Cinque Terre or Amalfi Coast: Which is The Best Coastline to Visit in Italy

Cinque Terre vs Amalfi Coast

Amalfi Coast or Cinque Terre? Both are the most popular coastal destinations in Italy, so it’s very hard to choose between the two: The Amalfi Coast and Cinque Terre. Both Places offer beautiful scenery, colorful villages perched along cliffs and admire brilliant azure waters, as well as testy delightful seafood, sip on delicious wines, and stunning hikes.

Here, we’ve put together a guide to help you make the right choice between The Amalfi Coast and Cinque Terre.

For Easy Accessibility – The Cinque Terre Wins

Location and access to get to Cinque Terre and Amalfi Coast
Location and access to get to Cinque Terre and Amalfi Coast

Cinque Terre is strategically located in northern Italy and is perfectly connected by train to some of the largest cities in the region. Milan is a great landing option. The train journey is very easier and cheaper from Milan via Genoa to Cinque Terre takes about 3 hours, the same as Bologna, while the journey from Florence takes about 2 hours.

You can get to Amalfi from Rome, Naples, Sorrento, or Salerno. The Southern part of Italy is not as well linked when it comes to train transportation, so getting to the Amalfi Coast is bit more challenging. In addition, driving along the Amalfi is a major difficulty as all the winding roads are too narrow for buses and cars to pass and it is also very difficult to find a parking space.

For Architecture – The Cinque Terre Wins

The colourful buildings in Cinque Terre, Italy
The seaside view of colourful buildings in Cinque Terre

Both the Cinque Terre and the Amalfi Coast have many impressive architectural feats on the winding steps and teetering terraces that outline the coast.

Each of the five towns and villages in Cinque Terre are iconic and has a similar pastel color palette and steep streets and paths wherever you go. It looks incredibly beautiful and full of charming houses.

On the other hand, the architecture on the Amalfi Coast is more diverse, with similarly bright colored buildings, but also more historic structures. You can visit the remains of Roman villas and temples in some of the towns or the medieval Castle Areci in Salerno to admire the archaeological ruins.

If you are looking for photogenic architecture then Cinque Terre will be the right choice, whereas if you want to see different historical styles and different building designs, the Amalfi Coast offers a wider variety of architectural wonders that are perfect for your viewing.

For Beaches – The Amalfi Coast Wins

Beach chairs along the water in Positano, The Amalfi Coast
Beach chairs along the water in Positano, The Amalfi Coast

Both destinations do have beaches to enjoy. But if you are just looking for a beach, don’t head to Cinque Terre. Monterosso al Mare is the only town with beautiful beaches. The beach in Manarola, which is actually not a beach, consists mostly of rocks and crystal blue water.

There are some incredible beaches on the Amalfi Coast! The location and enjoyment of the beach in Positano is just the best. There are beach chairs along the water in Positano, which are a little pricey but worth chilling out in the middle of it all. There are also some amazing lesser-known beaches which you can find at Vietri sul Mare, Erichie, Furore, and Maiori.

For Sightseeing – The Amalfi Coast Wins

infinity terrace, ravallo at amalfi coast
Infinity Terrace for Amazing Sightseeing, Ravallo at Amalfi coast

Both locations will offer lots of options to fill your days with spectacular and seaside views. In the Cinque Terre, you can explore La Spezia, Porto Venere, spend time on the beach in Monterosso a Mare. You can also take a day trip to Florence, or even take the train and explore the famous and picturesque Portofino.

But when we are talking about the specific culture or historic sights, The Amalfi Coast has something more such as gardens and villas of Ravello, the historic cathedrals of Amalfi Town and Salerno, the ceramics museum in Vietri sul Mare, paper museum in Amalfi, and Roman villa museum in Minori.

Additionally, The Amalfi Coast is very well-positioned and connected to other major sights for an exciting day trip such as Capri Island, Pompeii, Herculaneum, Paestum, and Naples.

Also read: 10 best things to see in The Amalfi Coast, Italy

For Accommodations (Hotels & Resorts) – The Amalfi Coast Wins