Positano Italy – Things to do in Positano – Positano beach. As already written in the post “Amalfi Coast Towns” Positano is one of the best towns on the Amalfi Coast. Its beauty enchants many people.
As you can see below, Positano is developed on different levels, and starting from the top going down to the pedestrian center you have to follow a road on the coast. On this road, you can find many restaurants with a wide view of the coast and the sea. It’s unique!
You’ll see many shops in the pedestrian area where you can find many clothes in a perfect Positano style.
At the end of your way, you find something very precious in this area: the beach! This makes Positano the town to choose for those that love beaches.
As a result, maybe Positano is the best town to stay in especially in the summertime but not in the low season. Positano is the town most affected by the tourist seasons!
For our own experience, we want to give you the following precious advice.
- In August and the more busy seasons prefer the boat to the bus when you have to move. When there are many people, the bus times aren’t trustworthy and if the bus is full it doesn’t stop and it leaves you at the bus stop :(. The boat times are instead always right.
- Do not pack too many things because Positano is full of stairs and it isn’t easy to arrive at your hotel with big and heavy bags. If you don’t want to renounce to some of your stuff use the porterage service. The porterage service brings your bags from the tourist port of Positano to your hotel. In this way, you’ll not have a heart attack 😉 if you’re not trained.
- Avoid the 2 central weeks of August if you can. Too hot and too crowded.
Things to do in Positano
In Positano, there are many things to do and visit. The first thing you should do in Positano Italy is to get lost in the town and find out all the characteristic corners and shops. You can’t also miss the amazing sunset! You’ll get in love with it.
Visit the following page to watch our Positano sunset videos: Best Amalfi Coast Sunset Positano Italy.
When you are in Positano, I’m sure you want to visit also the other Amalfitan Coast Towns. The good news is that Positano is well connected to the other Amalfi Coast towns such as Sorrento, Amalfi and Capri.
Here you can find a list of top things and places you can visit while you’re in Positano Italy.
- The Positano beaches
- Visit Positano’s Center and do a good shopping
- MAR, the roman archeological museum
- The Path of the Gods Positano or il Sentiero degli Dei: you can take the bus in Positano (https://www.sitasudtrasporti.it/orari – 5070 AMALFI – POSITANO – SORRENTO (via Meta – via Massa Lubrense – via Nastro Verde)) and in a few minutes you arrive to the following bus stop: Via Arienzo, 53, 84017 Arienzo SA
- Enjoy the food, even better if you have delicious food with an amazing view (Top 3 Best restaurants in Positano Italy with a view)
- Visit Amalfi, Ravello and the other Amalfi Coast Towns
- Visit Capri
- Enjoy the nearby beaches
- Visit the Emerald Grotto
- The Saracen Tower
Positano beach: Marina Grande and Fornillo Beach
One of the best things to do in Positano is to relax on the Positano beach and enjoy the view. Positano beach is very nice and it’s also big compared to other beaches on the Amalfi Coast. When you walk from Positano’s highest part to the lower part through the city center, you finally arrive at the Positano beach: Marina Grande.
You can see Positano beach in many postcards and many beautiful pictures around the web. The truth is that Positano beach is lovely and unique for its scenario.
There is also another beach you can easily reach on foot: Fornillo Beach.
Fornillo Beach is not far from the Grande beach of Positano. You can easily get to Fornillo beach on foot, thanks to the paved path that takes you directly from Spiaggia Grande to Fornillo beach.
This trail is also very nice to walk as it counts the sea and is scenic. The Fornillo beach remains more private and quiet than the Spiaggia Grande in Positano, especially during the high tourist season.
You can see better the path that leads you from Positano beach to Fornillo Beach (where there is the Hotel Pupetto) in the following video:
In the following video, you see a beautiful view of Fornillo beach from the boat and the path leading you to the beach. Watch the video!
Visit Positano’s Center and do a good shopping
Most likely, to get to Spiaggia Grande you passed through the streets of the center. The center of Positano is very characteristic especially thanks to the shops that display and sell clothes in perfect Positano style.
