The nearly legendary Amalfi coast is an ethereal section of shoreline along Italy’s southwest coast that is renowned for its stunning rocky cliffs, scented lemons, and brilliant turquoise waters.
The well-traveled villages of Positano and Capri conceal a wealth of undiscovered jewels, uncommon locations that only a select few tourists are even aware of.
According to legend, Naples’ current location, the island of Megaride, was formerly home to the siren Parthenope, a figure from Greek mythology. A lovely young lady named Parthenope wanted to become a siren after falling in love with their music. She performed a dramatic dive into the water, whereupon she changed into a Siren and started to sing the most alluring tunes to entice sailors to their fate. As the sailors of Amalfi were thought to have heard her melodies for the first time, the name of the city Amalfi is derived from her name.
The Siren Parthenope legend is frequently portrayed in literature and art, and it is still a significant aspect of Amalfi Coast culture.
Since the 19th century, tourists from near and far have flocked to the Amalfi Coast like the siren. Now, however, we’ll discover some of the best-kept secrets of the Amalfi Coast, from isolated beaches like Fiordo Di Furore to distant villages and hidden hiking routes – getting you off the normal tourist trail.
Prepare to explore the other side of the Amalfi Coast, where you may escape the tourists and experience life as a local would.
15 fun hidden gems of the Amalfi Coast you have to see to believe!
Best Things to Do on the Amalfi Coast Italy #1. Emerald Oasis of Bagni della Regina Giovanna
Along the Amalfi Coast in southern Italy, there are a number of little coastal pools known as the Bagni della Regina Giovanna (Baths of Queen Joanna). You will be transported into a world of enlightening beauty by the pools, which are located in a remote natural cove and are surrounded by luxuriant vegetation, such as olive trees and Mediterranean scrub. The pools, which are nourished by natural springs, are well-known for their clear, emerald-green water, which gives the place its moniker “Emerald Oasis.”
The baths have a lengthy history and were utilized as a spa and recreational place during the Roman era. Later, they were utilized by the Naples Bourbon Kings, among them Queen Joanna, who gave the baths their name. Unfortunately, the baths started to deteriorate in the 20th century; but, in the 1980s, they were brought back to life and reopened to the public. The Bagni della Regina Giovanna is regarded as one of the most stunning and quiet beaches on the Amalfi Coast and is a local favorite for swimming and tanning.
Best Things to Do on the Amalfi Coast Italy #2. Vietri sul Mare
This is one of my favorite places on the Amalfi Coast and is one that is often neglected or is simply unknown to many tourists. The colorful homes and buildings of the lovely coastal town of Vietri sul Mare cascade down the hillside to the water. Additionally, the town has a long history of producing pottery, which you can’t help but notice around every corner.
The Roman-era ceramic culture in Vietri sul Mare is one of the distinctive features that set the town apart. Numerous pottery factories and workshops can be found in the community, where guests may observe the artists at work and buy locally produced ceramics. The vibrant colors, elaborate patterns, and classic designs of Vietri sul Mare ceramics are well-known.
Vietri sul Mare’s architecture, a fusion of several architectural forms with Moorish influences and a hint of Baroque, is another factor that makes the town so endearing. Piazza Umberto I, the town’s central plaza, is a perfect site to start your exploration because everything grows there, from family-friendly restaurants to charming cafes. The Chiesa di Santa Maria della Pietà, the town’s principal church, is particularly well worth a visit due to its stunning Baroque design and lovely murals. Vietri sul Mare is conveniently located near other well-known locations including Positano, Ravello, and the Amalfi Coast. It’s one of the first places you may stop after leaving Salerno, but possibly as a result, many people ignore it, making it a “right under your nose” appeal.
Best Things to Do on the Amalfi Coast Italy #3. Villaggio Monte Faito
On the verdant slopes of Monte Faito on the Amalfi Coast, Villaggio Monte Faito is a hidden gem. It’s a location where you can get away from the daily grind and lose yourself in the breathtaking scenery that makes southern Italy so distinctive.
