Firenze Santa Maria Novella to Napoli Centrale
Travel Time: 3 h
Total per person: €29
My sister and I took the evening train from Florence to Sorrento. Sorrento is the best place to stay if you want to go to Mt. Vesuvius, Pompeii, and Herculaneum. Initially, we were going to hike in Mt. Vesuvius (4 hr hike) and get pizza in Napoli but my sister broke her shoulder prior to this trip and since I wanted to do another hike in Amalfi, we decided to skip Mt. Vesuvius and just stayed overnight in Piano di Sorrento and checked in early at Positano and spent the rest of our trip in the Amalfi Coast.
1 Night in Sorrento
Corso Italia 142
Piano di Sorrento, NA 80063 Italy
Total: $50 (for 2 people)
Total per person: $25
Piano di Sorrento is about two stops before the Sorrento stop on the local train in Naples. There is a local line called “Circumvesuviana” that travels between Naples and Sorrento and is a great alternative to taking the ferry. Our Airbnb host let us check in fairly late and was present to help us up to her apartment unit. It’s located fairly close to the train station so if you need a safe residential area to stay when visiting Pompeii and Mt. Vesuvius, I highly recommend this place!
Napoli Centrale to Piano di Sorrento
Take the Circumvesuviana LOCAL train
2 stops before Sorrento
Hourly (180 min): €4,90
I made the call to skip Mt. Vesuvius pretty late and ended up messaging our Airbnb host in Positano that we would have to drop off our things pretty early even if we checked in late. He immediately understood our situation and let us check in early and planned to pick us up from the bus stop to help us with our things.
Sorrento to Chiesa Nuova (Positano)
Take the Circumvesuviana train from Piano di Sorrento to Sorrento Station
Take the SITA bus from Sorrento to Positano
Get off at Chiesa Nuova – Bar Internazionale
So one thing to note about the Amalfi Coast is that hotels close during the winter so starting from mid-october, there are no rooms available and your best option is to Airbnb. Our particular Airbnb was perfect because it was situated right above the main bus stop in Positano (Bar Internazionale in Chiesa Nuova) and had a terrace that overlooked all of Positano! Although, if you do stay in Positano during high peak season, I highly recommend Le Sirenuse!
3 Nights in Positano
Via Monsignor Saverio Cinque 121
Positano, Campania 84017 Italy
Total: $233 (for 2 people)
Total per person: $116.50
Once you get to Sorrento, SITA buses are the only way to get around the coast without a car that doesn’t require waiting for a ferry, and the line is very straightforward. Just make sure to pay attention to the bus timetables! Taxis are very expensive here!
45 minutes: €2,20
90 minutes: €3,40
24 hours €6,80
After we checked into our Airbnb, we decided to explore Positano. Our host had recommended a few places to eat, one of which was right next to where we were staying. The restaurant is called Ristorante Da Costantino. So we got a table by the window and ordered a litre of house wine and seafood pasta and other traditional southern Italian dishes. When we ordered dessert, the manager dropped by and chatted with us and ended up giving us some limoncello on the house! Limoncello in the Amalfi Coast is pretty special due to the soil. The five towns that make up the coast (Sorrento, Positano, Ravello, Amalfi, and Salerno) are built upon limestone, which makes it the perfect situation in which to grow olive and lemon trees. The olive oil and limoncello are both very famous and worth getting your fill during your stay. After our meal, we decided to walk all the way down to the beach! It’s probably around a 30-minute walk down and pretty much a straight-shoot.
There were people surfing and swimming at the beach but it was definitely not as crowded as peak summer since we went in late October. It’s funny – I grew up in Los Angeles and was never a fan of beaches but while I was in Italy, I just loved running around the water with my pants rolled up! However, the beaches of Italy are not very friendly for your feet. Italian beaches do not have sand. They’re like mini pebbles and tiny rocks. It really hurts to run around the beach with your bare feet so just be warned and be careful. My sister and I decided to watch the sun set before we hiked our way back up.
The road back up gets a little tricky especially if you don’t keep track of which paths and stairs you took but we managed to figure our way back up and stopped by a few stores on the way to just browse. It takes about an hour or so to hike back up to Bar Internazionale from the beach.