My last trip to Sorrento was in the dead middle of December and the beach village was a damn ghost town. When I visited last weekend, the town was alive with beachgoers. The religious holiday, Ferragosto, marks the middle of August when Italians go on vacation and head to the coast. Entire cities practically close down in the name of la dolce vita.
Every inch of beach and deck space was covered in vacationers soaking up the sun. Outdoor restaurants were filled with families sharing seafood, pasta and white wine. The scent of grilled fish, basil and garlic wandered from back kitchens to alleyways in the marina.
There are two components, at a minimum, that are going to contribute to the success of your summer day in Sorrento: a decent sun lounging situation and gelato.
In Sorrento’s Marina Grande, sun beds and umbrellas are very affordable. You can rent two sun beds and an umbrella for under €10.
Over on the main beach area, Peter’s Beach charges €10-€13 for each item. So, two sun beds and an umbrella are over €30.
BYOT- If you bring your own towel, expect to be on the hunt for the few square feet of free beach space. If this is your MO, get there early. This area of beach resembled a mat-to-mat yoga class in San Francisco with shirtless, sweaty men and their fancy mat towels covering every inch of floor space.
Which ever you choose, expect to get cozy with your neighbor. Beach space is at a premium and the decks are crowded. I know I’ve expressed this sentiment on instagram, but how genius are European sun loungers? The face shield situation is brilliant. Why aren’t those in America yet?
I’d be curious what the gelato shop per capita ratio is in Sorrento. It seems like there’s one on every corner. I’ve encountered the rare “bad gelato” throughout my travels in Italy before, but for the most part you can’t go wrong.
Gelato Primavera is one of the most popular shops in Sorrento. Find photos of various celebrities who’ve visited taped up to the wall.
Almost all of the flavors at Raki are gluten free. They have GF cones too!!
Once you’ve nailed the sun bed situation and grabbed a gelato, you’ll truly be living la dolce vita. Sorrento is what Italian summer dreams are made of.