Yachting Around The Amalfi Coast
Italy’s Amalfi Coast may be the closest thing to heaven on earth. In fact, its beauty led Italian writer Renato Fucini to declare matter-of-factly, “The Day of Judgment, for those Amalfitans that go to Heaven, will be a day like any other.”
This stunning, picturesque, and enchanting region of the world – named a UNESCO World Heritage site in 1997 – has been attracting visitors to its shore since the Roman times. There are many ways to explore and experience the coast’s untainted glorious magnificence, historic charm, and purely Italian romanticism, but truly, the best method to do so is by sea (unless you bring your Ducati or Lamborghini Gallardo Spyder with you and feel like taking on the Strada Statale 163, the two-lane coastal highway commissioned by King Ferdinand II of Naples; at night you’ll hear these high-powered machines screaming around the hairpin turns).
The rocky, rugged, and mountainous topography of the Amalfi Coast creates many scenic, secluded, and well-protected harbors and coves, ideal for yachting holiday vacations and day charters any time of the year
Whether vacationing in your own Benetti 140, or chartering the likes of a Lurssen 248, not only can you soak in the more popular sights in places such as Positano, but you’ll have exclusive access to hidden treasures very few will ever see in their lifetime, with magical places such as Capri’s Blue Grotto at your beck and call.
With our comprehensive listing of super yachts and experienced brokers, HMY can help you find the perfect vessel to get you there. Or let an HMY Luxury Charters specialist build the perfect vacation for you and match you with your dream yacht.
No matter how you get to this unapologetically beautiful part of the world, where the pastel-colored villas seem to emerge from the pristine waters onto the jagged terrain of the nearly vertical mountains, we know once you’ve arrived the number of options of things to do and places to see can be daunting. We’ve compiled some of our favorite locales on the Amalfi Coast and nearby islands to help you navigate the scenic cliff-side towns and clear waters of the Tyrrhenian Sea to ensure the utmost in luxury, privacy, and enjoyment.
If you want to start your visit off with excellent shopping and people watching (and potential celebrity sightings), but still experience the breathtaking beauty the coast offers, head to Positano. Artist Paul Klee describes it as “the only place in the world conceived on a vertical rather than a horizontal axis” so if you spend time on land, be ready to get in your 10,000 daily steps. After a day of sight-seeing, shopping for flowing linens and Italian sandals, and exploring the Marina Grande beach side, head back to your Christensen 164, mix up a negroni cocktail, and soak in the panoramic views of the hardy cliffs and shimmering sea at sunset.
If you’re looking to tone it down a bit after Positano, one of the few less-touristy towns is Vietri Sul Mare. Just west of Salerno, Vietri sits at the beginning of Amalfi Drive (163) and is the ceramics capital of the Campania region. It’s also extremely quaint and locked in time, never having really relied on tourism for its livelihood like its more popular neighbors.
As you would expect, the wine is fantastic; if you’re in the mood, set up a private wine tour at Le Vigne di Raito, an organic vineyard just up the mountain in the village of Raito. As you eat a home-cooked meal prepared and served by owner Patrizia Malanga on her gorgeous veranda overlooking the sea, and the wine flows unabated, you may just find yourself saying, “I’m never leaving.” But you will, because you have more of the Amalfi coast to explore. But before you go, don’t forget to sample some of the world’s finest limoncello, produced from the omnipresent mountainside lemon groves.
After spending plenty of time on land, it’s time to put that Heesen 143 to full use and explore more exclusive locales accessible only by boat.
While now privately owned, the La Galli archipelago – made up of three main islands (Gallo Lungo, La Castelluccia, and La Rotonda, and a smaller fourth island) southwest of Positano – is a great snorkeling spot (keep in mind it is a private island, so plan accordingly) with its crystal-clear waters. Or just go to see the monstrous fortress previously owned by legendary Russian ballet star Rudolf Nureyev.
Just off the southwest tip of the Amalfi Coast’s 50 kilometers of shoreline is the majestic island of Capri. A favorite vacation getaway for ancient Roman emperors, this lovely destination attracts movie and music stars (Leonardo DiCaprio and Beyonce are regularly spotted on super yachts), the ultra wealthy, and fashionistas. Aside from its splendor, another reason super yachts flock here is because it boasts one of the top super yacht anchorages – the Marina Piccola.
