From Rome to the Amalfi Coast: 6 Best Ways to Get There
Author Shandley McMurray's favorite part about traveling from Rome to the Amalfi Coast is the spectacular views.
The Amalfi Coast lies in stunning juxtaposition to Rome's bustling tourist attractions. Its cliffside homes, beautiful beaches, and breathtaking views make this a divine place to enjoy a day trip. Luckily, there are plenty of ways to travel the 273 kilometers from Rome to Positano, the region's main town, as well as to the 12 other captivating villages.
The most direct route to the Amalfi Coast is by car, but this involves narrow, winding roads that at times hug the cliffside. Yes, the iconic vistas give a glimpse into why this is one of the best places to visit in Italy, but it can be nerve-wracking to take your eyes off the road to appreciate them.
Other options include taking a bus, train, ferry, or a combination of the three. Regardless of which method you choose, our list of the best ways to get from Rome to the Amalfi Coast will help ensure a seamless trip.
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1. From Rome to the Amalfi Coast by Bus
The cheapest way to get from Rome to the Amalfi Coast is by bus, but it's a bit of a roundabout way of traveling. Tourists can take a bus from Rome Tiburtina to Salerno and hire a car service to transport them the hour-and-20-minute drive into the most popular town, Positano.
Or travelers can hop on a local bus or a ferry from Salerno, which can take roughly an hour and 15 minutes. In general, ferries run between April and October.
The town of Amalfi can also be reached via a 48-minute drive from Salerno or a 30-minute ferry ride. The SITA bus travels from Salerno to Amalfi, with stops in other Amalfi Coast towns, like Atrani, Minori, Cetara, Vietri sul Mare, and Maiori. There's also a SITA bus that runs between Amalfi, Ravello, and Scala. And another that runs from Amalfi to Sorrento with a stop in Positano.
Another option is to take a bus from Rome Tiburtina to Scafati, which lies nine miles north of (or an hour's drive from) Positano. It's not technically on the Amalfi Coast, but it can get you close.
Insider's tip: Book a bus ticket well in advance before they sell out, especially since the new license plate restrictions. Also, sit on the right side of the bus for the best views.
2. From Rome to the Amalfi Coast by Train
The direct train from Rome to the Amalfi Coast can take as little as one hour and 49 minutes up to almost four hours. Trains travel from Roma Termini station to Vietri Sul Mare-Amalfi, a small town on the eastern edge of the Amalfi Coast, about 14 minutes west of Salerno.
From here, tourists can hop on a Sita Bus to the Amalfi Coast towns of Cetara, Maiori, Minori, Atrani, and Amalfi. Tickets can be purchased at tabaccherias, cafés, or newspaper stands.
In summer, the TRENITALIA trains depart about every 26 minutes from 6:26 am to 7 pm and cost anywhere from $16 to $43.
Trains also run multiple times a day from Roma Termini direct to Salerno in about an hour and 35 minutes. The SITA bus will take you the rest of the way. It travels from Salerno to Amalfi, with stops in other Amalfi Coast towns, like Atrani, Minori, Cetara, Vietri sul Mare, and Maiori. There's also a SITA bus that runs between Amalfi, Ravello, and Scala. And another that runs from Amalfi to Sorrento with a stop in Positano.
Another way of reaching the Amalfi Coast by train is more involved. Travelers can take a train from Roma Termini to the Naples Stazione Centrale station. This journey will take about an hour and 10 minutes direct, and there are multiple trains that travel this route daily.
Then, tourists must hop on a Circumvesuviana Train to Sorrento, which should take about an hour and 10 minutes. Be warned, there's no air-conditioning on these trains, and they don't take seat reservations.
A faster route involves taking a Campania Express train instead of the Circumvesuviana. It stops at fewer stations, knocking the travel time between Naples and Sorrento to about 45 minutes. This is a more costly option, but the cars are air-conditioned, and passengers can reserve their seats.
From there, board a Sita bus to Positano, which will take about 35 minutes, or Amalfi, which is an hour and a half away. Tickets can be purchased at tabaccherias, cafés, or newspaper stands.
3. From Rome to the Amalfi Coast by Tour
Taking a tour is one of the easiest and most informative ways to get from Rome to the Amalfi Coast. Taking the 12-hour Pompeii and Amalfi Coast Day Tour From Rome, for instance, is one of the best things to do for history buffs.
A private, air-conditioned vehicle collects tourists from their Roman hotel, then drives them for two and a half hours to one of Pompeii's most famous attractions, the Archeological Park. After touring the impressive sites for two and a half hours, guests are transported to a trattoria for lunch. Only your private group will be booked on the journey.
