This packed 6-day itinerary is perfect if you want to discover the best of Italy but are short on time. Start on the Amalfi Coast for Roman villas and small fishing villages, then head to the beautiful coastal town of Sorrento for a cooking class. Stop to see the Pompeii ruins, then head to Rome for a classic tour of the historic city.

Highlights

  • Visit the incredible ruins of Pompeii, preserved by Mt. Vesuvius’ eruption
  • Tour the incredible halls and basilicas of the Vatican
  • Learn to cook an Italian meal & explore the resort town of Sorrento
  • Take a day trip to the island of Capri to see how Ancient Romans spent the summers

Brief Itinerary

Day Highlights Overnight
Day 1 Arrive in Rome & Transfer to Amalfi Coast, Positano Sunset Cruise Amalfi
Day 2 Capri and Anacapri Day Tour Amalfi
Day 3 Amalfi Coast to Sorrento, Afternoon Cooking Class Sorrento
Day 4 Sorrento to Rome, Pompeii en Route Rome
Day 5 Vatican & Classic Tour of Rome Rome
Day 6 Goodbye Italy!  

Detailed Itinerary

Day 1: Arrive in Rome & Transfer to Amalfi Coast, Positano Sunset Cruise

View of Positano from the water
View of Positano from the water

Welcome to Italy! Arrive in Rome, then take a high-speed train to Naples on the coast before making your way to your hotel in Amalfi. This stretch of coastline south of Naples is renowned for its exceptional beauty and iconic medieval cliffside fishing villages. Lemon groves and sprawling summer villas cling to the steep cliffs that lead to sparkling blue water. 

In the afternoon head onto the water with a sunset boat tour to Positano from Amalfi. With its steep houses tumbling down to the sea, old-timey hotels draped in flowering vines and restaurant terraces Positano is an obvious favorite with travelers looking for a getaway. Soak in the views of the coast and the Tyrrhenian Sea from the boat as you enjoy a glass of Prosecco and some light aperitifs. Swim or snorkel in the clear blue waters, or simply enjoy the view. 

Disembark in Positano for a romantic dinner with ocean views. Enjoy a pasta dinner with fresh seafood, paired with a glass of fruity Falanghina. Return to Amalfi for the night.

Day 2: Capri and Anacapri Day Tour

Views from the Via Krupp
Views from the Via Krupp

Spend the day enjoying the sunshine, summer villas, and clear blue waters of Capri Island, known locally as the Pearl of the Mediterranean. Capri sits on the south side of the Gulf of Naples and is a popular destination. Ancient Romans used the island for summer villas for the Empire's rich and famous, while the Greeks called Capri the 'Isle of Sirens.' 

In the morning head out for a scenic drive along the Sorrentine coast to the Sorrento port, where you'll catch a hydrofoil to Capri. From here go for a guided walking tour of the island's main attractions. See the main harbors (Marina Grande and Marina Piccola), walk along the Belvedere of Tragara (a villa-lined promenade with panoramic views), and explore the ruins of ancient Roman villas. 

Head up the hill to see Anacapri, the Piazzetta, and Augustus' Garden, as well as the best views of the Faraglioni Rocks. 

In the afternoon return to the water to explore the Grotta Azzurra, a naturally hollowed sea cave, and soak in the sunshine on the beach.

Day 3: Amalfi Coast to Sorrento, Afternoon Cooking Class

Cozy street side cafe in Sorrento
Cozy street side cafe in Sorrento

After a relaxing breakfast, say goodbye to the Amalfi Coast and head north to Sorrento. Sorrento is a long-time favorite with Italian and international travelers for its beautiful views, tranquil atmosphere, and cascading lemon terraces. The city's focal point is the Piazza Tasso, a central square built over a gorge that splits the city. Other notable attractions include the beautiful nearby Marina Piccola bay, the Villa Pollio Roman ruins in Capo di Sorrento, the Sorrentine Peninsula Archaeological Museum, the 11th-century Duomo, and the Basilica di Sant'Antonino, which houses the remains of the city's patron saint. 

