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Sorrento
Sorrento

Day Trip to Sorrento

When it comes to warm Italian hospitality, no place serves it up quite like Sorrento. Located on the rugged northern side of the Sorrentine Peninsula south of Naples, Sorrento overlooks the sea from its rocky cliffside perch. Its beauty has captured the heart of travelers since ancient times—you can still see traces of the ancient Greek and Roman settlement here called Surrentum. In the 1800s, Sorrento was a favorite destination for international tourists who prized its citrus groves, sea breezes, and restorative beauty.

A small city that thrives on summer tourism, Sorrento’s historic center is a charming network of narrow, cobblestoned alleys. Start your day with a coffee in the central Piazza Tasso, then stroll around, stopping in little shops to admire the traditional woodwork and other artisanal crafts that thrive here. Take in panoramic views from the Villa Comunale and enjoy lunch at an old-fashioned trattoria, or venture seaside to the picture-perfect Marina Grande. See Sorrento’s famous lemons and learn more about olive oil making at or relax with a sunset cruise along the Sorrentine Peninsula. Cap off the day with a gelato, of course, and join the locals for a passeggiata (the leisurely evening walk beloved by Italians) along Corso Italia.

Getting Around

Conveniently located between Naples and the Amalfi Coast, Sorrento can be an easy day trip destination or a charming home base for exploring the region. The Circumvesuviana train connects Naples and Sorrento with stops at the ancient cities of Pompeii and Herculaneum, and the Sorrento train station is a short 10-minute walk from Piazza Tasso. Ferries to Capri, Amalfi, and other towns on the Amalfi Coast depart frequently from Marina Piccola below the historic city center; plan on a steep walk down or pay a small fee to use the elevator that connects the Villa Comunale garden above to Spiaggia San Francesco at the water’s edge. Unlike many Amalfi Coast towns, the city center is pleasantly flat, making it easy to explore on foot.

Eat

   O’Parrucchiano La Favorita

O’Parrucchiano La Favorita

Dine under the lemon trees on the romantic terrace of this restaurant that’s popular with locals and visitors alike. Founded in 1868, it’s a local institution that is said to be the place where cannelloni were invented. Order the famous gnocchi alla sorrentina, baked in tomato sauce with creamy mozzarella, and the delizia al limone, a luscious lemon dessert that’s a local favorite. Be sure to call 15 days in advance to secure your reservation.

Corso Italia, 71
+39 081 878 1321

   D’Anton Design & Bistro

D’Anton Design & Bistro

Photo Credit: D’Anton Design & Bistro

A stylish all-day cafe on the edge of the pretty Piazza Sant’Antonino, D’Anton’s is run by a chic mother-and-daughter team with impeccable taste. The casual restaurant in the historic city center doubles as a design shop and everything you see is on sale—so if you love your espresso cups, you can bring them home with you! It’s a serene spot for breakfast, lunch, or aperitivo. Just be sure to save room for a slice of lemon torta caprese, a twist on the beloved flourless chocolate cake.

Piazza Sant'Antonino, 3-4
+39 081 807 5839

   L’Antica Trattoria

L'Antica Trattoria

Set on a narrow alley in the historic city center, this charming restaurant recommended by Giada’s cousin Luigi has been open for nearly 100 years. Eating here is like being a guest in a family home: the dining rooms are antique-lined, cozy rooms like the saletta di nonno (grandfather’s room) and saletta mon amour, each with a different atmosphere and color scheme. It’s a charming place to enjoy handmade pastas and fresh seafood, especially in the signature Tagliolini Antica Trattoria with lemon cream sauce and red prawns. The stone-lined wine cellar has more than 30,000 bottles, including many hard-to-find local wines, curated with love by owner Aldo D’Oria and his son Luca.

Via Padre Reginaldo Giuliani, 33
+39 081 807 1082

   Il Buco

Pasta dish at Il Buco

For a higher-end dining experience, this restaurant is one of Luigi’s favorites. Chef Peppe Aversa celebrates traditional Sorrentine flavors in creative dishes like seared amberjack with limoncello beurre blanc and saffron pasta with lobster and burrata. Let the expert team guide you and choose the Mi Fido di Te (“I trust you”) menu, similar in concept to a sushi omakase where the chef will select dishes for you to enjoy. Set in a former monastery behind the Basilica di Sant’Antonino, the dining room combines ancient and modern design for an unforgettable dinner.

