Amalfi is the best-known and, together with Positano, the busiest one of the Amalfi Coast towns. The main attraction is the beautiful Cathedral in the heart of the historical center. An attraction of a different kind is the central shopping street, lined by souvenir shops, bars and restaurants.
Amalfi city guide
Tourist office and town hall
The tourist information office of Amalfi is located on the Marina, right where you get off the boat. It is open from 08:00 till 14:00 and from 16:00 till 19:00. Phone: +39 089 872 619.
Town hall: Largo Francesco Amodio, snc – 84011 Amalfi. Phone: +39 089 8736201.
Amalfi does not have a railway station. Day trippers generally reach the city by boat (TRAVELMAR), from Salerno or from one of the other Amalfi Coast towns.
The company SITA SUD provides bus connections to Sorrento, Salerno and the other cities of the Amalfi Coast.
If at all possible, it is recommended arriving in the city by boat. Whichever direction you come from, the views of the coastline are, more often than not, breathtaking.
What to see in Amalfi
The main attraction of Amalfi is its sumpteous Cathedral. The complex consists, apart from the church itself, of a cloister and a museum. The steps in front of the church provide a magnificent view of the Piazza Duomo.
The Piazza Duomo itself is lined with bars and eateries. An 18th century Baroque fountain is placed slightly to the left of the center.
Paper Museum (Museo della Carta)
Follow the main street all the way through the center till you come to the Valley of the Mills. One of the former paper mills that used to be located here has been transformed into the Museo della Carta. Children are taught to make their own piece of parchment.
The main attraction of the Museo Civico is the Tavoliere Amalfitana, a book with the laws governing the Mediterranean until 1570. Other exhibits highlight the role of Flavio Gioia (see below). The exterior wall of the museum is decorated with ceramics depicting scenes from local history. (Address: Piazza Municipio. Phone: +39 089 871066. Admission: Free. Hours: 09:00 till 13:00. Closed: Wednesdays.)
Museo di Civiltà Contadina Arti e Mestieri
The “Museum of Farm Life Arts & Crafts” sheds light on the history of the life of local farmers and craftsmen through the ages. Special attention is given to the cultivation of lemons. (Address: Via delle Cartiere, 55/7. Phone: +39 089 873211. Hours: From 09:00 till 13:00 and from 15:30 till 18:30; Saturdays from 09:00 till 13:00. Closed Sundays and public holidays.)
The Capuchin Convent is located on the hills to the left of the city. A 15 minute walk from the center, it has recently been converted into the 5-star Anantara Grand Hotel.
The Monumental Cemetery is located on the hill behind the right side of the center.
Flavio Gioia Statue
Flavio Gioia was a navy captain who (might have) invented the magnetic compass. In 1302 he introduced the instrument to Italian sailors. A statue dedicated to Gioia is placed on the city’s waterfront.
Another feature of the waterfront is what is left of the Arsenal, the workshop where galleys were constructed in the 10th and 11th centuries.
A brief history of Amalfi
During the middle ages, Amalfi developed into one of the most important maritime powers of the Mediterranean. In those days, the town had 10 times as many inhabitants as it does now.
The locals of Amalfi like their city so much, that they have placed a plaque in the town center claiming that “for natives of Amalfi who have been called to Heaven, Judgment Day will be just another day”.
In the middle ages, Amalfi used to be an independent and thriving maritime Republic. To commemorate this slice of its history, an annual boat race is held against the other naval powerhouses of those days, Genoa, Venice and Pisa. The four cities take turns hosting the event.
Eating and drinking
The local red wine is called Sammarco.
How to get to Amalfi