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Cinque Terre or Amalfi coast?

I will have 10 days on the ground in Italy, Venice and Tuscany are must sees. We are trying to decide between Cinque Terre and the Amalfi coast, any thoughts anyone?
We will land in Rome and fly to Venice. Return to the USA from Rome.

Posted by
525 posts

Why not take the train to Venice from Rome. It is about a 4 hour ride and you can see the scenery rather that the clouds. It would take about the same amount of time since you have to leave Rome to get to the airport and wait to board, blah, blah, blah. Unless you are transferring to a plane as soon as you arrive in Rome.
For 10 days, I'd do Rome,Venice, Florence then Cinque Terre. It depends on what month you will be in Italy to consider the Cinque Terre as the trails can be closed due to rain. If you don't have a car, you can base in Florence and day trip from there or base in Siena an day trip from Siena. Check the area around the Amalfi coast due to the garbage situation.

Posted by
24 posts

We will be flying to Venice as soon as we land in Rome and visiting Rome at the end of our trip.
What "garbage situation" are you talking about on the Amalfi coast?
We will be in Italy April 18 -28.
Thanks alot

Posted by
41 posts

I too am wondering which one to go my original plan which included doing both Cinque Terre and Amalfi Coast may be a bit too much for our 2 week trip (Rome, Venice and Florence are musts).
Cinque Terre Pros:
-Beautiful vistas
-Great hiking
-Weather will be cooler than the Amalfi
-Not as much historical sights to see
-Already been there (but only for one quick day)

Amalfi Pros:
-Beautiful vistas
-Get to see Pompei and visit Sorrento and Positano
-Warmer weather
-Never visited before

-More touristy
-A little more out of the way from my Northern sights (plus I have to stop at Naples to take 2nd train)

Honestly, I'm still undecided...I wish I had more days so that I can do both! Whichever you decide to do, just remember they are both gorgeous!

Posted by
4 posts

Positano, unlike Amalifi, has very few tourists because the buses cannot stop in Positano, there is no room to park. We loved Positano and stayed there for 5 days. Ravello was our other favorite. They have an extensive schedule of concerts there during the summer.

Posted by
36 posts

I have to say that Cinque Terre and Amalfi Coast are both outstanding. difficult choice.

Very easy to choose. You have to check what is the most convenient in terms of comfort, enjoyment and money.

Sometimes, and this is me, it is better to see less places and enjoy more....
I can only say that whatever you do, it will be a great trip as Italy is a treasure in every single corner !

Maybe you will come next year to see the amalfi Coast.

Take Care

Posted by
479 posts

Bridget, it depends on the kind of traveling you want to do in those places. If you're looking for a Key West tourist stop then Amalfi. If you're looking for not much to do except sit back and relax or hike then Cinque Terre. You'll love either decision. There isn't a wrong one here.

Posted by
24 posts

Thanks for all the input.
We will be traveling with a 16 year old girl so we are leaning towards the Amalfi. Seeing someone else list the pros and cons I've already considered was very helpful.I was thinking about staying in one of the smaller towns near Sorrento.Any one have any lodging recommendations? Has anyone stayed at The Grand Hotel La Pace in Sorrento?

Posted by
13 posts

You're better off staying in Positano (than Sorrento) more central to everything!

Posted by
9419 posts

I vote for Amalfi Coast vs CQ and Positano is not more central to everything, Sorrento is. Sorrento is absolutely wonderful, we've been there 3 times and are going again next July. Sorrento is the better base because it has the train station (Circumvesuviano) that takes you to Pompeii, Herculaneum, Mt. Vesuvious, Naples and Rome (via Naples). It has has way more boats that go to Positano, Amalfi (the town), Capri, and Naples. We don't think Sorrento is overly touristy at all. It's clean, beautiful, charming, friendly locals, lots to see and do. The "garbage situation" is only in Naples. I highly recommend staying at "La Tonnarella" which is in RS Italy guide. We love this hotel and Sorrento. We enjoyed Positano very much as a day trip, but it is a small town and far more touristy than Sorrento, in my opinion. And it is much harder to get to and out of than Sorrento. No trains, only a bus. It does have boats that can take you to other places but far fewer than from Sorrento.

Posted by
223 posts

I would not stay in Postano with a child ;-) It was/is lovely and romantic for me and my husband...but fairly boring and certaianly not convineint for anything. Sorrento is not as charming ( IS in it's own touristy way) but it is mush easier to get to! I would also vote for Amalfi as a base rather then Positano...just a little bit more to do there...more of an evenig stroll...more restaurants, etc. main bus terminal.

p.s. Bridget- there is no huge garbage problem on the Amalfi coast...the problem has been kept away from the tourist hot-spots. I don't think it would be noticed anywhere but in Naples.

Posted by
14 posts

I would vote for Positano and the Amalfi coast. You can do day trips to Capri and Pompeii. Positano is beautiful and very romantic.

