is a great town, compact and easy to get around. Great night life. The evening stroll and piazza Tasso are great for people watching.

Weadles Mar 2nd, 2007 06:44 PM

Positano is much more beautiful and charming than Sorrento which caters to lots of big tour groups in the summer. We've never seen so many fish n chip places outside of England. Not that there's anything wrong with that, just not what we were looking for on an Italian vacation!

But for the quintessential Amalfi Coast experience, go to Positano. There's a reason why poets call it unforgettable, and why it's been voted one of the top romantic destinations in the world.

Sure, there are lots of tourists in Positano, too, but it still feels more authentically Italian than Sorrento. And the views and food are spectacular.

In the $250-300 range, I'd check out:

Albergo Miramare
Eden Roc
Hotel Buca il Baca (spelling??)
Palazzo Murat

By the way, you can catch a boat to Capri from Positano. Or, you can take a day tour with Salvatore whose "company" is located down at the town dock in Positano. I highly recommend him!

celeste60 Mar 2nd, 2007 11:19 PM

We took the train Rome to Naples and took the local train from Naples to sorrento. The advantage was that we did not have to leave the train station to get to sorrento. We stayed in sorrento for two nights. The first day, we took the train from sorrento to Pompei, the second days, we took the hydrofil from Sorrento to Capri. Very convenient.

We then took the Sita bus from Sorrento to positano and stayed in positano for the next two nights.

I think to get back to rome, we took the bus from positano to sorrento and from sorrento caught the train to the train station in Naples. The reason why sorrento is a bit more convenient is because once you get to naples, you can catch the train to Sorrento. I think to get to positano from Naples, you have to leave the train station, take a cab or bus to the port to take the boat to positano.

ira Mar 3rd, 2007 05:50 AM

Hi S,

Sorrento is an excellent base for visiting Pompeii, Herculaneum, Mt. Vesuvius and Capri.

It is not on the AC, but on the Sorrentine Peninsula.

Positano is about halfway along the Coast between Sorrento and Salerno. You can catch ferries to Capri, and Sorrento, Amalfi and Salerno as well as buses.

If you wouldn't mind spending less money for a small hotel with the same views as La Sireneuse in Positano, I can highly recommend in Praiano (abt 6 km from Positano, on both the Orange and SITA bus lines).

See my trip report for details;tid=34451044


Henry Mar 3rd, 2007 01:15 PM

Sorrento has excellent transportation connections, no need of car. Consider La Minervetta


TravMimi Mar 3rd, 2007 07:22 PM

Sadly too many tourist in Sorrento never get much past walking the Corso Italia, sit at the Fauno in Piazza Tasso, use marina piccola and get one or two streets in the "drain". Besides being the perfect base there is charm all its own. How many tourists walk a few hundred meters from piazza Tasso up via fuorimura to see the old mills in the gourge?? or see Marina Grande? or the fishing village Marina di Puolo? If you are just taking a romantic weekend Positano is good, but for some life, people watching and perfect connections, Sorrento.

Weadles Mar 3rd, 2007 08:32 PM

Sorry, but I disagree with you,TravMimi. We did everything that you suggested in your post, and still preferred Positano for its views, restaurants, neighbors ( Amalfi and Ravello!) and charm.

Steve_James Mar 4th, 2007 02:37 AM

I have to agree with Weadles.

Sorrento just doesn't compare with Positano IMO - for views, charm ... or anything else.

One is a busy transport hub that caters to package tours. The other is a picture-postcard village on the most spectacular coastline in Europe ...


TravMimi Mar 4th, 2007 08:42 AM

The reason Sorrento is the transport hub for tourist is because most people get to go only once. There is so much to see in that area that it's the best place to be for a 3 or 4 day taste of the entire area. For people like me who are there so often, the other side is perfect for a nice romantic restful get away.

ekscrunchy Mar 4th, 2007 09:14 AM

So how would it be to break up the OPs trip into two segments and stay 2 nights in both places?

I am asking because I am thinking of a trip to that area early next year and am also torn about where to base myself.

Weadles Mar 4th, 2007 09:57 AM


I don't like two night stays because just as you're settling in, you have to pack up again. Sorrento is only 30 minutes by car from Positano, 45 minutes by boat. I think the best idea is to weigh what each area provides ( Sorrento: easy transportation to Pompeii and Capri, very flat and walkable city, Positano: dramatic views, beautiful coastline,amazing food in Montepertuso (!!), easy day trips to Amalfi and the gardens at Ravello)and then make your decision.

Good luck! You really can't go too wrong in either place.

TravMimi Mar 4th, 2007 10:05 AM

I love having a good base hotel. Fall into bed at 11:pm with no worry about that awful 6:am telephone buzzing!!!!!

ekscrunchy Mar 4th, 2007 10:20 AM

Thanks..I do agree about having one base. My own trip would not be until next spring so I have plenty of time but it does seem to be a common dilemma.

One last question: Accesss to Pompeii from Positano? How long does it take and what is the easiest way to do this?

TravMimi Mar 4th, 2007 10:26 AM

bus or taxi to Sorrento then 30 min circumvesuviana train to pompei

ekscrunchy Mar 4th, 2007 12:54 PM

Mimi that certainly sounds easy! Thanks for the response.

I am thinking about a week-long combination of the Amalfi coast or Sorrento with one or two stops in Puglia for early next year. I have to look into the drive time for this combo....

TravMimi Mar 4th, 2007 12:59 PM

Some people love to drive in Italy some are train people. Im a train person. No matter, when you're in Puglia get some Bella di Cerignola olives from a local grove and think of me.

ekscrunchy Mar 4th, 2007 01:09 PM


Will think of you as I chow down!

Good idea to take the train instead of driving the long stretch from the coast to Puglia.....will have to investigate.
Thanks again for your help.

Steve_James Mar 5th, 2007 02:09 AM

Hi Ekscrunchy - Pompeii from Positano?

No need to go via Sorrento. It's simpler than that ...

From Positano take the SITA Sorrento bus, and get off at META station (- 25 mins).

[This is the nearest stop on the Circumvesuviana to Positano - the bus stops at Meta station].

From META it's 25 mins on the train to Pompeii Scavi.

This is the quickest option on the outward journey. It will normally save 30 minutes over going via Sorrento ...

For the return journey, however, it is advisable to return to Sorrento rather than Meta (- the bus starts from Sorrento station and usually fills up there - so that way you're sure of a seat).

Get bus tickets in advance from the station shop - and *validate them on boarding ...

Hope this helps ...


ekscrunchy Mar 5th, 2007 06:10 AM

Thank you Steve. You are always most helpful.

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