10 things to see in Amalfi, the pearl of the Amalfi Coast
The glorious historical past, the timeless charm of its alleys that reveal panoramic points and architectural wonders, the typical atmosphere of seaside villages: Amalfi is a distillation of all this and much more. Perched on a cliff overlooking the Tyrrhenian Sea, this pearl of the province of Salerno is a UNESCO heritage site and one of the destinations of international tourism. Powerful maritime republic between the ninth and eleventh centuries and an important center of paper production, Amalfi today retains on its face both the simplicity of the fishing town, as well as the features of the ancient splendor that combine the Baroque splendor and the Romanesque and Byzantine echoes . Visiting it, trying to see its many souls among the steep stairways that rise along the cliff, means treating yourself to an unforgettable experience of art, history and nature.
Are you planning your itinerary to discover this splendid location? Then you just have to take a look at the things to see in Amalfi that you really shouldn’t miss. We have selected 10
What to see in Amalfi
Cathedral of Sant’Andrea
Built in 987, the Cathedral of Sant’Andrea is one of the symbolic places of Amalfi. Its Byzantine-style facade decorated with polychrome marble is the iconic face of the city and, towering at the top of an imposing staircase overlooking Piazza del Duomo, is the Amalfi monument that is the first to be seen on the horizon.
Lovers of sacred art will appreciate the Baroque soul of this splendid religious building which houses frescoes and marble decorations inside. Adjacent to the cathedral is the bell tower built in the twelfth century, while at the foot of the staircase stands the eighteenth-century fountain dedicated to Saint Andrew. A walk in the charming Cloister of Paradise, splendid in its Byzantine style, and a visit to the crypt where the remains of Saint Andrew are kept are a must.
Rione Vagliendola: the heart of the historic center
Although every corner of Amalfi envelops visitors with its authenticity, the Rione Vagliendola is at the top of the list of things to see in Amalfi, it is no coincidence that it is considered the most characteristic district, full of suggestive places that offer a real dip in the past. Between sumptuous noble residences and turreted houses, the district winds up to the former Convent of San Pietro della Canonica and houses the suggestive Monastery of SS. Trinity and the Church of Sant’Antonio. Those who indulge in a quiet walk in this part of the city will be captivated by the unmistakable atmosphere of everyday life, among shops, pastry shops and tiny shops that overlook the very narrow streets.
“Cap’ e ciuccio” fountain
The historic center, an inexhaustible source of suggestive views and curiosities, also houses great little treasures, such as the “Cap ‘e ciuccio” fountain. This one, located in Piazzetta Spirito Santo, intrigues tourists with its particular composition: a finely detailed nativity scene has been positioned between the two marble heads that act as sources.
Amalfi is above all a seaside resort, to be experienced on the beach: to enjoy a quiet day at the beach, you can stop at the Marina Grande beach, easily reachable from the town and starting point for numerous boat excursions. Alternatively, one kilometer from the town is the Duoglio Beach, characteristic for its 400-step staircase. For those who want to combine a few hours of relaxation by the sea with an excursion, there is the nearby Atrani: the small village in fact enjoys a particular beach divided in half by the Dragon River and is fully included among the things to see in Amalfi.
As the name suggests, the Emerald Grotto owes its fame to the typical green color that the water takes on reflecting the sun’s rays that filter through the rocks. Discovered in 1932 by the fisherman Luigi Buonocore, this cave features amazing internal formations such as stalactites and stalagmites and is home to rare marine species. To visit it you can book a boat tour.
Valle delle ferriere
For those who love trekking this spectacular nature reserve is in the top ten of things to see in Amalfi. Following the path that winds from the Lattari Mountains to Amalfi, you are immersed in unspoiled nature, encountering the ruins of the medieval ironworks and water mills that have allowed the Amalfi paper industry to flourish.
Torre dello Ziro
Ancient lookout tower built to defend against attacks by the Saracens by sea, then converted into a prison complete with ramparts and walkways, the Torre dello Ziro, together with the remains of the walls, is one of the things to see in Amalfi. In this symbolic place of the Grand Duchy of Amalfi Giovanna d’Aragona, known as “The madwoman”, spent her imprisonment.
Arsenale della Repubblica
Those who love history and want to take a dip back in time to relive the Maritime Republic of Amalfi will find interesting a visit to the Arsenale della Repubblica, which is just a 10-minute walk from Piazza del Duomo. The building, a superb example of medieval architecture, was occupied by the Amalfi shipyards: today it has the ancient structure intact and houses the Compass Museum and the Marine Art Museum: here it is possible to retrace the maritime history of Amalfi through important museum collections.
Valle dei Mulini
In addition to the glorious past of seafaring power, Amalfi is also known throughout the world for the production of paper which developed in the ancient Campania municipality between the 12th and 13th centuries. Introduced by the Arabs, who had learned it in turn from the Chinese, the paper production technique in Amalfi soon became the basis of a thriving business that continued to grow until the end of the 1700s. At this time the city came to count as many as 16 paper mills and a real production area known as the Valle dei Mulini, which exploited the hydraulic energy of the Canneto river. This green area at the gates of the city is still today crossed by a mule track that follows the course of the Vernotico stream and allows you to admire the ancient mills: visiting it means treating yourself to a dip between nature and history.
The Paper Museum
If you choose to take a dip in the history of Amalfi paper production and cross the Valle dei Mulini, the Paper Museum is worth a visit: this ancient restored paper mill allows you to closely observe the machinery used for the production of the ancient Charta bambagina, the famous Amalfi paper still used today for important documents and valuable publications.
Discover Amalfi by car or on a boat tour
Amalfi is a place to be discovered, ideal both for a few days of relaxation by the sea, and for a mini tour to discover the city and the coast that takes its name from it. Whether you choose to stay in Amalfi for several days, or instead join it in an on-the-road itinerary, the vehicle that can add charm to any trip is a convertible car. By contacting Positano Scooter, a scooter rental agency that has a section dedicated to cars, you will have the opportunity to choose the vehicle that best meets your needs by selecting it from a fleet designed to visit Amalfi, to spend an evening in Positano or to visit other splendid ones. places like Sorrento or Praiano. To do this, simply choose your favorite model and establish the pick-up and drop-off points: the Positano Scooter staff will take care of the rest.
Amalfi is even more special when viewed from the sea, which is why it is the perfect destination to be included in a minitour by boat departing from Positano. If what you are looking for is an unforgettable experience among the most beautiful places on the coast, contact the staff of Positano Scooter immediately who will be able to show you the different solutions for a dream boat ride.
For your private boat tour you can choose to leave from Positano for the Amalfi Coast and make a suggestive stop at the Emerald Grotto, or you can opt for the itinerary that includes a visit to the fishing village, while for lovers of magical atmospheres of the sunset there is a Tour of the Coast at sunset.