The natural beauty and historic significance of the scenic Amalfi Coast—where human settlement dates to the early Middle Ages—were recognized by UNESCO with a World Heritage listing in 1997.
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The beautiful Amalfi Coast can be crowded, but its allure is irresistible—spectacular beaches, balmy weather, towering cliffs, idyllic villages, lush gardens, and magnificent vistas, just to name a few.
Photograph by Eleanor Scriven, Corbis Images
Amalfi, the best known town on the Amalfi Coast, has a superb cathedral, a tempting labyrinth of picturesque streets, and a mountain-ringed setting that can be explored on foot or admired from the sea.
Photograph by Francesco Riccardo Iacomino, Getty Images
A staircase of homes tumbling down to the sea, Positano is one of Italy's most memorable towns. Once a sleepy village, it has become a resort of chic hotels and expensive boutiques.
Photograph by Eleanor Scriven, Getty Images
At its heart Amalfi is a sea town. After declaring itself independent of Naples in A.D. 839, the town used its strategic position and fine harbor to carve out a spot as the main trading port of southern Italy.
Photograph by Konstantin Kalishko, Alamy Stock Photo
Ravello is considered one of the most romantic and beautiful small towns in southern Italy. Perched on steep, terraced slopes—closer to the sky than the sea, according to French novelist André Gide—it has a lofty setting. Views from the gardens at the Villa Rufolo are unmatched.
Photograph by Richard I'Anson, Getty Images
Graced with a bounty of lemon trees, sometimes yielding outsize fruit, the people of Amalfi make and consume limoncello, the sweet and refreshing liqueur that's popular throughout Italy but best sampled among the coast's famous lemon groves.
Wine and Song
Photograph by Ken Scicluna, John Warburton-Lee Photography Ltd/Aurora Photos
In Ravello, vines come with a dramatic view and, in some cases, an impressive lineage: The Falanghina grape variety, a favorite of Romans, is believed to have originated in ancient Greece. If you're fond of entertainment while you sip, Ravello—known as the "city of music"—has hosted a summer festival of classical performances since 1953.
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