Positano by night has a very magical atmosphere.
The Path of the Gods Positano
One of the best things to do in Positano is the Path of the Gods Positano. Positano and the Amalfi Coast are in fact also famous for the trails in the mountains just behind the coast. The peculiarity of these trails is that they are extremely scenic.
The Path of the Gods Positano is a very panoramic hiking path. If you start your hiking tour in Nocelle, don’t stop at the beginning of the path because, after 1 hour of walking, you can see Positano, and the view is much better than at the beginning of the path.
A good idea is to go in the morning and then have lunch at the restaurant la Tagliata or have a light lunch at the ” Inverno al Chiosco del Sentiero degli Dei” that is at the beginning of the Path of the Gods. Go to the following page: “Top 3 Best restaurants in Positano Italy with a view“.
How to reach the Path of the Gods?
You have 3 options to reach the Path of the Gods:
- By bus from Positano
- By car
- On foot thanks to the stairs that lead you from Arenzio near the beginning of the Path of the Gods. This option is the most tiring and certainly not for everyone.
Path of the Gods by bus from Positano
To reach the Path of the Gods by bus you can go to the Chiesa Nuova stop in Positano and take the bus to Nocelle. The Nocelle bus stop is very convenient because it is located a few steps from the road that leads you directly to the Path of the Gods.
Path of the Gods by car from Positano
To reach the Path of the Gods by car you have to head towards Nocelle where you will find a small parking lot which, however, fills up quickly at certain times of the year. I, therefore, suggest you arrive early. For convenience, I leave you the Google point that you can set on the navigator to reach the parking: https://goo.gl/maps/YNymZt2aQ5wnzQyR8.
From the parking lot for the Path of the Gods, you have to walk a short paved section between the houses. During this route, you will also see the sign indicating the stairs to Positano. In fact, from here you can also reach Positano on foot, more precisely Arenzio.
Continuing the path shortly after you will see on your right the Kiosk of the Path of the Gods, once you pass it you will begin your adventure on the Path of the Gods!
Path of the Gods on foot from Positano
From Positano, it is possible to reach the Path of the Gods also on foot thanks to the stairs which, however, do not directly connect the center of Positano to the Path but arrive at Arenzio. So in your journey, you have to take into consideration that from Positano you have to go to Arenzio or vice versa.
This option is the most tiring and certainly not for everyone. In order not to go up all the stairs it might be a good idea to go to the Path of the Gods by bus and then walk back.
Why do the Path of the Gods?
The Path of the Gods is an excellent alternative to the beauties of the coast of the sea. In fact, you can admire these beautiful landscapes from a different point of view.
Landscapes from the Path of the Gods in summer:
Landscapes from the Path of the Gods in winter:
You also do physical activity and enjoy the natural beauty.
After the effort you can refresh yourself at the kiosk of the Path of the Gods: in summer with excellent slushes with fresh lemon or orange juice and in winter with excellent cold cuts. All always with the magnificent view of the Amalfi Coast.
Winter at the kiosk of the Path of the Gods
Map of the Path of the Gods Positano
Enjoy the food
In Positano, there are a lot of excellent restaurants. There are also restaurants where you can taste excellent food enjoying amazing views. Read our post dedicated to the “best restaurants in Positano Italy with a view“.
Visit Amalfi, Ravello and the others Amalfi Coast Towns
Another of the things to do in Positano is to take the boat and visit one of the other Amalfi Coast towns. From Positano Italy, you can visit the following Towns by boat (https://www.travelmar.it/)
- Amalfi (about 30 min from Positano Italy)
- Minori (about 1.10 from Positano Italy) In Minori you can visit:
- The Ruins of Roman Villa and Antiquarium
- The Path of the Lemons
- in Minori, you can taste Salvatore De Riso’s specialties. Salvatore De Riso is the most famous pastry chef on the Amalfi Coast.
