PARIS AND AMALFI COAST RECOMMENDATIONS?

Thank you all for the well wishes on Tuesday’s post about our upcoming move! After months of making arrangements and keeping the news to ourselves, we are both so excited to get down there, move into our new home, and start exploring our new city. But first…

MG_0553

amalfi coast

*images one and two

Because Will has a few weeks before he starts his new job, we are taking our first trip to Europe together! Since it will be extremely hard for him to take time off once he starts work, we knew we had to seize this opportunity to travel together. I can’t tell you how lucky I feel to get to go back to Europe just weeks after visiting London and the South of France with my brother!

We settled on four days in Paris and three days on the Amalfi coast. I haven’t been to Paris in five years (since I studied abroad in nearby Tours) and Will (who studied in Barcelona) has never been. And the Amalfi coast is new to both of us and somewhere we’ve both wanted to go forever! I love asking my readers for travel recommendations because it feels like asking a girlfriend who happens to know all the best restaurants, boutiques, and museums. And it makes it even more fun to recap each trip! So tell me: what can’t we miss in Paris or on the Amalfi coast?!

48 thoughts on “PARIS AND AMALFI COAST RECOMMENDATIONS?

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

  1. I won’t bother with recommendations – you have more than enough fun places to research and keep you busy. However, I just want to make sure you pack at least one cashmere sweater and scarf for Paris. My son and I are here for his spring break and it’s quite chilly. Now, you can always run into Eric Bompart and buy a piece or two as well, but I wanted to give you a heads up – no one is running around in white denim yet. I was surprised to see so many casual sneakers out and about in fashionable places… So excited for all of the adventures you and Will have ahead! Bisous!

  2. Yay! yay! So happy for you. For Paris, I would recommend LE HIDE for dinner… hole in the wall place but the food is amazing. Also Benoit Paris is amazing for bistro food, I also love Le Baudelaire for lunch, and La Cour Jardin as well. Have an amazing trip!.

    x
    Sloane

  3. That’s awesome! I lived in Paris for 11 months, it was absolutely incredible! Here’s a quick list of some recommendations!

    Obviously don’t miss the Tuileries or the Luxembourg garden, but the Jardin des Plantes is a more hidden gem. Spend some time up at the top of Montmartre wandering the little side streets, it’s funky!

    Restaurants: le bistrot d”acote Flaubert is my personal favorite, it’s the brainchild of Micheline 3 star chef Michele Rostang, but it’s at bistrot prices. Le soufflé which is over by the Louvre is really fun, they have lunch and dessert soufflés. Angelina’s is also nearby, they’re world famous for their hot chocolate and pastries. There’s also a neat restaurant in the top of the Pompidou Center that has amazing views, it’s pricey but is very Paris.

    Finally, even though you only have 4 days, you could rent a car for an afternoon and go out to Monet’s house in Giverny. I personally only think the trip is worth it on the most beautiful, sunny days but it’s a lovely drive and the gardens in the spring are breathtaking, I would skip Versailles on your trip as it really takes a full day to get the whole feel and rushing it makes it not worth the time spent getting there and back!

  4. You have to spend a day in Positano on the Amalfi Coast! It’s a beautiful town that scales the cliff right down to the ocean, and when I was there we took a bus from Sorrento that dropped us off at the top and we walked our way down through the winding staircases between houses and along the adorable shop-lined streets. Amalfi (the town itself) was no comparison to Positano — I want to go back so bad! ENJOY!! xx

    Natalie / Salt & Sail

  5. In Ravello, stay at or at least have lunch at the Hotel Caruso – one of Jackie Kennedy’s favorite places. Their infinity pool is to die for!

  6. AH! How exciting that you have so many trips planned! I am currently studying in Paris and loving every moment of it. If you only have four days, I highly suggest a sunset at Sacre-Coeur and Montmartre, brunch at HolyBelly, a stroll through the Bastille Market (buy the almond sugar cookies, they’re to die for.), and if it’s sunny, a picnic in the Luxembourg Gardens! They just planted all the flowers and the trees are starting to bloom, one of my favorite places to sit and relax. If you want more specific restaurant recommendations, please feel free to email me! I have whole lists tacked around my apartment!

    Can’t wait to hear about your trips!
    Char

  7. You cannot miss Ravello when you visit the Amalfi Coast! The gardens there are absolutely stunning, and they offer some of the best views of the coast.

    The Amalfi Coast was one of my favorite places in Italy, however, my fiance and I spent most of our time relaxing and just enjoying the views of the coast while there. Make sure you get some limoncello and eat lots of seafood!

