HighSails uses cookies to make the site simpler.Find out more about cookies

Salerno sailing guide & sailing itineraries - Touch the Amalfi Coast

TrustPilot Logo

COVID 19: You can change your booking on most of our boats if your travel plans are affected by coronavirus.
See here for more details

Let us help you plan the perfect sailing trip

Provide your travel details, receive free offer and enjoy your holiday!

An introduction to Salerno

Acting as a gateway to the stunning Amalfi coast in southwestern Italy, Salerno is an old port city and capital of the Campania region. Located in the Gulf of Salerno on the Tyrrhenian Sea, Salerno has been an essential strategic harbour on the Mediterranean sea, dating back to prehistoric times. Salerno is a city with a rich and vibrant past, which prospered immensely during the Middle Ages and the Renaissance. Salerno was an independent Lombard principality during the early Middle Ages, and during this time, the first medical school in the world, Schola Medica Salernitana, was founded here. Visiting here, you will find the city divided into three distinct zones: the medieval area, the 19th-century section and the most recent, densely populated post-war area.

Why should you choose Salerno for your sailing holiday?

The busy port of Salerno

At first, Salerno may seem like a typical big port city; however, visiting here, you will be greeted by a charming atmosphere, characteristic of the more easy-going southern regions of Italy. The historical centre of the city offers several medieval churches tucked away in quaint neighbourhoods. This includes the Salerno Cathedral, also known as the Duomo, a symbol of the city since the 11th century.

However, the number one reason people visit Salerno is the stunning Amalfi coast, which spreads just outside the city borders north towards Naples. The Amalfi coast is one of the most beautiful stretches of coast in Italy and among its most popular summer destinations.

Sailing the Amalfi coast, you will be met with plenty of beautiful beaches, picturesque towns and historical sites like the Duomo di Amalfi, the Shrine of Saint Andrew and the Chiostro del Paradiso.

The small town of Amalfi is a two-hour drive to the west of Salerno, resting among the cliffs and offering spectacular views, welcoming beaches and an unforgettable ambience.

What weather conditions to expect in Salerno

Visiting Salerno, a moderate Mediterranean climate will greet you with mild and rainy winters and warm and dry summers, characteristic for southern parts of Italy. The most rainfall occurs during the winter, with November being the wettest month. As is the case for most Mediterranean countries, summer has significantly less precipitation, with July being the driest month of the year and the ideal period for enjoying the coast and the sea.

Due to the strong wind that comes from the mountains toward the Gulf of Salerno, the city is very windy (mainly during the winter). However, strong winds also help disperse most of the clouds, making Salerno one of the sunniest towns in Italy.

During the summer, Salerno temperatures regularly exceed 30 °C, while spring and autumn are ideal for sightseeing and hiking as the temperatures sit around 20 °C.

Located on the coast of the Tyrrhenian Sea, the annual average sea temperature here is around 20 °C, with the highest sea temperatures reaching 26 °C in August.

Best time to sail in Salerno

Beautiful vistas on the Amalfi Coast

Sailing the Tyrrhenian Sea and the Amalfi coast near Salerno can be enjoyed for most of the year, except for winter. Warm weather, little to no rainfall and high sea temperatures make visiting in the summer ideal for those looking to enjoy swimming, snorkelling, surfing and other water-based activities. Make sure to explore the beautiful beaches and fine dining in some truly spectacular locations.

Parts of Salerno

View of Salerno at sunset

As mentioned before, Salerno has several distinct areas, representative of the eras in which they were established, i.e. the medieval area, the 19th-century section and the post-World War II area. 

Being a coastal city and an important harbour on the Tyrrhenian Sea, Salerno also has a well-developed and charming promenade, with beautiful views of the Amalfi coast.

Salerno is known as a vibrant university town with a lively nightlife and cultural scene. There is a wide selection of clubs, discos, and cafes for you to choose from, located both in the old town centre and in the newer parts of town. 

Marinas around Salerno

Marina d'Arechi 

The newly constructed Marina d'Arechi is located 5 km south of the Salerno city centre and is one of the more secure marinas in Italy due to an impressive, 1.2 km long breakwater. This large and modern marina offers 1,000 berths for vessels up to 130 m in length. Guests of the marina can enjoy extensive amenities, including 24/7 mooring assistance, free WiFi, power and water connections at berths, all-day surveillance and car and bike rentals. The marina also has a good restaurant and cocktail bar. 