With well-marked trails that take you through Mediterranean greenery and spectacular panoramic views of the coast and sea, the hamlet is a hiker’s dream. As you explore the mountain’s breathtaking grandeur and learn about its extensive cultural and historical past, you’ll feel like you’re on top of the world! Not only that, but the community also has a beautifully renovated castle that provides a window into life in the Middle Ages. You’ll never forget the feeling of standing on the ramparts of the castle and admiring the breathtaking views of the rocky coastline and glistening water.
The inhabitants of Villaggio Monte Faito add to the town’s enchantment. There are a few hundred residents in the small, traditional hamlet, and there are a few small guesthouses and agritourism sites where you may experience local culture.
Best Things to Do on the Amalfi Coast Italy #4. Climbing to the Top of Castello di Arechi in Salerno
Climbing to the top of Castello di Arechi in Salerno is an incredible journey that transports you back in time and fills you with a sense of adventure. This ancient castle, built in the 8th century, proudly stands atop a hill, overlooking the city of Salerno and offering a panoramic view of the rugged coast below.
As I embark on the climb, I am immediately captivated by the imposing walls and towers of the castle, evoking a feeling of being part of a grand cinematic experience. The winding path leading up to the summit has been trodden by countless individuals throughout the centuries, and as I make my way up, I can’t help but feel a surge of excitement and anticipation. Reaching the top is a true triumph, rewarding me with awe-inspiring vistas of Salerno and the breathtaking coastline. Within the castle, I am able to explore the ancient ruins, including the keep and the chapel, providing a glimpse into the lives of its inhabitants from centuries past. The image above beautifully captures the historic building, commanding a presence over the entire city of Salerno.
Best Things to Do on the Amalfi Coast Italy #5. Fiordo Di Furore
Did you know that the Amalfi Coast has its very own fjord? You don’t need to venture all the way to Norway to witness the grandeur of nature’s creations. Fiordo di Furore is a narrow and deep fjord tucked away in the southern part of the Amalfi Coast. As I approach this hidden gem, I am greeted by charming fishing villages dotting its shores, and crystal-clear waters teeming with marine life. If you’re up for it, don’t forget to bring your snorkeling gear to fully enjoy the boat ride!
Fiordo di Furore is renowned for its remarkable natural beauty and secluded coves, making it a beloved spot among the locals for activities like kayaking and swimming. The fjord also serves as a breathtaking backdrop for rock climbing, allowing you to immerse yourself in the stunning scenery while the rest of the world seems to fade away. The main beach, Spiaggia della Regina, offers an ideal spot to relax and take in the views, while the stone bridge spanning the fjord adds a touch of charm for passing drivers.
This tranquil corner of the Amalfi Coast is often overlooked by travelers focused on navigating the winding coastal roads. However, once you descend into the fjord, the hustle and bustle of the world seem miles away, allowing you to savor the magic of this peaceful and enchanting coastal haven.
Best Things to Do on the Amalfi Coast Italy #6. Cetara
Cetara, a picturesque seaside village nestled along the Amalfi Coast, is a place that exudes the charm and allure of the Mediterranean. As I stroll through this idyllic fishing village, I am transported to a postcard-perfect destination that embodies the essence of the Amalfi Coast. The pastel-painted houses cascade down to the sea, and the quaint harbor teems with colorful fishing boats, showcasing the village’s maritime heritage. Cetara offers a secluded ambiance that sets it apart from the more glamorous destinations along the coast.
One of the biggest draws of Cetara is its culinary delights, particularly its delectable seafood. The village is renowned for its fresh catch of the day, which becomes the centerpiece of the delicious dishes served at local restaurants. The seafood in Cetara is a testament to its exceptional quality, ensuring a truly unforgettable dining experience. The anchovies, in particular, are a local specialty, and you simply cannot miss the opportunity to taste the traditional fish sauce called “colatura di alici.” With each bite, you’ll savor the freshness of the ingredients, including lemons sourced from nearby groves. Cetara is also an excellent spot for swimming and sunbathing, boasting a beautiful beach with soothing coastal waters. Combining a dip in the sea with a freshly caught dinner is the epitome of a perfect getaway.
