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Amalfi coast Italy

World’s Greatest Drives – Amalfi Coast, Italy

Posted by Avis on March 27, 2018 | 955 people viewed

Magically suspended between the blue sky and the iridescent coloured sea, the Amalfi Coast is characterized by a picturesque labyrinth of stairways and narrow alleys, connecting the two main elements of this landscape: the mountains and the sea. Deemed by UNESCO “an outstanding example of a Mediterranean landscape, with exceptional cultural and natural scenic values,” the Amalfi Coast stretches 60 kilometres and encompasses beautiful towns and villages, all with a unique culture filled with historic churches and quaint old houses. If you’re looking for a driving itinerary with iconic sweeping views and unparalleled beaches, then this Amalfi Coast drive in your Italy driving holiday itinerary is the only itinerary you need to consider. The best way to explore this beautiful country is by getting a car hire in Italy.

Image source: Pixabay

Map:

 

Amalfi Coast Italy

See the best of Italy’s showcase coastline in an Avis hire car which is car rentals in Italy. Pick up your hire car from Avis Salerno, near Pontecagnano Airport and drive north along the coastal road.

 

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Distance: 125 KM Drive Time: 4-hours

Salerno > Ravello > Amalfi > Praiano > Positano > Sorrento > Naples

 

Best time to travel:

Locals recommend planning a drive of the Amalfi Coast during the shoulder tourist seasons, mid-September to October and May, when the road is less crowded and lumbering tour buses are fewer.

Local Language: Italian is the official language along the Amalfi Coast. English is spoken to some degree in the main tourism destinations, as are several other European languages such as German.

Driving Rules:

 

  • In Italy, please drive on the right side of the road.
  • Mobile phones may only be used with a hands-free device
  • Use the outside lane to overtake on motorways and dual carriageways
  • There are historical areas in which you cannot drive. Look out for “Zona traffico limitato”
  • Dipped headlights must be used in poor daylight visibility when driving on motorways, dual carriageways, and rural roads
  • Do not use the horn in a built-up area unless in danger
  • Speed Limits (km/hr)
  • Urban roads: 50 km/h (31 mph)
  • Secondary extra-urban roads: 90 km/h (56 mph)
  • Motorways: 130 km/h (80mph)
  • Urban highways: 70 km/h (44 mph)
  • Main extra-urban roads (Expressways): 110 km/h (68 mph)
  • Unless indicated by road signs.

 

 

Salerno

 

Image Source: Pixabay

 

Pick up your hire car from Avis Salerno, near Pontecagnano Airport and drive north along the coastal road to begin an unforgettable journey. A wonderful city in the homonymous gulf of the Tyrrhenian Sea between the Amalfi Coast, the Sele plain and the Cilento area (to the south), in the spot in which the Irno Valley opens towards the sea –  Salerno was for a short while Italy’s capital.

Sites of interest:

  • the Lungomare Trieste (the seafront promenade) is a great place to stretch your legs and enjoy views which rival the French Riviera.
  • the Castello di Arechi, an imposing castle located at 984 feet elevation overlooking the city.

 

 

Ravello

 Ravello Italy

Image Source: Pixabay

 

Praised by the Italian poet Boccaccio in his Decameron, with its postcard landscape and noble atmosphere, Ravello has attracted guests for decades, including D.H. Lawrence (the author of the scandalous book Lady Chatterley’s Lover) and composer Wagner. Perched on steep, terraced slopes—closer to the sky than the sea, it is considered one of the most romantic and beautiful small towns in southern Italy.

Sites of interest:

  • Villa Rufolo, one of the most beautiful and famous architectural complexes in Ravello. It was built by the Rufolo family, one of the most powerful families in the Medieval period.
  • Villa Cimbrone, clinging to the rocky ridge with the same name, here you can enjoy one of the stunning views of the Amalfi coast.
  • – Oscar Niemeyer Auditorium, designed by the famous Brazilian architect Oscar Niemeyer, has 400 seats and is preceded by a panoramic terrace.
  • the Sanctuary of the Saints Cosmas and Damian, entirely rebuilt in the last years of the XX century in order to accommodate the larger number of believers who go there every year.

 

 

Amalfi

 Amalfi Italy

Image Source: Pixabay

 

Amalfi is the town that gives its name to the whole coast as well as one of the most famous tourist destinations in the world for its history, monuments and natural setting that allowed to be declared by UNESCO World Heritage Site.

It was the first of the Four Maritime Republics of Italy and for a long time had the monopoly of trade with the East. It looks like a cluster of white houses clinging to the rock and connected to each other by covered alleys and stairways.

 

Sites of interest:

  • At the centre of the main square, there is the beautiful Cathedral of St. Andrew, with its impressive staircase
  • the bell-tower in Arab-Norman style
  • the charming Cloister of Paradise.
  • the Amalfi paper Museum, located in an old Medieval mill of the XIII century.

