The charming town of Sorrento sits on a long cliff amid lemon and olive groves overlooking the sea on the Amalfi Peninsula south of Naples. A ravine divides the town with the old town on one side and suburban area with hotels on the other. The old town, still retaining its Roman grid of narrow streets, was an important trading post in the middle ages.
Its many hotels and restaurants, as well as easy access and good public transportation, make Sorrento a good base for taking day trips to explore the Amalfi Coast, Pompeii, Vesuvius, and other Bay of Naples attractions.
Where to Stay in Sorrento
Sorrento has more hotels than the other Amalfi Coast towns so it makes a good base, especially if you're traveling by public transportation.
Shopping in Sorrento
Pictures in inlaid wood is a centuries-old local craft that you'll find in many shops and Limoncello, the popular lemon liqueur is produced and sold here as well as other lemon products and good olive oil. See suggestions for 6 good places to shop in Where to Shop in Sorrento.
For more about the foods of Sorrento, book the food walking tour through Viator. This three-hour tour will bring you to eight spots to try delicious, local eats like pastas, cheeses, paninis, cured meats and more.
What to See and Do in Sorrento:
- Via San Cesareo is the main street of the old town. Here's where to go for the lively evening passegiata. Wander around the narrow streets of the old town.
- Sedile Dominova is one of the most impressive buildings. Built in 1349, it has a 16th-century trompe l'oeil cupola.
- Church of San Francesco, in piazza San Francesco, is next to a 14th-century arched cloister. In summer there are free art exhibits and occasional concerts.
- Public gardens, along the clifftops, offer great views of the sea and Vesuvius in the distance. From the gardens you can take a lift down to the seaside.
- Stabilimenti has piers and along the sea, they have beach and lounge chairs for rent. There are no real beaches so this is as close as you'll get. There are several lifts from town that take you down to the sea or back up.
- Walking paths with nice views take you to the ruins of the Roman Villa di Pollio or Massa Lubrenese, a small fishing village.
- Correale Museum has an interesting assortment of Neopolitan exhibits (closed Tuesday).
- Museo Bottega della Tarsialignea, the woodcarving museum and workshop is open in the mornings.
- From Sorrento you can visit the stunning towns along the Amalfi Coast on the narrow but very scenic Amalfi Drive. Take a bus or taxi. Or take a boat ride along the coast if you prefer to travel by water.
- It's also easy to visit Pompeii, Vesuvius, and other Bay of Naples attractions by train or the popular island of Capri by ferry from Sorrento.
- Take a guided tour of Capri by boat from Sorrento with a Capri Small Group Tour offered by Viator.
Getting Around Sorrento
The Circumvesuviana train travels between Naples and Sorrento arriving in Piazza Lauro, 2 blocks east of Piazza Tasso. Book your train ticket in advance at raileurope.com. From Sorrento, ferries go to Naples and the island of Capri as well as other Amalfi Coast villages in summer.
Buses also run to Sorrento, connecting the town with other Amalfi Coast villages. The closest airport is Naples, 45 km away. From Naples airport, there are three direct buses a day.