Should I Stay in Amalfi, Positano, or Sorrento?

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The south coast of Italy is filled with quaint little towns like Amalfi, Positano, and Sorrento, and they’re full of rich history and awe-inspiring beauty. If visiting the country of love has been on your bucket list, you need to look no further. Each one of these destinations is a worthy representative of the country’s nickname Bel Paese, which means beautiful country. But should you stay in Amalfi, Positano, or Sorrento?

Whether to stay in Amalfi, Positano, or Sorrento varies greatly depending on different factors. Sorrento is not as crowded and somewhat less expensive, while nothing compares to Amalfi and Positano’s beautiful landscapes and coastal scenery.

We all have different sets of requirements as to what would render our holidays perfect and enjoyable; let’s pack it out to see which one of these towns might be your next dream destination:

Choosing Between Amalfi, Positano, and Sorrento

Amalfi and Positano are located on the Amalfi Coast. The beauty and uniqueness of the 13 towns situated on this Italian coastline are just two reasons why it was declared one of UNESCO’s World Heritage Sites. Sorrento, on the other hand, is not situated on the Amalfi Coast. This vibrant old town is found on the Sorrentine Peninsula between the Bay of Naples and the Amalfi coastline. It is the easiest accessible out of the three towns and makes for the perfect base from where you can visit all the quaint little villages, including Amalfi and Positano.

Reasons for choosing Amalfi, Positano, and Sorrento

Before I delve into accommodation options and activities, allow me to paint you a picture of what awaits you in each of these towns:


Amalfi has a population of around 5k residents. Because of its mild climate and coastal beauty, this peaceful resort town has become a sought-after destination on Italy’s south coast. You will be greeted by the picturesque beauty of clusters of white buildings set against a hillside. The houses are connected by alleys and stairways and lead to the main square Piazza del Duomo. The main square offers ample sidewalk cafes and exciting shops. In Amalfi, you will find some of the best beaches on the coast, and if you’re into medieval architecture and stunning cathedrals, this town should be your destination of choice. Follow this link for an insight into the beauty that awaits you: Amalfi.


Positano is by far the smallest of the three towns, with an estimated population of 4k. The beauty of Positano lies in its various postcard-perfect beaches and vertical landscape where white and pastel-colored houses ‘fall’ down the natural shape of the mountain. The various passageways and alleys link into one main road where the shops, hotels, and cafes are situated. Prepare yourself for a lot of steps and strenuous hikes through this vertical town. Positano is quite popular amongst the rich and famous; therefore, you should be prepared to pay a little extra for everything, including food and entertainment. Nonetheless, the buzzing and lively nightlife might make it all worth your while. This link will give you a preview of this vertical wonderland: Positano.


Sorrento is by far the biggest of the three towns, with an estimated population of 16k. This famous resort town is the most accessible town to reach, making it the perfect base to visit various others along the south coast. To use the words of the website Summer in Italy, “The city sits on the bluff that ends abruptly at a sheer cliff that plummets straight down to the sea.” Sorrento is relatively flat, so there are less strenuous hikes and exhausting stairways like Positano. This town is not known for its beaches as it is situated on a clifftop. The most attractive beach, Punta del Capo, is further south and can be reached by bus. The town is quite touristy, and the Piazza Tasso, with its numerous shops and restaurants, is mostly always bustling with people. Follow this link to see what awaits you in Sorrento.

So, depending on the type of traveler you are, each town clearly has its own charm and set of reasons for possibly being your town of choice. Let’s summarize:

AmalfiGreat beaches
Interesting culture and historyStunning medieval buildings
Location: easy day trips to Capri and other smaller towns
Energetic atmosphere by day
PositanoBeautiful view
Energetic nightlife
Upscale shopping
SorrentoEasiest town to reach
Perfect base for day trips to Naples and Pompeii
Almost everyone speaks English
You don’t mind big crowds
Lots of shops and restaurants

Accommodation options in Amalfi, Positano, and Sorrento

The best times to visit Amalfi, Positano, and Sorrento are May and September. The towns are less crowded, and the temperatures are the most pleasant. Let’s compare prices for 3- and 4-star accommodation for a two-week stay:

TownType of 7-night stay during September
AmalfiL’Antico Convitto  – a 3-star hotel right in the center of AmalfiDouble room without balconyBreakfast included – $2,481
Hotel Aurora  – a 4-star hotel with a private beach in front of the hotelDouble room with sea view and balconyBreakfast included – $2,083
PositanoVilla Rosa – a 3-star hotel near the center of PositanoDouble room with partial sea view and balconyBreakfast included – $2,762
Positano Art Hotel – a 4-star hotel near the center of PositanoDouble room with sea view and balconyBreakfast included – $3,235
SorrentoHotel del Mare3-star beachfront hotel walking distance from the town centerDouble room with sea view and balconyBreakfast included – $1,489
Hotel Continental4-star beachfront hotel with panoramic viewsDouble room with sea view and balconyBreakfast included – $2,813

Things to do in Amalfi, Positano, and Sorrento

There are so many things you can do in Amalfi, Positano, and Sorrento. You can spend your days sunbathing in the glorious setting or explore medieval masterpieces. Perhaps you prefer trying the delectable local cuisine or sipping Limoncello at the piazza where tourists and locals entwine. Alternatively, you can spend your days sleeping and your nights clubbing. The possibilities are endless.

For information on the best bars, restaurants, and activities offered in each town, you can e-mail or phone their tourism offices:

TownContact numberE-mail or Website
Amalfi+39 089 871
Positano+39 089 875 067
Sorrento+39 339 123 0908


The beautiful towns of Amalfi, Positano, and Sorrento on the Italian south coast each have their individual charm and reasons for attracting so many tourists. All that’s left for you to do is to choose one that suits your needs and expectations.

3 thoughts on “Should I Stay in Amalfi, Positano, or Sorrento?”

  1. wonderful information. Thank you so much. We are only in the area 3 days. We are flying into Naples and going to the Amalfi coast. Should we rent a car?


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