- Maiori (about 1.20 from Positano Italy)
- Salerno (about 1.20 h from Positano Italy)
- Cetara (about 1.30 h or 2 h from Positano Italy) This town has a beach and the town is very characteristic. Cetara is known for the best tuna on the Amalfi Coast and the anchovy sauce.
What you shouldn’t miss are these 3 following Amalfitan Coast Towns:
- Ravello. You can go from Amalfi to Ravello by bus. In Ravello there are 2 beautiful villas to visit:
- Villa Rufolo (where there are the concerts)
- Villa Cimbrone (where there is the Terrazza dell’Infinito)
If you want to know more go to the following page: Amalfitan Coast Towns.
Positano is a perfect point to take a boat and visit the marvelous and unique island of Capri. You can go for a daily tour or stay at least one night to have more time to enjoy this place. In Capri, you find the famous blue grotto and the amazing Faraglioni.
If you want to know more about Capri and watch the videos about this amazing island, go to the following page: Top things to do in Capri.
MAR, the roman archeological museum
Right in the center of our Positano, the Roman Villa is a witness of past wonders and as they fly for a new image of Positano, which is affirmed, above all, as a city of art and culture.
The MAR is the archaeological museum of Positano and is not a common archaeological museum. In fact, this archaeological museum was established with the discovery of a wonderful Roman Villa in Positano near the current church.
The museum is a fantastic testimony of the passage of time and the change of the territory. It is fascinating to see how the history of Positano has been built “layer by layer”. What do you mean? By continuing to read this article, it will be clear to you! But first, let’s try to go in order.
Roman Villa Positano
In Positano, at the end of the valley and near the beach, there was a magnificent Roman Villa. This Villa took up most of the valley and reached the beach. The Roman Villa of Positano was taken in full by the same eruption that buried Pompeii and Herculaneum. The Roman Villa Positano was buried under many meters.
In some points, we have reached 15 meters of this flow which buried the villa but which then solidified over the centuries and formed a block of tuff-like material called “Durece”.
The levels of the MAR Positano
We have said that the MAR archaeological museum of Positano which is composed of different levels corresponding to the various eras of Positano. In fact, above we have the upper Crypt, while below we have the Roman Villa Positano, of which you can see the frescoes of the triclinium.
The Upper Crypt
At the entrance to the MAR the first room we find is that of the upper crypt built in the 17th century and therefore in an era well after the Middle Ages. This upper crypt was built on top of the Roman Villa Positano which had now been buried.
The Upper Crypt appears as a series of stone seats placed in succession side by side. What was the function of this crypt? The Upper Crypt is the place where they tried to accelerate the process of decay of the bodies. When a monk died, the corpse was placed on one of these seats and when it began to swell, it was punctured in the lower parts and the liquid flowed toward the seat openings.
In this way, the body deprived of its fluids decomposed a little earlier. The decomposition process always lasted years but was however accelerated compared to the natural times of decomposition.
When after years, only the skeleton remained, the bones were collected and placed in special tanks.
This practice was typically widespread in southern Italy because it was mainly the Spaniards who introduced this practice.
Did the monks know of the existence of the Roman Villa Positano, which was located below them? Yes, the monks were aware of the Roman Villa as there is documentation that they dug in search of materials from the Roman Vila to reuse. In fact, the monks recovered marble and columns from the Roman Villa. These villa materials were reused to rebuild buildings or sold them.
How was the Roman Villa Positano discovered today?
Even today it was known that there was something under the surface as anyone who dug, even to do some work, found something. Why, then, suddenly was it decided to dig in this spot where it was still full of “durece” and there was also the pavement?
At the end of the nineties, the municipality of Positano had the project to transform the upper crypt into a museum as it later became. But there was very dirty ground and a dirt floor in this point. Then it was decided to remove a few centimeters of this floor but after a few centimeters parts of the roof of the Roman Villa emerged.
At this point it became clear that under the Crypt there could be some rooms of the Roman Villa and in 2003 the archaeological excavation, finished in 2016, began. The Positano Sea has been open since 2018.
Villa Romana Positano and MAR: who should visit it?
