Amalfi Coast & Sorrento Bike Challenges
Amalfi Coast Cycling Tour
Amalfi Coast Biking Tour
The Amalfi Coast Bike Challenge
Cycling along the world’s most beautiful coast, all around the Peninsula, from Salerno to Sorrento and back
5-day road cycling tour with different bases in charming hotels
The Sorrentine peninsula, situated between the equally beautiful Bay of Naples and Gulf of Salerno, is an area of staggering natural beauty and scattered with cultural treasures. Best known for its medieval coastal towns and inland villages such as Amalfi, Positano and Ravello and the resort town Sorrento, it is also home to several hidden marvels. Small natural reserves, ancient paper mills and wild mountain scenery are only a small distance away from the busy touristy centres, waiting to be explored by the aware traveller. The best of the coastal scenery is on the southern side of the peninsula, the Amalfi Coast. With its towering cliffs and picturesque coves this definitely is one of the most beautiful coastlines in Europe, with a long tradition as one of the premier tourist destinations in Italy. In addition it offers some of the most beautiful roads and some challenging climbs which have been featured several times in the Giro d’Italia. Cycling along the ‘Costiera Amalfitana’ is an unforgettable experience!
This tour gives us the opportunity to discover both the Amalfi and Sorrento Coast. We will start from the little fishermen’s village of Cetara and cycle north towards splendid medieval Amalfi. Along our way we pass through Maiori and delightful Minori and Atrani, arriving at the coasts’ most famous town of Amalfi. Shortly after we pass along the deeply eroded and amazing ‘fjord’ of Furore and cycle through the little hamlets of Praiano and Conca dei Marini, before arriving at mundane Positano, clinging to the coast’s rocky cliffs. From Positano we climb up to Sant’Agata sui Due Golfi, located on the very ridge of the peninsula and offering wide views both on the Amalfitan and Sorrentine coasts. Small winding country roads then bring us to Termini on the very tip of the peninsula, and down again to Massa Lubrense and the seaside town of Sorrento.
From here we continue through the foot hills above Sorrento to the seaside resort of Vico Equense and on to Castellamare di Stabia. Along our way we can enjoy ample views of the Gulf of Naples and Mount Vesuvius on the one hand, and of the mountain tops of Mount Faito on the other. After arriving at Castellamare, we turn inland again, climbing up along Gragnano and Pimonte to Agerola, one of the great climbs of the area. From the high valley of Agerola we then descend on a steep winding road to Pogerola and Amalfi, passing through Furore and cycling around the high end of the spectacular ‘fjord’. Returning to Salerno we will make an inland detour to famous Ravello and Tramonti, well known for its local food specialties and wine. We will also cycle past wonderful Raito and the millennium old abbey of Cava dei Tirreni. A last climb takes us up to the medieval castle of Salerno, for a last magnificent view of the Gulf of Salerno, and the whole Amalfi Coast.
This amazing cycling adventure will take us one some of Italy’s most spectacular roads, many of which have been the theatre of epic cycling battles during the ‘Giro d’Italia’ between athletes the like of Fausto Coppi and Gino Bartali and more recently Lance Armstrong and Ivan Basso. We will discover several hidden aspects of the Sorrento peninsula and see with our own eyes that it has become with reason Italy’s most famous coastline.
Please note: this is a moderate tour (to road cycling standards!) for which experience with road cycling and a good general physical condition are necessary to make your travel experience enjoyable. Average cycling times: Approx. 5-7 hours each day.
Amalfi Coast Cycling Tour
Day 0 Naples (or Salerno)
Arrival in Naples (or Salerno) in case you arrive a day earlier.
Naples has an international airport. From Rome (and many other cities) Naples and Salerno can easily be reached. There are regular AV (High-Speed), Eurostar and Intercity trains: travel time by High-Speed train: about one hour; cost around € 40,00, by IC-train: about two hours; cost around € 20,00; by normal, regional trains the cost is about 11 euro, and it takes almost 3 hours. Several hotels can be booked in Naples and Salerno, according to your wish (either ‘downtown’ centrally located, or near the harbour or train station, ranging from 3 to 5-star).
