Nerano - Untouched Natural Beauty on the Amalfi Coast

October 12th 2010 by Laura Thayer

At the tip of the beautiful Sorrento Peninsula lies Nerano, a little known and charming fishing village on the Amalfi Coast. Escape the tourist crowds in Campania and soak up the warmth of the Mediterranean sun in this picturesque seaside village.

Southern Italy’s famous Amalfi Coast is home to villages and tiny hamlets built into the rugged coastline along the Bay of Salerno. The village of Nerano is off the tourist path and offers a secluded getaway on the stunning Amalfi Coast.

Located near the isolated and windswept point of the Sorrento peninsula, Nerano is surrounded by one of the most untouched and dramatic areas on the Amalfi Coast. It’s a landscape of rocky cliffs, ancient olive groves and intense natural beauty. Not far from Punta Campanella, the lighthouse that marks the very point of the peninsula, Nerano is a tiny village built into the mountains overlooking a pretty little harbour below. Despite its attractive setting, what brings most visitors to Nerano is the seaside hamlet of Marina del Cantone.

A steep road leads from the village of Nerano down to Marina del Cantone, where you’re greeted by brightly coloured umbrellas lining the beach and the sparkling blue Mediterranean Sea. The pebbly beach hugs the gentle curve of the quiet harbour, and the beachfront offers one lido after another where you can rent sun beds and umbrellas. Marina del Cantone is known for its clear water, which is so inviting on a sunny day that you won’t be able to resist diving in!

Nerano Amalfi Coast Campania HarborNerano Amalfi Coast Campania Harbor

The beach is lined with restaurants, nearly all offering outdoor terraces with lovely views of the harbour. The hardest part is trying to choose where to go first! While you’re in Nerano, one of the local specialties to try is Spaghetti con Zucchine alla Nerano. Pasta prepared with zucchini and parmigiano is a traditional dish all over the Amalfi Coast, but in Nerano the dish takes on a richer and creamier flavour with the addition of caciocavallo or the Provolone del Monaco D.O.P cheese made exclusively on the Sorrento Peninsula.

Nerano Amalfi Coast Marina del CantoneNerano Amalfi Coast Marina del Cantone

Marina del Cantone still feels like a sleepy fishing village. Small, colourful fishing boats resting on the beach are  reminders of the village’s humble past. Lined with a mix of quaint old buildings and more modern structures, the beachfront has maintained its old-fashioned charm.

Nature lovers will want to explore the untouched beauty of the mountainsides surrounding Nerano. One of the most beautiful walks starts in from the village of Nerano and leads to the beautiful Bay of Ieranto taking you through olive groves that are thought to have been planted by ancient Greek settlers in the area. The trail descends to the Bay of Ieranto, a protected area on the Amalfi Coast, which has spectacular views of the coastline and Capri’s famous Faraglioni rocks. The walk takes about an hour, but plan longer for enjoying the views and a dip in the clear waters at the small cove in the Bay of Ieranto.

Perhaps the best way to enjoy the beauty of Nerano is by just relaxing on the beach overlooking the harbour. The small boats moored there bob up and down in the waves stirred up by the jets and ferries passing by on their way to and from Capri and destinations on the Amalfi Coast. It’s a pleasant reminder of the hustle and bustle of daily life that you’ve escaped from on Nerano’s peaceful beach.

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Photo Credits: Laura Thayer

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  1. Laura says:

    Ciao Mark! I've been wanting to visit Nerano for years and finally got there this summer. It was fairly free of tourists, and it just had this air of calm that was so inviting and relaxing. I know I'll be going back many times next summer!

  2. Eleonora says:

    Bravaaaa! I was weaned on Peppone allo Scoglio (Antonietta's) spaghetti con le Zucchine and the lovely antipasto beforehand!! Thank you for mentioning one of La Costiera's lovliest spots. So glad you could visit it with few people around and enjoy the sweet life there. Baci Ele (sempre più homesick)

  3. Mark H says:

    What a wonderful looking location - and if it is fairly free of tourists - even better.

  4. Laura says:

    Thanks, Lisa! :-)

  5. I love the flower pot-beach photo - so pretty!

  6. Eleonora says:

    ...and congratulations on this wonderful new endeavor!

  7. Grazie Elenora! You're so sweet. Oh, the meal we had at Nerano was divine. I hope you can get down here soon to recharge your batteries. :-)

  8. Lewis says:

    This is my absolute favorite spot to dive at on the Amalfi Coast. Michele at the dive shop Nettuno ( is the best shop there!

  9. Ciao Lewis! If I were a diver this is one of the spots I'd head to as well! :-)

  10. [...] Between mountains and the sea, the town of Positano climbs the sheer cliff side with pastel colored houses stacked one on top of the next. How a town could possibly exist in such an inhospitable environment is mystifying. And, yet, once the beauty of Positano penetrates deep into your heart, all of the questioning about why and how the buildings seem to cling to the mountains fades away. What is left is the simple joy that comes from appreciating the beauty of this extraordinary town on the Amalfi Coast. [...]

  11. [...] villages clinging to the cliff sides form a dramatic backdrop to the beautiful beaches of the Amalfi Coast. Travelers come from around the world to experience the natural beauty of this coastline in [...]

  12. [...] even more color and life are the brilliant ceramic shops you’ll find in each town along the Amalfi Coast. Ceramic lovers will find these tempting shop displays as irresistible as the gorgeous views of the [...]

  13. Massimo says:

    I often visit the Amalfi coast but I didn't know Nerano! It's really a fantastic village and I think I am going to visit it next time I drive the Amalfi coast, not just Amalfi, Positano and Ravello.

  14. Breezy says:

    What is the best way to find this place? Do you have GPS coordinates? Sounds like it might be a nice get away this weekend. Thanks!

  15. Laura says:

    Ciao Breezy, I would check on Google Maps for the directions. Have a lovely visit!

  16. Breezy says:

    OK thanks!

  17. Giulia says:

    Hi Michael, Im sure that Laura can give you a little help. Thanks for popping by!

  18. Laura says:

    Ciao Michael, That sounds like a lovely vacation you have planned in Nerano! I will have to ask around for the boat service options and get back to you. I know I've seen a boat based in Nerano (called the "Nerano") in both Amalfi and Positano, but I'm not sure about its regular service. I'm sure you'll be able to find something to reach Positano and Amalfi by boat during the summer, but I'll see what information I can find. Thanks!!

  19. [...] begins with the special variety of lemons that are grown on the Sorrento Peninsula. Along the Amalfi Coast you’ll find the Limone Costa d’Amalfi cultivated in steep garden terraces. Also called Sfusato [...]

  20. I am staying in Nerano this summer and want to travel to Positano, Amalfi etc. Will I need a car for this or are there boat trips to these places from Nerano? Any help would be appreciated.

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Nerano - Untouched Natural Beauty on the Amalfi Coast