The Mar with the Roman Villa inside is not designed for mass tourism due to the narrow spaces and the deterioration of the Roman Villa that tourism of this kind could bring. Furthermore, the Positano sea would certainly not be able to withstand the influx of tourists from Pompeii and Herculaneum, for example.
The Sea of Positano is especially intended for tourists who come on holiday to Positano and who want to know more about the history of this place. In fact, to encourage Positanese tourists to visit this museum, many hotels in Positano have an agreement. Just present your hotel reservation at the del Mar ticket office to get a discount on admission.
The Roman Villa that once stood in Positano
Let’s go to better describe what you see of the Roman Villa. First of all, it is necessary to specify that, at the moment, we only see part of the environment of the Villa.
We have the east face, the north part and then a part of the west face. In fact, the west face collapsed due to the mudslides coming down from the mountain. A part of the west wall is, therefore, still visible in its place, but a part of it is visible on the ground under the walkway built to allow visitors to enter.
The visible portion of Villa Romana is quite limited, but it is particularly beautiful for the colors of its frescoes: Pompeian red, green which is a very rare color to find in Pompeii and then there is Egyptian blue. Egyptian blue is an extremely expensive color that demonstrates, together with the villa’s grandeur, the hosts’ wealth. Using such an expensive color was just a way to show off and declare one’s social position.
The wall is also decorated with relief stucco monuments. The combination of fresco and stucco monuments is extremely rare to find in a Roman Villa, almost unique. This combination was found, in fact, only in the Campania-Vesuvius area. This is probably due to the origin of the workers. The origin could be Sicilian and Magno Greek or North African.
The floor of the room is also visible and made up of a large mosaic with black and white tiles, very simple but fine workmanship.
What you see today of the Roman Villa is only a small part of the Villa that once stood here in Positano. Certainly, in the future other parts of the villa will be visible thanks to the commitment and constant work of the archaeologists.
What is there to see at the Mar besides the Roman Villa?
As we said at the beginning, the Mar shows the passage of the temple in Positano and its history. In fact, a church, a crypt were built above the Roman Villa and the monks also lived here.
In this place, some bones have been found and these can tell us a lot about the life of the people who lived here, their problems, and their diseases.
Our mind in this museum can travel through time, in the various eras of which Positano was the protagonist.
Enjoy the near beaches: other beaches to visit
The Amalfi Coast is full of wonders. If you are in Positano there are other fascinating beaches that you can easily reach by bus:
- Arienzo beach. Next to Positano Italy. In Arienzo beach there is also a restaurant. You can reach the beach and restaurant by bus and boat thanks to the restaurant’s boat service. The only problem is that the restaurant only accepts reservations for both the beach service and the restaurant.
- Marina di Praia (Praiano) – about 30 minutes from Positano.
- Spiaggia del Duoglio: very clean water. You can arrive here by bus or you can go by boat from Amalfi.
- Bagni Regina Giovanna – about 30 minutes by car
- From Amalfi, you can take the boat to get to Santa Croce Beach. This is a small beach reachable only by boat.
- Minori and Maiori
- Marina del Cantone
In the following video Marina di Praia and Praiano beach. Watch the video and Subscribe to our YouTube Channel if you aren’t already subscribed! Subscribe here!
Things to do in Positano: Visit the Emerald Grotto
The beautiful Grotta Dello Smeraldo is not far from Positano Italy and you can choose it as a tour from Positano.
Positano Italy in winter
Positano is a magnificent location both in summer and in winter. Watch the following video: it shows you Positano in winter!
Text of the video:
Hi everybody, we are in Positano in winter. Positano is a magnificent location both in summer and in winter.
Clearly in winter, it presents itself in a completely different way than in summer.
For example, we remember well what the beach of Positano is like in summer.
In the summer we were worried if we would find a place on the beach and if there were umbrellas still available. Surely this problem does not exist now!
Our umbrella was right over there!
In Positano, many restaurants are closed in winter, but you have no problem finding the place you like best for lunch. Both for a lunch at the restaurant and for a quick lunch and why not even with a sea view.
