Trails & Treasures of the Amalfi Coast
Walk the stunning Amalfi Coast and stay in premium accommodation
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Vacation Style Holiday Type
Activity Level Leisurely / Moderate
Group Size Small Group
It’s hard to think of a more delightful, more life-affirming holiday than a week wandering the paths of Italy’s Amalfi Coast. It’s a magic spell conjured with Gods’-eye views of the Monti Lattari plunging headlong into the inky blue Tyrrhennian Sea, mesmerising carpets of wildflowers and the bewitching fragrance of lemons and wild herbs. Mix those with the comfort of staying in some delightful hand-picked 4-star hotels and the exquisite thrill of walking into glamorous hill-towns at the exact hour of the aperitivo; add in the ruins of Pompeii, a look into the crater of Vesuvius and a private boat trip to the fabled island of Capri, and you’ll be spellbound!
* All breakfasts, 2 lunches, 3 dinners and 1 wine tasting
* All accommodation
* All transport and listed activities
* Entrance ticket to Villa Cimbrone in Ravello
* Guided tours in Vesuvius and Pompeii
* Tour leader throughout
* Airport transfers for group flights (at designated times)
- Single Accommodation (available on request, inquire for supplement)
- Local city tax (approx. €15-20)
- Stunning coastal walks and dramatic scenery
- Private boat trip to the fabled island of Capri
- Soak up the glamorous atmosphere in Positano, Amalfi and Ravello
- Comfortable accommodation in fantastic locations
- 7 nights 4-star hotels in prime locations
- 5 days guided walking and sightseeing and 1 free day
- Group normally 5 to 16, plus leader. Min age 16 yrs.
- Altitude maximum 1280m, average 600m
- All transport by private minibus and boat
- Not suitable for severe vertigo sufferers
Start Naples; overnight at central hotel overlooking the Gulf of Naples.
This trip starts in the vibrant city of Naples. Those of us who have arranged our own flights should rendezvous at the start hotel, although the more convenient option may be to meet the group at the airport for the transfer. Land only clients can join at any time, but we do recommend arriving before 7pm to meet the rest of the group. Our accommodation tonight is the beautifully located Hotel San Francesco al Monte, perched on a hill overlooking Naples and offering spectacular views over the gulf and Mt. Vesuvius. It is truly special and unique as it a former 16th century monastery which preserves many original features including the monks’ refectory, ecclesiastical memorabilia, religious statues and much more. After checking in we will enjoy a welcome aperitivo and dinner in the panoramic rooftop terrace.
Drive to Mt Vesuvius for an escorted walk to the crater; lunch and wine tasting at renowned local winery and afternoon guided visit in Pompeii; transfer to Ravello.
After breakfast we travel south to explore two of the most iconic sites of the Bay of Naples, namely Vesuvius and Pompeii. The only active volcano on mainland Europe, Mt Vesuvius is best known because of the eruption in A.D. 79 that destroyed the city of Pompeii and Heculaneum. We drive up the slopes, first with our private vehicle, then by 4WD. Finally, accompanied by an expert volcanologist, we hike up to the summit (approx. 4km return). Please note that the hike involves a short but steep climb on gravel and loose terrain. Once at the top we will have the opportunity to get very close to its 200 metre deep crater whilst enjoying some fine views over the Bay of Naples. By lunchtime we make our way down by private bus and stop in a famous local winery, where we enjoy a guided wine tasting. We will sample the organic Lacryma Christi DOP wines produced on Mount Vesuvius slopes, paired with some delicious local dishes. In the afternoon we head to the fascinating ruins of Pompeii, one of the most famous UNESCO World Heritage sites, for an escorted visit to the perfectly preserved remains including old bathhouses, bakeries and homes, some of which are still adorned with original frescoes. We conclude the busy day with a transfer (approx. 1 hour) to Ravello, our home for the next three days. We check in at our panoramic hotel, perched on the sheer cliffs and offering amazing views over the Amalfi Coast.
