How to get to Sorrento: the quick, cheap and easy guide. If you want to bathe in the sea with a perfect view of Naples and the smoky blue peak of Vesuvius, there’s a trick to it: don’t stop at Naples. Instead, continue south of the city, along the triangular peak of land jutting out into the Mediterranean, known as the Sorrentine Peninsula. You can stop anywhere along here, but I recommend going right to Sorrento, where the coast road runs out, flattening into green gardens with hazy azure vistas over the bluest of blue seas.
Seaside resort Sorrento has got a lot going for it, and the views of Vesuvius are just the icing on the cake. From its gorgeous fishermen’s port, Marina Grande, to breath-taking look-outs and chic, incredibly private hotels, getting lost in its cobbled streets is a pleasure, while shopping or strolling along the Corso in the twilight rewards you with a sense of community. Sorrento is definitely worth visiting if you’re travelling in Southern Italy, and it’s easy to get to from Rome or Naples.
How to reach Sorrento from Rome
Here’s the challenge: in just four hours, I guarantee you can get from chaotic Termini station in Rome to a sun-recliner sipping something cool on the Sorrento shore. Take a train from Rome to Naples – you have a wide choice between the two service providers of Trenitalia and Italo, scheduling between them around 30 trains a day, of varying duration and prices. Book a couple of weeks ahead if you can to get discounted fares, otherwise expect to pay up to €40 per person for the 1’ 10” Frecciarossa or Italo fast train to Naples.
Once you reach Napoli Centrale, the main train station in Naples, the simplest solution is to take the Circumvesuviana train on to Sorrento. This takes 1’ or 1’ 15” (depending on if it’s the direct train or the one that stops more frequently) and departs about twice an hour (check the timetable here). I recommend buying tickets for this at the newsagent on the platform as soon as you arrive, rather than from the Circumvesuviana ticket office further down the hall, where there is always a queue. An adult ticket costs €3.60 in 2016 and must be validated before use. Sorrento railway station is centrally located and suitable for reaching many city centre hotels on foot.
How to get to Sorrento from Naples by sea
If you’re staying in Naples, you don’t need to put up with the heat and chaos of the Circumvesuviana train – there are a couple of fast ferries leaving from the port area of Beverello, which motor to Sorrento in about 30 minutes, leaving around 10 times a day. Details on the Alilauro line can be found here: single tickets start at around €12. These dock at the port of Sorrento, otherwise known as the Marina Piccola, which is a centrally located bay at the foot of the Sorrentine cliffs. Two lifts, costing a couple of Euros per ride, then bring you up to the town level.
Why I love riding the Circumvesuviana train
You’ll read a lot of scathing reviews of the Circumvesuviana train. It’s a rickety old train, always full to bursting, renowned for pick-pockets and encounters with over-friendly locals. It also offers an incredible slice of life and local colour – a quick taste of Napoli before arriving at the coast. You pass through some stunning locations on this little train – including the historical sites of Pompeii and Herculaneum, and pretty resorts like Vico Equense and Piano di Sorrento. As far as I’m concerned, this journey really puts me in the mood for a holiday in Sorrento and I wouldn’t have it any other way!
How to Get to Sorrento From Rome or Naples (and Why I Love Riding the Circumvesuviana Train)
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