Experience the Breathtaking Amalfi Coast Road: Italy's Most Scenic Drive

The popular Amalfi Coast route follows the shoreline from Sorrento south to Salerno, in Italy. Locals recommend planning a drive of the Amalfi Coast during the shoulder tourist seasons, mid-September to October and May, when the road is less crowded and lumbering tour buses are fewer. It's one of the best coastal drives in the world. Picturesque Amalfi has been featured in films for as long as cameras have rolled at 24 frames per second.

Strada Statale Amalfitana

What is Strada Statale Amalfitana famous for?

The iconic road along the Amalfi Coast (Strada Statale 163 Amalfitana) is famous for its hairpin bends, zigzags, the views over the sea, and the narrowness in some parts. The road winds along the cliffs, and it was built at a very steep angle, so zigzags backward and forwards. Amalfi Coast drive is arguably the world's most beautiful and thrilling sightseeing road. It's a unique opportunity to impress in your heart and memory breathtaking views protected by Unesco. Not to be missed are the stages or the drive in Amalfi, Positano, Scala, and Vietri sul Mare.

Where was Beat the Devil filmed?

Picturesque Amalfi has been featured in many films for as long as cameras have rolled at 24 frames per second, mainly chick flicks like Under the Tuscan Sun or the 1957 Humphrey Bogart classic Beat the Devil, featuring a very sultry Gina Lollobrigida. Gamers may recognize it as a setting for fictional tracks in “Forza Motorsport” and “Gran Turismo 4” games.

How long is Strada Statale Amalfitana?

Tucked away in the southwestern part of the country, the road stretches 50 kilometers (30 miles) between Sorrento city and Amalfi village, the community that gave the coast its name. It’s a trip that has to be made at least once in your life. The coast is one of the most fascinating in the world for its landscape. The highway passes through pretty villages close to high and steep cliffs, but what makes the Amalfi Coast extra special is how the distinct traditions from different countries are clearly visible.

Is Strada Statale Amalfitana challenging?

The road can be stressing. Filled with tour buses, cars, and scooters all fighting for space on hairpin turns along cliffs high above the sea. Yet every corner seems to reveal an even more stunning view. Driving the road in a car is one of the most stressful and dangerous things you will do in your life. It's a daredevil drive flanked by towering cliffs on one side and the beautiful blue of the Mediterranean Sea to the other. The drive along this spectacular coastline is simply breathtaking. It’s not, though, for the faint of heart. With steep rock on one side and a dramatic drop to the Mediterranean on the other, the narrow road clings to the mountain and follows the twisting shoreline, resulting in winding roads and sharp curves. It has only occasional railings to keep your car from potentially plunging into craggy, breaker-washed sea boulders far below. You can drive north or south on the drive. The fainthearted (but never the brave) prefer the northbound direction because the southbound lane precariously hugs the sea cliff edge. Rather frighteningly, the road is known for its distinct lack of caution, which is utter madness when you consider that much of it veers on the edge of steep cliffs. Take in what views you can, but keep your eyes firmly on the road for this one. This white-knuckle thrill ride is one of Italy's greatest wonders, 30 miles of narrow, S-curve roadway strung halfway up a cliff with the waves crashing below, green slopes all around, medieval pirate watchtowers on the headlands, and colorful villages tucked into the coves. Most of the coastline is a cliff-face, there is nowhere to park off-road- so everyone parks in the most ridiculous places along the road.

When was Amalfi Coast Road completed?

In June 1807 Giuseppe Bonaparte visiting the coast was enchanted by it and decided to build a road from Naples to Amalfi. The road was completed in 1854 by Ferdinand II. The "Amalfi Drive" is said to be the most spectacular road in Europe and from Sorrento, the winding cliff-top road offers breathtaking panoramic views at every bend. With the picturesque towns of Sorrento and Amalfi on the route, some exceptional restaurants - including Don Alfonso, a three-Michelin starred establishment - and great places to relax, it is the perfect place to escape from the world.

Is the Amalfi Coast Road worth it?

Situated on the western coast of Italy and west of Salerno, the Amalfi coast is a popular tourist destination, and the road is one of the many listed here that should be experienced by any driver who loves touring holidays. The Costiera Amalfitana, or Amalfi Coast, is widely considered Italy's most scenic stretch of coastline, a landscape of towering bluffs, pastel-hued villages terraced into hillsides, precipitous corniche roads, luxuriant gardens, and expansive vistas over turquoise waters and green-swathed mountains. Italy’s Amalfi Coast has one of the most romantic coastlines that you’ll find anywhere in Europe. Although you can also take a coach trip or a bus from Sorrento, you won’t get the full experience of the region unless you’re behind the wheel. Expect to find sandy coves as you turn around the bends and head down to Positano to see the colorful villas lining the picturesque mountainside. The best towns to visit along this drive are Amalfi, Positano, and Ravello. UNESCO actually named the Amalfi Coast an outstanding example of the Mediterranean landscape and gave it a place on the World Heritage List.