 

Praiano

Praiano Italy

Image Source: Wikimedia

 

With its genuine and authentic atmosphere, far away from the mass tourism, Praiano is characterized by narrow streets making their way through the Mediterranean vegetation, terraced gardens and typical houses, leading directly to the sea. Here you can enjoy the most romantic sunset of the whole coast: the purple sun slowly disappears behind the mountains, illuminating in the background Capri with its Faraglioni, the Sorrento Peninsula and Punta Campanella. The town features numerous historical, architectural and naturalistic attractions.

Sites of interest:

  • the Church of San Luca the Evangelist, in Baroque style; the interior is decorated with a beautiful tiled floor with a floral motif and, in the centre, the image of the patron saint, depicted in the act of painting.
  • the Church of San Gennaro, in the village of Vettica Maggiore, built in Renaissance style and features three naves and a dome covered with majolica tiles.
  • the Church of Santa Maria a Castro with the adjoining convent of San Domenico, situated on the slopes of Mount Sant’Angelo a Tre Pizzi, at 360 meters above sea level.
  • the fortified towers, built to defend the area from the Saracen pirate attacks, part of the imposing defence system of the Amalfi Coast.

 

Positano

 Positano Italy

Image Source: Pixabay

 

If you’ve seen beautiful photos of coastal Italy, chances are that you’ve already seen Positano.

Positano is one of the best-known places of the Amalfi coast for its picturesque staircases, whitewashed houses following the natural course of the mountain and creating a vertical landscape. Appreciated by International artists after the First World War, Positano is famous for its handmade leather sandals and cotton/linen clothes (the so-called “Moda Positano”), for its beautiful XIX-XX century buildings in Mediterranean style and its postcard landscapes with the background of the tiled dome of the main church and Li Galli islands. Choose a car rental in Italy and hit those clean roads with excitement.

We recommend dining here and lingering until after dark when the town lights up and the lights reflect beautifully in the ocean’s water.

Sites of interest:

  • Grotta La Porta, where traces of human settlements dating from the Paleolithic Ages have been found.
  • Parish Church of Santa Maria Assunta that shows up with its large dome, tiled in majolica and sheltering some precious works like polychrome marble altars.
  • the Chapel of St. John, which consists of a rectangular room covered with a barrel vault and a floor decorated with the wind rose;
  • the fortified towers(the Tower of Fornillo, the Tower of Trasita, the Tower of Sponda and the Tower of Gallo), built to defend the area from the Saracen pirate attacks and formed part of the imposing defence system of the Amalfi Coast.

 

 

Sorrento

Sorrento Italy

Image Source: Pixabay

 

If natural beauty is at the top of your bucket list, Sorrento and the surrounding scenic byways will not disappoint. This Italian gem overlooks the Bay of Naples, and the Sorrentine Peninsula offers drivers stunning views of Naples, Mount Vesuvius, and the storied Isle of Capri. Old Sorrento is home to quaint crumbling streets and tiny alleyways, perfect for an afternoon’s exploration.

Sites to see:

  • The Cathedral of Sorrento is centrally located and is a breathtaking building to explore.
  • Museo Correale di Terranova is well worth a visit whether you’re a clock collector, an archaeological egghead or into delicate ceramics.
  • Centro Storico, A major hub for shops, restaurants and bars

 

Naples

Naples Italy

Image Source: Pixabay

 

The city of Napoli (as the locals know it), is the capital city of the beautiful Italian region of Campania. History buffs will love the deep roots of Naples – it is known as one of the oldest continuously inhabited cities in the world. We recommend that one area you should explore during your stop in Naples is the historic city centre; it’s the largest in Europe and the art, architecture, and artefacts found here encompass twenty-seven full centuries of history. It’s listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and it’s a beautiful, romantic, and unforgettable place to explore.

Sites to see:

  • Museo Archeologico Nazionale, Naples’ National Archaeological Museum serves up one of the world’s finest collections of Graeco-Roman artefacts.
  • Certosa e Museo di San Martino, The high point (quite literally) of the Neapolitan Baroque, this charterhouse-turned-museum was founded as a Carthusian monastery in the 14th century.

 

Drop-off your Avis vehicle at our car hire Naples airport branch and head back with a truckload of beautiful memories from one of Italy’s most piercing destinations.

 

Our Recommendations:

Stays:

 

Palazzo Marziale, Sorrento

Palazzo Marziale, Sorrento

Image Source: Scontent

Palazzo Marziale is a luxury boutique hotel in the centre of Sorrento, Italy. This historic palazzo combines original 15th-century architecture and furnishings with contemporary design and comfort. Savour the sophisticated charm of rare antiques paired with contemporary designer details, the welcoming atmosphere of a historical family residence, and the stunning location in the historic centre of Sorrento overlooking the gardens of Piazza San Francesco.

 

 

 

Villa Casale, Ravello

Villa Casale, Ravello

Image Source: Ravelloresidence

The apartments are exclusive and exceptional, only a short distance away from the heart of the village, where you can find relaxation and immerse yourself in the 4.000 sq metres of greenery with the swimming pool situated between the sky and the sea, with an incomparable view of the Amalfi Coast.