Morning sightseeing in elegant Ravello and Villa Cimbrone; walk through picturesque olive groves and terraced vineyards to Minori and Maiori; transfer an overnight in Ravello.
Ravello is one of the most beautiful towns of the Amalfi Coast, and a favourite amongst writers and artists who have been inspired by its beautiful garden and villas. Gore Vidal declared the views from Ravello to be the best in the world, and it’s hard to argue with him. We’ll have time to explore this hugely popular hilltop town before today’s walk, starting with a visit to to the elegant Villa Cimbrone. Set amidst elegant gardens, the villas balconies stand at the edge of the cliffs offering stunning views aptly described by André Gide as ’closer to the sky than the seashore’. Later we take a scenic short walk to the coastal towns of Minori and Maiori. Leaving from the town’s centre, we walk downhill following many sets of stairs (up to 1500), pathways, and panoramic trails offering sprawling views of the coastline surrounded by lemon groves. At the end of the day we return by private transfer to our hotel in Ravello. The evening is free and for dinner you can choose one of the many excellent local restaurants, ranging from simple pizzerias to exclusive restaurants with a view.
Follow steps and mule tracks down to the Ferriere Valley Nature Reserve and walk to Amalfi; free time to sightsee; transfer and overnight in Ravello.
Today’s walk takes us to Amalfi, Italy’s oldest maritime republic. Quintessentially Mediterranean, Amalfi’s townscape is comprised of a cluster of little white houses and buildings, narrow alleyways and shady porticoes, dominated by large Duomo Cathedral with its bright coloured tiles which are typical of the region. After descending from Ravello towards the panoramic village of Pontone, we continue through wooden bridges and shady paths carpeted with wild flowers in season, to the beautiful moss-clad waterfalls within the closed gates of the Valle delle Ferriere National Park. After a delicious lunch by the river, we follow the stream gently downwards through lemon groves, past the shells of former paper factories (a major local industry from the 12th to 19th centuries) and mediaeval ironworks until reaching Amalfi. We will have the option to visit the fascinating paper museum, enjoy some time at leisure to wander through the labyrinth of white washed alleys or take a refreshing swim in the sea. We return to Ravello in the afternoon by private transfer.
Transfer to Agerola; walk the famous 'Path of the Gods' with superb panoramic views all the way to Positano; free time to sightsee and boat to Sorrento.
Today we take one of the world’s finest coastal walks. First we travel by private transfer (approx. 1hr) to the quiet village of Bomerano. From here we join the famous ‘Sentiero degli Dei’ (Path of the Gods), thus named as it provides some of the most evocative views in the world, of ragged cliffs speckled with tiny villages and extensive views of the sparkling Mediterranean sea. The route follows undulating hills, carpeted with flowers in season, the contours of the land and the coast. The trail is broken by insights into local life, passing shepherds huts and ancient stone houses carved into the limestone before we descend a long series of steps to the colourful Positano, an almost vertical town clinging to the rock face of a sheltered bay. We enjoy some free time to explore the alleyways lined with wisteria and designer boutiques or have a dip in the clear water of the beachfront before getting on the fast boat which takes to the beautiful town of Sorrento, our home for the next two days. Perched on the sheer cliffs overlooking the Bay of Naples, Sorrento offers a great choice of restaurants and shops.
Free day: optional cooking class, walk or relax in Sorrento.
Today we have a day at leisure. You may decide to enjoy your day by the pool, on the beach or in true Italian style, in a café, sipping espresso and watching the world go by. Alternatively you may opt to join a cooking class in one of the area’s best known agriturismos. This optional activity can be arranged locally by your leader. Finally, those wishing to enjoy another active day, can follow the tour leader on a stunning short walk to the westernmost point of the Sorrento peninsula, Punta Campanella, along some of the most unspoilt stretches of coastline and beaches.
Take a day-trip to glamorous Capri by private boat; explore the island on foot and return to Sorrento.
