For families looking for the best way to spend their vacation along the Amalfi Coast, I want to share my must do tips.
I first ventured to the Amalfi Coast about 16 years ago to scout the Classic Journeys’ culture + walking tour there. Almost since our first departure, Amalfi has been one of our most popular regions. And with the benefit of many visits back, I’ve been fortunate to be sort of adopted by the locals. When my wife and I had our first son, we brought him to Amalfi as a one year old. In fact, he learned to walk on that trip. Over the years, we’ve returned many times as our family has grown. We’ve brought friends with us on several occasions. And we enjoyed our most recent trip to Amalfi last June. That trip had boys and girls from 8 to 17 on it.
Each time I return, friends ask me to share with them my favorite things to do in Amalfi. A top five is a difficult assignment because the area offers so much from which to choose. So this time, I enlisted the help of a focus group: the kids who traveled with us in June.
With them I was able to edit the myriad of fun into a manageable list that your family can enjoy in a week. So, without further ado, here goes our top five family activities along the Amalfi Coast:
#1 Sea kayak along the coast
The waters are calm and warm. You have the perfect point of view, being able to see the villages, cliffs and coves from sea level. Two man kayaks make it easy for any age. And along the way, you have the chance to swim in beautiful coves, relax on little beaches and explore the most spectacular sections of the coast.
#2 Visit the Blue Grotto on Capri In the late afternoon when the day trippers are gone
Everyone has heard of Capri. And middle of the day it can sometimes seem as if everyone is IN Capri. But the smart money heads for the hills (literally and figuratively) during the middle of the day to explore more quiet parts of the island. Then, late in the afternoon, when the day trippers have left the island, explore the Blue Grotto without the crowds. Your kids will love the caverns and the iridescent blue waters.(If you do this as part of a Classic Journeys’ family vacation in Amalfi, our guides will take the kids to the Blue Grotto so that the parents can relax back in the village, shop, or stroll to the piazzetta for a drink and to watch the sun set.)
#3 Learn to make your own pizza in the true Neapolitan way
Pizza was first made in Naples. And the famous mozzarella cheese is made nightly from local water buffalo and cows’ milk. So it stands to reason that there is no better place to learn to make an authentic pizza. And we know the best place to do that: in our friend Luca’s cliff top home, set just below a 14th century monastery and a thousand feet above the sea.
#4 Taste test all four gelato shops in the town of Amalfi
How can you not love a town whose main square has a gelato shop on each of its four corners? That’s really the case in the town of Amalfi along the famed coast of the same name. Adults in the know can walk one block to a little limoncello factory where our friend Marco will show you how the famed liquor is made and offer a tasting of his favorites, including the crema and a limoncello that is espresso infused.
#5 See Pompeii with a guide who makes the ruins come alive with stories
Any kid or teen can read the facts on Pompeii. They already know that the city was lost 1600 years ago when Vesuvius erupted. What makes the ruins a can’t-miss-hit with kids and teens is a guide who can make the UNESCO site breathe with real stories of the people who lived there: the families, kids, pets. Where they shopped, went to school, played and had fun. Last year, we lived an unintended test on how to visit Pompeii. We literally ran into neighbors who were visiting Pompeii with their kids on their own. On return from Italy, we compared notes with them. For the kids in our group, Pompeii resonated like a real and vibrant city still alive. For our friends who chose to go it alone, it was just a bunch of ruins. Do your kids a favor: inspire them with a good guide in Pompeii.
Whether you go it alone or with Classic Journeys, Amalfi is a paradise for families. If you do choose to travel on our Amalfi Coast family vacation, we’ll take you on the chairlift to the top of Monte Solaro, walk the rim of Vesuvius, and introduce your family to the sea kayaking guides, the gelato makers, the boatmen on Capri, and many other friends like Luca who’ll make your vacation unforgettable for everyone in the family.
Scheduled departures of the week-long trips take place over school breaks in April, June and July. And if you don’t see a date that works for your family or you want to customize it according to any wish list (gladiator training in Rome anyone?), just give us a ring at 833-387-1210 or email email@example.com and we’ll be happy to chat.