In the grounds, there is a characteristic wood oven used for cooking tasty and delicious pizza and other specialities from the vegetable garden, which is cultivated with much passion by the proprietor who also produces wine and olive oil in the local tradition.

 

Pensione Maria Luisa, Positano

Pensione Maria Luisa, Positano

Image Source: Pensionemeria

Pensione Maria Luisa, one of the historic hotels of Positano, in a panoramic position a few minutes from Fornillo beach in the pedestrian area. The hotel is located just 2 minutes from the main road where you meet your lights and aromas of the most popular restaurants Saraceno d’Oro. From the terraces of their rooms with sea view open the images imprinted on the postcards: from here you can admire the colours of the sunset while sipping an aperitif or making beautiful pictures. Those who could not book in time a room with a private terrace, can, of course, use the common terrace and available to all our customers – botany room with sea view, TV and mini kitchen. The concierge service in 4 languages (Italian, English, French and German) is available for information until evening.

 

Hotel Villa Maria Pia

Hotel Villa Maria Pia

Image Source: Villamariapia

In Praiano “Heart of the Amalfi Coast between Positano and Amalfi is located” Villa MariaPia “in a unique scenery of exceptional beauty, ideal for guests who love the sun, the sea and the hills that encircle. From the summit of these hills, along with the Path of the Gods, you can see all the countries of the Amalfi Coast. The Villa seems to be born from the rock is a wonderful show for the traveller. There are very large terraces equipped for sunbathing and outdoor dining to enjoy the full splendour of the Amalfi Coast and you have the feeling that they can dive into a sea of an infinite horizon.

 

 

Eateries:

 

Casa Mele

Casa Mele

Image Source: Scontent

Casa Mele offers the opportunity to experience a savoury, regionally inspired feast that can be partnered with a hands-on cooking class. If you visit Positano, be sure to go to Casa Mele – Restaurant and Cooking Class – a home for locals to grab a bite to eat and a place built for friends to catch up and enjoy a drink. It’s a way to take in another, equally breathtaking view of Positano’s warmth and generosity of spirit. In Chef Raffaelle’s kitchen, you will feel that you are family among the family.

Where: Via G. Marconi, 76 – Positano (Sa)

Contact: +39 089 812 2041

 

Da Salvatore

Da Salvatore

Image Source: Ravello

Da Salvatore B&B is located a short walk away from the Piazza Duomo. It offers simple-style sea-view rooms with air-conditioning, flat-screen TV, tiled floors, private bathroom with free toiletries. The on-site restaurant offers local cuisine in a lovely setting with panoramic views from its garden terrace. Wines by the glass include knockout super-reds such as Amarone and Barolo.

Where: Via della Republicca 2, Ravello, Italy

Contact: 089 85 72 27

 

 

Marina Grande

Image Source: Ristorante

They combine the traditions of a Mediterranean restaurant with innovative Italian cuisine from the Amalfi Coast based on time-honoured recipes. Their seasonal menus include tasty hors-d’oeuvres, first courses, main courses and desserts carefully prepared with fresh ingredients. They offer a great list of excellent wines, and creative drinks and cocktails, directly on the most beautiful beach on the Amalfi Coast.

 

Where: Viale Della Regione 4, Amalfi, Italy

Contact: 089 871129

 

 

Don Alfonso 1890

Don Alfonso 1890

Image Source: Apache

Nestled in a 19th-century Neapolitan building, the restaurant is filled with bright colors – lilac, yellow, orange and pink – which look lovely with the natural, Mediterranean light, transporting guests to the extraordinary atmosphere of Southern Italy. The philosophy behind the food at Don Alfonso aims to combine the best produce and traditions of Campania with culinary innovation.

The Don Alfonso 1890 cellar is an ancient and romantic nook in a Pre-Roman tunnel where more than 25,000 top-quality bottles are kept. There is also an aging room for cheeses.
The 1300 labels in the Don Alfonso 1890 cellar come from all over the world. Some bottles are true finds. The jewels in our treasure chest, in the hands of an expert sommelier, are the perfect “travel companions” for the meals served in our restaurant and hotel garden.

Where: di Don Alfonso Gestioni s.r.l.

Corso Sant’Agata, 11/13
80061 Sant’Agata Sui Due Golfi, Naples (IT)

Contact:  0039 081.878.00.26 – 081.878.05.61

Re Maurì

Re Maurì

Image Source: Remuera

Re Maurì stands out among the Italian gourmet restaurants thanks to its strong personality that makes it a real temple of taste, a restaurant for connoisseurs, awarded with one Michelin star after only two years. The cellar offers a careful and refined selection of wines with a total of 850 wines, Italian and international ones, and a particular focus is put on the local production. There are 12 labels in the water menu and 30 types of Cuban, Dominican and Honduran cigars, as well as a unique selection of Davidoff, a real treat for fans; these are numbers that contribute to making the moments spent at Re Maurì valuable, exclusive, unforgettable.

 

Where: Ristorante Re Maurì , via Benedetto Croce (strada verso Vietri) – 84121 Salerno (SA)

Contact: 04899020657

Book your car rental in Italy here.

 

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