The luxurious Amalfi Coast is a popular holiday destination for honeymooners and celebs, with sheer cliffs and a rugged shoreline dotted with beaches and pastel-coloured fishing villages. Last summer (August), me and my friend Ellie spent 4 days exploring this beautiful coastline on a budget, and here’s what we got up to on our travels.
Apartment in Salerno
We decided to stay in the port city of Salerno, the southernmost part of the Amalfi Coast, because it is considerably cheaper but still has great transport links to the main towns along the coast with 2 ferry ports and a mainline train station.
We booked our apartment through Airbnb and it was ideal for what we wanted – clean, comfortable and just minutes away from the port. Our hosts were so lovely and welcoming, they even gave us homemade biscuits and limonchello when we arrived!
Lunch in Amalfi town
The ferry port was only a 5 min walk from our apartment, with ferries leaving for Amalfi regularly throughout the day (8 euros each way). The boat trip takes around 30 mins but it’s a really nice way to see the coastline, especially if you can get a seat on the top deck.
We pulled into Amalfi town and as busy as it was, it seemed to add to it’s charm. The beaches are lined with pin-striped umbrellas and there are plenty of restaurants to choose from, most with incredible views – though you do pay a premium.
Amalfi town is a great place to wander around, take in the scenery and stop for some lunch but as far as beaches go they were just too expensive and too crowded for us.
Fiordo di Furore beach
This amazing little beach is one of the most fascinating along the entire coastline. Set at the bottom of towering cliff faces and framed by Furore bridge, this beach only catches the sun in the early hours of the morning meaning it never gets too hot, even in high summer.
Take the Sita bus from Amalfi – Positano and ask the driver to stop at Furore bridge. You’ll then have to walk down a never-ending flight of stairs, but it’s completely worth it – this beach was one of my favourite parts of our whole trip.
Day trip to Positano
Again we took the ferry from Salerno (12 euros each way) which lasts just over an hour but goes really quickly when you’re enjoying the view and admiring the yachts. Positano, like Amalfi, was incredibly busy but there is definitely more to do and the town itself is bigger.
We spent the morning lounging in the sun and decided it was definitely worth paying for a bed (25 euros for 2 sunbeds and parasol for the day), and were not wrong. The sand was far too hot to lay on just a towel, and it was nice to have a place to base ourselves.
There are plenty of boutique shops to look around, amazing ice cream parlours, beautiful restaurants and Italian dessert places. Overall Positano has a very upmarket feel to it and the scenery is just breathtaking – it was a magical place to spend the day despite how busy it can get.
Wine on tap at La Botte Pazza
Our favourite restaurant in Salerno was La Botte Pazza which is split into 2 separate buildings essentially (with separate entrances), one side for meat and the other for fish – which I thought was pretty cool. We only got a chance to eat on the meat side unfortunately as the restaurant was fully booked for the rest of our stay.
The food was amazing and the restaurant did well to create a homely, authentic Italian feel, with a modern take on the classics. Everything was extremely fresh and the best part of all was the free wine, red or white, on tap all night!
As much as we loved experiencing the famed Positano beach, we really wanted somewhere a bit quieter to spend our last day. Duoglio beach is a stunning stretch of bright blue ocean at the bottom of a dramatic cliff drop, accessible by a very steep staircase consisting of 462 steps (I counted) in the blazing heat.
The walk down is tough, but coming back up is a whole different story, though you are rewarded with the most spectacular views. Douglio beach is far less touristy than the others and the perfect place to unwind in peace. There are a couple of snack bars and a small restaurant too.
In order to explore the gorgeous Amalfi Coast on a budget, we decided to stay in Salerno as it was cheaper and book with Airbnb, we also made good use of the ferries and buses, and spent most of our days chilling on beaches and wandering around the pretty towns. It can definitely be done without spending a fortune and makes for an amazing and memorable holiday destination.
Want to know more about my experience on the Amalfi Coast? Send me a message.