Positano is so magically and potentially the most picturesque place in the world! It is a beautiful beach village with colorful buildings, jaw dropping cliffs, and incredible restaurants. Positano is known as the city of lemons! You will find lemon candy, lemoncello, lemon trees, clothing with lemons, lemon sorbet and lemon scented perfume just to name a few…. 🙂 This place holds a very special place in my heart and I hope you fall in love with Positano as much as I have.
Places to See and Activities:
- Wander through Positano – Get lost through the winding roads full of boutique luxury hotels, charming restaurants, fantastic views and cafes.
- Shop – Positano has many high-end fashion boutiques, ceramic shops, and art galleries. It’s a great place to buy sandals and footwear. Shoemakers can make shoes on request while you wait. Stroll along Via Cristoforo Colombo.
- Beaches – There are several incredible beaches in and near Positano. The water is very clear, the umbrellas are colorful and there are both pebble and sand. You usually have to pay €10-20 for a chair at the beach clubs. If you go around 6pm then you will not have to pay and it is a beautiful time to relax and watch the sunset before dinner. Here are a few of my favorite beaches:
- Spiaggia Grande – the main beach and ferry port, the hub of activity in Positano. Don’t miss it, but don’t forget there is much more to Positano. Several beach clubs and restaurants along this beach. This is where many take the “famous” Positano picture.
- Spiaggia di Arienzo – a small, secluded, quiet beach. It is a nice 1k walk from the center of town along the road and then 270 steps from road to beach past amazing villas in the area or a 5 minute boat ride away from the main beach. Go early to reserve some chairs to ensure a spot close to water. This beach faces to the southwest so it gets the sun longer than any other beach in Positano. If you have a towel and don’t mind lying on the rounded pebble beach (not sand) you can go to the free area. Pretty swimming and great food here. Open 7am – 7pm in the summer season. Beach ran by family business. Must pay a few euros for bathroom access.
- Spiaggia del Fornillo – another smaller, more secluded beach that is accessible either by a set of stairs from the grotto above or via a path from Spiaggia Grande. Fornillo has a more laid back atmosphere with four beach bars lining the shore and no ferry traffic.
- Rent a Scooter – …if you are brave enough! This is a great way to see the villages. The roads are windy, narrow, and tough in a car so a scooter is a great option plus it is was easier to find parking spots!
- Wine Tasting – there are several options and they usually include transportation to/from a local winery, tasting over a homemade lunch at a family owned restaurant, and extensive knowledge on wine in the region and wine regions across the world.
- Hike – Highly suggest The Path of the Gods (Sentiero degli Dei). It is a gorgeous walking trail on the Amalfi Coast that ends in Nocelle, above Positano. The path is around 5 miles but there are several options to cut it shorter by uses buses. This hike is mostly a goat trail so good sturdy shoes are recommended, and take water, hat and camera. There are lots of steps.
- Drink Limoncello – A lemon alcoholic drink, that is popular all over the Amalfi Coast because of all the lemon trees. If you drink alcoholic then you must try this at least once! Also try an Aperol Spritz or Campari Spritz. I prefer Campari as it is a little less sweet and very refreshing.
- Day trip to Island of Capri – Take a ferry from the main beach to Capri. Usually less than €20 and about a 35 minute ferry ride. Check out the famous Emerald Grotto and the other grottos near. Capri is full of beautiful gardens, local watering holes, and so many chic people. Highly suggest renting a scooter for the day so you can see the whole island.
- Rent a boat – There are several great boat companies. Plan ahead and book one early or try to work out a deal on the main beach by the ferries. I suggest picking one with good reviews off of TripAdvisor and making a day of it.
- Day trip to Amalfi – One hour bus ride, 30 minute drive or take a ferry. Similar to Positano, it is a town with dramatic steep cliffs. Have a drink or meal at Hotel Santa Caterina.
- Cooking class – Several great options in Positano! Book ahead of time.
- Day trip to Sorrento – About 30-40 minutes away by car or ferry. This area surprised me and I ended up loving it. The marinas are busy and the beaches are unique. The town and streets had a Rome, Italy feel to it. We ended up staying here for a night. I recommend Bellevue Syrene.
- Late Night Dancing – If you want to go out late at night, Music on the Rocks is your place. It is a nightclub inside a cliff, right under Rada Restaurant and on the far side of Spiaggia Grande (main beach). It is the only nightclub around and I’ve definitely had way to many tequila shots here! Also, you are partying in a cave so that is cool. Check the schedule for the various DJs and theme nights.
