Paestum, the Amalfi Coast, and Naples

May 26th, 2006, 06:07 AM
  #1  
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Paestum, the Amalfi Coast, and Naples

My husband and I are planning our first trip to Italy in mid-late April 2007. We're going to be in Italy for three weeks. We have allocated four days for the Naples/Amalfi Coast area, including the day we'll take a train down from Rome. We are trying to decide where to stay in this area.

We're planning on spending about a day in Naples and also visiting Pompeii and the Amalfi Coast. Sorrento seems like it's centrally located to all of these places, but we also were thinking of going to Paestum for a day and we weren't sure how long it would take to get there from Sorrento. According to Rick Steves' Italy book, there is a way to transfer from the Circumvesuviana to the FS train to Salerno in Pompeii, but we haven't been able to find any detailed information about this. Has anyone made this transfer before? How much time would it save us versus going all the way back up to Naples to transfer?

We would also consider staying somewhere closer to Paestum for one night. Does anyone have any suggestions?
travelLUV is offline  
May 26th, 2006, 06:20 AM
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As for the Trenitalia (FS hasn't been used in a few years) in Pompeii - it has sporadic service to Salerno but you can also take the dramatic Amalfi Coast buses to Salerno, taking a bit longer but a tremendously scenic route.
PalQ is offline  
May 26th, 2006, 06:29 AM
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Hi Travel,

Paestum is well worth the trip! I was staying in Praiano, so took a bus to Amalfi, boat to Salerno, and train from Salerno to Paestum. It took 2 1/2 hours - too long.

You could hire a private driver for either round trip or one way.

It might be nice to take a boat from wherever you stay and see the Amalfi Coast that way! It's a whole different perspective. I returned on the boat from Salerno all the way to Positano and really enjoyed it.

Important note: You cannot buy return train tickets at the Paestum station. You must get them at the bar/cafe in Paestum. The Campania transportation tickets for both bus and train are good for a certain number of minutes, which is why you don't want to buy a ticket that would cover the whole time you are actually at Paestum.

Buon viaggio!
Dayle is offline  
May 26th, 2006, 06:41 AM
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PJK
 
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We stayed in Paestum a few years ago, but I am sorry to say I do not have the name of the great place we stayed. I do remember that we found it in the Karen Brown book. It was a villa within walking distance from the ruins. Had a wonderful evening meal there. We did the trip you describe and loved it all. So interesting. Enjoy. (If I can dredge up the name of the place, I will re-post.)
PJK is offline  
May 26th, 2006, 06:43 AM
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Thanks for the responses. We had actually planned to spend an entire day on the Amalfi coast. We thought we'd take a bus from Sorrento and stop in Positano, Amalfi, maybe Ravello or other towns. Then taking a ferry back from Amalfi to Sorrento. It didn't look like we'd have time to do the Amalfi coast & Paestum in a single day, unless we didn't stop in any of the Amalfi coast towns.

So if I understand correctly, the FS name is no longer used, but the train still runs under a different name? Thanks! Currently we are using the 2005 RS's Italy, which must be a bit out of date.

We are trying to figure out if we can do fit something else in the same day we go to Paestum (maybe Herculaneum, or something). It seems like kind of a long trip from Sorrento to Paestum, and we were trying to minimize our travel time. Any ideas about the transfer in Pompeii, or possibly staying somewhere closer to Paestum?
travelLUV is offline  
May 26th, 2006, 06:47 AM
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PJK
 
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Try this web site if you are interested in staying in Paestum. I am almost positive this is the place we stayed.


http://www.karenbrown.com/property.asp?propid=10580#
PJK is offline  
May 26th, 2006, 06:48 AM
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the transfer in Pompeii involves a bit of a walk from the Circumvesuviana station to the Trenitalia (formerly called FS for Ferrovia del Stato -sp?)) but a change in name only for the national railway in Italy that runs nearly all the trains except for local trains in some areas such as the Naples-
Sorrento Circumvesuviana line.
Check schedules at www.trenitalia.com - put in Pompeii and Paestum - probably have to change in Salerno - don't think the Circumvesuviana line is in the data base however - but it runs at least twice hourly to the Pompeii Scavi station, right by the entrance to the ruins, and then you must walk or whatever to the modern town on Pompeii to hop on Trenitalia trains to Salerno. Not sure how far the two stations are apart.
PalQ is offline  
May 26th, 2006, 07:57 AM
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Paestum is a very interesting site, with a n excellent museum (combined ticket available). If you wished to do something else on the same day, the Agropoli (about another 2 stops by train) is a very pleasant little town, although the town centre is a 15 minute walk from the station. There is a castle with spectacular views over the bay.
willit is offline  
May 26th, 2006, 08:37 AM
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PJK is probably thinking of the Seliano Estate in Paestum. We(my mom, sis & I) stayed their for one night on our way to Basilicata. We loved it so much, we came back a few days later and stayed another night. We had a car we picked up in Salerno, so I can't help with any other transport questions. But if I were staying in Sorrento and wanting to see Paestum/Amalfi Coast, I would hire a driver for the day. RS mentions several and others have been mentioned on this site. I know it's expensive, but I think it is worth it since you will save time and frustration. Plus you will enjoy the day a whole lot more.

Good luck on your planning.

MY
MichelleY is offline  
May 26th, 2006, 08:41 AM
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Hi Travel,

I didn't mean to imply that you should do the entire Amalfi Coast and Paestum all in one day. In fact, I think if you spend any time at all in the towns of Positano, Amalfi and Ravello, you will have a very hard time doing even that in one day.

Yes, Paestum should be its own day and some of the coastal scenery nearby looked fabulous. I would vote for staying a night in that area if you feel you have time.
Dayle is offline  
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