    1. We went to Ravello on our honeymoon 3 years ago, and it is hands-down the number 1 place I want to revisit – maybe for a big anniversary! It’s just so beautiful and charming. Cumpa Cosimo was the best restaurant we ate at in Italy… We ordered a few random dishes and at the end, the elderly lady proprietor (totally a nonna-type) came over and just looked at our empty plates and was like, “eh, 30 euros!” Everything was INCREDIBLE. There are shuttles to the other Amalfi locales but they aren’t too far.

      We stayed at the Hotel Caruso, which Gwyneth Paltrow recently included on her list of best hotels in the world. Think lemon trees outside the windows with amazing views of the sea. Ah I’m so jealous! Have fun!

  8. I stayed in Amalfi for a few days while i was studying abroad in Florence. We stayed in Sorrento. I loved just walking the narrow streets and sipping limoncello!

    I definitely recommend getting on the circumvesuvio train (really cheap) and taking a day trip to Pompeii. While it is really different than laying on the beach in Amalfi, it is INCREDIBLE. Ever since learning about Pompeii in elementary school it was on my bucket list and getting to see it in person was haunting and amazing. Vesuvius just looms over you the whole time you are there.

    I also recommend the ferry to Capri/ blue grotto from Amalfi.

  9. My husband and I went to Italy for a month in September for our honeymoon. It’s very romantic and beautiful.

    We stayed in Positano and took a day trip to Analfi as it was quite small and the whole city can be seen in half a day. I highly recommend visiting Ravello as well as it was beautiful and had amazing views and gardens.

    If you are in Positano. One of the restaurants we recommend for a home cooked Italian feast is La Tagliata. You have to call them or get your hotel to make a reservation as its quite popular and a shuttle will pick you up. Go during the sunset as its at the very top of the mountain and you get some amazing views. There is no menu. You just pay a flat rate per person and that includes unlimited wine and you keep being given huge dishes to try a bit of everything. The food was delicious.

    Another place we recommend for a fancy dinner where you get to dress up is Villa Franca. It’s a beautiful hotel and if you can afford to stay there amazing but it was out of our budget so we just had a nice dinner 🙂

    Also, if you want to spend a day on a hidden cove. Take a boat in Positano with a little red fish called Da Adolfo. The restaurant is in a hidden cove and you can only get there by boat. It’s on the beach and it has delicious seafood, it’s pretty cute and hidden and apparently Leonardo DiCaprio visited the week before us as well as Sharon Stone.

    Asides from these things, just walk around or hang out on the beach and try the gelato and pizza. You can’t go wrong. We stayed in Amalfi for 9 days and we loved it!

  10. My husband and I went to Italy for a month in September for our honeymoon. It’s very romantic and beautiful.

    We stayed in Positano and took a day trip to Analfi as it was quite small and the whole city can be seen in half a day. I highly recommend visiting Ravello as well as it was beautiful and had amazing views and gardens.

    If you are in Positano. One of the restaurants we recommend for a home cooked Italian feast is La Tagliata. You have to call them or get your hotel to make a reservation as its quite popular and a shuttle will pick you up. Go during the sunset as its at the very top of the mountain and you get some amazing views. There is no menu. You just pay a flat rate per person and that includes unlimited wine and you keep being given huge dishes to try a bit of everything. The food was delicious.

    Another place we recommend for a fancy dinner where you get to dress up is Villa Franca. It’s a beautiful hotel and if you can afford to stay there amazing but it was out of our budget so we just had a nice dinner 🙂

    Also, if you want to spend a day on a hidden cove. Take a boat in Positano with a little red fish called Da Adolfo. The restaurant is in a hidden cove and you can only get there by boat. It’s on the beach and it has delicious seafood, it’s pretty cute and hidden and apparently Leonardo DiCaprio visited the week before us as well as Sharon Stone.

    Asides from these things, just walk around or hang out on the beach and try the gelato and pizza. You can’t go wrong. We stayed in Amalfi for 9 days and we loved it!

  11. Hi!

    You will ABSOLUTELY LOVE Amalfi Coast. My family is from Sorrento and it is absolutely a gorgeous place, you must visit Positano and the island of Capri. I DEFINITELY suggest the two of you rent a small speed boat and casually tour around the island of Capri, soo utterly romantic and AMAZING!

    ENJOY!

    Cat

  12. My favorite places to eat in Paris are Ralph’s for brunch (they have a beautiful garden) and La Plage for dinner. They won’t dissapoint! Have fun!

