Sorrento, Italy: The Perfect Base to Explore Southern Italy & The Amalfi Coast
Sorrento, Italy is a coastal town located in southwestern Italy, facing the Bay of Naples. This town is well known for its stunning views, beautiful architecture, steep cliffs, and rich history. The location of Sorrento makes it an excellent base for exploring the Amalfi Coast and other towns along the southern Italy coastline. This coastline is famed as one of the most beautiful and picturesque coastlines in the world.
How to Access Sorrento:
Sorrento is easily and highly accessible via air, train, bus, and car travel. Sorrento is just over an hour drive from Naples-Capodichino International Airport, which is the nearest major airport. In addition to being an easy city to fly into, it is also easily accessible by train. Once you arrive in Sorrento, it’s easy to get around whether you choose a car, bus, or train as transportation. Some towns that are easily accessible from Sorrento are Amalfi, Positano, Ravello, and Praiano just to name a few. This makes Sorrento an ideal choice for traveler’s who want to explore the coast whil avoiding long transport times from larger cities.
Location and Attractions:
Not only is this cute little town conveniently located, but Sorrento itself has a lot to offer. The town’s historic center is filled with cobblestone streets, charming cafes, stunning vistas, and beautiful architecture. You can explore the Cathedral of Sorrento, which dates back to the 15th century. Take a stroll through Villa Comunale, a public park with stunning views of the Bay of Naples or walk down to the waterfront and take in the views. You should definitely take a cooking class while in Sorrento and do a Limoncello tasting. Sorrento is known for its delicious food, specifically fresh seafood and shellfish, and locally grown produce such as lemons and other citrus fruits. Don’t forget to try Spaghetti e Vongole (spaghetti with clams) and Frittura di Calamari & Gamberi (lightly floured calamari and fresh shrimp).
Proximity to Small Coastal Towns:
Sorrento’s proximity to Capri is another reason why it’s an excellent base. Capri is a stunning island located a short ferry ride away. This island is known for its stunning landscapes, crystal-clear waters, and luxurious resorts. Once on the island, you can take a boat tour to visit the Blue Grotto, or relax on one of Capri’s beautiful beaches. This is a perfect day trip that is made easily possible should you choose Sorrento as a base.
Of course, one of the main benefits of staying in Sorrento is the opportunity to explore the Amalfi Coast. The Amalfi Coast is a 50-kilometer stretch of coastline famed for its dramatic cliffs, turquoise waters, and colorful villages. Driving along the winding roads of the Amalfi Coast, offers breathtaking views at every turn. Along the way, plan to stops in towns like Amalfi, Positano, Ravello, and any small town that piques your interest. Whichever you choose to visit, each of them has their own unique character, charm and attractions.
To give you an idea of how conveniently located Sorrento is, below is a list of popular towns and cities. The below times are approximate and based on driving ourselves. I used the location closest to the Air Bnb we stayed at while based in Sorrento as a starting point.
- Pompeii – 37 minutes
- Amalfi – 40 minutes
- Minori – 46 minutes
- Praiano – 48 minutes
- Maiori – 50 minutes
- Naples (Napoli) – 1 hour and 2 minutes
- Positano – 1 hour and 4 minutes
- Salerno – 1 hour and 5 minutes
*Driving times may vary based on your exact location and mode of transportation while staying in Sorrento.
Advantages of Staying In Sorrento:
One of the main advantages is that it is much less crowded than other towns along the coast. Towns like Positano and Amalfi tend to be super popular and are overrun with tourists. Sorrento offers a more relaxed, slow-paced, and authentic experience. I had a wonderful time strolling through the narrow streets and hidden alleys at my own pace. Taking the time to stop and sample local cuisine at small family-run restaurants and shopping at family owned shops.
Sorrento offers a range of accommodation options to suit every budget and travel style. From luxury hotels to budget-friendly hostels and Air Bnbs, there is something for everyone. You can choose between staying in the heart of the historic center or opting for a quieter location on the outskirts of town. During my stay I opted for an Air BnB, which was about a 10-minute walk away from the town center. The Air Bnb was tucked away while still being close enough to the town center. This made it easy to access most restaurants, the coast, and shops on foot. No matter what your travel preferences may be you’ll surely be able to find a place that suits your needs.
I quickly realised how perfect the location of Sorrento was for exploring the Amalfi coast. Its charming atmosphere and proximity to other towns make it a great choice to start your Amalfi Coast and Southern Italy adventure. Whether you want to explore the coastline’s picturesque towns or simply relax and soak up the Mediterranean sun, Sorrento has something for everyone.