The Amalfi Coast is one of Italy's most popular and stunning regions, and it's only 172 miles (277 kilometers) from Rome. It's located in the region of Campania, just south of Naples and not too far from Pompeii and Mount Vesuvius. Travelers can take a train or bus straight to Salerno or drive to the town of Amalfi along the winding road through the Ferriere Valley.
The Amalfi Coast is made up of many different towns, so having a car may be useful if you plan to explore, but there's also an easy-to-use bus system that runs frequently and services many of the towns on the tourist route. There are several options to get to the Amalfi Coast from Rome if you don't want to drive yourself, such as taking the bus or train, which can sometimes be even faster than driving.
|Train||2 hours, 30 minutes||from $18||Fast and convenient|
|Bus||5 hours||from $20||Budget travel|
|Car||3 hours, 30 minutes||172 miles (277 kilometers)||Flexibility|
What Is the Cheapest Way to Get From Rome to the Amalfi Coast?
The absolute cheapest way to get to the Amalfi Coast is to take a regional train, which is a local train that typically runs on a commuter schedule. These fares start at $19, but they are not high-speed routes. Depending on how many stops it makes, a regional train to Salerno could take between four and five hours. Bus routes offered by Marino Bus take about the same length of time, but are slightly more expensive with tickets starting at $22.
When looking for the cheapest option, make sure to check both bus and train schedules. Although the bus may cost a few bucks more than the regional train, the route might be slightly faster with fewer scheduled stops.
What Is the Fastest Way to Get From Rome to the Amalfi Coast?
For not much more than the cost of the regional train, you can take a direct high-speed train from Rome to Salerno that will get you there in about two hours, 30 minutes, although sometimes direct trains can take as long as three hours. These trains are more expensive, but you'll also have the option to upgrade to first class and on-board bar service will be available.
To get to Amalfi quickly, you'll first need to catch a Trenitalia or Italo train from Roma Termini, Rome's main train station, to Stazione Salerno, the main station in Salerno. Trains run directly between the two stations from early morning until late at night. You could also take a train to Naples and then make a connection in Salerno, which may be worth a stop for a quick lunch—especially if you've never tasted Neapolitan-style pizza before.
How Long Does It Take to Drive?
The roads in Amalfi are famously winding and narrow in places, especially the SS163, the Amalfi Coast road which connects the main coastal towns and offers iconic views along the way. This three-hour, 30-minute route may be difficult for a non-local driver to traverse easily.
However, you may want a car if you're staying in one of the Amalfi Coast's small villages. To drive from Rome, take the A24 Autostrada to the E45. When figuring out your budget, don't forget to factor in the cost of tolls, gas, and parking.
When Is the Best Time to Travel to the Amalfi Coast?
The fastest train, the Frecciabianca, leaves Rome every day at 1:56 p.m. and arrives in Salerno at 4:46 p.m. If your schedule is flexible, you should book this train and plan for an early evening arrival in Amalfi, which will give you more time to check into your accommodation and rest a little before heading out in the evening. Alternatively, the fastest train to Salerno, via Italo, leaves Rome late at 7:30 p.m. and arrives at 9:32 p.m. Although it's the quickest way to get to Amalfi, this arrival may be too late for some travelers.
Summers in the Amalfi Coast can be extremely hot and especially crowded as visitors flock to the beaches. If you'd rather visit at a quieter time, you should plan a trip for the spring or fall, particularly in the months of May or September when the temperatures are still pretty warm and hotel rates are on the cheaper side. Although the Amalfi Coast is in the southern part of the country, winters can still get pretty cold with temperatures occasionally falling below freezing point—although snow is an extremely rare event.
What's the Most Scenic Route to the Amalfi Coast?
If you really want a car to get around the coast, you could also take the train to Sorrento, then pick up a rental car there. The drive between Sorrento and Salerno is undoubtedly one of the most stunning in Europe, but it does require nerves of steel. The narrow road zigzags along the coast for 50 miles (80 kilometers) as it precariously clings to cliffs high above the sea, with low or non-existent guardrails between you and the rocks below. The views are spectacular, but if you're driving, you'll have to be sure to keep your eye on the road instead of the scenery.
What Is There to Do in the Amalfi Coast?
To see the Amalfi Coast properly, you should try to visit all the villages and towns that make up the coastline, from Salerno to Positano, Praiano, Amalfi, and everywhere in between. In these towns, you'll find some of the best hotels and restaurants the region has to offer. You should also make time to get a nice long day at the beach or, for something different, you can go for a hike in the mountains. This is one of the best ways to get far away from the crowds, while taking in some unique views of the coastline that most tourists don't get to see. The hike down to Fiordo di Furore from Agerola is particularly picturesque, winding past ruins, churches, and finishing at a quiet inlet that even has a small beach.