Welcome to Italy’s dazzling Amalfi Coast! This world renown seaside region has long been a vacationer’s paradise, and no wonder! From dramatic coastlines to family friendly water adventures, quaint cliff-side villages to jaw dropping coastal views across the Mediterranean, it doesn’t take long for visitors to fall in love with the beauty and drama of the Amalfi Coast.
Come along with us as we spend three days exploring the Amalfi Coast from the sea-side village of Amalfi. Enjoy snapshots of adventures perfect for a family to experience in a limited timeframe. Though our time in Amalfi was short, our experiences were worth the adventurous drive it takes to get here!
The Adventures Begin & End in Amalfi Village
Welcome to the village of Amalfi! Surrounded by dramatic cliffs and fronted by incredible coastal scenery, this quintessential coastal Mediterranean village dates back to the 9th century. It is one of the most historic villages along the Amalfi Coast as well as the largest. With its central location right in the middle of the Amalfi Coast, Amalfi Village also makes an excellent choice to base a family friendly Amalfi Coast adventure.
For centuries, Amalfi played a prominent role as both a maritime powerhouse and as a trading post between the Byzantine and western worlds. Today, Amalfi is still a happening place. At the center of all the action is the village’s Duomo, a 9th century cathedral rumored to house the remains of St. Andrew the Apostle.
This stunning church, with its elaborate bronzed doors dating to 11th century Constantinople and a picture perfect mountain backdrop, should be on every Amalfi Coast visitor’s must-see list. The climb to the top of the stairs alone is worth the amazing views across Amalfi! Don’t miss the 9th century Basilica of the Crucifix right next door while there.
There is something for everyone to enjoy in Amalfi Village. With lively festivals, interesting architecture, culture and a history dating back hundreds of years, there’s not a dull moment for visitors to this quaint, historic village. Festivals like the Feast of Sant’ Andrea, held annually on June 27th and November 30th, are well worth planning a day or more in Amalfi.
Evenings bring on both a feast of tasty coastal Italian food options and a Mediterranean flair for action, making Amalfi a wonderful family friendly town to end a day exploring the Amalfi Coast. When the sun sets and the lights come on, head over to the village square, grab a front row seat in an outdoor cafe, and enjoy the entertainment, people watching included!
Inside Amalfi’s Museum of Handmade Paper
Located off the beaten path, Amalfi’s Museum of Handmade Paper is a destination worth the uphill climb from the village and the hour or two to explore it. The museum is uniquely located inside a well preserved 15th century paper mill, and provides visitors a glimpse into the ancient art of making paper by hand.
The museum’s lower level is the actual remains of a once thriving medieval paper mill, complete with the very machines and instruments used to create by hand the bambagina paper Amalfi was known for. This ancient technique has been reconstructed and restored so today’s visitors can again experience the centuries old process of making paper by hand.
Visitors might even have the opportunity to assist in making their own bambagina paper just as it was made centuries ago, including the cut up rags that were the base of 15th century bambagina paper. It’s an experience the entire family can enjoy!
Sea Kayaking The Amalfi Coastline
An excursion to the Amalfi Coast just isn’t complete without experiencing the brilliant blue waters of the Tyrrhenian Sea and the incredible, gorgeous coastal scenery the Amalfi Coast is noted for. Most do so via boating excursions. Some choose kayaking!
A kayak excursion along the Amalfi Coastline provides a slower pace perfect for soaking in all those grand and glorious views. It’s also a wonderful opportunity to get up close with coastal formations not otherwise accessible!
Glide past old watch towers dotting the coast, paddle into sea caves, and pass beneath natural rock arches from this unique vantage point. Enjoy respites of snorkeling and swimming along the way. No expert experience required! Simply the ability to swim and an adventurous desire to experience this dramatic coast line in an off the beaten path method.
Day Tripping To The Island of Capri
Considered one of Italy’s most beautiful islands, Capri is an eclectic mix of upscale luxury and incredible natural beauty. From the bustling boat docks lined with restaurants, hotels, and other trappings of modern life, to the tranquil trails winding their way through a more rustic side of the island, Capri offers up both a cultural as well as a nature-based experience.
Get an early start if day tripping to Capri is on your agenda! The island is accessible only by ferry, which is equally part of the experience. You’ll know arrival is close when this massive rock formation looms ahead. Many ferries will pass through this naturally carved passage on the final approach into Capri.
Capri is fully accessible by foot, though there might be a few steep hill climbs involved! What better way to experience the villages of Capri and Anacapri, and the magnificent villas that dot the island, then to weave one’s way up and down the walkways and passages leading between them.
Leave enough time in your day trip to hike a trail or two! Enjoy uncrowded, sweeping views across Capri and the Mediterranean, soak in the smells of blooming bougainvillea that permeate the air, and experience an ancient Roman ruin. Then head back into the hustle and bustle of Capri Town for a refreshing bite to eat and a taste of locally made limoncello before catching the ferry back to the mainland.
Have you been to Amalfi?
Our time was limited along the Amalfi Coast, but we made the best of what time we had! Waking up to the sights and sounds of the nearby docks as they prepared for the day, feeling the fresh ocean breeze pass through our room, then ending our active days with this dramatic view, reinforced that the village of Amalfi was an ideal location from which to base our 3-day Amalfi Coast adventures.
How about you? Have you been to the amazing Amalfi Coast? Did you day trip from elsewhere, or did you overnight as we did? Which quaint Amalfi village do you stay in? What was your favorite experience? Do share!
Amalfi image by Alpha350 via Flickr. All other images by C.Biederman.