Italy has a large collection of coastal postcard villages, each with its own landscape of breathtaking views of the vast ocean. These picturesque villages with rows of colorful houses that cover the spectacular rocky walls will make you want to change the bustle of the great cities of Rome, Milan, and Florence, for the coastal charm and relative tranquility. In this article, we show you ten of the most beautiful coastal villages in Italy, but we will let you know: there are many more. The best way to discover them? Take advantage of the next summer vacation to travel to the Italian coast and get drunk with the atmosphere of la dolce vita.
It would not be an exaggeration to say that Positano is one of the most beautiful places on earth and, of course, one of the most beautiful coastal villages in Italy. This small town on the Amalfi Coast impresses visitors with its pastel-colored houses perched in the mountains that rise above the sea. John Steinbeck, a famous American writer who lived here in 1953, wrote: " It is a dream place that is not very real when you are there and becomes real after you are gone " ... Although you may never want to leave. Of course: Wear comfortable shoes, since the roads are mostly steep stairs.
Positano has lived many lives: as an important commercial route during the Renaissance, a fishing village forgotten during the industrial revolution and, finally, a city of idyllic beaches that undergoes a modern renaissance thanks to holiday tourism. As a suggestion, you can choose to spend a day at the beach of Spiaggia del Fornillo, a smaller and easier alternative to travel to the popular Spiaggia Grande. In addition, the town of Positano offers the option of traveling by boat to the nearby islands of Capri and Ischia and to the Grotta dello Smeraldo cave.
The five villages that make up the Cinque Terre in the Italian Riviera are undoubtedly among the most beautiful coastal villages in Italy, but among them, Manarola is the most picturesque and photogenic. The stepped vineyards are curved around the slopes that join the five locations, and from Manarola, you can easily access the other four (Riomaggiore -which we will talk about later-, Corniglia, Vernazza and Monterosso al Mare) by train and route Hiking
Portofino and its distinctive crescent port are located on the Ligurian coast, in the province of Genoa of the Italian Riviera. This fishing village became a movie destination thanks to dolce vita in the 50s and 60s, when movie stars like Humphrey Bogart, Clark Gable, Elizabeth Taylor, and Sophia Loren spent their vacations here. Nowadays it is also popular among celebrities (it is not in vain one of the most beautiful coastal villages in Italy ) and now it is full of luxurious superyachts, but it does not lose its charm.
Santa Cesarea Terme
Santa Cesarea Terme is an idyllic village of the Adriatic Sea that sits atop a rugged plateau overlooking the sea in Puglia. This is a little tourist area since foreigners do not usually visit the southern «heel» of the boot that is Italy. But the locals claim that it is one of the most beautiful coastal villages in Italy and they sing their praises, from pristine beaches with crystal clear waters to the relaxed lifestyle of its inhabitants.
The city is characterized by the typical architecture of the early 20th century, and its coast is dotted with hot springs, located in four natural caves along the cliff. The underground caverns and rocky strata are responsible for the hot springs, celebrated for their healing properties, took the 18th-century aristocrats to the small coastal village and are making them gain fame again among those tourists seeking beauty and spa treatments.
Cagliari has the best of both worlds; a rich history and a city dotted with Roman ruins, along with the lively and youthful atmosphere of its elegant beaches. This beautiful town, whose Sardinian name means «Castle», has it all: beautiful beaches, magnificent Italian architecture, many shops, cafes and restaurants, wildlife and parks. On the beach of Poetto, flamingos roam the swampy areas and people picnic under the umbrellas. The old part of the city at the top of the hill is certainly worth exploring. Go up to Castello for a walk through the narrow cobblestone streets, visit the impressive Bastione San Remy, and walk towards Piazza Indipendenza to enjoy a glorious panoramic view of the city and the sea.
Riomaggiore is part of the aforementioned Cinque Terre area and is the largest and most eastern town of the five that make it up. Located on the virgin and serene blue waters of the Gulf of Genoa, Riomaggiore is famous for its sweet wine, Sciacchetra, made with Bosco, Vermentino, and Albarola grapes. The multicolored ravine of the Riomaggiore buildings is where the famous Sentiero Azzurro begins (the path that connects the five villages of the Cinque Terre), and its photogenic architecture and relaxing beaches will not leave you indifferent.
Located at the point where sea and mountains meet, and where lemon plantations alternate with deep valleys, Sorrento is undoubtedly one of the most beautiful coastal towns in Italy thanks to its extraordinary landscape. Located in the province of Naples, the civilized old town is known for its production of lace and ceramics. Drink a glass of Falanghina and enjoy the atmosphere in Piazza Tasso, a paradise for those looking to soak up Italian life and culture. The beauty of the city and the rocky natural environment compensate for its lack of beach, which is also irrelevant for its privileged location; Amalfi Coast to the north, beautiful Italian countryside to the east and the island of Capri a short distance from the coast.
Polignano a Mare
The impressive town of Polignano a Mare stands on a cliff in the Adriatic Sea. In addition to the stunning views over the Adriatic, the small town also has lovely whitewashed streets, charming old churches and a beach with warm turquoise waters, flanked on both sides by cliffs.
Located in the province of Bari, it is believed that its historic center is one of the most important ancient settlements in Apulia, and has a maze of houses and narrow alleys, as well as many panoramic terraces with views. Along with its rich history, Polignano is known to have hosted the world diving competitions organized by Red Bull.
This small fishing village in the province of Genoa is a popular holiday destination among the locals and one of the most beautiful coastal villages in Italy. Located on the Italian Riviera, just two hours drive from Milan, it has a large beach, beautiful colorful houses and hiking trails that meander through the hills.
Camogli is not only pretty but also growing surprisingly. In addition to the beautiful caramel-colored houses, there is a small harbor with shops and restaurants, a carousel near the water, and a large square where children can play and adults can drink coffee while they relax.