Sorrento and Amalfi Coast
Nicknamed “La Gentile” because of the gentleness of its climate and the cheery friendliness of its inhabitants, Sorrento is a charming resort in a spectacular setting. The site of luxurious villas during Roman times, Sorrento has been a popular vacation retreat since at least 600 AD, and today is one of the best-known resorts in Italy. Perched on a dramatic line of steeply rising cliffs, on a clear day you can see the city of Naples (Napoli) about 25 miles away on the other side of the bay, as well as the slopes of the majestic Mt. Vesuvius, and the island of Ischia.
The charms of Sorrento are many, from the picturesque streets of the old city adorned by patrician villas to the Marina Grande, a traditional fishing harbor and popular destination for a stroll. The town, with pretty pastel colored houses and several quaint small squares, is surrounded by orange and lemon groves and lush thickly wooded hills where vines and olives are grown.
Sorrento is a great town for walking and exploring. At the center of Sorrento is Piazza Tasso, a bustling and typical Italian square filled with several bars and restaurants. The view from the public gardens above this square is spectacular. The old historic quarter has charming cobbled streets and alleyways, a 15th-century cathedral, and several luxurious old villas. The area of Via Comunale, lined with colorful flowerbeds and stately trees, terminates at a seaside terrace that offers spectacular views of the Bay of Naples (Napoli) the peak of Mt Vesuvius.
There is some very good shopping in Sorrento, with inlaid wood, lace, designer clothes, antiques, and jewelry being the most popular items, together with Italian wines, aperitifs, and liqueurs in festive bottles.
Sorrento and the Amalfi Coast are full of life and opportunities to have fun. There are plenty of open-air cafés, local trattorias, nightclubs, and concerts held in the gardens of villas.