I have to be honest. I was the most excited about going to Sorrento, but it was probably my least favorite place we went. I don't know if it was because I had such high expectations or because we loved Rome so much, but if I had to do it again I might have cut Sorrento and done Venice instead. Now, don't get me wrong, we did have some amazing experiences.
The place that we stayed offered some fun excursions, and we took advantage of two of them. The first being the Mami Camilla's Cooking class. Although I would call it more of a cooking experience rather than a class...it was a lot of fun, but rather than step by step instruction it was more learning by observation and random grunts of ingredients given by the grumpy chef. We were told he was in a mood that day, but I thought it was kind of fun that he was grumpy--it added to the romantic view of Italians that I have. Thankfully there were some American culinary students studying with him for a few weeks who were really helpful to translate the grunts to us.
One of my favorite things in Sorrento was going through a lemon orchard and trying their limoncello. The lemons were HUGE!
The Sorrento region is known for their lemons. Above, Ryan is displaying how much we enjoyed the lemon granita. YUM!
The Capri boat tour was by far the best thing we did with our time in Sorrento. It was so beautiful, and to be out of our shoes and just relax for a few hours with the cool Mediterranean was so delightful. We got to swim through the green grotto, duck down through the tiny cave of the blue grotto and see and swim (for a nice tip) the blue grotto, and take in a seaside view of Sorrento.
This is the Blue Grotto. It was pretty impressive, you have to lay down in the little boat to enter, and the water seems to glow from beneath. We were there about 6pm, but we heard from others that noon is the time to go because it gets be most direct light and reflects the sun best at that time. I did no editing (other than a crop here and there) to these Blue Grotto pics, it really looks like that! Beautiful. Ryan even got to swim in it for "a good tip."
- Capri Tour & blue grotto
- The lemon orchard in the middle of Sorrento. Inside there is a small shop that sells limoncello and other lemon and orange based liqueurs. They let you try them all and they are delicious.
- All things lemon
- Cute shops
- Pizzeria Gigano-- SOO good with great prices. We had our favorite appetizer (antipasti) there and we're blown away by everything we ate and that floated by our table on their way to lucky diners. Another Rick Steves' suggestion. They even give you a complimentary glass of champagne when you sit down.
- Mami Camilla's was really helpful, it was nice to be taken care of after Rome
- The seafood is delicious. Try the spaghetti al mare.
- Seemed so touristy after Rome. I felt like I was on a resort, which I'm sure is great for some people, but we got bored.
- Our place wasn't really in Sorrento, it was in San't Agnello, so we had long walks to get everywhere.
- Sidewalks were tiny, and Italian drivers are crazy. Much more scary than Rome.
- Expensive for food
- The hotel bed was SO hard. We are actually pretty sure it was just a box spring. My hips were still sore from it up until we got to Tuscany.
- We were not impressed By the actual town on Capri. It was mostly very expensive shops and food. We wanted some shade and stopped for some water, a coke and bread and the water alone cost €5 and the service fee was 3 times more than we had paid anywhere else. These two cheapos were not impressed
- Everything closes a little earlier in Sorrento than we were used to in Rome, so we were frustrated when turned away from the grocery store to get laundry detergent
- Stay in the actual town of Sorrento, it's where everything is going on and is a much shorter walk to everything.
- Walk around the main street and go into the limoncello shops and try all the different types (free tastes). One of our favorites was the Crema de Limoncello (unfortunately the bottle we bought didn't make it back).