Food and Drink in Positano (Amalfi)
Follow the main street of Amalfi, past the cathedral and the gelato stations, choose any restaurant with its doors open to the outside breeze, and you won't go wrong. Seafood is a mainstay there, with squid, shellfish, clams and sardines often used in pastas, entrees and sauces. Pizza got its start just a few miles down the coast in Naples, and pies with tangy local tomatoes and fresh cheese -- buffalo mozzarella is a specialty -- are offered everywhere. For dessert, look for sfogliatelle, a stuffed shell pastry that defines Italian baking. Lunch is the main meal of the day, and many restaurants serve fixed-price menus. Locals generally don't eat before 8:30 p.m.
Locanda del Marinaio serves up fresh seafood and homemade pastas in simple, yet delicious sauces. (Via Lorenzo D'Amalfi, 20; open 11:30 a.m. to 11:30 p.m. daily)
Bar Bagni da Ferdinando is more than a restaurant in Positano; it also operates a section of beach. You can grab a seat along the water's edge with sun chairs and umbrellas and enjoy beach service for meals, or eat at the cafe, just off the beach. (Spiaggia di Fornillo)
Best Cocktail in Positano (Amalfi)
The drink of choice along the Amalfi Coast is limoncello, an alcoholic lemon liqueur meant to be sipped in small quantities (because of its potency). The region's lemons, known as "sfusato amalfitano," grow as large as melons, and many locals have their own recipes. You'll find limoncello in every restaurant, as well as sold in many of the trinket shops lining the streets.
Beaches in Positano (Amalfi)
Beaches along the coast of Amalfi and Positano, as well as the small towns in between, are lined with colorful umbrellas and beach chairs. While the sand is coarse and gravelly, almost a gray color, the setting with the towns climbing into hillsides is straight off a postcard. However, to nab one of those chairs or umbrellas, you'll have to pay around 12 to 15 euros per person.
Smaller, more secluded beaches won't charge fees but are more difficult to reach. Many beaches require visitors to climb steep stairs, and some are accessible only by boat, such as Fiumicello Beach. The main beach in Amalfi is the Marina Grande Beach, in the center of the city's seaside action.
Don't Miss in Positano (Amalfi)
Located in the heart of Amalfi at the Piazza del Duomo, the marble Amalfi Cathedral, or Duomo di Sant'Andrea Apostolo, is a must-see. The buildings that make up the church complex date from the ninth century, with a basilica, church, cathedral, crypt and cloister available daily for touring church services.
With the mountainous terrain, coves along the coast beckon for exploration, with the most popular being the Emerald Grotto (Grotto dello Smeraldo) in Conca dei Marini. Boats will take you to the grotto, which glows an emerald green inside, for 10 euros roundtrip. Entrance to the grotto costs 5 euros per person. Boats operate from 9:30 a.m. to 4 p.m.
If you're new to this region of Italy, you won't want to miss the nearby archaeological sites of Pompeii and Herculaneum, as well as a stop at Mount Vesuvius, which destroyed both in 79 A.D. Pompeii was destroyed by the volcano's lava, while Herculaneum was destroyed the following day by its ash, and today, the ruins of these cities have been uncovered to get a glimpse into the life of the people, centuries ago. Be warned: A trip there will take most of your day.
Stores sell the special handmade Amalfi Coast paper that is thicker and more artistic in design, and the local paper mill houses a museum -- Museo della Carta -- showcasing how the paper is made. You can try making your own paper, and of course, purchase stationery.
If you have already seen Amalfi and Positano, take a ferry to the island of Capri. Ferries operate often, and depending on how much time you have, a ride gives you a chance to tour the island or its beautiful coastal surroundings. You can check out the Faraglioni landmark (three rock spurs rising from the sea), the Via Krupp scenic walking trail or the romantic Gardens of Augustus.
Perched high on a hill, Ravello personifies the luxurious side of Italian seaside living. With gardens, villas, charming restaurants and views to die for, the town has always attracted a tony set; D.H. Lawrence wrote Lady Chatterley's Lover there. It's a perfect place to while away a few hours, wandering the streets or sipping Peroni.