Campania Holidays

A tasty slice of southwest Italy

Cast your eyes to the Campania region in southwest Italy, and you’ll find some of the country’s most spectacular scenery. Rolling hills and pastoral countryside scenes abound, not to mention the dazzling Amalfi Coast and bustling Naples – Italy’s third largest city. Campania holidays can also take in Italy’s largest national park, Cilento, and Vallo di Diano National Park. Given the abundance of great-quality produce grown in the area, it’s unsurprising that Campania holidays are a mecca for foodies.

The region is well-known for its fruit, vegetable and flower production – particularly nuts, tomatoes and lemons – while the Amalfi Coast is celebrated for its seafood and high proportion of Michelin-starred restaurants. Much-loved dishes such as ‘spaghetti alle vongole’ and ‘caprese’ salad hail from this region, but its most famous dish comes from Naples – the city where pizza was born.

But holidays to Campania aren’t just about eating – you’ll find history, incredible architecture and wild beauty in abundance. One day can be spent exploring the ruins of Pompeii, the next on a boat trip to tour the islands of Capri, Ischia and Procida. With cities, coastal countryside and mountains to explore, the hardest part of a holiday to Campania will be deciding how long you wish to stay.

Three tips for a top trip

Rent a car

One of the best ways to explore all 40 kilometres of the Amalfi Coast is by car. Rent your own and follow the coast to Sorrento and pastel-hued Positano.

Sample the local wine

Campania is one of Italy’s oldest wine-making regions – be sure to try the mineral-rich wines from the volcanic soil around Mount Vesuvius.

Pack walking shoes

There’s much to do in Campania, and it’s by no means flat. Naples can be deceptively hilly, too – a funicular is well worth boarding for the views.

Best attractions to see in Campania

Naples

Explore the city’s Unesco World Heritage historic centre and impressive castles, and gorge on authentic pizza. Don’t miss the chance to explore the’ labyrinth of underground tunnels, either.

Mount Vesuvius

Mount Vesuvius is one of mainland Europe’s only active volcanoes – explore the jaw-dropping post-eruption ruins of Pompeii and Herculaneum while you’re at it.

Sorrento

Scattered down cliffs overlooking the Bay of Naples, the town of Sorrento is picture-perfect. Sample the local limoncello then hop on a boat trip to Capri.

Your Campania questions, answered

Campania has a warm and favourable climate throughout all of the year. You can expect highs of approximately 31°C in the summer and 14°C in winter.
The ancient ruins of Pompeii are just 26 kilometres from Naples. This incredible historic site is approximately 40 minutes by train from the city centre.
Any time of year is good. For sun worshippers and beach lovers, summer is a natural choice as the weather is consistently hot and sunny. Autumn and spring bring milder temperatures, perfect for those who want to sightsee while avoiding the heat of high summer. Winter is a quieter season, especially around the coast, and prices are much lower at this time. Christmas in Naples is delightful, with an all-out approach to festive shopping and celebration; check out Christmas Street, the famous thoroughfare with the world’s largest selection of Nativity scenes.
Limoncello is a popular Italian liqueur typically made from Sorrento lemons and a spirit such as grappa or vodka. It’s traditionally served after dinner in a chilled glass.
The Amalfi Coast is blessed with sandy expanses and secluded coves alike. The Cilento region has some of the best beaches in the area. Positano is the most popular resort, with many lovely beaches. Punta del Capo, set among the cliffs of Sorrento, has the picturesque ruins of a Roman villa nearby, while Marina di Paestum is famous for its Greek temples and crystal waters. Another beach destination worth a visit is the town of Vico Equense. It has several pretty beaches, one of which is overlooked by a 17th-century tower.
Although Campania is a great holiday choice for all travellers, it is particularly loved by families, with something for everyone. Children are welcomed throughout Italy and are well catered for with beaches, outdoor activities, child-friendly amenities, and pizza and gelato on the menu almost everywhere. Adults will love the scenery, culture, food, and wine. If you have very young children, you might enjoy a beach holiday more than a city break as cobbled streets can be tricky for prams. But whatever you decide to do, Campania is a perfect choice for a relaxing yet sophisticated family holiday.
A car is not essential but it’s the best option if you want to cover a lot of ground. A road trip through the scenic landscape of the Amalfi coast, stopping at each attractive village you pass, is a wonderful way to discover experiences off the beaten path. If you want to properly explore the coast, hiring a car will make the less crowded beaches more accessible and give you more freedom. If you’re only exploring Naples, you won’t need a car as the city is well served by a convenient metro system.
You can check out the islands off the Amalfi Coast easily by booking a boat excursion. A boat trip around the islands will take a single day, on average eight hours, and will allow you to take in the sights and experiences of the Campanian archipelago and even do some water sports. The island of Capri is the most popular destination, but Ischia and Procida are also recommended. The islands are famous for their beaches, pristine views, and exclusive spas and boutiques. You can either book a boat tour around the most popular islands, or spend more time exploring just one.
There’s so much to do and see in Campania that you should give yourself more time than you think. For a truly relaxing holiday and to sample a little of everything the region has to offer, schedule at least a week. This allows for beach days, a boat excursion to the islands, a trip to Naples or Pompeii and some time exploring the natural beauty of the national parks. If you’re after a short city break, the best of Naples can be experienced in two to five days, although you’ll definitely want to come back for more.