We end this walking week with a visit to the idyllic island of Capri. Capri’s intriguing combination of fabled beauty and hedonism has charmed its visitors for centuries, from Roman Emperors to contemporary Hollywood stars. We reach the island by private boat and dock at the Marina Grande, the main harbour. We walk up through lemon groves and gardens to the central square of the little town of Capri – the famous ‘Piazzetta’, the centre of the island’s mundane life. From here we start a beautiful circular walk which showcases some of the best cultural and natural wonders of the eastern part of the island. We hike past the ruins of the Imperial Villa Iovis, which belonged to the Roman emperor Tiberius, the Arco Naturale, and the Faraglioni, the iconic sea stacks off the south coast. We enjoy a delicious lunch in a panoramic spot before walking back to the centre where there may be free time for a visit to the Certosa and the Gardens of Augustus or a walk down Marina Piccola, along the spectacular Via Krupp. In the afternoon we enjoy a scenic tour by boat around the island, before returning to Sorrento for a final farewell dinner.
This trip ends in the morning of day 8 in Sorrento.
On this trip we will use three different comfortable 4-star hotels. All hotels have been selected for their prime location, comfort or character. All rooms are en suite and all hotels have a swimming pool.
Naples: Hotel San Francesco al Monte 4****
Wonderful 4-star boutique hotel and restored 16th-century offering panoramic across the Gulf of It features 2 pools, a rooftop restaurant and stylish rooms in converted monks’ chambers.
Ravello: Hotel Graal 4****
Prime quiet location in Ravello, just 100m from the historic town centre and offering spectacular views over the Salerno Gulf. It offers a panoramic outdoor swimming pool and comfortable rooms with satellite TV and balconies.
Sorrento: Hotel La Residenza 4****
Immersed in a private green park, Hotel La Residenza is located in a quiet area approx. 1 km from Sorrento centre and a few metres from the beach. It offers a private outdoor pool with sun terrace. All rooms are air conditioned and feature a minibar and satellite TV.
All breakfasts, 2 lunches, 3 dinners and 1 wine tasting are included.
The abundance of fresh local produce as well as highly skilled local chefs make the Campania region one of the most envied culinary landscapes in the world. Most regional meals are prepared using of seasonal fresh ingredients such as olives, oranges, lemons, eggplants, tomatoes, almonds, grapes, and more; not to mention all of the seafood fished right off the coast.
Breakfast at the hotels is usually continental style with a choice of cereal, bread, pastries, eggs, ham, cheese, yoghurt, orange juice and milk with an array of teas/coffee.
One of the included lunches will be taken at a famous winery on the slopes of Mount Vesuvius. After a guided walk through the vineyards, we will visit of the winery with an explanation of the Lacryma Christi production, followed by a wine tasting paired with local local specialties including antipasti, spaghetti and pastiera napoletana.
The other included meals will be taken at the excellent hotels’ restaurants or local restaurants selected by our expert local leader.
Vegetarians and gluten free diets are generally well catered for in the Amalfi Coast but we recommend informing us of any dietery requirement prior departure.
Activity Level: 2 (Leisurely/Moderate) 6 days guided walking with low altitude throughout
The Amalfi Coast is home to some of the best-loved walks in Europe; the varied scenery and temperate climate make this a heaven for hikers and ramblers. The distance walked each day is relatively short (average 8km) and the pace is leisurely allowing time to rest and enjoy the views; however, the terrain encountered on some of the paths is similar what you may find on a moderate walking trip.
The terrain and type of path will vary from man-made paved tracks and tarmac to forest trails. Whilst most walks are manageable for those with a good level of fitness, the walks involve some steep climbs and descents on slightly loose terrain and some have sections on narrow pathways alongside some sheer drops (not recommended for severe vertigo sufferers). The walk on Mount Vesuvius is on rocky cinder/gravel trails and likely to be loose underfoot, with steep sections and quite large drops in places.
On most days, there are considerable sections of steps (up to 1500), which make the walks unsuitable for those with knees problems.
Walks usually take between 4 and 6 hours including lunch stops (depending on the pace of your group) and require a good level of fitness. Summer temperatures can make some of the walks more strenuous. If you are concerned about the difficulty of the walks we recommend calling us to discuss the trip in more detail.