Best Things to Do on the Amalfi Coast Italy #7. Hike the Valle Delle Ferriere
The Amalfi Coast is not just about pristine beaches and mouthwatering cuisine; it also offers thrilling hiking opportunities along its majestic cliffsides. Embarking on a hike through the Valle Delle Ferriere near Amalfi unveils a hidden world of lush vegetation, cascading waterfalls, and the remnants of an ancient paper mill. These unexpected treasures make this hike a true hidden gem that often escapes the radar of many travelers.
The hike itself is an adventure, taking me across bridges and alongside a tranquil stream that flows through the valley. While not overly challenging, the trail allows me to break a sweat and immerse myself in the natural beauty of the area. As I delve deeper into the valley, the ruins of the old paper mill come into view, offering a glimpse into the history of this site and igniting my imagination about the lives of those who worked there centuries ago.
One of the highlights of this hike is reaching the ultimate destination, the waterfall of Valle Delle Ferriere. More often than not, I find myself standing before this majestic cascade in complete solitude, allowing me to fully absorb the magic of the moment. The mist of the waterfall on my face and the soothing sound of the cascading water creates an enchanting and unforgettable experience.
Best Things to Do on the Amalfi Coast Italy #8. Drive along the Coastline on a Vespa
The Amalfi coastline is famous for its winding roads that cling to the rugged cliffs, and what better way to experience them than by driving a Vespa? Embarking on a Vespa adventure along these roads is an epic journey filled with exhilaration and freedom. With Travelbase’s Vespa trip on the Amalfi Coast, everything is taken care of, from GPS navigation to your comfortable Vespa and accommodations.
As I hop onto the Vespa and hit the road, the wind caresses my hair, and the warmth of the sun embraces my face, instantly evoking images of iconic Italian movie stars and the timeless allure of Italy. One of the greatest joys of driving a Vespa on the Amalfi Coast is the ability to stop wherever I desire and explore the charming villages and towns along the way. I can indulge in a slice of tiramisu in Amalfi town for an hour, and then cruise to the shores of Positano without any constraints. Travelbase’s Vespa trip offers the freedom to choose and create your own adventure on the Amalfi Coast.
Best Things to Do on the Amalfi Coast Italy #9. Snorkel from a Traditional Amalfitan Gozzo Boat
Immersing myself in the clear blue waters of the Amalfi Coast from a traditional Amalfitan Gozzo boat is like diving into a vibrant underwater wonderland. This unique experience provides a mesmerizing glimpse into the rich marine life and pristine sea waters that the Amalfi Coast is known for.
The Gozzo boats have a long-standing history deeply rooted in the maritime traditions of the Amalfi Coast. Originally used for fishing and transportation, these boats were meticulously crafted by local artisans using traditional techniques and materials. Today, they symbolize the region’s heritage and are an integral part of its cultural identity. Many of these boats have been passed down through generations and are still utilized for activities such as snorkeling, diving, and boat tours.
As I step aboard a traditional wooden Gozzo boat, a thrilling adventure awaits. The Captain expertly navigates the boat into the sea, and soon we reach the snorkeling spot. Underwater, a kaleidoscope of marine life unfolds before my eyes. Schools of fish gracefully swim through the clear waters, exploring vibrant coral reefs, and perhaps even encountering an elusive octopus. The unparalleled clarity of the water allows me to witness the vivid colors of the sea creatures and plants, providing a unique perspective on the Amalfi Coast. To partake in this extraordinary experience, you can easily book a day trip that includes the Gozzo boat and snorkeling gear.
Best Things to Do on the Amalfi Coast Italy #10. Explore Maiori
Welcome to Maiori, a hidden gem nestled along the Amalfi Coast that will captivate and inspire you. This charming coastal town boasts the longest beach on the Amalfi Coast, stretching over a kilometer and known as “Spiaggia Grande.” Here, sun-worshippers and beach lovers can bask in the golden rays of the sun while gazing upon the shimmering blue sea.