Legend has it that this visually stunning marina is the chosen spot where the Sirens seduced Odysseus in Homer’s The Odyssey. It only takes a second for the eyes to see why; the large walls of rocks act as windbreakers for the bay, resulting in a calm, sunny spot perfect for dropping anchor.
From there, take your tender over to the famed Capri sea stacks, the Faraglioni, or plan a day trip to the other-worldly Grotta Azzurra (Blue Grotto), a sea cave on the northwest side of the island. The mesmerizing blue hue of the water is caused by sunlight passing through an underwater cavity and shining through the seawater. This tour de force of nature may leave you speechless and flustered (in a good way), but it’s nothing a glass of a lovely Sangiovese won’t help.
As you wake the next morning and take in the spectacular sunrise that features colors that defy explanation, have the captain set course northwest for more exotic, reclusive locales such as Ischia, the Pontine Islands, and Procida.
Ischia, southwest of Naples, is a unique volcanic island that features stunning beaches of pillow-soft sand. Even better news—tourists often overlook these beaches, instead heading to Capri, meaning you get the peace and tranquility you seek! A must-experience on the island are the thermal springs and volcanic mud, a result of centuries of volcanic activity; these thermal baths in the village of Forio are a pride and joy of Ischia, and will leave you feeling relaxed, rejuvenated, and ready for a refreshing glass of the local Biancolella white wine.
Back on board your Westport 130, the feast for your eyes continues, as you’ll experience breathtaking views of Capri, Naples, Procida, and the towering Aragonese Castle.
Not far from Ischia is enchanting sister island Procida, the oldest in the Bay of Naples. Often described as a pre-fame Positano and a well-kept secret, Procida is also a favorite among super yacht captains. There are myriad sheltered coves to drop anchor, and while the island is gaining in popularity, there are still several quiet bays to discover. So find your spot, take advantage of the fact that motorized water toys are still permitted, and enjoy the crystal-clear water in private. And once you’ve had enough of that particular bay, pull up anchor and find another one.
Back on board, as you ponder the next destination while eating caught-that-day octopus and swordfish with a lovely loaf of fresh Italian bread and cold Peroni, consider heading further northwest into the gulf, to Palmarola, the least inhabited of the Pontine Islands.
You may very well find your boat the only one in any of the many secluded and protected coves. Years of weather erosion have turned the rugged shoreline into something of a marvel itself. Of particular note is a cliff dubbed the “Cathedral”; half-swallowed by the sea and battered by the elements, it appears as if an old church is protruding straight from the rocky terrain.
The shallow waters on the south of Palmarola are ideal for snorkeling and swimming, where you may encounter dolphins or even eels. Or simply enjoy the quiet on your sundeck. Either way, there are no bad days here.
Since you’ve already come this far, take full advantage of your Trinity 190 or the HMY charter yacht you’re on and keep the adventure rolling with a trek west to the masterpiece cluster of islands that is the La Maddalena Archipelago, just northeast of Sardinia. The mostly uninhabited La Maddalena islands, which belong to a national park, offer some of the most secluded, heavenly beach respites in the region, along with some of the most amazingly translucent waters.
Aquamarine lagoons such as the Porto della Madonna and some of the deserted beaches are only available by boat, allowing you and your family or guests to truly embrace the splendor in pure tranquility. But once you’ve worked up an appetite, you’re not far from one of the islands’ waterside trattorias. Among the locals, you’ll also experience a stronger-than-usual command of the English language, the result of the presence of a large NATO naval base (until its closure in 2008).
If you’re up for one more stop in the archipelago, head over to the uninhabited island of Spargi, to experience what are considered some of its most splendid seascapes. Beaches such as Cala Soraya, on the eastern side of the island, with its fine, white sand, lush Mediterranean shrubs, and translucent water, are the epitome of picturesque.
For more information on HMY Luxury Charters and how we can help you plan the perfect Amalfi Coast getaway, click here. Or to browse our full MLS listings of super yachts that will get you there on your terms, click here.