Naples/Capri/sorrento and Amalfi Coast...oh where oh where

Hello, My family will be staying in Naples from May 12-14. If you were to do out Itinerary that is doable and not to exhausting, what places do we visit from the 3? Amalfi coast, Capri or Sorrento? It will be our first time. Thanks much Carmen

Posted by Roberto
Fremont, CA, USA
3314 posts

Stay in Positano instead of Naples and you can kill Amalfi Coast (Positano is on the Amalfi Coast). From Positano buy a day excursion to Capri (on a boat) with one of the several companies in Positano. They'll take you to Capri and back and feed you along the way. If instead of Positano and the Amalfi Coast, you prefer Sorrento instead, you can stay in Sorrento and do the day trip to Capri from Sorrento. I just prefer Positano to Sorrento. Google Positano or Sorrento or Amalfi Coast on Google Images and decide what you like better. Positano is a quaint fishing village. Sorrento is a resort town (Sorrento is not on the Amalfi Coast however, in spite of what you might hear from those who don't know).

Posted by carmen
alexandria, va, usa
31 posts

thanks for the advice. Im still waiting on a family friend who lives in naples that is why we are more inclined on staying there. is it bad to stay in naples?? is there really nothing to see there that's why a lot of people are advising to stay in sorrento or position?

Posted by Ed
Pensacola
7971 posts

Here's the story on Naples: Line up the city's poplulation. Every other person is a pickpocket, the ones in the middle are Rolex stealers (ignore the fact that there are more anectdotal Rolex stealers than Mr Rolex made watches, that's not important). There's not much to do there except wander one of the neatest cities in the country with a couple of really good museums, but who wants to do that or see those? Above all don't stay anywhere near Garibaldi since you'll see hookers and get mugged. You'll also block the view of whatever I'm looking at and think my wife's a hooker if she's wandered out in the dark alone to pick up something and that would really hurt my feelings. Proposition her and she'll mug the heck out of you - - be forewarned. We've wamdered out onto the peninsula a couple of times and driven the whole Amalfi at least once. It's kind of cutesy boring. No place I'd really be anxious to stay, okay for a day trip.

Posted by Harold
New York, NY, USA
2826 posts

Naples gets extreme reactions. It's definitely a gritty, rough city; it's also fascinating. I agree with my Cadogan guide assessment: "the only thing subtle about Naples is its charm." I learned to like it, and would definitely go back. But some hate, hate, hate it. I recently suggested it to someone on this Helpline, who said they had a horrible experience there years ago and will never go back. There's certainly interesting things to see there. But if people want a soothing place, they should go elsewhere. Personally, I stayed in Naples for a few days, and for one day I went to Sorrento and Positano for the day. I found this day a waste. If I had it to do over again, I would either settle in to one of these for a few days, or skip them. But that's just me; apparently, lots of people find the Amalfi drive spectacular, and love even a short time in Sorrento and Postiano. I also wasn't as taken with Pompeii as many are, but I LOVED the Archeology Museum in Naples. I didn't get to Herculaneum, but will next time. And Capri is another one with mixed reviews - some say the standard day trip is sufficient, others say that staying overnight ensures that you escape the midday crowds and actually enjoy it. With only 3 days, you'll just have to do your own research, and see what appeals to you.

Posted by carmen
alexandria, va, usa
31 posts

Thanks for all the advice guys! I'm just a bit wary because I have a toddler with me! Was hesitant to go but hubby has a good friend there and lives near the area! Ill take note of what you've written! I'm sure the locals will know we're tourists upon arrival so that is what I hate!!

Posted by ekc
Portland, OR
282 posts

The locals will know you are tourists upon your arrival in every city in Italy, not just Naples. Go and enjoy hanging out with a local!

Posted by carmen
alexandria, va, usa
31 posts

thanks EKC! i think i have been overly anxious these past few weeks planning things accordingly!! i think i should enjoy the planning and too be overly nervous about everything!!

Posted by Charles
Austin, Texas, USA
308 posts

Stay in Sorrento. Much nicer. Capri is easily reachable so is Pompeii. Naples is sort of a dump. It is worth a quick day trip but I would not home base out of there.

Posted by Kim
Paris
541 posts

In Re Ed's comment: "There's not much to do there except wander one of the neatest cities in the country with a couple of really good museums, but who wants to do that or see those? " Ed you left out "with some of the best eating in all of Italy" . . . With 12 days there (well really 10 I suppose with arrival and departure days), I think you've time to enjoy Naples and spend a couple (or three) of nights as well either on Capri or in Positano. depends as well, I'm presuming you're going to Pompeii from Naples. Sorrento to me isn't as interesting as the Amalfi Coast, the islands, or Naples. It's not big enough to be unique Naples, but it's too big to be as charming as Positano or as beautiful as Ravello (up above Amalfi). If I had the luxury of free lodging with friends in Naples (which, come to think of it, I do), I'd take about 3 days to have a mini-vacation within the vacation and go to one of the seaside places. You're so close, you have to take advantage!! The other thing is that your friends might want to take you to one of the islands in the Gulf of Naples, Procida or Ischia, where fewer Anglo tourists go, but more Italians.

Posted by Kim
Paris
541 posts

Oops my post is kind of completely irrelevant -- I thought you said May 12-24, but of course you said May 12-14. That's a very different kettle of fish!! Does that mean that the 12 and 14 are travel days, and your only entire day is the 13th? In that case you just have to decide if you want a city or beach break and pick your spot accordingly.

Posted by Agnes
Alexandria, VA, USA
616 posts

Naples is AMAZING - I traveled there solo and visited friends who gave me an incredible tour. It's busy, hectic, in-your-face and happens to be one of the highlights of my trip (which included more "serene" areas like Amalfi Coast, Capri, etc). Just keep in mind that some people also "hate" New York City and would warn others to stay clear...which is sort of mind-numbing. Naples feels comparably dense, but it's equally fascinating, diverse, and more than worth spending time in. If you have small kids, it may be sensory overload to navigate tight spaces with strollers, but if you enjoy the bustle of a real city, then Naples delivers. Yes, you need a shot of confidence (and some knowledge of Italian will really help) but it's sooo worth it!!!

Posted by carmen
alexandria, va, usa
31 posts

Thanks so much for all the input!! im really overwhelmed!! i appreciate all the comments!!We will definitely stay in Naples because of a very good friend. He is from the Italian Army and was deployed with my husband who is in the US navy!! they worked together in Kabul and it would mean a lot for them to have their grand rendezvous in the rough city as what they have planned for years!! Ill definitely keep in mind the side trips we will take based on your comments.
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