Early Planning...Amalfi Coast in June?

Jul 16th, 2004, 08:19 AM
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Early Planning...Amalfi Coast in June?

First of all, thanks to everyone who commented on our recent Scotland trip report and photos. Ms. Go and I truly appreciate your kind words!

We are now starting to look at possibilities for next year's trip (never too early!), and the lovely Amalfi Coast may be the front-runner. I know there is no shortage of fine threads to search through here, but I was wondering if someone could give us the skinny on just a few basic starting points.

First off: is there a truly definitive trip report that I should be searching for here at fodors? If so, what key word(s) should I use?

From what I've seen on the net, renting an apartment or small villa for 3 people (two 40-ish adults and one 12-year-old) for a week would be very nice. If we do this, should we be focusing on Positano, Praiano and Amalfi properties? The ones I see at summerinitaly.com look pretty good to me...anyone have experience with this site?

If we did rent such a place, is there a major difference between those 3 specific locations? How big of a deal is the location within a given town (i.e. being near town, near the shore, or halfway between)? Assume no car.

We would probably also flesh out our itinerary with a couple of nights in Naples, a couple of nights on Capri, and day trips to Pompeii, Herculaneum, Paestum, Ravello, Sorrento, and Caserta palace. Any thoughts?

I'm sure we will get plenty of valuable advice from Bob the Nav and Grinisa. Anyone else want to help start us off heading in the right general direction?

Many thanks in advance for your help.
mr_go is offline  
Jul 16th, 2004, 09:10 AM
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My husband and I rented a two-bedroom apartment in Positano named La Cisterna in June, 2003 (see the website link below). It is wonderful and a lot less expensive than staying in a hotel. Also, a maid is available wash clothes (wash, hang out to dry, fold/iron!) and cook for you, although we cooked ourselves several times. It's just below the Marincanto Hotel (which means it's not too far up the hill so you can easily walk back up after excersions or dinner) and has access to a private beach. You can't go wrong with this apartment! I recommended it to a friend who just got back and said they couldn't believe it was all theirs for a week. Huge terrace, herbs in the planters, grill, etc. It's better than the pictures, and they look great! We also peaked into the apt named Torre Sponda which is really cool (i.e. different).

We've stayed in Sorrento in years past with our kids but prefer Positano because of the water activities available and the shops/restaurants. Positano has easy boat access to Sorrento, Amalfi (and from there to Ravello by bus), and Capri. There are a number of vendors at the dock that provide any type of trip you can dream up! I would recommend making this your base and travelling to these points by boat.

Ciao . . .
Parker is offline  
Jul 16th, 2004, 10:39 AM
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mr go, I have used summer in italy and I like them the best of all the agencies I have used.

I too suggest that you stay near to town especially if you dont have a car. All three of the towns you mentioned are great places to base yourself.

There is a good trip report from kiki and alot of others too. I am sure Ira will tell you to read his too.

Try the search box here on fodors and you will be overwhelmed with all the info on that area.

Happy Planning
SeaUrchin is offline  
Jul 16th, 2004, 11:47 AM
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My wife and I and our 2 sons (then 13 and 10) spent a couple of days on the Amalfi Coast last summer during 2 weeks in Italy. As part of the trip, we also stayed in a villa in Tuscany rented through the Parker Company (based in Massachusetts).


We only have wonderful things to say about this company - what we saw was what we got (whether on their website or in their rather significantly sized brochure of villas). We were a group of 16 at the villa, but I know they have villas of all sizes available. Also, www.initaly.com has a host of information, including rental accommodations, about all aspects of an Italian holiday - very helpful.

Also, maybe it was just us, but Amalfi appeared quite crowded and commercial (we were there in late July), more like built up parts of the Jersey Shore than a scenic and serene fishing village. We stayed in the Hotel Marmorata which, although it has a Ravello address, was actually at the base of the cliffs, with access to the Med from the rear of the hotel. It was very nice. We also took the bus to Amalfi and up the cliff to Ravello with no trouble.

Definitely visit Pompeii (highly recommended - but bring hats, water, etc and use a guide), Mount Vesuvius (we drove, then hiked up - very cool - literally, the temperature dropped 20 degrees centigrade between Pompeii and the volcano), and maybe drop in on Herculaneum (while the unearthing of an entire city was amazing to see, the neigborhood it is located in seemed a bit rougher to us - we didn't stay long). We also drove through Caserta to see my father's relatives in a small village called Maddaloni - that was unforgettable.

In all, a fabulous place to spend time - we'd go back in a heartbeat. Enjoy!
dave63 is offline  
Jul 16th, 2004, 12:28 PM
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Parker: Thanks, I will look into La Cisterna. Sounds wonderful.

