10 Best Things to Do in Positano

What is Positano Most Famous For?

    Positano is one of Italy’s crown jewels, excellent for those seeking a scenic seaside paradise. You’ll be blown away with the colourful, cliffside villas overlooking the sunny Amalfi Coast. The sound of waves crashing against the pebbled shores is heaven for beach lovers. As you walk through its sloped streets, you'll encounter quaint cafés and boutique stores reverberating a cosmopolitan vibe.

    Unbelievable scenery awaits you at every turn in Positano. A brisk hike up the rugged hills provide glimpses of Italian splendour at its finest. As you soak up the relaxed atmosphere, it’s easy to be swept away by its characteristic charm. To get a full understanding of what we mean, here’s a rundown of the best things to do in Positano.

    What are the best things to do in Positano?

    1

    Amalfi Coast road trip

    Admire the dramatic cliffs and beaches

    Very few drives can match the majestic beauty of Italy’s Amalfi Coast. This world-famous route hugs the cliffside and overlooks the shores of the Tyrrhenian Sea. The roughly 50-km drive connects the nearby towns of Sorrento and Amalfi as Positano sits in between. Every sharp turn reveals a unique look at pristine beaches and lovely villages.

    If you don’t want to miss any of the astonishing cliffs or the deep-blue horizon, hiring a driver may be a smart investment. Plus, having someone at the wheel who knows the roads creates a more relaxing road trip experience. You can focus your attention on the ancient roadway’s grace instead of oncoming traffic.

    Location: 84011 Amalfi, Province of Salerno, Italy

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    2

    Spiaggia Grande

    Catch Positano’s iconic cliffside view

    Spiaggia Grande is the place to be in Positano if you’re hoping for the perfect snapshot of the famed cliffside town. You can find the unmistakable image of Positano’s brightly coloured homes cascading down the hill here. Grab a seat among the rows of umbrellas and lounge chairs lining the pebbled shore and spend the day under the sun.

    Spiaggia Grande is the social epicentre along Positano’s coastline with terrific places to eat or have a drink. The convenient location of being just a few minutes stroll from the centre of town has its perks. Mind that the sun loungers for rent aren’t budget-friendly and you’ll need flip-flops at least – the rough pebbles on the shore can get very hot.

    Location: Spiaggia Grande, 84017 Positano SA, Italy

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    photo by Belaskova 398440 (CC BY-SA 3.0) modified

    3

    Bagni d'Arienzo Beach Club

    Sip cocktails and enjoy the view

    Arienzo Beach is where you can escape the crowds and enjoy a calming beach day in Positano. You can reach it in no time by hopping on the ferry at the Positano pier, located beside Spiaggia Grande. Shuttle boats are ultra-convenient and depart every half hour from 10am to 1pm. If you’re trying to reach the beach by land, you’ll have to descend a steep flight of steps.

    The Arienzo Beach Club has you covered with tasty food and delicious cocktails for a lazy afternoon. You can rent a sun lounger or sit on the dock to work on your tan.

    Location: Via Arienzo, 16, 84017 Positano SA, Italy

    Open: Daily from 10am to 6.30pm (Beach), 10am to 6.30pm (Bar) and 12pm to 3.30pm (Restaurant)

    Phone: +39 089 812002

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    photo by renato agostini (CC BY-SA 3.0) modified

    4

    Church of Santa Maria Assunta

    Admire the remarkable history and architectural beauty

    The stunning Church of Santa Maria Assunta is one of the most revered architectural works of art in Positano. Its history can be traced back to the 10th century when a Byzantine icon symbolizing the Virgin Mary arrived in Positano. The church celebrated this icon for centuries, and it remains an important figure in the local way of life.

    The church faced its struggles during the Middle Ages but is now a marvellous testament of Positano’s beauty and history. The masterfully restored structure boasts a breathtaking belltower, magnificent medieval artwork and an exquisite dome-shaped roof set against the cliffside townscape.

    Location: Via Marina Grande, 84017 Positano SA, Italy

    Open: Daily from 8am to 12pm and 4pm to 8pm

    Phone: +39 089 875480

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    photo by Dave & Margie Hill (CC BY-SA 2.0) modified

    5

    The Path of the Gods

    Discover local villages with breathtaking seascapes

    The Path of the Gods offers a delightful trekking route for thrill-seekers and nature lovers in Positano. This nature trail, known locally as Il Sentiero Degli Dei, takes you above Positano and into cosy local villages residing along the Amalfi Coast. The hike is roughly 6.5 km and rewards you with spectacular views of Positano and the neighbouring coastline.