N.B. If you arrive one day earlier you have the possibility to pay a visit to the world famous archaeological museum in Naples, where all the artefacts from Pompeii and Herculaneum are exposed, and/or the equally wonderful Capodimonte museum. Also is it possible to make a day trip to Pompeii.
Day 1 Arrival – Cetara
After our arrival at Cetara we get settled in at the hotel where we will meet with our tour guide and take hold of our bicycles. Tonight we eat in the restaurant of the hotel. In case you arrive early you may want to take your bicycles for a short ride to the nearby village of Vietri sul Mare, renowned for its colourful table ware ceramics, or you may go for a stroll through the historical centre of the small village of Cetara, situated at walking distance.
Hotel in Cetara – HB
Day 2 Cetara to Sorrento
On the first day of our trip we will start out from Cetara and head for splendid medieval Amalfi, following the beautiful winding coastal road, defined by some ‘the most scenic ride in the world’. Our first stop is in the idyllic village of Cetara, famous for its tuna fish production. Here we can take our time for a cup of coffee or a cappuccino at the little bar near the tiny port of the village, overlooking the colourful fishermen’s boats lying on the white sandy beach. Then it goes on to Capo d’Orso, one of the highest points of the road, offering a wonderful outlook on the whole of the Amalfi Coast and Capri. An exhilarating descent on a beautiful winding road through lemon groves, forests and dramatic cliffs, brings us to Maiori, the biggest town on this stretch of the coast, and to Minori, a delightful little village with its nice centre and beautiful seaside boulevard. Then we continue with a short climb to Castiglione and the little whitewashed village of Atrani and the splendid town of Amalfi. We can halt here for a quick visit to some of the town’s most important monuments and why not, a mid-morning ‘gelato’ near the beach. After leaving Amalfi we continue on the second half of the dramatic ‘Strada Amalfitana’. Shortly after Amalfi we will pass by the scenic ‘Grotta Azzurra’ sea cave which is open to the public and the spectacular ‘fjord’ of Furore, a deep canyon opening up to the sea in which a small fishermen’s village clings to the rocky cliffs. We then pass through Praiano and Positano, easily the most scenic – and mundane – of the little towns on the Amalfitan Coast. After Positano the coast becomes wilder and more rugged, and it is a good climb to arrive at the Colli di San Pietro, beautifully situated on the ridge that separates the Amalfi Coast from the rest of the Sorrentine Peninsula. We now cycle on the plateau high above the coast towards the very end of the peninsula, Punta Campanella. From the very last village (indeed: called ‘Termini’) we have a great view on Capri. We then start riding along the northern coast, with wonderful views of the Bay of Naples and Mount Vesuvius, through the charming village of Massa Lubrense to the seaside resort of Sorrento, perched on high vertical limestone cliffs above the sea. Here we will settle in at our hotel before going out to visit the city’s walls and the old town centre with its wonderful gardens and villas. Dinner is on your own tonight, you have the choice of several different pizzeria and restaurants catering for the most divers budgets.
