You can talk about Big Sur or the Cote d’Azur or the Cinque Terre. But none of them comes close to Amalfi. Really spectacular. Whether you base yourself at Sorrento or Positano or Ravello or the city of Amalfi itself, it’s best to do most of your excursions with a local driver or by public transport. Why? No stress! The Amalfi Drive has many curves and is often heavily trafficked. Do you need that?
Arrive and get settled; check on neighborhood food stores, coffee bars, laundries, and rosticcerie
Sorrento — full day exploring this famous resort town. Shops and views are everything. Lunch at restaurant with a terrace.
Naples – the old city (Spaccanapoli), where everyone will tell you not to go, but it’s fantastic. Great pizza. One of the most beautiful church cloisters in existence, Santa Chiara. Also visit the deconsecrated church of San Severo for the incredible statue of Cristo Velato, and then a half-day at the National Archeological Museum.
Capri. Yes, do the Blue Grotto, the Villa San Michele, and the “piazzetta”, famous for people-watching. But be sure also to take a long walk to an area “away” from things, like out to the Villa Jovis or to the Belvedere Migliara.
Day at the beach recovering from Naples.
Positano – spend the day poking around this famous resort town, sometimes still described as a “fishing village”.
Morning in Ravello, our favorite among the famous tourist towns of the Amalfi Coast. Afternoon poking around the smaller, less touristed places like Cetara or the backstreets of Amalfi itself.
Naples again, this time in the upper city, visiting the Capodimonte Museum, the Certosa di San Martino, and the Villa Floridiana. Lunch at a restaurant on the seafront. Afternoon strolling along the lungomare. If there’s an opera on at San Carlo, try to get tickets (better arranged on-line via internet); the theater and the experience are both fantastic, if not exactly what we’re used to.
Long daytrip to Paestum to see the temples, perhaps an hour or two at the beach at Agropoli.
Day relaxing at home.
The island of Ischia. There’s lots to see and do here, including exploring the port of Ischia itself and climbing Mount Epomeo for incredible views. The southern part of the island is less touristed and more “ethnic”.
Pompeii and Herculaneum.
Rent a speedboat to explore the coast and all the charming unpopulated little coves.
Re-visit some of the places you only half-visited over the past two weeks