    Becky
    The Becky DIaries

  13. I just got back from spending a semester abroad in Paris and I lived on Rue Montorgueil in the 2nd. It’s a tiny street with a ton of character (similar to rue clare but all the cafes, boucheries and boulangeries are permanent) super centrally located near Les Halles, just minutes from the Louvre in one direction and Notre Dame on the other but a little more of the grid and not quite as packed with tourists. Its also home to the oldest patisserie in Paris, Patisserie Strohrer with the most amazing eclairs you will ever taste! Even the Queen of England made a special stop there the last time she was in Paris!

  14. This is so exciting! Hope the two of you have a great time. Next year I’ll be heading to England for a semester to study so I’ll totally be revisiting your recap post to get some ideas for a weekend trip!

  15. I would love to visit the Amalfi… it has been on my list for a long time now! But I can say a few things for Paris! Go to Angelina on the Rue de Rivoli (right by le Louvre) for the most amazing hot chocolate. They’re also well known for their Mont Blancs, but the hot chocolate alone is a meal in itself! Try the Musée de l’Orangérie for a slightly different museum experience – it’s in the Jardin des Tuileries, again by le Louvre but down at the end by Place de la Concorde and it’s a lot smaller than the rest of the museums but by far my favourite – especially the two rooms dedicated to Monet’s waterlilies, they are absolutely beautiful! I think it often gets overlooked by tourists so is less busier but so much better than crowding around to be disappointed by the Mona Lisa!!
    Charlotte x
    La Vie en Gâteaux

    1. Congratulations on your upcoming move and now a Europe trip! I will have to second the Musée de l’Orangérie…although I have never been there, I was kicking myself for not going when I studied abroad. If you like impressionistic pieces then I’m sure this place is for you. I haven’t been to the Almafi Coast but now that you mention it and after reading everyone’s post here maybe I have to add it to my list!

  16. My husband and I drove from Rome and all I remember about the Amalfi coast is that we were going to die .. lol. The road is super narrow, the tour buses are huge and the cliff is just a drop away. However, once we got to Sorrento .. it was fabulous.. what a lovey town. We didn’t do much in Sorrento as my main goal was to see Pompeii.

    Have a wonderful trip !!

    Monica.

  17. Ugh, I’m useless when it comes to this! I haven’t been to Paris in 7 years now (time really flies!). BUT, I hope you have the most amazing time and cannot wait for your recap!! I just blogged about my weekend in NYC but it was all so rushed that I probably missed your top recommendations. Oh well, guess it’s an excuse to go back soon! Have an amazing trip 🙂

  18. Congrats on the move and the trip! If you’re in Sorrento, there are plenty of places to buy cute sandals, but my favorite store is called Corcione (Corso Italia, 80067 Sorrento Napoli, Italy). It’s a father/son shop and they’ll measure your feet, adjust them, and make them right in front of you. It’s such a fun experience and you’ll think of it every time you wear them. Every time I go back to the Amalfi Coast I stop in for a replacement pair. Last time, I made friends with an *adorable* little Italian girl having sandals made at the same time. (And there are a few bars/shops nearby so Will can wander if he gets bored ;)) Enjoy!

  19. If you’re any where near Sorrento on the Amalfi coast, be sure to take the ferry over to Capri for the day! The best way to see the island is to rent a boat and take a ride around the entire island (it costs around 20 euro and takes only 2 hours). There are tons of boat rental stalls where the ferry docks. When I was there my friends and I rented one, bought some Italian antipasti snacks, and the boat driver gave us a complimentary bottle of strawberry wine that we finished in about 10 minutes. So fun! Also, try to visit Anacapri – the town at the very top – and ride the Mount Solaro chairlift. It’s so worth it, even if you’re afraid of heights! FYI, the beaches there are very rocky so you’ll have to bring/rent chairs if you want to suntan (also, comfortable shoes!).

  20. please go for drinks if you are not already staying there at Santa Caterina. It is the most wonderful and beautiful terrace and hotel I have ever stayed at. It is heaven on earth.

  21. mackenzie! you’re going to have such an amazing time in Amalfi! I would recommend as others are saying to definitely stay in Positano, it’s centrally located, and so quaint, you can walk / hike up the winding stairs / road to wherever you’re staying. as you’re walking down / up you pass adorable restaurants, little shops, markets, and the view is amazing, and the walking helps burn all the calories you eat in gelato! a few of my favorite things that I hope you can experience as well!

