Of all the towns set along the Amalfi Coast, Amalfi is the most family-friendly. Less steep (and less expensive) than chic Positano, more accessible and closer to beaches than clifftop Ravello, Amalfi is busy but welcoming. The old town is full of shops and restaurants that won’t bust the family budget, there are fun museums and wooded trails to explore, and the coast’s largest beaches are within the city limits.
Amalfi was our favorite base when my sons were still tots. The level streets and squares are easier on little legs (and strollers), and the bustling port is a gateway for jaunts by boat to the rest of the coast and nearby islands. Here’s how to spend three days in Amalfi.
The summer sun is relentless—pack sunblock, hats, and plenty of water.
If you only have time for one thing, make it a mini cruise along the coastline.
Begin by exploring this once powerful maritime republic's historic center, anchored by a magnificent cathedral. Browse the lively souvenir shops on Via dei Mercanti, stop at the Paper Museum to learn about Amalfi’s long papermaking history (and see a demonstration), and wander the pedestrian-only maze of whitewashed lanes.
Leave the daunting crowds and traffic on land with a scenic boat tour from Amalfi. Splurge on a private boat so your kids have more room. Drop anchor to swim, dock in Positano for a quick stroll through the village, and relax over a picnic lunch on board.
Skip the sit-down meal tonight and instead join a local host in their kitchen for an interactive cooking lesson. Everyone learns how to make fresh pasta and classic Italian dishes from scratch, and then sample your creations together over a family-style dinner.
End with a trail walk. For families with older kids, there's Valley of Mills in Lattari Mountains above Amalfi. The trail runs downhill through protected forest and along a stream.
For a challenge, take the uphill trail from Amalfi to Pogerola overlooking the coastline, or follow the easy “Path of the Lemons” (Sentiero dei Limoni) that runs through the coastline’s citrus groves between Minori and Maiori. Then, make a beeline to the popular Duoglio or Santa Croce beaches just outside Amalfi. If you arrive after lunch, the waterfront is less crowded, and beach clubs often offer discounted rental rates.