Wow, what waves! Right there where in summer we wait for boats to Amalfi, Sorrento or Capri. Clearly, boats do not leave here in winter.
What to visit in Positano in winter? An excellent idea is to visit the very interesting MAR Roman Archaeological Museum, where you can also see part of the remains of an extraordinary Roman Villa. The museum ticket office is located near the church near the beach.
Walking on the beach is also very enjoyable, especially when there is a beautiful sunset.
Let’s now move to via Cristoforo Colombo to admire the beach of Positano and the view from above.
We wait for it to get darker and the lights of the houses to be turned on. I like admiring Positano in the evening.
Photo Gallery Positano in winter
Things to do from Positano in 1 day
Now we see a few ideas of what you can do in 1 day if you are in Positano. This can be useful to make your plan for a vacation of more days. It’s enough to choose your favorite options!
- Positano Beach and MAR (on foot)
- Duoglio Beach and Amalfi (by bus and boat)
- Amalfi + Ravello
- Marina di Praia beach
1 – Positano Beach and MAR museum
Positano beach Spiaggia Grande is not only a beach but also a beautiful viewpoint of Positano. If you prefer a more private beach, you can choose to relax on Fornillo Beach.
In the meantime, you’re in the town you can visit the MAR, the roman archeological museum or do your shopping.
The MAR is very close to the beach and is a beautiful museum where you can visit an ancient Roman villa.
2 – Duoglio Beach and Amalfi
The Duoglio beach is famous for its clear water. You can get to Duoglio beach by bus. You can also have lunch here. (Don’t go to this beach too late because there is sun until about 4′ o clock).
In the afternoon, you can use the boat service that connects this beach to Amalfi. In this way, you don’t have to climb the 400 steps that connect the beach to the road. This is a good occasion to save energy and visit Amalfi.
From Amalfi, you can take another boat for Positano or come back by bus. The boat service connects the Spiaggia del Duoglio and the Santa Croce Beach with Amalfi. In this way, you don’t have to climb the 400 steps that connect the road to the beach!
Amalfi + Ravello
After your arrival, the best thing to do in Positano is to walk in the Positano city center to take the first pictures and discover this amazing town.
Where are we going after it? In the famous Amalfi and Ravello.
In order to get from Positano to Amalfi faster, we chose to take the boat. This is also a more enjoyable way to travel and a good opportunity to see the Amalfitan Coast from the sea.
You can buy your ticket at the ticket desk very close to where the boat arrives next to the Marina Grande beach. Usually, you don’t need to reserve your seat on the boats because they are big and carry many people.
This is a big advantage because in this way you can take the boat at the time you’re ready to go without planning before.
You can see the timetable also online for example on the Travelmar website.
After we arrive in Amalfi, we can see the city center. Amalfi isn’t huge, so you don’t need a lot of time to visit it.
We can now take the bus and go to Ravello.
How can I get to Villa Rufolo from Amalfi? In Amalfi, you can take the bus for Ravello (Piazza Flavio Gioia, 1 Amalfi). The bus line is the number 5110 to get to Ravello.
You can check the bus times at the following page https://www.sitasudtrasporti.it/orari
In Ravello there are 2 beautiful villas to visit:
- Villa Rufolo
- Villa Cimbrone
Villa Rufolo is in the main square and just 5 minutes from the bus stop. Villa Cimbrone is about 15 minutes from Villa Cimbrone. In your plan, pay attention to reserve enough time for the visit of both villas.
After visiting Villa Rufolo and Villa Cimbrone, go back to Amalfi to take back the boat for Positano.
We are now ready for our delicious dinner in Positano. (Best restaurants in Positano Italy with a view)
Praiano Marina di Praia Beach
Marina di Praia is between Positano and Amalfi and it has a very characteristic beach and it’s worthy to be seen. How you can get to Marina di Praia?
As the first thing, we go to take the bus for Amalfi in Positano (Sponda). We take the bus from Positano to Praiano and we arrive in about 15 minutes. We can enjoy the beautiful Marina di Praia.
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