    1. eat at donna rosa (http://www.drpositano.com/) the restaurant arranges transportation for you, just call ahead of time, it’s high up the mountain in a small village and the most amazing food, and the service is great, family owned.
    2. da adolfo beach club – someone else mentioned this, and its great, the little boat ride that picks you up at the main beach in positano is so scenic and you land on a beach with amazing food and drinks.
    3. visit le sirenuse – the restaurant is good, over the top, but good, and so pretty, make sure to request a table next to the side, so you have the best view of the coast (and their bath products are amazing, so visit the bathroom!, I was sad that the gift shop was closed when we arrived that evening for dinner!)
    3. visit capri, even if it’s just for the day, we went in the morning, walked around, saw the shops, had lunch, and then did a private boat tour (http://www.capri.com/en/c/capri-whales) for the afternoon, about four hours long. Our guide was great, he stopped and let us swim, and we literally went around the entire island and were able to see the homes, and the private yachts that people had parked off the coast!
    4. I dont know the name of it, but be sure to get a lemon sorbet from the little tourist shop that is right next to the boat docks in positano, I dream about it.

    lastly, something i would not recommend, is visiting the actual town of amalfi. we took a ferry one afternoon and I was not impressed, alot of tourists, the buses drive into this town, and just seems overcrowded.

    I hope this helps!! you’re going to have a wonderful time!

  22. Hi Mackenzie! The Amalfi coast is one of my favorite spots in the world. There’s nothing like a sunny day and the pebble beach in Positano. I would definitely have some shoes made in Positano. Have a cocktail on the beach while you wait. Don’t miss Ravello – the view from the Palazzo Avino is one of my favorite in Europe. When you’re done there, grab a gelato in the main piazza and wander the gardens. It’s worth the drive up the hill and away from the more touristy parts of Positano and Amalfi town. I love to have dinner in Praiano – a tiny town between Positano and Amalfi. The Hotel Tramanto D’Oro is a little family owned place with great food and a gorgeous balcony restaurant. The town of Amalfi is well worth a visit, too. If you have time, catch a ferry over to Capri for a day. You won’t regret it. Have a wonderful trip!

  23. I’m not sure how much you’ve been to Paris before, but I’m assuming you’ve done the touristy things already! Here are my other recommendations: If you haven’t already figured out where you’re staying, consider renting an apartment in Paris instead of staying at a hotel. This summer I stayed in an apartment on Rue Cler through Paris Perfect (www.parisperfect.com / the Syrah apartment) and it was amazing pretending to live like the locals. The apartment is right above one of the best markets in Paris so you can make your own fresh dinner from the market and it’s only a 5 minute walk from the Eiffel Tower.

    Some amazing restaurants on Rue Cler (we eventually figured out that we should just eat every meal here as it was all wonderful):
    – Cafe du Marche
    – La Petit Cler
    – Cafe Roussillon (Rue de Grenelle + Rue Cler)
    – Tribeca (best pizza in Paris)

    Also Cafe Constant, which is the most laid-back & easiest to get into of Christian Constant’s restaurants. The food is out of this world. http://www.maisonconstant.com/cafe-constant/

    One last recommendation is Collin’s Pub on Rue de Grenelle – a small, eclectic place where a lot of younger French people go. Met really interesting people there. Hope that helps!

  24. Hello!
    When I studied abroad in Florence, Italy I spent a long weekend at the Amalfi coast. We stayed in Capri and Sorrento (both perfect places!) I would recommend doing a boat tour of the island of Capri and be sure to go into the blue grotto. The cool thing about Sorrento is that there is a lemon/orange orchard in the middle of the town that you can walk through. I would try to get to Naples and then island hop around the coast by ferry! Super jealous! Enjoy your trip! I can’t wait to see your pictures!

  25. My husband and I did the Amalfi Coast as part of our honeymoon! I absolutely adored the amalfi coast and cannot wait to go back… recommendations you cannot miss:

    Positano:
    – Le Sirenuse hotel is gorgeous. We stayed there for three nights and were spoiled! Even if you’re not staying there, pop in for a cocktail at their outdoor Oyster bar, or induldge in dinner at their Michelin star restaurant. the views are incredible.
    – Da Adolfo- this is a little restaurant that you need to get to by boat! It has it’s own beach, and the food is delicious. Down by the dock at the beach in positano, look for the little boat with the red fish on top. They will take you to the restaurant where you can drink pitchers of white wine with peaches (incredible) and try their dishes. It was one of our favorite things in Positano- do not miss it! the Londoner has a great post about it here: http://www.thelondoner.me/2013/08/da-adolfo-positano.html

    Ravello:
    The little town of Ravello is tucked away in the mountains of the Amalfi coast and has the most incredible views. We stayed at Palazzo Avino- the grounds and interiors are to die for. Definitely go there for a drink or dinner and walk the grounds and enjoy the views. They’re UNREAL. The town itself is adorable, and reminded me of a small village you’d find in a disney movie. super cute and fun to explore.
    http://www.palazzoavino.com/
    Mamma Agata’s cooking school- favorite thing there- we did this class which was located in this woman’s house looking over the sea. she teaches a small group to cook a variety of Italian dishes with her mother. It’s mostly observation, and lots of eating and enjoying their wine- such a fun day, i couldn’t recommend this enough. From the lemon cake, to the eggplant, to the pastas… I’m having dreams just thinking about this!
    http://www.mammaagata.com/

    Enjoy- can’t wait for your posts!