- Day trip to Ravello – The drive to Ravello is often called one of the most romantic road trips in Europe. Be careful, as the roads are tight and Italians can be a little wild with driving! Stroll through the small village and visit Villa Rufolo and Villa Cimbrone.
- La Tagliata – Lunch or Dinner, Positano. Family owned restaurant up in the mountains. The food and drinks just keep coming, usually at a fixed price. Live music is often going on from one of the family members. This is well-worth the trek and my favorite restaurant in the area. Tell MaMa I said hi!
- Chez Black – Lunch or Dinner, Positano. A seafood spot with yummy pizza and pasta near the beach with the iconic Chez Black blue chairs and fun interior. Make sure to order a heart shaped pizza and melon with prosciutto! When coming to the restaurant, the staff will tell you it’s ”fully booked”, but moments later they’ll rush to put together a table for you. I believe they only say it to appear chic, which they do a good job of. 🙂 The best people watching is in the first few rows closest to the beach.
- Rada – Dinner, Positano. If you would like to treat yourself to romantic, fine dining then go here. It is on the water and built into a cliff right below Hotel Marincanto. Great service, attention to detail and wonderful food.
- Next 2 – Dinner, Positano. Locals flock here on weekends and this place comes alive. I prefer eating and drinking in the fun courtyard rather than the all-white dining room. Food is so delicious and very creative. During summer months they host DJs several times a week and this spot is a favorite for those looking to have a drink and relax without bumping and grinding with sweaty party-goers (at Music on the Rocks, ha-ha)
- La Sponda at Le Sirenuse – any meal, Positano. The breakfast buffet was incredible! It was pricey at €40 so we tried to really fill up. Lunch is also a great option here. In my opinion, it has some of the most amazing views of Positano so be sure to get some pictures here for the meal price tag! You can also make a reservation at the Oyster & Champagne bar, which is also located at Le Sirenuse and offers drinks and snacks. Make sure to make a reservation as it’s super popular.
- Franco’s – for a drink, Positano. Best happy hour. Go early. Next to Le Sirenuse.
- Casa e Bottega – breakfast or lunch, Positano. Healthy, trendy food that is perfect the day after a really heavy meal. This place is full of options from acai bowls, green smoothies and zuccini pasta with pesto! I usually eat here 1x daily.
- Treville Beach Club – lunch, Positano by boat or a lot of stairs! I’d go by boat. It is an experience and makes for a wonderful day eating and drinking on a beach. Warning: if the tide gets too high then boats cannot come or leave. This happened to us and we had to trek 400 stairs and 1k to make it back into town. Luckily, I drank a lot of wine so it made this very fun and laughable to me.
- Santa Caterina – dinner, Amalfi. Highly recommend staying here, as well, if you would rather stay in Amalfi and have a pretty penny to spend.
- Cele Restaurant – dinner, Positano. This restaurant is owned by Hotel Marincanto and it is so romantic and beautiful. Also, a great spot to snap a few photos.
- My pick:
- La Sorgente del Sol – This property is my favorite, as it is a home turned into three individual rooms available to rent out and one large villa that fits up to 8 people available to rent out. It is about a 1k walk into the centre of the Positano town which is the only downfall. This lodging has a few amazing balconies, included a rooftop hot tub! I love staying in a place that feels like home, rather than a hotel.
- Luxury options:
- Hotel Marincanto
- Le Sirenuse
- II San Pietro di Positano
- Villa Tre Ville
- Affordable options:
- La Bougainville
- Villa Rose
- Hotel Savoia
Transportation and Orientation:
- Getting there:
- Fly into Naples or Rome. Naples is closer. Rent a car or hire a driver. If you rent a car, beware there is very little parking in the Amalfi Coast. You can also use public transportation to make your way to the Amalfi Coast, it will take longer with a few changes from trains to buses.
- Transportation when you arrive:
- If you stay in the center of Positano then the best way to get around is by foot as most of the town is a pedestrian zone. Winding stairs, called the Thousand Steps, and the main street lead down through town to the beach.
- Use the local buses. The road to the centre of Positano town is one way only, and the small local buses go in an anti-clockwise direction that you can take up or down the hill. The charge to ride is €1.20 if you purchase your ticket from a local shop, or €1.60 if you purchase directly from the bus driver.
- Rent a scooter. This is a good way if you’d like to visit Amalfi, Ravello, or Sorrento during your visit to Positano.
Thanks for adventure along!