2a Rampa Marina Piccola, Piazza Sant'Antonino, 5
+39 081 878 2354

   Raki

Raki

Photo Credit: Raki

Our gelato of choice in Sorrento is at Raki, created by master gelato maker Luca Fioravanti. His focus on sourcing the highest-quality ingredients shows in every stunning flavor, from toasted sesame to the local favorite Limone di Sorrento. Vegan sorbets and gluten-free cones are available so everyone can enjoy!

Via San Cesareo, 48
+39 081 189 63351

Do

   Piazza Tasso

Piazza Tasso

Start your day in Piazza Tasso, a vibrant meeting point in the heart of Sorrento named for a famed local poet, whose statue you’ll find in one corner of the square. Sip a cappuccino and enjoy some people-watching at one of the many cafés, then stroll up the pedestrian arm of Corso Italia off the western side of the piazza. You’ll pass the 15th-century Duomo di Sorrento, home to stunning baroque artworks and intricate inlaid woodwork, along with adorable boutiques perfect for window shopping.

Piazza Tasso

   Via San Cesareo

Via San Cesareo

For a taste of old Sorrento, meander down Via San Cesareo in the historic city center, a narrow lane lined with shops selling clothing, handmade sandals, and food. Don’t miss the beautiful ceiling frescoes in the entrance to the 15th-century Sedile Dominova (Via San Cesareo, 68), then head to the leafy Villa Comunale garden. Enjoy the spectacular views of the Gulf of Naples across to Mount Vesuvius, then pause for a break in the peaceful cloister of the Chiesa di San Francesco next door.

Via San Cesareo

   Stinga Tarsia

Stinga Tarsia

Photo Credit: Stinga Tarsia

Sorrento is known for its artisan crafts, including intarsia, a gorgeously intricate type of inlaid woodwork. Brothers Franco and Roberto Stinga are third-generation woodworkers who are carrying on this local tradition in gorgeous style—they were even chosen by Fendi to interpret its iconic baguette purse in wood! Their handcrafted picture frames, jewelry boxes, and other pieces are approachable works of art in both historic and modern designs.

Via Luigi de Maio, 16
+39 081 878 1165

   Bagni Salvatore

Bagni Salvatore

Photo Credit: Bagni Salvatore

Swimming in Sorrento is a unique experience, with beach clubs built on platforms that extend over the rocks of the rugged coastline. To experience it yourself, follow the zigzagging staircase (or take the elevator) down to the water and head to Bagni Salvatore, which sits next to the ruins of an ancient Roman villa you can explore from the water. You’ll need to book in advance and pay a fee, which gets you a reserved sunbed, umbrella, towel, and café service.

Spiaggia San Francesco
+39 081 878 1214

   Visit Gargiulo

Gargiulo

Make the trip into the hills just outside the city to visit Frantoio Gargiulo, makers of our favorite lemon- and orange-infused olive oil, to see how they turn Sorrento’s iconic fruit into a deliciously nuanced oil. A tour of their olive groves is a fascinating look at how the family has been making olive oil since the 1800s, and includes a tasting of their oils, limoncello, and more local delights.

Via Nastro D'Argento, 9, Sant'Agnello
+39 08 180 72300

   Capitano Ago

Boat trips are Giada’s absolute favorite way to enjoy the Amalfi Coast. Gazing out at the sea from Sorrento is a thrill, but you can get even more gorgeous views on the water, looking back at those majestic cliffs and colorful villages. The friendly team at Capitano Ago offer private and semi-private boat excursions to many destinations around the Gulf of Naples, as well as a two-hour sunset cruise that’s perfect for pure relaxation and golden hour photos.

Via Marina Grande, 92
+39 392 272 8910

Stay

   Grand Hotel Excelsior Vittoria

Grand Hotel Excelsior Vittoria

Nowhere captures the elegance and old-world glamour of Sorrento like the Grand Hotel Excelsior Vittoria. Crossing from bustling Piazza Tasso into the hotel’s beautiful entrance garden dotted with citrus trees feels like stepping back in time. If you’re in town for the day, stop in to stroll the garden or have lunch at the open-air restaurant Terrazza Vittoria. Or, soak in Sorrento’s beauty a little longer with an overnight stay in one of the refined, cozy rooms overlooking the water.

Piazza Tasso, 34
+39 081 877 7111

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