Masuccio Salernitano Marina 

This marina is located near the old town of Salerno, in the Salerno port and offers 414 berths for smaller boats, up to 16 m in length and with a max draught of 5 m. The marina is very well protected, with a 350 m breakwater protecting the east-facing entrance. Proximity to the major attractions and landmarks in Salerno makes it a perfect stop for an overnight stay.

Porto di Cetara 

Located in the small coastal town of Cetara, located west of the city of Salerno, this small port offers 150 berths for boats up to 13 m in length. The port consists of a 141 m long quay and a two-arm breakwater pier approximately 250 m long. Amenities are limited here, but there are power connections and berth assistance available.

Best spots to cast an anchor around Salerno

As a gateway to the Almalfi coast, Salerno's area offers numerous anchorages, nestled along with one of the most beautiful stretches of coast in Italy.

City of Salerno anchorages

Vietri Sul Mare - The bay here is mainly open to the southeast and southwest but is perfect for seeking shelter from the westerlies if you anchor under the Vietri Sul Mare. Here you will find good holding on a sandy seabed with depths around 5m.

East of the commercial harbour 

Here is a perfect spot for those looking to visit the city of Salerno itself, as it provides direct access to town, as the dinghy can be tied up alongside the promenade. This location also offers good holding on the sand with depths of up to 5m. 

Alternatively, if you can find space, there is berthing nearer the city at Porto Turistico (Porto Masuccio) or Porto Nuovo. Recently the Molo Di Levante breakwater has been expanded, offering adequate shelter from the elements.

Amalfi coast anchorages

Amalfi town - Amalfi town lies smack in the centre of Amalfi coast, a short sail west from the city of Salerno. You will find an anchorage spot east of the town harbour, but it should be used only in fair weather. The depth here reaches up to 10 m, and there is good holding on a muddy seabed. 

The bay of Positano - Besides the Marina Grande anchorage, the stunning bay of Positano offers ample options for mooring. As an alternative to the Marina, sailing enthusiasts can drop anchor near the beaches of Fornillo (west of Marina Grande), Arienzo and Laurito (east of Marina Grande).

Spectacular bay of Positano

It is essential to mention that strong winds can hit the area from all directions except north. Holding is good in mostly sand, with depths around 5 m.

How much will a charter in Salerno cost you?

Weekly charter prices in the city of Salerno depend on several factors. Mainly, the famous Amalfi coast's proximity and the trendy destinations like Capri island slightly increase the average charter price. The final price depends on several key factors, all of which should be thoroughly considered before making your decision. Factors like the boat type, date of your charter, and other additional services can all significantly impact your charter cost. Sailing in late spring or early autumn will be far less expensive than in the middle of summer, and there is a bigger chance of finding a deal or discount. 

On average, catamarans and motorboats are more expensive than basic sailboats, and herein lies the most significant impact on the cost of your charter. Also, hiring additional crew like skippers, cooks, or additional crew will impact your cost as well, usually at a price of around 150 € extra per person per day. 

In Salerno, starting prices for chartering a sailboat that can accommodate up to 8 people at the beginning of June is between 2,000 € and 2,500 €. The price will increase if you wish to charter the boat later in the peak tourist season (July and August). Charter pieces for catamarans in the same period start around 10,000 €, while motorboats will cost you around 20,000 € for a weekly charter during the summer.

How to reach Salerno

Being a large and vital harbour on the Tyrrhenian Sea, Salerno is very well connected with other parts of Italy, making it easy to reach using several different modes of transportation.

Flying to Salerno 

The fastest and easiest way to reach the city of Salerno is by booking a flight to the Naples Capodichino International Airport, which is about 50 km northwest of Salerno. There are numerous daily domestic flights to Naples International Airport and several international flights from all over Europe, increasing in frequency during the summer.

As you land in Naples, your options of reaching Salerno include several direct bus lines, as well as renting a car or grabbing a taxi.  

A train ride to Salerno

If you are in no rush, another option to reach Salerno is by train. The most picturesque option, slowly making your way through the Italian landscape, will make you appreciate and enjoy the beautiful countryside vistas. There are several direct lines from Naples and Rome and other major Italian cities, departing daily towards Salerno.

Boat to Salerno

Suppose you wish to approach Salerno by sea. In that case, several ferry lines are connecting it with major Italian cities and other Amalfi coast destinations like Positano and Amalfi town. Additionally, the large and modern Marina d'Arechi near the city offers over 1,000 moorings, attracting yachters to sail here and explore the city. 

