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Beaches, Sorrento

Sorrento’s beaches range from rocky secluded coves to bustling beach fronts, surrounded by a host of activities and amenities. Embrace the scenic views of the towering cliffs, which surround Sorrento’s coastline, and although some of the beaches don’t offer the typical white golden sands you expect, they are truly spectacular. So, enjoy sunbathing on the rocks, overlooking captivating scenery and add beaches to your list of scenic sights to see on Sorrento holidays. 

Castiglione Beach

Castiglione Beach is situated below the scenic cliff-top town of Ravello. It is a small, charming, pebbly beach with warm crystalline waters, surrounded and sheltered by tall cliffs.

This blissful beach can be accessed via a staircase of 186 steps from the road, and since parking close to the steps is almost impossible, it’s best to leave your car in one of the nearby car parks in Ravello; then take the little pathway to Castiglione. Plus, there are two free beach areas with a private beach located in the middle, remaining sunny until the early afternoon.

Ravello has a variety of restaurants and bars serving local cuisine, and the magnificent cliff edge terrace is the venue for Ravello’s annual Wagner Festival, as well as the Chamber Music Festival, which is organized by the Ravello Concert Society.

Travellers can also visit the hilltop Villa Cimbrone, known for its fantastic gardens, statues and fountains; a wonderful way to while away a couple of hours in the Italian sunshine.

Leonelli’s Beach

Leonelli’s beach is located in beautiful Marina Piccola, in Sorrento and has been managed by the Leonelli family for three generations.

As you arrive onto the beach via the lift, you will see that there are two very different areas to choose from. The beach itself, which is ideal for families with its shallow, safe waters and black sands make it a wonderful place for children to paddle, swim and build sand castles. Plus, the three terraces which are equipped with deckchairs, sunbeds and parasols provide a comfortable relaxing place to sunbathe.

There are free changing huts and outdoor showers, all of which are kept immaculately clean. When you feel a little peckish, why not head to the beach restaurant? Here, you will be able to sample some of the local seafood specialities, pasta, salads or pizza. If you still have room after a delicious dinner, you could try one of the delicious Italian ice-creams served at the bar, before heading back outside to soak up some more sun.

As with many beaches in Sorrento, there is a small charge to access the beach and its facilities, but this beach is certainly worth the small fare.

Leranto

Leranto beach – a natural and protected bay, can be found at the tip of the Sorrento Peninsula, near the scenic village of Nerano.

Image source: Wikimedia Commons. Copyright Rodridgo Aregenton.

If you walk down the path from Nerano to the beautiful bay of Leranto, you will come to a point where the path divides into two. From here, take the downhill path to reach the quaint beach, consisting of sand, white pebbles, varied wildlife and native flora. Not forgetting the wonderfully clear blue sea, which is perfect for snorkelling and offers amazing, awe-inspiring views.

There is a large concrete bathing platform jutting out over the water, adding an original spin on the usual beachside experience. However, you will have to access the sea via rocks and ropes. Make sure you bring refreshments with you to this beach, as there are few facilities and amenities located nearby.

If you don’t want to walk down to the bay, there are various boat trips to Leranto Beach available, departing from Nerano.

Marina Grande Beach

Marina Grande beach is a sheltered bay sitting underneath Sorrento’s limestone cliffs and is part of the Port of Marina Grande, known for its natural old-fashioned charm, combined with excellent modern-day facilities required by visitors and tourists.

The small, traditional fishing port has a small, rocky, volcanic sand beach and is an excellent spot to paddle in the water, relax on the sand, watch the fishing boats come and go, or just admire the view across the Bay of Naples. The pier that juts out into the sea has colourful booths, as well as platforms equipped with sun loungers and parasols, and the village has a number of small quaint shops to explore.

There are also plenty of bars and restaurants for when you want a refreshing drink, snack or meal. So, why not sit and admire the sunset, while sipping on a drink and watching the fishermen tend to their wooden boats, ready for the next day?

Marina Piccola Beach

Marina Piccola beach is situated very close to the historical centre of Sorrento and is accessible via an elevator, located near the beautiful church of San Francesco, or by walking down the stairs carved into the mountainside from Villa Comunale, which is a large public park.

This beach sits next to the port and consists of a small strip of volcanic sand, occupied by a number of beach establishments. Each occupies a small area of the waterfront and sundeck over the water, where sun loungers and umbrellas are set up ready for you to hire. There are also the usual facilities available here, including toilets and showers, along with restaurants and bars.

