Driving the Amalfi Coast

Jul 3rd, 2007, 03:16 PM
  #1  
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Driving the Amalfi Coast

Is the Amalfi Coast too dangerous for tourists to drive?
Also, if we stop in Positano, Amalfi, etc, are there places to park our car? Or should we just drive to a bus station somewhere and use public transportation to get from town to town? Thanks!
Creative5 is offline  
Jul 3rd, 2007, 03:23 PM
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Although I haven't driven there myself, I know people who have. It does sound a little dangerous, but if you drive (very) defensively I think it's fine. Perhaps try to avoid the busiest times, don't drive at night, and don't try to read a map while you are behind the wheel, you'll be OK.
Jenski is offline  
Jul 3rd, 2007, 04:30 PM
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Hi! If you click on my name you will get some feedback on my question about the AC. Also, there have been many posts about the AC here. I too was concerned about driving it. We are going in late October. I guess it depends on the time of year you are going. Summer sounds kind of like a parking lot. We will be driving it but then we are used to certain Los Angeles freeways that are pretty much a nightmare. Good luck!
michele_d is offline  
Jul 3rd, 2007, 05:01 PM
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This will take a while to load;but if you want to see what it is like to drive on the amalfi coast go to our web site and look at the movie clip bus ride to Positano... then think twice about driving... emilyandjim.info
Oscar_James is offline  
Jul 3rd, 2007, 05:29 PM
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How good of a driver are you? DH drove it on our last trip to Italy. And while the drive can be nerve wracking, just having the freedom to drive the beautiful coast at our own pace provided beautiful memories for both of us.

The road has very little straight driving. Its almost all curves. It is one lane each way. And, you will see tour buses on the road, which can be frightening when going around a curve. Also, you will probably be passed by Vespas and other scooters.

But, if you are a careful driver, I still think it is worth the freedom to drive and explore this beautiful area. Just, say yes to the additional insurance at the car rental place in case of an incident.

Also, there are definitely parking lots in Positano, Amalfi and Ravello. Just remember, that it is extremely crowded in July and August. But, the crowds clear around September and October.
FlyingMaltese is offline  
Jul 3rd, 2007, 05:48 PM
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We did the drive in the reverse of what seems more typical; we drove Salerno towards Positano. This way you have all the views but you're driving next to the hill instead on the side of the cliff. We arrived mid-August, mid-week, mid-day, and traffic was very manageable. Once we got to the hotel we pretty much parked the car and used public transportation - bus and ferry.
toni_g_b is offline  
Jul 3rd, 2007, 05:49 PM
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The driving is not really dangerous at all.

It it however fairly slow, even in off season, since the road is very winding, with narrow lanes and no shoulders (but a heavy rock wall between the road and the drop to the sea below).

We enjoy it - and always drive it when in the area - but that's usually in May or early June. In the middle of the summer the traffic is often close to bumper to bumper - and you're better off using boats.

As for parking - you need to make sure your hotel has parking - and assume it will be difficult in any of the towns (cricling to look for a spot - and parking in places barely bigger than the car, half off the road etc). If you're a good at parallel parking in tiny spots you shouldn;t have a problem.
nytraveler is offline  
Jul 3rd, 2007, 05:58 PM
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Speed is low and cliff/water is not an issue.

Main problem is the narrowness of the drive east of Positano. When there's a bus coming the other way, you often have to stop, and if you meet at a curve, you may need to back up.

So, ask yourself, do you feel comfortable being an inch off a wall to your right, and perhaps less than an inch off a bus to your left? If that's not a major problem, you're fine.

It's not a problem for me, and I highly enjoyed the drive.
rkkwan is offline  
Jul 3rd, 2007, 06:06 PM
  #9  
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No, it is not dangerous if you are a resonably good driver. It is slow at times. It is also a very scenic drive and it allows you to stop and explore the spots you find most appealing. We drove it without difficulty.

You must arrange parking with your hotel because it is very limited. If you are not staying and have no hotel, you will have more difficulty. There are garages along the route but they save their spaces for use by hotel guests that regularly use them.
GBC is offline  
Jul 3rd, 2007, 08:23 PM
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There are certain people on this board who always say "don't drive", but sometimes I wonder why. That recommendation doesn't fit for everyone. I've been to the AC three times, each with a car, and will go back next Spring for a 4th trip, again with car. I like the freedom having a car allows.
Kristina is offline  
Jul 3rd, 2007, 08:25 PM
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Yes. Use buses, unless you are a fully confident driver.
Cinart is offline  
Jul 3rd, 2007, 10:46 PM
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It is not dangerous to drive--just congested and unique i.e. having to consider width of on-coming traffic. Your idea of driving to pick up a bus is fraught with the same issue you will have driving anywhere--where to park? If you can park at the bus station, you can probably park at your destination and you won't be held up by the various bus and ferry schedules.
I'll be in the area in September and driving. Have fun. Paul
macanimals is offline  
Jul 4th, 2007, 11:31 AM
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Cinart -

IMHO unless you're a fully confident driver you shouldn;t be on any roads anywhere. The Amalfi Drive is not a challenge to any driver who is even reasonably competent (unless they have vertigo)..
nytraveler is offline  
Jul 4th, 2007, 11:35 AM
  #14  
ira
 
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Hi C,

>Is the Amalfi Coast too dangerous for tourists to drive?

No. It's just that the driver has to pay attention to the road and doesn't get to see the scenery.

Additionaly, if you don't know where to stop to let the buses by, you end up causing a traffic jam.

You wouldn't do that, but lots of other people do.

ira is offline  
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