In the afternoon learn how to prepare traditional Italian dishes during a 4-hour cooking class at the Sorrento Cooking School. The school is the first of its kind in Sorrento and offers daily cooking lessons for amateur cooks and for those looking to enjoy a day of learning about Italian flavors and ingredients from a talented local chef. 

You'll learn about traditional Italian dishes including pasta, pizza, fish, and local desserts, as well as the techniques for preparing the perfect dough and the perfect garnish for each dish. Finish the course with a delicate pastry, then sit down to enjoy your hard work with a delicious meal. Buon appetito!

Day 4: Sorrento to Rome, Pompeii en Route

Abandoned city street in Pompeii
Abandoned city street in Pompeii

In the morning head out to Rome. Along the way, stop at the ruins of Pompeii, a bustling seaside city that was buried underneath 13-20 ft (4 to 6 m) of ash and volcanic debris after the 79 CE eruption of Mount Vesuvius. The ash, which killed many of the city's residents, acted as an archaeological time capsule by preserving many of the city's original buildings and features completely intact. 

The city was lost for 1,500 years following Mount Vesuvius' eruption before its accidental rediscovery in 1599. Items from jars to furniture were frozen in time, and even people who were unable to flee the oncoming ash were perfectly preserved. The guided 2-hour walking tour of Pompeii's ancient streets will show off preserved villas, shops, public buildings, and plazas, giving you an insider's look into life 2,000 years ago.

Tour stops include the House of Gladiators, large manors and villas, the Temple of Isis, and the Garden of the Fugitives where you can see plasters of several of the victims of the volcanic eruption. 

After the tour, continue to Rome. 

According to legend, Rome was founded by brothers Romulus and Remus in 753 B.C.E. atop Rome's Palatine Hill. The long-time center of the powerful Roman Empire, Rome boasts nearly 3,000 years of architecture, history, and culture. 

Spend the evening exploring a few of the city's highlights and see for yourself why Rome is considered one of Europe's top cities. 

  • Tour the Colosseum and travel back in time to relive the grandeur of the Roman Empire. Learn about some of ancient Rome's most famous and illustrious citizens, such as Julius Caesar, Emperors Augustus and Nero, and the Flavian Emperors who built the Colosseum
  • Go for a stroll in the central Piazza Navona where families and tourists gather on warm days, see the beautiful Trevi Fountain and the iconic Pantheon
  • Find the perfect antique market, downtown boutique, or shopping mall to find the perfect items in one of the fashion capitals of the world
  • Enjoy the sunset in the orange groves of the Giardino degli Aranci, on the city's Aventine Hill

Day 5: Vatican & Classic Tour of Rome

St. Peter's Square and the Vatican
St. Peter's Square and the Vatican

Today you will visit the Vatican City museums and Sistine Chapel, as well as other top sights for an exclusive 6-hour tour of the city's incredible art and history. Start at the Vatican, where you'll visit the Pio Clementio Museum, Gallery of the Candelabra, Gallery of Tapestries, and Gallery of the Geographical Maps

Continue to see the magnificent Raphael Rooms, ending in the breathtaking Sistine Chapel and St. Peter's Basilica. Experience the magic of Renaissance art as you learn about the secret details and untold stories of the masterpieces. 

Afterward, continue into a city for a tour of the city's most notable landmarks. Cross Piazza della Repubblica to see the Fountain of the Nyands, then continue to see the Trevi Fountain, La Colonna di Marco Aurelio, and the Palazzo di Montecitorio, which was designed by Bernini.

Admire the exterior of the Pantheon and head inside for a look at the ancient Roman temple, then head to Palazzo Madama—the Senate seat—ending at Piazza Navona.

End your evening with a stroll to the neighborhood piazza for gelato and some people watching.

Day 6: Goodbye Italy!

Little details of life in Rome
Little details of life in Rome

Time to say goodbye to the country of love! After one last cappuccino over breakfast, head to the airport for your connecting flight home. Safe travels!

Map

Map of Relaxed Amalfi Coast & Rome - 6 Days
Map of Relaxed Amalfi Coast & Rome - 6 Days