The Marina Piccola also offers a free beach area, where the sand is pebbly but the water is crystal clear and clean; making it the ideal spot for a swim. There are also sunbeds and parasols to hire on this part of the beach, and it’s a wonderful place to relax and enjoy watching the colourful fishing boats skim across the waters.

Nerano

The beach of Nerano – Marina del Cantone, is a blissful bay located on the south side of the Sorrento Peninsular, which can be accessed via foot, on a 30-minute walk through olive terraces.

The popularity of this beach dates back to ancient Roman times, when the wealthy, upper-classes spent their summer holidays here. The large pebble beach, with its crystal clear waters and sunny climate – lasting from April to late October, makes it as popular with visitors today as it was then.

There is plenty to do on this beach, including diving – exploring underwater caves, boat excursions along the coastline and fishing trips. For those who prefer to just relax and soak up the sun, there are sunbeds and umbrellas for hire and a number of restaurants nearby, where you can try the local speciality ‘spaghetti alla Nerano’, or one of the many delicious fish-based dishes.

Pignatella Beach

The beautiful Pignatella Beach is located between Sorrento and Massa Lubrense; made up of large, smooth, flat stones that act as sunbathing areas, with sun loungers and umbrellas available to hire. To get in and out of the water you need to use the system of ropes and ladders attached to these stone platforms.

Pignatella is perfect if you’re looking for a beach with a difference. The beach faces west and is sunny until late into the evening, being particularly popular with locals, who arrive on their scooters, park in the shade of the olive trees and then walk down the rocky path to meet their friends to relax and socialise.

There is a small kiosk where you can purchase drinks and snacks; even better, there is no charge to use this beach, which is quite rare in Sorrento.

Punta Del Capo

Punta del Capo is one of Sorrento’s best beaches, located just to the west of the town, with the crystal-clear waters making this beach a popular place to swim and sunbathe. Travellers can either access the beach via the lift located in Sorrento, or stroll to the end of the main street and then down the winding, scenic underfoot road.

As you walk down, you can enjoy the magnificent views of the coastline, the waterfalls and the limestone cliffs of the Capo and stop to admire the Roman Fort as you pass by. Or, watch the local fishermen as they fascinatingly fish off the rocks. The boardwalk that forms part of the pathway down to the beach is steep, providing magical, birds-eye views of the landscape from the top.

Once you reach the bottom of the beach, there are toilets, changing facilities, sun loungers and umbrellas for hire, as well as a lovely open-air bar/restaurant serving tasty food at reasonable prices.

Puolo Beach

Puolo Beach is comprised of a stretch of grey volcanic sand, part of which is privately owned by a hotel but the other section is open to the public to enjoy.

There are several bars and restaurants on the beach, serving fresh fish dishes and delicious local wine along with beers and soft drinks. There is also a solarium with sun loungers, umbrellas and deckchairs, pedal boats for hire or boats that can be rented or chartered for the day.

Because of its protected position between two cliffs, the weather feels mild and warm all year round, even in the winter months. The sea is shallow and you can paddle out quite a long way before it gets deeper. Once you have gone past the initial pebbly stretch, you will find the soft sands, as well as sparkling waters, with a large area safe for swimming, separated by a rope from the moored boats.

The beach is very well cared for with any litter being cleared up on a daily basis, and the locals take great pride in their beach and community.

Regina Giovanna

Bagni della Regina Giovanna (Baths of Queen Giovanna), is a protected pool of emerald green sea water, separated by a natural limestone archway from the open sea.

From the nearby carpark, follow the steep path past olive groves and ancient villas, until you come to the stairway which leads to the hidden pool. Here, you can swim in the shallow water and out of the cave entrance into the sea, with Vesuvius rising straight in front of you. As the water is so beautifully clear, snorkelling is very popular here, and there are thousands of tiny fish swimming under the arch. However, bear in mind you will need to bring your own gear.

To get to the tiny pebble beach here, you will embark on an exciting adventure, wading through the beautiful waters and climbing over rocks. Often, travellers prefer to find a sunbathing spot on the rocks, so they can take in the beautiful view of the Bay of Naples.

Ensure you take any food and drink you require with you to Regina Giovanna, as this beach’s secluded location means there are few places nearby to buy refreshments.