Fun fact: The name of the beach itself, Spiaggia Grande, reveals its impressive length.
Maiori perfectly embodies the essence of the Amalfi Coast, offering sun-drenched leisure amidst the stunning hills. While many travelers gravitate towards the towns where the sea meets the shore, Maiori invites you to look up and appreciate its unique allure. Perched high above the sea, the town provides a scenic “balcony” where you can enjoy breathtaking views of the coast and the expansive Mediterranean stretching out before you. Don’t miss the opportunity to carve out time for Maiori during your visit to the Amalfi Coast, as it showcases the magic that makes this region so special—a touch of class through meticulously manicured gardens, sweeping vistas, and beauty that rivals the Renaissance.
Best Things to Do on the Amalfi Coast Italy #11. Embark on the Path of the Gods Hike
During my first visit to the Amalfi Coast, hiking the Path of the Gods left an indelible mark on me. This trail, whose name alone evokes mythical tales recounted by Romans and Greeks, transports you to a realm of captivating beauty. As you traverse this scenic hiking trail along the cliffside, vineyards and quaint towns dot the horizon, offering constant breathtaking views of the Amalfi Coast.
For a truly memorable experience on the Path of the Gods, consider booking a guided trek. Local guides can accompany you on this adventure, sharing fascinating anecdotes and providing a deeper understanding of the path. The trail itself is not overly challenging, making it perfect for nature lovers who wish to explore the splendid natural beauty of the Amalfi Coast, especially on clear days. One of the highlights of the hike is the presence of panoramic viewpoints where you can pause, catch your breath, and immerse yourself in the awe-inspiring coastal vistas. Named after the Greek gods themselves, the trail’s stunning views are often attributed to their divine creation—an enchanting landscape that makes you feel as if you are walking in the footsteps of ancient deities. Such tales and views create a remarkable narrative and an experience you will treasure.
The Path of the Gods hike begins and ends in the town of Bomerano. The trailhead is conveniently located near the small village of Agerola, a mere 20-minute drive from Bomerano. This well-marked path offers various route options, with the most common route taking you from Bomerano to Nocelle, where you can conclude your hike.
Best Things to Do on the AAmalfi Coast Italy #12. Discover Tramonti’s Old Town
Another hidden gem awaiting discovery on the Amalfi Coast is the old town of Tramonti. This mountain outpost, situated in the heart of the region, offers a unique setting amidst olive trees, terraced vegetation, and babbling streams.
As the town is nestled in the hills above the coast, it presents the perfect vantage point to admire awe-inspiring views of the sea and the surrounding countryside. While wandering through the narrow streets of Tramonti’s old town, one can’t help but feel a sense of exclusivity and tranquility. Unlike the more popular destinations such as Positano, Sorrento, Capri, and Amalfi town, Tramonti retains its authenticity and offers a peaceful escape.
Exploring Tramonti reveals a rich history preserved within its ancient churches. The Church of Santa Maria della Libera, dating back to the 12th century, features beautiful frescoes and an impressive bell tower. Not widely known among tourists, this church holds significant religious importance to the Amalfi Coast and is dedicated to the town’s patron saint, Santa Maria della Libera. Additionally, the Norman Tower, built in 1563 as a watchtower to protect the town from seafaring pirates, stands tall, visible from the sea, and adds a touch of historical charm. Today, the tower houses a romantic restaurant, providing an ideal spot for a sunset dinner—a hint worth considering.
Best Things to Do on the Amalfi Coast Italy #13. Indulge in the Fragrant Citrus Scents on the Path of Lemons
Walking the Path of Lemons in Italy is akin to strolling through a fragrant citrus paradise. This scenic hiking trail is renowned for its abundance of lemon trees that line the path. However, these are not your average grocery store lemons—some are as large as a baby’s head, and their unique shapes add to their appeal. Most importantly, they are incredibly fresh.