Sea Urchin: Yes, overwhelmed is the right word. Like I said...no shortage of fine threads to search through. And, fortunately, almost a year to do the looking!

Dave 63: Thanks for the tips. Didn't realize Ercolano had some dodgy parts. Good to know.
mr_go is offline  
Jul 16th, 2004, 02:01 PM
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mrgo, I would rent a place in or very close to Positano where you can walk to the bus stops and into town. This will make it easy for your daytrips up and down the coast on busses which stop running fairly early in the evening.
GAC has posted good information on the time schedules, so search on his threads. He also seems to be an expert on the area.

I like Praiano and Amalfi too although Amalfi is further down the coast and Praiano doesn't have much going for it except views back to Positano. I assume that Ira will recommend that hotel in Praiano but there is not much to do in the area.

I would do a few days in Capri too, get some good advice here about the hiking trails away from the tourist areas, there are some current threads going right now.

If I were traveling wit a 12 year old I would choose Positano for the pathways w/o cars where the child could explore by him/herself.

Have fun and ask more questions!

nocinonut is offline  
Oct 25th, 2004, 01:43 PM
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Dear Mr. Go,

The Amalfi coast is fabulous, and 2 years back I visited this location, and I posted lots of details on hotels, restaurants, etc. If you use the search feature and type in 'kiki', it should appear. The Amalfi Coast was the last portion of our trip, so you'll need to scroll down the replies a little bit to get to that section.

kiki is offline  
Oct 25th, 2004, 01:53 PM
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Kiki, thanks. I've read your report and quite a few others, and can say that we're now well underway in our planning. Certainly much further along than we were back in July. I truly appreciate your contribution to the knowledge base here!

In fact, we have booked the flight, a week in a Positano apartment, and two nights each in Naples & Capri. And it would have been a LOT more difficult without the gracious help of the regulars on this discussion board. Bravo and brava to each and every one of you!

We now have the DK and Time Out books, plus one just on Amalfi-coast hikes. So I have plenty of research left to do...and, unfortunately, plenty of time to think about it!

Thanks again.
mr_go is offline  
Oct 25th, 2004, 05:18 PM
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Can you tell me the name/author of the AC hikes book?

Jocelyn_P is offline  
Oct 25th, 2004, 05:38 PM
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Check out "Ira's Italy Trip Report" from October of 2003. He stayed in Praiano. Gives lots of descriptions of places to eat, how to get around,etc. We stayed at the Hotel Villa Franca in Positano in April during Easter, and loved it. We skipped Capri just because we liked walking the hills of Positano. We agree that Amalfi is busier, Ravello is very beautiful and quiet (though not a great "central place" to visit everything else, it is more remote) Our teenagers loved Pompei, and Vesuvius (the ride up the narrow road was their highlite) as well. June should be beautiful. Enjoy.
AVazzano is offline  
Oct 25th, 2004, 06:13 PM
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Jocelyn, it is called Sorrento, Amalfi, Capri: Car tours and walks by Julian Tippett, published by Sunflower Books. I had a little trouble finding it. Amazon listed it, but was out of stock. I ended up ordering it from www.themapshop.co.uk.
ms_go is offline  
Oct 25th, 2004, 06:36 PM
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Thanks, ms_go. I'm going to order it, too.
Jocelyn_P is offline  
Oct 25th, 2004, 06:43 PM
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Hi gos,

You say you've booked your flight already...did you use FF miles? Flights for me (out of Tulsa) in June are outrageously expensive--several hundred dollars more than similar flights last year.
Jocelyn_P is offline  
Oct 25th, 2004, 06:56 PM
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Jocelyn, we bought one expensive ticket and used UA miles for the other two (got in just before Lufthansa began limiting ticketing with UA miles to within 90 days of travel). It might be a little early for discounted June fares. We usually don't buy them this early, but we wanted the FF tickets. I think we bought our tickets for this past June in early February.
ms_go is offline  
Oct 28th, 2004, 01:19 PM
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Woo hoo! Prices on AA went WAY down today so I got my ticket for $600 less than it would have been yesterday.
Jocelyn_P is offline  
Oct 29th, 2004, 04:52 AM
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Hi Mr_go

You might find this link to hiking the AC useful.

ira is offline  
Oct 29th, 2004, 05:52 AM
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Thanks, Ira. We're hoping to do some or all of this walk, if we can convince the 12-year-old that it will be fun.... From the pictures, it looks fabulous.

Way to go, Jocelyn. I'm sure the price of my ticket will go down eventually, too. But what's done is done. And we did get two FF tickets, so I'm trying hard not to have any buyer's remorse.
ms_go is offline  
Oct 29th, 2004, 10:15 AM
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Hey Ira, cool site. And not just that page, either! Thanks.
mr_go is offline  

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