A little bit of backstory on Positano: John Steinbeck once said, “Positano bite deep. It is a dream place that isn’t quite real when you are there and becomes beckoningly real after you have gone.” And I have to agree – from the moment you first catch sight of the views from the Amalfi Coast, you’ll have to pinch yourself to make sure it’s real. Photos and even videos simply can’t do it justice. It’s the prettiest, most captivating place I’ve ever been. We decided to go in the month of May because the temperatures are mild, the flowers are blooming and it’s not quite peak season, so you don’t have to worry about crowds.
HOW TO GET TO POSITANO
There are two ways to get to Positano: by land or by water. We flew into the Rome airport on a direct flight from Charlotte, N.C. Once we landed in Rome, we took a taxi to the Rome train station, about 30 minutes away. Our plan was to take the fast train to Salerno (2 hours) and then from Salerno, take the ferry to Positano. This is the fastest route, but be sure to check the ferry times! We ended up missing the ferry from Salerno to Positano, so we took a taxi instead. Although this was a longer route, the views were unreal! Also – be prepared for a really long day of travel. We arrived in Rome at 9:30 a.m. and didn’t get to our place in Positano until 4:30 p.m.
WHERE TO STAY IN POSITANO
- Caffe Positano: This little cafe is the perfect spot for lunch because of the AMAZING view! Seriously, go here for the view alone. They have amazing fresh buffalo mozzarella and good coffee, too.
- Casa e Bottega: One of the healthiest restaurants in Positano, Casa e Bottega offers both breakfast and lunch. We went here for breakfast one day and ordered smoothies that tasted SO fresh and delicious. They have a lot of vegetarian, vegan and gluten-free dishes available.
- Collina Bakery: We went here several times for breakfast and lunch because of the good prices! They offer a selection of pastries and donuts (and coffee) in the morning, as well as pizza and calzones during lunch. A pastry was around €1 and a calzone was €3.
- Da Adolfo Restaurant: This restaurant is pretty much a full day affair! You have to catch a boat to the beach club to eat here, so you’ll probably want to stay for half a day and lounge on the beach too.
- Franco’s Bar: Definitely check out Franco’s Bar, located in Le Sirenuse, for champagne and cocktails!
- Hotel Poseidon Positano: Hotel Poseidon has a great poolside bar. Order a bottle of rosé and snag a table next to the railing for a great view.
- Hotel Poseidon Positano: Our favorite dinner that we had in Positano! I ordered the buffalo mozzarella stuffed ravioli and it was the best dish I had in Positano. My mom and Brit ordered lemon risotto with shrimp and they loved it, too. For dessert we all had the Lemon Delight – pure Heaven on Earth!
- Ristorante Le Tre Sorelle: We went to this restaurant on our first night in Positano and had a great experience. It’s located right on the beach so we got to watch the sunset and we could see the ocean from our table. We ordered a margherita pizza and an order of gnocchi with fresh tomato sauce and basil, and everyone had a little of each. Both dishes were amazing. Also, it is customary for the waiter to bring out Limoncello after your meal – a delicious Italian liquor made with lemon rinds. You have to try it at least once while you’re there!
- Ristorante Max: We didn’t get a chance to try Restaurant Max’s but we heard really good things about it from some people we met in Positano! It has really fresh, authentic food and isn’t touristy.
- Take a boat to Da Adolfo Restaurant – Grab the free boat with the red fish from the port at 11 a.m. Be sure to make reservations for the beach club ahead of time (if you’re staying at a hotel, the concierge can do this for you). Da Adolfo is about 15 minutes outside the city by boat. You can rent a lounge chair and lay in the sun for a few hours before sitting down for lunch at the restaurant. Be prepared to stay for a few hours and catch the boat back around 4 p.m.
- Hike the Sentiero Degli Dei (the Path of the Gods), a trail that links Agerola to Nocelle. The name, the Path of the Gods, is an indication of how spectacular the scenery is throughout the hike.
- Spend a day at the smaller beach, Spiaggia del Fornillo. It’s less busy than the main beach, Spiaggia Grande, and just as pretty. It’s also lined with places to eat and drink so you can grab lunch between tanning sessions.
- Buy local shoes. Positano is known for their sandals and a lot of places will custom make them for you – you pick out the design and the material and they will fit the sandal to your foot.
- Shop! There are a ton of local boutiques and art stores that are really fun to peruse.
- Visit Fiordo di Furore, an incredibly quiet and beautiful beach along the Amalfi coastline. Google it to see how beautiful it is!
- Take a boat out for the day. You can hire a private driver right on the beach (just be sure to get there early in the morning around 9 a.m.) and they will take you out on the boat. Stop by Vini e Panini for a sandwich and bottle of wine to bring with you before boarding the boat.
If you’ve been to Positano before and have any recommendations, let us all know in the comments!