Driving to Salerno

The least recommended option of reaching Salerno is by driving yourself, either via rent-a-car or using your vehicle. It is not that it is hard to reach the town or that the roads are not good; it is the fact that driving culture in Italy can be a bit overwhelming. Italian drivers, especially those in the south, are notorious for their aggressiveness which can be intimidating for some, especially if you visit for the first time.   

Salerno itinerary options

Salerno is one of the top sailing destinations in southern Italy. It is perfectly positioned on the Tyrrhenian Sea with several top tourist destinations like the Amalfi coast and Capri island only a short sail away. 

Option 1 - The glamour of Amalfi coast and Capri island

The colorful waterfront on Capri island
  • Total sail distance: 100 NM
  • Things to see and do: Set sail from Salerno to explore one of the most visited stretches of Italian coastline - the Amalfi Coast. Stop off at stunning coastal cities like Amalfi, Positano and Sorrento before casting off to the glamorous and trendy Capri island. However, the journey's highlight is stopping at Torre Annunziata just south of Naples and visiting the nearby Pompeii archaeological landmarks underneath the imposing Mount Vesuvius volcano.
  • This route is perfect for: The route is ideally suited for all kinds of groups as attractions and activities are abundant along the way. Stunning coastline and trendy island destinations will suit sailing enthusiasts perfectly, while families can spend countless hours enjoying the beautiful sandy beaches and warm sea. 
  • Best time of year for sailing: The best time of year for this route is during the summer when you can fully appreciate the hospitality of the Italian south and the alluring Tyrrhenian Sea. However, the Amalfi Coast is one of the more popular summer destinations in Italy, meaning there will be crowds which could significantly reduce your overall experience. In this region, warm weather means you can still visit in late spring or early autumn and still have the same experience, but with significantly fewer crowds.

Day 1: Amalfi

As you leave Salerno, your first stop on this route will be the picturesque town of Amalfi, only a short sail west. Arriving early in the morning will enable you to take a stroll down winding narrow alleyways of this stunning little medieval town before relaxing on its small but beautiful sand beach. The nearby Conca Dei Marini lies in a small bay and is the perfect stop for the day. Another exciting excursion option is a visit to the nearby Grotta Dello Smeraldo (the Emerald Cave). 

Day 2: Positano

One of the most popular beaches in Positano

Continue your journey west, hugging the Amalfi coastline and soak up the sights on your way until you reach another charming coastal town - Positano. Here you will be met with a myriad of colours, a combination of lush greenery, turquoise sea and the colourful architecture of local architecture. Explore the ancient Roman villas and spend an unforgettable day on one of the most extensive beaches on the Amalfi Coast - Spiaggia Grande.   

Day 3: Capri

On the third day of your route, it is time to say goodbye to the Amalfi coast and head from Positano straight for the glamourous island of Carpi. This popular jet-set destination will immediately enchant you with stunning vistas, charming villages and quality restaurants. As you approach Marina Grande, the number of superyachts and luxury boats will surely capture your eye, indicating the type of visitors flocking to this island. Whether it is sampling delicious cuisine, doing some shopping or exploring its stunning natural beauty, Capri will undoubtedly be one of the highlights on this route.    

Day 4: Ischia

A short sail across the Bay of Naples from Capri, Ischia, also known as the Emerald Island due to its luscious vegetation, is the largest and most developed island in the region. Here you will find a beautiful island with an authentic atmosphere and stunning beaches with significantly fewer crowds than in other nearby destinations. While visiting Ischia, be sure to visit the Thermal baths of Ischia, a long-standing tradition and a significant attraction dating back to the Roman Empire. Here you will find the largest concentration of spas in all of Europe, with nearly 100 springs and spas scattered across the island.

Day 5: Torre Annunziata

The small coastal town of Torre Annunziata is, in fact, a southeastern suburb of Naples on the Bay of Naples at the southern foot of Mount Vesuvius. Along with Herculaneum and Pompeii, Torre Annunziata was designated as a UNESCO World Heritage site in 1997. Twice affected by Mount Vesuvius's eruptions, this small harbour town offers a perfect place to visit and explore the nearby archaeological findings at Pompeii. Additionally, you will find stunning beaches here, featuring black volcanic sand.

Day 6: Sorrento

As you start your way back towards Salerno, one last stop on the Amalfi coast will be the town of Sorrento. One of Italy's most famous resort towns, Sorrento sits high above the Mediterranean, offering spectacular views that extend from the island of Procida across the enormous gulf towards Naples and Mt. Vesuvius. Here you will find a colourful town, full of charming hotels, restaurants and villas. Sorrento has a history of tourism that spans to the Ancient era, with Greeks using it as a seaside resort over 2,000 years ago. You will find two well-equipped marinas here, making Sorrento a favourite spot for sailing enthusiasts.

