We ferried over from Positano to Sorrento and changed our base for the next few days primarily to be able to rock climb over the ocean in Punta Campanella. We also took advantage of Sorrento’s proximity to Capri and made a day trip there.
Climbing in Punta Campanella
There is stunning rock climbing along the Amalfi Coast. While it’s not as famous as many of the other climbing destinations, there are plenty of bolted routes along the Sorrentine Peninsula. Given the southern exposure and warm temperatures there are only a couple of crags that are not too hot in the summer and one of these is Punta Campanella.
Given we weren’t familiar with the area, we decided to do a guided trip to check this area out. Francesco picked us up from Sorrento and drove us to the trailhead. The trail is used for hikers and fisherman as well so it is mostly a paved path. Towards the end, there is a short scramble down to the rocky shore right on the sea. There are about 25 routes along the coast and they are all bolted.
It’s hard not to fall in love with this place. This unique white limestone offers various types of climbs, all with stunning views of the ocean and some with views of Capri. It’s even possible to go for a swim in between climbs!
We made it a leisurely day climbing all single pitch routes and enjoying caprese sandwiches in between climbs. Francesco even brought his jet boil to make an afternoon coffee, which felt very Italian!
We finished our day just after sunset and and walked back along the path taking in the view of Capri at dusk before making our way back to Sorrento. We then undid all our hard work by carb loading on amazing pasta at Semola Pasta Bar.
Sailing to Capri
On our second day in Sorrento, we left early in the morning and took a small boat cruise to Capri. Leaving early allowed our group to be the first boat to Capri and arrive at the Blue Grotto before it opened for the day which was great to avoid the queues.
While the grotto is 25 by 60 meters inside, the entrance is only 1 meter high. You are unfortunately not allowed to swim in so we transferred from our boat to a small rowboat where we had to lay backwards to fit through the grotto entrance. Once inside, our boat captain sang a traditional folk song while we marvelled at the intense blue colour of the sea.
It was then time to set sail along the coast of Capri. Our captain pointed out several highlights such as the green grotto (which you can no longer swim in), the white grotto, various rock formations and the Punta Carena lighthouse before docking at Marina Piccola.
We had several hours to explore the island so we went up to the Piazetta to check out the town and take in the views but ultimately we decided that the water was what made this place magical. We found a couple deck chairs at a beach club near the marina to swim in the crystal clear waters around the island.
Once back on the boat, we had some more time to admire the coastal scenery and get in another swim before heading back to Sorrento.
We were back in Sorrento before sunset which was perfect for being able to have an apertivo on the Tasso Hotel Terrace before strolling down to Marina Grande for dinner at Trattoria de Emilia.
We really enjoyed Sorrento and had the debate on how much time to spend here on our final day on the coast. Our compromise was to have breakfast on the hotel terrace and make our way to Bagni Salvatore, a beach club near the hotel, for a final swim before before catching a ferry to Naples (and then a train to Rome). It was difficult to leave this peaceful seaside town!