Clifftop cafés, chic shopping streets and Amalfi Coast neighbours – Sorrento holidays go hard on the Italian charm.

Sorrento serves up superb views. The Neapolitan-Riviera postcode comes with Insta-ready scenery from the Gulf of Naples to Mount Vesuvius, and the town’s perfectly placed on a clifftop overlooking it all. The whole place feels super glam, with the marinas and Old Town bringing the big film-set energy. Sun yourself on the Amalfi Coast, take a day trip to Pompeii and have your Audrey Hepburn moment over on Capri – la dolce vita’s never looked so sweet.

Why pick Sorrento

History for days

Sorrento’s big on age-old sites. Throw it back to the Roman era at the clifftop ruins of Villa Pollio Felice, then skip to the Middle Ages and soak up the peaceful vibes at the 14th-century Cloister of San Francesco, with its ancient columns and pretty courtyards. Duomo di Sorrento is definitely worth a visit, too – built in the 15th century, this cathedral’s full of aesthetic frescoes and grand details that you’d expect to see in the Vatican. And if you climb to the top of the bell tower, you’ll be treated to one of the best views over Sorrento.

Local flavours

The home of limoncello, Sorrento’s iconic lemon groves steal the show. Join a tour at I Giardini di Cataldo to see how the sweet citrussy liqueur is made and taste the real deal – it would be rude not to. And this part of Italy’s all about Neapolitan pizza. It might look like your standard Margherita, but the deliciousness is all in the details – the real deal must be made with tomatoes that grow near Vesuvius, and the cheese has to be either buffalo mozzarella or fior di latte.

Pretty marinas

Golden sands aren’t necessarily Sorrento’s forte, but its double helping of marinas more than makes up for it. Pink and yellow townhouses tower over Marina Grande, where the waterfront’s peppered with fishing boats, seafood restaurants and wooden bathing platforms. Make your way along the coast to Marina Piccola and you’ll find luxury yachts bobbing at the foot of the cliffs.

Stylish streets

Sorrento’s Old Town twists and turns down streets serving up gelato bars, family-run boutiques and historic buildings. Stroll down cute, cobbled alleys filled with stalls selling shoes, scarves, and handbags in every colour, and once you’ve had your fill of retail therapy, heaver over to Piazza Tasso to people-watch with an espresso or spritz.

Good-looking locale

Sitting pretty on the Neapolitan Riviera, Sorrento’s well-known neighbours are very easy on the eye, too. Along the Amalfi Coast, you’ve got foodie-fave Positano and historic trio Mount Vesuvius, Herculaneum and Pompeii close enough for a daytrip. Capri is only 30 minutes’ ferry ride away from Marina Piccola – this exclusive little island’s a VIP pick, and there are usually a few luxe yachts bobbing near the shore. It’s easy to see why, with its fancy villas, well-groomed gardens and boujie towns. Sit outside a café for some subtle celeb-spotting, take a boat trip to the Blue Grotto, or ride the chairlift to the island’s highest point.

Festivals and events

Here’s what’s on in Sorrento over the summer…

Sorrento Lemon Festival

What: a celebration of Sorrento's famous lemons

Where: all over the town

When: May

Key highlights: lemon and limoncello tasting, traditional music, and the town gets a glow-up with lemon-themed decorations.

Sorrento Opera Festival

What: live opera performances in historical venues

Where: Sorrento’s age-old sites

When: across the summer

Key highlights: catch a classic Italian opera in some of Sorrento’s prettiest settings.

Our pick

Take it from someone that's been there – here’s a top tip from our team:

Sorrento has two marinas, so make sure you know which one you’re trying to get to. Marina Piccola is where you can catch ferries over to Capri and has lots of tourist info points, whereas Marina Grande has lovely waterfront restaurants and is more away-from-it-all. They are next to each other, but the cliff face between them means you can’t easily get across without going up, round and down the steep steps.

For the best views over Sorrento and the Gulf of Naples, the rooftop bars with balconies on the clifftop are the place to go – and they have unreal piña coladas, too.” – Chloe Brightwell


The non-touristy pick

Birrificio Sorrento

Italy’s known for its wine, but it’s also got strong beer game. This microbrewery, under 10 minutes’ drive from the centre, uses local ingredients like Sorrento lemons and oranges to flavour their craft beers, from light and golden ales to stouts. Visit the brewery for a tour and learn all about the brewing process, and you’ll get to taste a few at the end, too.

Picks that don’t cost a penny

Join the locals for a passeggiata – the Italian art of a leisurely walk – through Villa Comunale, a lovely, landscaped park with a dreamy view over the Gulf of Naples. The paths lead you past lush gardens filled with flowers, palms and olive trees to a waterfront terrace. It’s the perfect spot to watch the world go by with a creamy gelato and stare out at Vesuvius in the distance.

Getting around

You can pretty much get anywhere in Sorrento on foot, but it’s worth knowing that the stairs from the town to the marina are steep. Otherwise, here’s how you can get to the places near Sorrento.

Buses

Sorrento's local bus service connects the town with super scenic routes to Positano and other towns along the Amalfi Coast.

Trains

From Sorrento, you can catch the Circumvesuviana trains direct to Naples, Pompeii and Herculaneum.

Ferries

You can jump on regular ferries from Sorrento’s Marina Piccola to Capri, Naples, and other ports along the coast of the Neapolitan Riviera.

At a Glance

  • Wind your way through the Old Town
  • Tuck into Neapolitan pizza and ice-cream
  • Take a boat trip to Capri

TOP THINGS TO SEE AND DO IN SORRENTO

BEACHES

SHOPPING

NIGHTLIFE

FOOD & DRINK