Distance : 70 km – Altitude gain : 950m – Cycling time (no breaks included) : 4 hours
Hotel in Sorrento – BB
Day 3 Sorrento to Amalfi
Today we will cycle from Sorrento through the foot hills of Mount Faito in direction of Castellamare di Stabia, after which we climb up to Agerola situated up in the mountains on the plateau between the Sorrentine and Amalfitan sides of the peninsula, before descending again to Amalfi. From Sorrento we will follow quiet back roads to Piano di Sorrento, after which we start climbing up the foot hills of Mount Faito. Once we arrive in the small village of Arola, our road starts snaking through this hilly country, taking us up and down and down and up again, through the villages of Ticciano, Casola and Massaquano, before descending to the seaside resort town of Vico Equense on the Sorrentine Coast. Here we can make a short stop for a cup of coffee on a terrace overlooking the Gulf of Naples, with the backdrop of Mount Vesuvius. From Vico Equense we will follow part of the main road along the coast to the town of Castellamare di Stabia, once the location of several luxurious Roman villas hidden in lush countryside. From Castellamare we start climbing up the road leading to the villages of Gragnano and Pimonte, which brings us to the ample valley of Agerola, famous for its locally produced mozzarella cheese. We pass through the village arriving at Bomerano, where we will stop for lunch, and then continue to the monument to Fausto Coppi at the ‘belvedere’ panoramic point. After admiring the view we launch into the exhilarating descent to the Amalfi Coast, full of hairpin curves, made famous by the epic battles in Italy’s ‘Giro’ between Coppi and Bartali. Only they did it the other way around, climbing up the incredibly steep ramps from the coast to Agerola! We will pass through the village of Furore, and shortly after circle the higher end of its ‘fjord’, before turning of the main road and climbing up to Pogerola. This little village is situated on a high cliff face overlooking Amalfi. After a last pause to enjoy a cup of coffee, and the marvellous view on the coast, we then return to the main road and descend the last couple of km to the medieval centre of Amalfi. After freshening up in our hotel, we will have plenty of time to visit the tiny town’s ‘Duomo’ with the Paradise Cloister, and stroll through its little back alleys. Those who want can visit at the local Paper Museum, offering an interesting look at the centuries old local paper production. We also shouldn’t forget to taste the locally produced ‘limoncello’ lemon liquor! In the evening we then all join for a great evening meal. We are picked up by private boat and brought to a nice restaurant located in a beautiful little bay nearby. After dinner we travel back to our hotel, gliding by boat over the glorious Mediterranean.
Distance : 65 km – Altitude gain : 1500m – Cycling time (no breaks included) : 4 hours
Hotel in Amalfi – HB
Day 4 Amalfi to Salerno
On our last cycling day we will head from Amalfi to Ravello and Tramonti, up in the mountains, and then back again to Salerno. After leaving from Amalfi, we turn inland at Castiglione and start climbing up the steep winding road along the narrow valley of the ‘Dragone’ torrent and underneath the rock cliffs of Ravello. Ravello, one of the main highlights of the Amalfi Coast not only has a very interesting history, and many medieval monuments, but also offers beautiful views over the Amalfi Coast, and boasts great villas with stupendous gardens. After admiring the local ‘Duomo’, we pay an extensive visit to the dramatically located Villa Rufolo and Villa Cimbrone, with their amazing gardens and some of the coast’s most famous viewpoints. We can opt for an early lunch here or first continue inland through some surprising wild scenery in direction of the valley of Tramonti, and find a suitable picnic spot in the latter village. From Tramonti we then descend along a winding road towards the Amalfi Coast again, to arrive at Maiori with its wide seaside boulevard. After a short stop for coffee, we start heading for Salerno, first climbing up to Capo d’Orso and then down again to Cetara. Shortly before arriving at Vietri sul Mare, we turn inland and climb up to delightful Raito clinging to the hills. From Raito it then goes still up to Benincasa and Dragonea, to arrive at the millennium old abbey of Cava dei Tirreni, located in a small hamlet on the slopes of Mount Finestra high above the town itself. After paying a short visit to the abbey, we descend into the town and visit its particular historical centre. Here we have the time for a refreshing drink in one of the many bars lining its main square. From Cava dei Tirreni we then climb up again – for the last time during this tour – to the hamlets of Maddalena and Croce. Here we are rewarded with a marvellous view of the Gulf of Salerno. Cycling down towards Salerno we will pass its impressive medieval castle, where we halt for a short visit, before entering the city and finally turning in at our hotel. After freshening up, we have plenty of time for a stroll through the historical city centre and why not, do some shopping, before finding a nice place to for a pre-dinner ‘aperitivo’. In the evening you are free to go out and find a suitable restaurant to end your wonderful trip through one of Italy’s most delightful coastal areas.
