Naples is surely surrounded by some heavenly islands and it has become increasingly popular among tourists especially to witness the famed city of Pompei, the majestic Amalfi Coast and the vicious volcanic mountain ‘Vesuvius’, which erupted once and still remains active. Naples has some real gem of places surrounding it and you should surely take this opportunity to see more of this region of Italy.
Below I have mentioned four of the best and easy day trip idea from Naples, I have decided not to mention Pompei and Herculaneum as its less than 30mins away from the city and is usually combined with other attractions in Naples rather than dedicating a full day to it.
Sorrento – People usually skip this gorgeous city and consider it only a gateway to the Amalfi coast but Sorrento still has a few good attractions which can easily be visited on a day trip from Naples, there is a direct train from Naples which takes just about an hour to reach. Once in the centre, you should visit the Duomo, which is the main cathedral here and later carry on exploring the old town of the city where you will stumble upon the Basilica of Sant’Antonino and the mystic San Francesco cloister.
To grab a bite you can check out the popular square Piazza Tasso, there are plenty of restaurant options, shops and a couple of horse-drawn carriages willing to take you around the town for a tour. For the adventurous souls out there I highly recommend the hiking here especially in ‘The Path of the Gods’ the view is astonishing.
The main square Piazza Tasso was built over many small gorges so if you walk towards Viale Enrico Caruso from here you can get a beautiful view of the valley and the abandoned water-powered mills. If you are interested in shopping, strolling the streets of Corso Italia would be a good idea, it’s lined with shops. Lastly, to end your evening in Sorrento’s head to the Marina Grande which is the small fishing village of Sorrento, here you can enjoy a drink or a meal, it’s the perfect place to end your day in Sorrento.
Capri – Capri is a paradise in the Bay of Naples, it’s easily reachable by a ferry and it takes no longer than 40mins. It’s an island even favoured by many celebrities. The food here is amazing, the scenic beauty is phenomenal and the boutique shopping is therapeutic. Capri lives up to its expectations. There are plenty of boats you can hire and explore the nearby grottos especially the famous Blue Grotto. In the evenings the main Piazzetta is the place to gather for drinks and food. Another amazing feature of this island is the Monte Solaro, you can take a chairlift to reach the summit and enjoy the fantastic view from up here.
Some sights to admire in Capri are Gardens of Augustus, the view from the criss-cross alley is beautiful. Another charming place in Capri is Marina Piccola where you can sunbathe and enjoy a swim in the ocean, it is also less busy then the touristy Marina Grande. Lastly head to the Punta Carena lighthouse to make the most of your evening and admire the wondrous sunset from here, you can’t complain about that view.
Ischia – Take a ferry or a hydrofoil to reach the ports or Ischia, there are three ports in the Ischia and its over an hour away from Naples but you will reach slightly quicker by a hydrofoil. The island is comparatively more laid back and relaxed if compared to the glitzy Capri island but sometimes this is all that you desire especially if you want to get away from the crowds. The main highlight of this island is the medieval Castello Aragonese build on a rocky inlet and connecting to Ischia by a causeway, you can tour the castle and learn about the impressive history surrounding it.
Ischia is a volcanic island and here you can find hundreds of thermal springs to relax and unwind. There are plenty of wellness resorts and public thermal parks to experience the benefit of this water. To experience the food and shopping scene of this island, Ischia Porto would be a good place to begin especially the pleasing Corso Vittoria Colonna. To take in the beautiful sunset you should head to the town of Foria, the view from Chiesa del Soccorso church is stunning or if you please head to the beach Bagni Antonia which is perched between Ischia Porto and Ischia Ponte.
If you are into some intense hiking then make your way towards the summit of Monte Epomeo and appreciate the view from here. It’s good to know that Ischia consists of six towns and each town has something special to offer, you can easily spend 2-3 days without boredom hitting you.
Amalfi Coast – An hour and a half drive will take you from Naples to the magnificent Amalfi which is the gift of god to Italy. The dramatic coastline and the picturesque beaches make this place a heavenly abode. In the town of Amalfi itself, you can see the Duomo, visit the Valle delle Ferriere (nature reserve), and the popular Marina Grande beach. From here you can make your way towards the quaint town of Atrani which has a completely different atmosphere and is generally more relaxed then Amalfi.
Once you have visited Amalfi you can drive up-to Fiordo di Furore which is the only fjord in Italy. The beach with the bridge backdrop is quite scenic, but to get to the beach there are steep stairs which are usually closed by the government for safety so do make sure to check before you head there, another way to access the beach is by a boat from Amalfi.
After this quick stop, you can continue towards Praiano, another magical town of the Amalfi Coast, you can check out the beach Marina di Praia, visit the church of Parrocchia Di San Gennaro, and marvel at the Torre a Mare (tower).
Finally, make your way towards Positano, and soak in all the beautiful scenery as this is considered one of the most breathtaking towns of the coast. The beach ‘Marina Grande’ is one thing you don’t want to miss here and if this seems to busy just walk towards the nearby Fornillo Beach instead. Apart from the beach, the Church of Santa Maria Assunta is another highlight of the island which is in the centre of Positano, later giving you the opportunity to see around the compact town. After this intense trip, you can start to head back to Naples which should take you an hour or so which isn’t too bad!
Naples sure is a place to spend a good few weeks since it has plenty of islands to explore and to experience most of the towns at a good pace you need to have enough time as it won’t do justice to the beautiful cities and the stunning coastline.