One week is not long to visit the entire Amalfi Coast region, but you'll certainly be able to get a good idea of its key attractions. Because your time is short, you'll have to pare your exploration to the essentials. You'll miss a lot of the pleasurable lingering, which is so suitable to this region, but you'll have enough time to plunge right into the most phenomenal sights.

You can do a lot of this itinerary by public transportation (including ferries), but you might want to have a car for days 2 and 3, while exploring the region's southern area.

Days 1 & 2: Sorrento & the Amalfi Coast

Fly into Naples's Capodichino Airport and get yourself directly to Sorrento (there's bus as well as limo service from the airport, or you can rent a car, if you feel more daring). Once there, allow yourself a day of relaxation to recover from jet lag. Wander round the narrow lanes of the old town center, take a swim in the warm sea and, if you are more ambitious, catch a concert in the evening. The best -- if you plan in advance to get tickets -- are those offered in the cloister of San Francesco. On Day 2, get an early start and explore the Sorrento peninsula and Amalfi Coast. (Hiring a limo is the best option, as your driver will double as guide.) Hike, swim, and visit the splendid Amalfi cathedral (don't miss the interior). You might even have time for some of the smaller towns off the beaten track. Have dinner at one of our favorite restaurants in the area: Relais Blu, San Pietro, Taverna del Capitano, Ristorante Torre del Saracino, or Don Alfonso 1890 -- on this stretch of coast, you'll find some of the region's best gourmet haunts, as well as those with the best views. 

Day 3: Padula, Paestum & Salerno

In the morning, head to the Certosa di San Lorenzo (you can use public transportation, but you'll have to keep a strict timetable; it is best to rent or hire a car) and devote a few hours to this architectural marvel. In the afternoon, drive or take a bus to Paestum to visit the stunning temples at sunset -- on the way, you'll cross through Cilento National Park. Spend the night in Salerno (where you can relinquish your car if you rented one), and have dinner in the medieval town.

Day 4: Salerno & Capri

After an early stroll through Salerno, enjoying its splendid lungomare, take a ferry to Capri, where you can spend the rest of the day browsing the chic shops and seeing the sights. Stay overnight -- this is especially important in summer -- to get the full flavor of this mythical island after most of the crowds have gone back to the mainland. 

Days 5 & 6: Naples

The next morning, catch one of the frequent ferry or hydrofoil services to Naples. At this point you'll be ready for the big city and its vast artistic riches. Start your visit with the Maschio Angioino, not far from the harbor. You might have time for a short visit to both Palazzo Reale and the Museo Nazionale di Capodimonte before you call it a day. Head down to the lungomare to enjoy the panoramic views of Borgo Marinari over a well-deserved dinner.

On Day 6, have a pizza lunch in one of the nearby historical pizzerie to round out your Old Naples experience. Spend the afternoon at the Museo Archeologico Nazionale in preparation for your last day.

Day 7: Herculaneum, Pompeii & Mount Vesuvius

For a relaxing, quiet excursion, catch a train on the Circumvesuviana railroad to Herculaneum; or go to Pompeii, if you like grandiose stretches of excavations. Both sites offer enormous amounts to see -- covering both in 1 day is impossible, and we don't recommend trying. Use the other half of your day to climb Mount Vesuvius, the burning heart of Campania, and visit one of the ancient Roman villas that lies in its shadow.

Note: This information was accurate when it was published, but can change without notice. Please be sure to confirm all rates and details directly with the companies in question before planning your trip.