Distance : 66 km – Altitude gain : 1600m – Cycling time (no breaks included) : 4 hours
Hotel in Salerno – BB
Day 5 End of the tour
The tour ends in Salerno after breakfast today. A train transfer can take you back to Naples. A taxi transfer to other destinations can be arranged on request.
Why choose a cycling tour along the Amalfi Coast? Just have a look at the scenery !!!
Amalfi Coast Biking Tour
ACCOMMODATION & MEALS
All nights are spent in beautiful hotels (generally 3-star). All rooms have en-suite facilities.
Dinners are not included on the second and last night of the tour.
No picnic lunches are included in the tour price, but these can be prepared for us by the accommodation holders, or materials for picnics can be purchased in the villages where we will be passing through.
Night 1: The first night is spent in a beautifully located hotel, just outside the charming fishermen’s village of Cetara. The hotel has a marvellous view of the Bay of Salerno and a private beach.
Night 2: This night is spent in a nice hotel in Sorrento, at only a few minutes from the historical centre.
Night 3: The next night we stay in a beautiful 4-star hotel in the centre of the little town of Amalfi. From the hotel we can easily walk into town.
Night 4: The last night you will stay in a good 3 or 4-star hotel in downtown Salerno. The hotel is within walking distance of all the major points of interest of the town.
On our GUIDED TOURS we include almost everything:
Private English speaking tour leader for 5 days
• Professional guiding service for each activity
• Accommodation: 1 night Cetara, 1 night Sorrento, 1 night Amalfi,
1 night Salerno in ***/**** hotels
• Meals: 4 breakfasts, 2 dinners
• All private & public transfers as indicated throughout the entire itinerary
• Support van & mechanical assistance for the duration of the tour
• Entrance fees of all sites along the itinerary
• Special activities as outlined in the day by day itinerary
• 24/24 h local assistance
• Luggage transport
• Departure taxes
• Travel Insurance
• Drinks and meals not mentioned in the itinerary
• Optional additional tours or activities
• Items of personal nature
• Bicycle rental (high quality road racing bikes. Click here for more details.
You may want to bring your own saddle and pedals)
LEVEL OF DIFFICULTY
Moderate (3): Moderate rides (to road biking standards!) with inevitably several climbs, some short stretches of which can be quite strenuous. All roads are well paved and mostly quiet with little traffic except for some stretches between Sorrento and Castellamare di Stabia. Extensions or shortcuts are possible on some days.
Fitness: Experience with road bicycling and a good general physical condition are necessary to make your travel experience enjoyable. You should be able to cycle for several hours a day and long distances also in hot dry weather conditions.
ARRIVAL & DEPARTURE
Arrival: The tour starts in CETARA which can easily be reached by bus from Salerno, which is only a one hour train ride from Naples. Naples has an international airport. From Rome (and many other cities) Naples and Salerno can easily be reached.
Departure: The tour ends after breakfast on day 5 in SALERNO. A short transfer can bring you to the local train station from where Naples can easily be reached.
|Places available. You can book this tour with a minimum of 1 person.|
|Guaranteed Departure. Still some places available.|
|There are a very limited number of available places on these dates. Immediate booking is recommended.|
|Availability and prices on request.|
|Fully booked. Departure closed.|
- Prices are per person and based on 2 people sharing double or twin accommodation.
- Single rooms (mostly double rooms - single use) are available on all trips. The supplements listed apply.
- Prices are expressed in Euro's. There will never be a currency surcharge.
- Actual exchange rates: GB £ - US $ - CAN $ - CHF - DKK - SEK - NOK - Other currencies.
- A 5 % early booking discount applies for several trips.
Amalfi Coast Bike Tour
Amalfi Coast Cycling Tour
It is possible to extend your tour with a few days at Salerno, along the beautiful Amalfi Coast or at Naples. Details and prices on request. Extra cycling and/or sightseeing options can be provided!
It is possible to book an upgrade in some of the places en route. Details and prices on request.