There are a lot of great views in the country of Italy, but some of the best ones may just be in Sorrento. This city is located high up on the cliffs that look out over the stunning Bay of Naples, giving spectators a bird’s-eye view of, not just the hustle and bustle of the marinas below, but also of the also beautiful towns of Naples and Capri.
Toss in the incredible backdrop of Mount Vesuvius as well and you’ve got a city whose pictures are worth much more than a thousand words.
Before you pack up your camera, here are some more things to add to your itinerary in Sorrento, Italy.
What Is the Best Time to Visit Sorrento, Italy?
The springtime months of April and May are arguably the best time to visit Sorrento. The weather is typically sunny, and temperatures are mild for the most part. Plus, you will avoid the crowds that tend to show up in the summer months, which makes for much more peaceful sightseeing.
Our Favorite Things to Do in Sorrento, Italy
Check out the Marinas
Sorrento is located on a peninsula, meaning that it is surrounded on three sides by water. Obviously, this makes it a great place for boats and fishing, and visitors can spend hours people-watching at the harbor. There are two main marinas to visit: Marina Grande and Marina Piccola, both of which see all types of interesting ferries and fishing boats come in each day. You can also stroll along the nearby boardwalk to sample some seafood or find little nooks where local fishermen go out to bring in the catch of the day every day.
Visit the Churches
Italy is filled with churches dating back centuries, and Sorrento is no exception. The Cattedrale dei Santi Filippo e Giacomo, for example, has a door that dates back to the Renaissance and a bell tower with Byzantine-era designs. Then there’s the Basilica di Sant’Antonino, built to honor the town’s patron saint, which holds the bones of a whale from whom Sant’Antonino reportedly once saved a small child.
Watch the Sunset at Villa Comunale
Villa Comunale is a park not far from the Cloister of San Francesco (see below) that offers some spectacular views of the sunset. Sit on a terrace with your loved one as you look down onto the Marina Grande’s brightly colored boats, or out at the towering shape of Mount Vesuvius in the distance as the sun paints the sky with its bright pinks and oranges.
These are just some of the best things to do in Italy, for a full list, do check out our guide to Italy!
Some of the Best Attractions in Sorrento, Italy
Cloister of San Francesco
This 13th-century cloister (a covered walkway ) is a part of an even older eighth-century monastery dedicated to Saint Francis. You don’t have to be a religious person to appreciate the lovely vines covering the entire structure and the perfectly formed arches or their octagonal columns that make it another very photogenic part of the city. In the summer months, you can go to art shows and concerts here, or you can just stop by for the view.
Bagni della Regina Giovanna
Nature lovers are drawn to this natural pool situated just below the ruins of Villa Pollio Felice, an ancient Roman villa. The pool itself is enclosed by tall, steep rock cliffs and separated from the vast expanse of the sea beyond by a natural rock arch. It takes a bit of work to get here: you must arrive either by boat, bus, or after a thirty-minute walk, but once you arrive you’ll realize you’ve found one of the most tranquil places to swim in the whole city.
Museo-Bottega della Tarsia Lignea
Sorrento is famous for its wooden marquetry (a type of art that consists of using colored wood to make designs for displays or furniture). While you’ll see many other instances of this around the city, the Museo-Bottega della Tarsia Lignea lets you see huge amounts of it in one place. Located in what was once an 18th-century mansion, this museum holds intricately designed boxes, pictures, and furniture whose origins span from centuries ago to the current day.
Other Sights Worth a Visit in Sorrento, Italy
The Museo-Bottega della Tarsia Lignea isn’t the only museum in town worth visiting: there is also the Correale di Terranova Museum of fine arts, which is full of paintings and ceramics from the 17th and 18th centuries, as well as Museo Archeologico, an archeological museum whose highlights include sculptures and artifacts that range from before recorded history began to 1971, as well as a scale model of the Villa of Pollius Felix.
To say that Sorrento is a picturesque town is a bit of an understatement. From its seaside views to its stunning artwork to its historically significant churches and marinas, there are photo ops everywhere here, just waiting to be captured.