Southern Italy’s most impressive coastline by train
The Amalfi Coast and its islands make up one of the most visually stunning regions in the whole of Europe. Starting in the ancient city of Rome, and then based in Sorrento, we visit magnificent Capri and the alluring lost city of Pompeii
Our journey begins at London St Pancras International, where you meet your group and Tour Manager at Great Rail Journeys' dedicated Departure Office. From here, we board the Eurostar, travelling to Paris. Here we change trains and continue by highspeed TGV to Chambéry, where we overnight. We enjoy dinner at a local restaurant this evening.
We travel by rail to Rome, Italy's bustling capital, today. On Day 3, our full day in Rome begins with a guided tour, during which we take in the city's most iconic sights, including the incredibly well-preserved Roman Forum, and the theatrical Trevi Fountain. Following the tour, you are free to spend your afternoon savouring the sights and sounds of Rome's seductive beauty.
Rome's architecture charts the passage of time as clearly as anywhere in Europe; with wonderfully preserved monuments from the early Romans and buildings with distinctive medieval, Renaissance and Baroque features. The most famous sights are a real wonder to behold - no photo can prepare you for the sight of the Colosseum up close. Visit the superb St Peter's Basilica and the Vatican museum, stroll through Rome's atmospheric streets, ascend the monumental Spanish Steps or relax in one of Rome's many squares with a coffee or ice-cream; with its abundance of history and culture, Rome is a city with something to suit every taste.
We continue today by high-speed train to Naples, where a coach meets us to take us to Sorrento. This beautiful coastal town sits perched on a towering cliff in its own mini bay within the larger Bay of Naples, and we spend seven nights here at the 4-Star Hilton Sorrento Palace.
Today we set out along the Amalfi Coast road, which gives incredible views over the shimmering bay and the rugged island of Capri. The serpentine road twists and turns, threading through exquisite villages perched on the lush hillsides. We descend to Positano, an unspoilt traditional village perched on the mountainside, where the pretty pastel houses seemingly tumble into the turquoise sea. The town retains a distinctly old-fashioned appeal, untouched by time in its secluded gorge on the coastline, and at the beach fishermen still haul their wooden boats as they did decades ago.
After lunch together at Positano, we visit the beautiful town of Amalfi, where we have time at leisure to explore. Lively Amalfi is a true reflection of this natural coastal charm, having given its name to one of the most spectacular stretches of coastline in the world, and is dominated by its impressive cathedral and its picturesque harbour - filled with expensive yachts and colourful fishing boats. The jewel of the Amalfi Coast, this is the largest resort along this expanse of beautiful shoreline, and there are a wealth of treasures here just waiting to be discovered.
This morning we catch the Campania Express train (Standard Class) to Pompeii, the world-renowned town tragically buried by ash following the eruption of Mount Vesuvius in 79AD. The volcanic ash that fell over the city covered everything except some of the roofs of the taller buildings. While it was abandoned and forgotten until its rediscovery in 1748, the ash worked to 'freeze' Pompeii and its people in time; having spent the best part of two millennia buried by ash, Pompeii is considered the best-preserved Roman city in the world. We have a guided tour of the shops, restaurants and villas that made up this fascinating city, as well as the Amphitheatre and the Grand Theatre.
Today is free to enjoy the charming, relaxed town of Sorrento. This incredibly picturesque coastal resort sits in its own 'minibay' within the Bay of Naples, you may choose to explore the narrow cobbled streets filled with beautiful Renaissance buildings, or perhaps relax in the central square, a great place to watch the world go by. A trip to Sorrento's Chiesa di San Francesco is certainly well worth a visit. Situated beside the Villa Communale Park, the Chiesa di San Francesco is one of Sorrento's most beautiful churches, featuring Arabic porticos and stunning bougainvillea blooms draped majestically across the interlaced arches.
We travel by coach today to Herculaneum, a city of Roman ruins that was destroyed by an earthquake in 62 AD. Thanks to its close proximity to Mt Vesuvius, the eruption that blasted Pompeii had a similar effect here, fossilising much of the town. We make our way through the preserved ruins, taking in the fascinating sights of life ancient life.
Today is free to spend as you wish. The picturesque coastal resort of Sorrento is set its own 'minibay' within the Bay of Naples, surrounded by lemon orchards and farmland. Sorrento is famous for its citrus products, and Limoncello, a local liqueur made with lemon rind, is a must-try for visitors to the area.
On Day 10 we cruise to Capri, the beautiful island famed for its stunning views, rocky seashores and scenic charm. Located in the south end of the Gulf of Naples, just off the coast of the Sorrentine Peninsula, the island has attracted artists and writers for centuries. We include a ticket on the funicular railway which carries visitors to the centre of Capri, and a local guide is on hand to explain the fascinating history of the island and its people.
This afternoon, you may wish to stroll to the dramatic coastal viewpoint or ascend by bus to the pretty village of Anacapri, isolated from the world atop Capri's huge cliffs. This evening, we enjoy a farewell dinner together.
Today we transfer to by coach to Naples joining the high-speed rail service to Turin, where we overnight. On Day 12, we continue home to London via Paris.
The following departures are guaranteed to operate:
For this tour, we recommend arriving to, and departing from, London Gatwick or London Heathrow airport (LGW or LHR). London Gatwick is approximately 30 miles from your start and end point, and London Heathrow is approximately 19 miles from your start and end point.
It is your responsibility to check and fulfil the passport, visa, health and immigration requirements applicable to your itinerary. We do not accept any responsibility if you cannot travel, or incur any other loss because you have not complied with any passport, visa, immigration requirements or health formalities. You agree to reimburse us in relation to any fines or other losses which we incur as a result of your failure to comply with any passport, visa, immigration requirements or health formalities.
Provisional departure and return times, where available, can be found together with our dates and prices by clicking on the 'Prices & Availability' button. We write to all booked customers approximately 10 weeks prior to the start of their tour to advise the exact departure and return time for their particular group.
An escorted experience and travel during your tour
Comfortable accommodation in your destination
Delicious meals included
Exciting excursions and free time to explore
of travellers would recommend this tour
based on 4 verified reviews
We prefer train to plane but dragging cases and long stints a minor minus. Generlly good though a failure to book a different train home could have been a problem
When you walk into breakfast in Sorrento and see Mount Vesuvius through the panoramic windows how can a tour be improved. The tour met everything it said it would.
I thought that it was a very well organised tour. The Tour Manager was excellent, with nothing too much trouble. Hotels and tours were very good.
Were not particularly impressed with Hilton Sorrento Palace.
Well led by a helpful guide. All went well except for French Rail strke and the weather which was not up to Italian expectations. Very interestin historically of course but cloud cover precluded us from enjoying the scenery.
The tour delivered everything that was advertised - except the weather which was not as good as the pictures! The company dealt admirably with the French rail strikes.
Very good. Suggestions: A free day before starting the journey home. Capri visit moved to the day before. An extra night in Rome.
We have already submitted our comments about the Great Railways travel. This survey was given to our tour guide, Rosalia, on the final evening of out trip. We spent consuderable time respoonding to the questions and hope its not lost. Please confirm. Robert Foust John Lee
Train travel good, hotel in Sorrento accommodation good but food and service disappointing. Italian coaches turned up - eventually.
Enjoyed the tour, very impressed with tour manager.
Southern Italy’s most impressive coastline by train