Day 7: Salerno

Putting an end to your Amalfi coast and the Gulf of Naples journey, you will have plenty of time left to explore the last destination on this route - Salerno. Take a walk on the city's promenade and the Medieval Old town before visiting the most popular attraction in the city - the stunning Salerno Cathedral. 

Option 2 - Find tranquillity down south 

Large sailboat near Palinuro island
  • Total sail distance: 105 NM
  • Things to see and do: On this route, you will find less trendy tourist destinations and more peaceful and secluded anchorages, perfect for those looking to enjoy summer activities and a more active vacation. Small coastal towns and tourist 
  • This route is perfect for: The route is ideally suited for all kinds of groups as attractions and activities are abundant along the way. Stunning coastline and peaceful destinations will suit sailing enthusiasts perfectly, while families can spend countless hours enjoying the beautiful sandy beaches and warm sea. 
  • Best time of year for sailing: The best time of year for this route is during the summer when you can fully appreciate the hospitality of the Italian south and the alluring Tyrrhenian Sea. However, the Amalfi Coast is one of the more popular summer destinations in Italy, meaning there will be crowds which could significantly reduce your overall experience. In this region, warm weather means you can still visit in late spring or early autumn and still have the same experience, but with significantly fewer crowds.

Day 1: Agropoli  

Located in the Campania region, the town of Agropoli will be your first stop as you set sail south along the Italian mainland. You will find a large tourist port with ferry connections to Naples, Salerno, Capri and Ischia. Exploring the city, you will be greeted by stunning and well-preserved medieval architecture and fortifications, remnants from the time this region was under constant threat from the Saracens. Today, this charming tourist town houses plenty of restaurants, cafés, and shops as well as several stunning beaches.

Anchor in the beautiful Bay of Trentova and spend a day swimming, snorkelling and enjoying other water-based activities.

Day 2: Acciaroli

Your next stop on your sailing route south will be the fishing town of Acciaroli. The town transforms into a bustling tourist resort each summer, attracting visitors with its crystal clear sea and spotless beaches. The town is the proud holder of the Blue Flag and Five Sails awards, indicative of its natural surroundings' untouched beauty. You will also find a bustling harbour here, a popular spot among sailors that can accommodate different sized boats. You will find several restaurants and cafes near the harbour, offering an excellent view of the sea.

Day 3: Palinuro

Palinuro is a small beach resort that sits on the Tyrrhenian coast, where the Cilento National Park meets the sea. The town is usually less crowded than other more popular destinations in Campania, perfect for a peaceful day enjoying the warm sea. 

The most prominent feature of this stretch of coastline is Capo Palinuro, overlooking the town's harbour and offering good protection from the elements.

Day 4: Marina di Camerota

The southernmost stop on this route before heading back towards Salerno is Marina di Camerota. This small coastal town is the southernmost inhabited area of Campania, with some truly breathtaking beaches. The sea here is irresistibly inviting, which, combined with soft sandy beaches, makes for another ideal summer destination. The place to visit here is the Punta Degli Infreschi, a nearby protected maritime area.

Day 5: Marina di Casalvelino

Start your day by heading back north and stopping at yet another small but charming coastal town - Marina di Casalvelino, also spelt Casalvelino Marina. The town is part of the Cilento and Vallo di Diano National Park, making it the perfect spot for a short hiking trip. The small town is also famous for its many beaches and sea quality, which has earned it the Blue Flag beach award each year since 2000. 

Day 6: San Marco

Castellabate at sunset

Your penultimate stop on your way back to Salerno is San Marco di Castellabate, located in Cilento. Part of a larger town of Castellabate, San Marco houses a long and sandy beach with the most inviting sea. Scuba diving is one of the more popular activities here, while attractions like Spiaggia Delle Grotta di San Marco and Port of San Marco di Castellabate are a must-see! The harbour in San Marco offers plenty of berthing capacity and is well protected by a long breakwater. 

Day 7: Salerno

Depending on your remaining time, you will spend the last day of your sailing itinerary heading back to your starting port in Salerno. Make sure to squeeze in some time to visit the most popular spots in this vibrant coastal city like the Salerno Cathedral, the Medieval Old town or taking a walk along the city's promenade. 

Let us help you plan the perfect sailing trip

Provide your travel details, receive free offer and enjoy your holiday!