    You’ll pass the villages of Bomerano and Nocelle, each of which offers a chance to escape the crowds for a while. The aerial views of the sea are some of the most jaw-dropping near Positano. The hike is easier when you trek from Bomerano to Nocelle since it is mostly downhill.

    Location: Sentiero degli Dei, 80051 Agerola SA, Italy

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    photo by Ken Mayer (CC BY 2.0) modified

    6

    Grotta dello Smeraldo

    Take a cruise to explore Positano’s magical sea cave

    Nicknamed the ‘Emerald Cave,’ the Grotta dello Smeraldo is a mesmerising natural phenomenon you simply cannot miss. Go underground and marvel at the green light that is reflected in the aqua-blue water. You can get a closer look at stalactites hanging from the cavern roof by riding a boat inside the cave.

    For the best view of the emerald light shining through Grotta dello Smeraldo, try to visit when the sunlight is the brightest. The cave is located roughly 5 km west of Amalfi, which you can reach by car or boat.

    Location: Via Smeraldo, 84010 Conca dei Marini SA, Italy

    Open: Daily from 9am to 4pm

    Phone: +39 089 831535

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    7

    Cantine Marisa Cuomo

    Enjoy a scenic vineyard tour

    Cantine Marisa Cuomo is where you can attend a wine tasting and learn the secrets of winemaking on the Amalfi Coast. Located about 1 hour from Positano, the winery is set in a breathtaking location along the cliffside. Tour the facility to see how they uniquely age their wines inside the rock formations of the Amalfi Coast.

    Enjoy the gorgeous scenery of terraced vines hugging the rocky cliffs of the Fiordo di Furore fjord that overlook the sea. Complete your grand tour of the vineyard with a pairing of the winery’s top selections.

    Location: Via Giambattista Lama, 16/18, 84010 San Michele SA, Italy

    Open: Monday–Friday from 9am to 1pm and 3pm to 6pm (closed on Saturdays and Sundays)

    Phone: +39 089 830348

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    photo by François Philipp (CC BY 2.0) modified

    8

    Monte Faito

    Ride the cable car to the mountain top

    The summit of Monte Faito is a phenomenal place to catch sweeping views of the nearby landscape. Marvel at the Bay of Naples, Mount Vesuvius or the island of Capri as you witness breathtaking scenery from the mountain’s summit. Although seasoned hikers make the trek to the summit, riding the cable car is the quickest way to the top.

    You can reach the cable car via the Castellamare di Stabia train station. The journey from Positano to the train station is roughly 1-2 hours by car or public transit. When you reach the top of the mountain, there are numerous walking paths to appreciate the incredible viewpoints.

    Location: Monte Faitom, 80050 Pimonte, Metropolitan City of Naples, Italy

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    9

    Authentic Italian dishes in Positano

    Dine on fresh seafood and pasta

    Positano's location beside the sea makes it a fantastic spot to dine on fresh seafood. Ristorante La Cambusa is a fabulous restaurant offering local catches and combining them with savoury pasta and Italian wines. No trip to Italy is complete without a slice of pizza, and Chez Black makes one of the best in town.

    Da Vincenzo whips up delicious pasta and serves a scrumptious tiramisu for dessert. For another classic Italian sweet, cruise around the streets to find endless gelato shops for a tasty scoop.

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    10

    Downtown Positano pedestrian street

    Go on a shopping and walking tour

    If you're in Positano for a shopping extravaganza, wander downtown and take a stroll down Pedestrian Street. You’ll find trendy fashion brands and local artists showing off their handmade crafts. Keep your eyes peeled for hidden gems as shops are often hidden along the steep, winding walkways. 

    One of the unique things to purchase in Positano is handmade leather sandals. For an authentic Positano experience, get yourself fitted for your own pair of custom-made sandals. The town also has boutiques specialising in marvellous clothing designs. Whether you need a new dress or simply want to make a fashion statement, Positano has endless places to shop for designer clothes.

    Location: Piazza dei Mulini, 84017 Positano SA, Italy

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    Daniel Grenier | Contributing Writer

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