  26. You will love the Amalfi coast! My husband and I spent the second week of our honeymoon there last fall, and it’s absolutely breathtaking. The two highlights of our week were both on Capri. The first was a full-day boat charter with Gianni’s Boat and our lovely captain Paolo. It’s a mom & pop shop, complete with homemade picnic lunch from Paolo’s mother, and it was incredible. Our other highlight was a spectacular meal at Da Tonino, which Paolo recommended and lives up to the hype. They have an incredible wine menu and exceptional food. I hope you and Will have a lovely time!

  27. You MUST take an early morning walk through the 5th and 6th arrondissements! When I was studying abroad, I made a habit of taking an early morning walk starting at a creperie kitty-corner to Notre Dame. After grabbing breakfast and a coffee, I’d cross the Seine via the nearest bridge into the 5th and then 6th. The neighborhoods, people watching and quiet beauty of Paris and St. Germain early in the morning are irreplaceable. You’ll end at the Eiffel Tower just in time to have lunch at a nearby cafe!
    Katharine
    http://www.paytington.com

  28. Positano! it’s so gorgeous and easy to take day trips from. The coast is definitely scary to drive on if you’re renting a car so I would be wary or plan accordingly with a driver! Joanna Goddard actually posted a blogpost awhile back about Courtney Adamo’s family who spends every Summer there- has some great insights: http://bit.ly/1FWNJll

  29. Congrats on your upcoming move, vacation, and life changes! Can I babysit Rory while you’re gone? 🙂

    For Amalfi coast first thing that comes to mind is to relax.. we spent 3/4 days there this past October. Going into it I really wanted to see Amalfi, Positano, and Sorrento. Even though they’re all located pretty close, you need a ferry to get from one to the other and its not the quickest trip. I wish we’d picked one place to stay and then made a day trip to Positano or vice versa. Tell me where you’re staying (Amalfi or Positano) and I can recommend more details.

  30. If you’re up for a workout/unbelievable views, do the Path of Gods hike from Amalfi to Positano. It’s about 3.5 hours and there are a bajillion steps at the end of it but the views are sooooo worth it.

  31. Ah Mackenzie! I am so jealous of you and all your adventures. You have so much fun and exciting stuff going on in your life right now. I am also planning a similar trip for this summer with some girl friends. We’re spending 4 days in Paris and 3 days in Santorini. I spent a long weekend in Paris during my study abroad but I’ve never been to Santorini. I’m excited to visit my favorite city again as well as explore a completely new place!

    As you’ve been to Paris before I”m sure you have somethings i mind, but I would definitely recommend taking a day trip out to Versailles to see the gardens in bloom. Have a lunchtime picnic out there! Also getting a bottle of wine, some cheese and baguette and heading to Sacre Coeur to see the sunset should not be missed. I am also hoping to check out the catacombs when I’m there myself this summer!

    – Kelsey
    https://kelseydefined.wordpress.com/

  32. Musée d’Orsay is a definite must. This is where all the Impressionist paintings are. Also, it should be a bit less crowded than the Louvre.

  33. More fantastic news! There are so many tremendously helpful articles and resources for planning a trip to Paris. I really enjoyed the CN Traveler pieces on Alice Water & Mimi Thorisson’s favorite restaurants in Paris. Merci, as I’m sure you know, cannot be missed. We also had the most amazing experience at Candelaria, but there are far too many to name! It’s been ages since I’ve been to the Amalfi Coast, but you should check out Hither & Thither’s recent trip there. Happy planning – it’s one of the best parts of travel!

  34. On the Amafi coast, visit Dubrovnik, Croatia! It’s absolutely gorgeous. I definitely recommend walking the wall around Old Town Dubrovnik. The sites are amazing, and there’s a cute little place to get a coffee or a beer halfway around. It’s about $20US (you’ll need to get Croatian money or charge it on a card, which has a fee associated with it) but it’s totally worth it.
    xo, Caitlin
    And Possibly Dinosaurs