As I begin my hike, the sweet scent of citrus envelops me, accompanied by the melodious songs of birds. This quieter part of the Amalfi Coast offers a tranquil escape where I can fully immerse myself in the captivating atmosphere. The trail itself is moderately challenging, making it perfect for those who seek a leisurely stroll while experiencing the iconic natural beauty of the area. If you prefer a fun and informative local guide, there are options to book a trek that includes interesting anecdotes about the Path of Lemons.
The abundance of lemon trees lining the trail is truly a sight to behold. Walking beneath their canopies, I am tempted to pluck a lemon directly from the tree. These lemons are so fresh that taking a bite, even if sour, is a must to truly appreciate their unique flavor. It is fascinating to learn that lemon trees have been cultivated in this region for centuries, and they were even used as currency in the past.
The Path of Lemons is often referred to as the “Path of Love” due to its romantic appeal. Couples can savor a leisurely stroll together, enjoying the breathtaking views and the intoxicating fragrance of the lemons.
Best Things to Do on the Amalfi Coast Italy #14. Immerse Yourself in Ravello
Many visitors to the Amalfi Coast gravitate toward the towns that hug the sea’s edge. However, by doing so, they often miss out on the splendor of Ravello—a hidden star perched high above the sea. This understated town captures the essence of the Amalfi Coast in a unique and enchanting way.
Ravello’s elevated position offers meandering strolls along its “balcony,” where mesmerizing views of the coast and the vast Mediterranean unfold before my eyes. It is a destination that should not be missed when exploring the Amalfi Coast, as it showcases all the elements that make this region magical—classical elegance embodied in meticulously manicured gardens, sweeping vistas, and beauty that rivals the Renaissance.
As I explore Ravello, I discover a town steeped in culture and art. Throughout history, Ravello has been a favored destination for renowned figures such as Virginia Woolf, Greta Garbo, and D.H. Lawrence. Ancient churches, including the 11th-century Cathedral of San Pantaleone and the 12th-century church of Santa Maria a Gradillo, await exploration.
The Cathedral of San Pantaleone, in particular, captivates with its stunning frescoes and impressive history. Additionally, Ravello is renowned for its magnificent gardens, including the famous Villa Rufolo and Villa Cimbrone. These gardens offer a tranquil escape where I can stroll amidst grand Greek statues and immerse myself in the beauty of the Mediterranean landscape. Ravello is a destination that exudes timeless elegance and provides a truly unforgettable experience on the Amalfi Coast.
Best Things to Do on the Amalfi Coast Italy #15. Visit a farmhouse for a cooking class
Imagine yourself in an idyllic farmhouse nestled among lemon groves and olive trees on the Amalfi Coast. Every month, this farmhouse hosts traditional cooking classes that bring locals and travelers together to learn the art of preparing the most exquisite Amalfitian dishes, using ingredients hand-picked right from the farm.
The cooking class begins with a tour of the classic terraced gardens, exemplifying the Amalfi Coast’s commitment to sustainability and environmental preservation. Walking through the lemon, olive, and vineyard groves offers a scenic experience, while also providing insight into the role these trees play in the Mediterranean diet. Local guides share the secrets of producing renowned Amalfi Coast products, such as Limoncello, olive oil, and wine.
Continuing to the vegetable garden, adorned with fragrant herbs and vibrant seasonal vegetables, the cooking adventure begins. Equipped with gloves and a charming wicker basket, I handpick the freshest ingredients to be used in crafting traditional Amalfitian delicacies. Donning aprons, we delve into the secrets of flavor and technique, guided by skilled instructors who ensure a jovial and educational atmosphere. As we sip wine throughout the class, we create a four-course meal that showcases the authentic flavors of the Amalfi Coast. This immersive cooking experience offers a genuine taste of local life, allowing you to truly savor the Amalfi Coast like a true insider.
So there you have it—15 remarkable experiences to embrace on the Amalfi Coast. From climbing ancient castles and snorkeling in crystal-clear waters to driving a Vespa along breathtaking coastal roads and savoring local cuisine, the Amalfi Coast offers a world of enchantment and discovery. Get ready to embark on a journey that will leave you with memories to cherish for a lifetime.