Note: Food and entry tickets to the Archeological Park are an additional cost.
The next stop is the Amalfi Coast, one of Italy's top points of interest. Here, visitors can enjoy the view as their English-speaking driver tackles the winding roads, and there will be a couple of stops for photo taking.
The final stop is determined by the tourists—either Positano (a large Amalfi Coast town) or Sorrento (which isn't technically part of this UNESCO Heritage Site region).
Visitors will have time to explore the town of their choosing, shop in the cute boutiques, climb the area's gazillion stairs, and marvel at the incredible architecture. When it's time to leave, travelers will board their vehicle for the drive back to their accommodations in Rome.
4. From Rome to the Amalfi Coast by Train and Ferry
As mentioned earlier, there's a train that runs multiple times a day from Roma Termini direct to Salerno in about an hour and 35 minutes. From Salerno, tourists can head to one of two ports to board a ferry.
The Molo Concordia pier is the easiest as it lies directly across from the train station. The Molo Manfredi lies a few kilometers away, which means you'll have to hop in a cab or walk with your luggage.
Another option, as mentioned above, is to take a train from Roma Termini to Naples Stazione Centrale and onward to Sorrento. Sorrento's public ferry port is Marina Piccola. There is a bus that will take you to the ferry, or you can walk it (with a lot of stairs to descend) in 10 to 15 minutes.
Positano Jet offers ferries from both Salerno and Sorrento to Positano between April and mid-October. The ferry from Salerno to Positano takes about one hour and costs around $16. The ferry from Sorrento to Positano takes about 40 minutes and costs around $17.
NLG operates a ferry between Sorrento and Positano during high season (May 1 to October 31st) three times daily. They charge about $19. They also run between Salerno and Positano once daily for about $16.
Travelmar offers ferries from both ports in Salerno (check your ticket to be sure you're leaving from the right spot) from early April through late September. They run multiple times a day into Positano and Amalfi, as well as Vietri sul Mare, Cetara, Maiori, and Minori.
Alilauro runs boats once daily between April and early November. They leave at about 5 pm and run from Sorrento to Positano. Tickets cost about $20. They also offer a boat from Sorrento to Amalfi for about $19.
A word of warning: Positano's port lies at the bottom of a steep hill. To get to the town center, travelers will have to carry their luggage up a multitude of stairs.
5. From Rome to the Amalfi Coast by Private Transfer
Skip the stress and leave the scary driving to a professional. Taking a private transfer from Rome to Positano is one of the easiest and most direct ways to reach the Amalfi Coast. In about three and a half hours, a private, air-conditioned vehicle will transport you from a location of your choosing in Rome and deliver you to a destination in Positano.
Transfers to other Amalfi Coast towns can also be arranged, and the time spent in the car will vary based on traffic and weather conditions. The best part? You and your private group can enjoy the spectacular views without having to worry about navigating the twisty roads. Tip: Sit on the right side of the car for the best vistas.
6. From Rome to the Amalfi Coast by Car
While renting a car may seem like the easiest way to get from Rome to the Amalfi Coast, this may not be the case if traveling in high season. In June of 2022, the local government instituted an "alternate numberplate system" to reduce traffic and the number of vehicles entering this beatific region, which makes it more complicated for tourists to use a rental car.
During high season, non-local cars with odd-numbered license plates can only enter the region on odd dates, and cars with even-numbered plates can enter on even dates. These rules apply from 10 am to 6 pm from April 24th to May 2, Holy Week near Easter, in August, and on weekends from mid-June to October.
That means those who plan to stay in the region can't book a resort for an odd number of dates, and they'll have to choose their rental car based on the license plate that lines up with their travel dates.
For those who choose to drive, the route is magnificent—it is slightly terrifying in parts, but the views are glorious, and you'll soon understand why this is dubbed one of the best honeymoon destinations in Europe.
The drive will take about three and a half hours to get from Rome to the Amalfi's most popular town, Positano; more if you choose to stop and see the sights of Naples, Pompeii, or the gorgeous gardens of Ravello along the way.
Drivers will follow the AI Autostrada before joining the E45 and finally, the most scenic and famous portion of the journey, the narrow, winding, cliff-hugging SS145. These routes involve tolls, so have cash or a debit/credit card on hand.
Also, be prepared for a bit of a white-knuckle experience, even if you're a seasoned driver. These roads are incredibly narrow, involve sharp turns, and are overrun with other cars and buses in peak season, which means you could sit for hours in traffic and may have to maneuver backward to let larger vehicles turn.
Insider's tip: Avoid driving to the Amalfi Coast during sunset, so you won't be blinded during the journey.