Posted by
7 posts

I haven't been to CT but my wife and I spent our 30th anniversary at sorrento / amalfi coast last year and had an amazing time. The views are incredible and the accessability is very convenient. It's hard to imagine a more beautiful and romantic location than the Amalfi Coast. Have a great trip!!!

Posted by
1 posts

Hi Bridget - We haven't been to CT yet. We live outside of Naples and I cannot say enough great things about the Amalfi Coast, it is truly breathtaking. I have been there about 15 times (went to Sorrento the last two weekends in a row for the day, love that place) - Sorrento, Positano, Amalfi, Ravello, Vietri - and the weather there right now is beautiful.

Posted by
10 posts

I am debating the same thing. Cinque Terre or the Amalfi Coast. I would love to do both, but I'm thinking it will make the trip too hectic. I will have my 18-year-old and 13-year-old with me. They're great travelers but I'm wondering if they'd enjoy the Amalfi Coast more, if I have to pick one of the two. And Cinque Terre just seems so out-of-the-way for our plans. Has anyone taken a train or bus from Venice to Cinque Terre? Any suggestions? How long was the trip? Thanks for all of your help. Happy Friday!

Posted by
53 posts

Bridget, first of all congrats on your upcoming adventure! I've been to Italy twice. Once for 16 days and the other for 21. with 10 days I strongly recomend you dont try to see too much in a short amount of time or you'll feel rushed and overwhelmed. reserve your hotel or B&B stays ahead of time so you dont waste your time looking for one. If I were doing this, I would: Fly into Venice, get there in the morning check into your hotel and stay up, see venice for the day, sleep there and have your second day in venice strolling around. take the train out fo venice and go straight to florence and spend 3 nights there. Leave florence by train and on the way to rome make a stop in Siena and Orvieto for a total of 1 or two days. then, go to rome and you should have 3 days there before flying out. also, if you rent a car in Florence on your last morning there and drive in to rome, you can hit some really nice hill towns along the way. One more thing to consider. Plan that you'll go back. Venice is way up at the top of Italy. If you start your trip on Florence and stick to a smaller area, you'll experience more with less travel time. Have fun!!!

Posted by
32196 posts

Bridget, When will this trip be taking place? Also, have you already booked your flights? It would be more efficient to book open-jaw flights, inbound Venice and outbound Rome. On the question of Cinque Terre vs. Amalfi coast, both areas are beautiful and unique. The Cinque Terre is more "rustic and informal", with accommodations typically consisting of small Hotels and B&B's. The cuisine tends to be unique and of course emphasizes Pesto as this is where it was invented. There are no large Museums or Galleries, and the typical activities are hiking the trails between the villages, swimming and just relaxing and enjoying "Il Dolce Far Niente" (and of course the great food). The Amalfi coast tends to be more upscale and "posh" (ie: expensive), and the scenery is equally as spectacular but somewhat different. You'll see an example of "posh" if you visit Capri, as there are some very high-end shops there such as Prada, Gucci, Giorgio Armani, Dolce & Gabbana, etc. The Hotels are somewhat in the same price range. Sorrento makes a convenient "home base" for that area, as it provides both rail (Circumvesuviana) and Bus access. You'll only be able to get to Positano by Bus. On the question of "garbage", this could still be a problem in Naples, but I've also seen substantial amounts in Torre del Greco (on the way to Vesuvius) and other areas. If you won't be going there, that won't be an issue. Given the fact that most of the places you'll be visiting are in the northern part of Italy, my suggestion would be to focus on the Cinque Terre this time, as the transportation links will be much easier to "fit" with your other destinations, especially for such a VERY SHORT time frame. Where are you planning to visit in Tuscany? Happy travels!

Posted by
433 posts

It may depend which area better fits into your overall travel plans and itinerary. However, with that caveat, my strong preference would be Sorrento and Amalfi coast over Cinque Terre, which I found overhyped, in part because of Rick's books and video. Sorrento and the towns along the Amalfi coast are lovely, and the views from the Amalfi coast are extraordinary. After Amalfi, I found Cinque Terre pleasant, but a relative disappointment, and I need not go back.

Posted by
2091 posts

I, OTOH, have been to the Cinque Terre in '02, '05 '07 and '10 and am trying to figure out some way to fit it in for our '13 trip! It isn't really logical for us but I miss the 5Terre and want to help the villages rebuild after the flooding!

Posted by
1 posts

Hi! I've been also torn between Cinque Terre and Amalfi. But since Amalfi's far and we're on a budget, we might just go to Cinque Terre. I'm going to Italy also on April. Venice-Verona-Florence (Cinque Terre&Tuscany)-Rome
We'll be travelling by train. Do you know how to get to Cinque Terre and Tuscany from Florence? We don't want to get a package tour since they cost a lot. Thank you!

Posted by
11273 posts

Folks, this is a dinosaur post from 2008. I hope Bridget is back from a highly successful trip by now! For those who posted new questions, you might want to start a new thread so you receive notice of responses.