I love the Italian lifestyle, but having discovered Venice and ticked-off Rome, I was on the hunt for something new. After being enchanted by Lake Garda’s small-town spirit, with its colourful houses and cobbled streets, it didn’t take much convincing for me to visit the similarly charming Sorrento. If dramatic coastlines and historic hotspots are your thing, this is the place for you. Perfect for couples looking for a chilled-out break, there’s also plenty to do if you want to get out and about. Want to miss the hustle and bustle of the summer season? Visit Sorrento in April or October for relaxed vibes and comfortably warm weather. Here's a whistle-stop tour of what to do and where to stay in Sorrento.
What to do
Discover the history
If you’re a lover of all things ancient, no holiday to Sorrento is complete without visiting Pompeii, which is a UNESCO World Heritage site. The Roman ruins are home to some incredible artefacts, like bronze lamps, terracotta pots and even uneaten food! There’s lots to see here, from thermal baths to intricate mosaics. For a really in-depth experience, enjoy a guided tour around the site and take in the views of hidden temples and the famous amphitheatre. While you’re in the area, why not visit the Villa of the Mysteries, which has lots of historic frescoes dating back to the first century.
Sample some food
Sorrento is a haven for foodies. Here you’ll find Prosecco by the caseload, amazing antipasti and locally-sourced mozzarella. Sorrento’s Old Town is the heart of the food scene, specialising in traditional Italian delicacies and delicious seafood. There’s also plenty of fantastic Italian produce to sample at the weekly market, which takes place in the Old Town. Think green olives, freshly-baked bread and the zestiest lemons in the country. Sorrento’s Old Town is the perfect place to spend a relaxing afternoon looking at the stalls, or better yet, sat in a quiet side street with an Italian coffee.
Explore your surroundings
If you feel like expanding your horizons on your holiday to Sorrento, you can always sail out to the small island of Capri. A day trip always makes a great change of scenery and Capri is packed with charm and plenty to do. Take a boat tour to the famous Blue Grotto, a waterway of secret coves and sparkling blue sea. If you’d rather see some sights from above, you can take a chairlift to the top of Mount Solaro, where you can enjoys views across the sea. What better way to end the day than with a cocktail at the Piazzetta? It’s great for people watching and soaking up the atmosphere of Capri.
Where to Stay
Modern with mountain views
Conca Azzurra on the Cliff is a cool, chic hotel with breath-taking views across Sorrento’s coast. There’s a rooftop sun terrace perfect for sipping cocktails in the warm Italian evenings, and they even provide a packed lunch for all those days out. With two outdoor seawater pools adding to the authentic charm, you’ll never want to leave this spot of paradise on the Sorrento coast. I love the fact the hotel’s secluded in its own special way, but there’s still easy access to everything you’d want to do in the surrounding areas.
Perfect for special celebrations
The Grand Hotel Capodimonte is the perfect place to stay for an anniversary or simply just a romantic getaway. Fancy going here on your honeymoon? Newlyweds are welcomed with a bottle of sparkling wine to get their holiday off to a luxurious start. With five cascading pools and leafy green gardens, the hotel’s focus is pure relaxation. It’s only a short walk to the town centre, so it’s easy to get out and explore some local culture. After a long day of exploring, you can unwind in the hydro massage pool before the next day’s adventure.
Beautiful and on-budget
The family-run Hotel Zi Teresa is found in the heart of Sorrento, near to everything you could want to explore in the beautiful town. The delicious, authentic dishes on offer in the restaurant are inspired by the homely feel of the hotel. Whether you’re a sun-seeker or feel at home in the water, Hotel Zi Teresa is perfect for everyone with, their rooftop terrace and relaxing pool area. Take a short stroll to Piazza Angelina Lauro, which always has great street food on the grill and a lively atmosphere.
Which sights have you seen around Sorrento? Is there anywhere that you’d like to visit in Italy, but haven’t had the chance yet? I’d love to hear your thoughts below.