When I booked a hotel in Massa Lubrense, I had no idea that I will be close to Sorrento. This is because I usually choose specific small luxury hotels from different websites that I know of and I trust the process.
Also, I must admit that I didn’t do enough research before my trip to Campania. I basically checked the distances between the towns that I was visiting to make sure that the commute between them was doable by car. And that was it.
So one downside of my lack of research was that I spent a week in Sorrento – a very touristy town. If you read my latest blog post, you will know that I didn’t like Amalfi town because it was full of tourists. Well, Sorrento is no different. It’s practically the same touristy and mainstream vibe.
I like to call my first trip to Campania an experimental visit. It’s like I had to explore some towns to know where I want to avoid next time I’m in Southern Italy. I also learned to avoid visiting in the high season and I paid the price for it!
I will keep this blog post short because I personally didn’t like Sorrento at all and I don’t recommend visiting the town either. Let me tell you why:
- Sorrento is a resort town with no sandy beaches. Yes, not even a single one. There are beach clubs with wooden platforms that have stairs going down into the ocean. And I spent a few days in those beach clubs. They are OK but nothing compares to going to a sandy beach and walking along the shore. Plus. the ocean is deep and it’s not very safe for swimming.
- The town is extremely touristy in the high season. Just like Amalfi town, you will hear mostly English when walking down the streets and dining at restaurants. Also, the streets are so busy and crowded – especially at night. But throughout the day really.
- The service was really bad at one restaurant where I had lunch one day. This goes back to the touristy nature of the town. The incident was so bad that I don’t want to mention it on my blog. Let’s just say that I will never go back to Sorrento in my life.
- I spent 45 minutes waiting for a simple tuna sandwich at A’Marenna (a popular sandwich shop in town). The sandwich was tasty but definitely not worth the long wait in the heat. That’s Sorrento in the busy season for you.
- A bed and breakfast host that I met at a tourist information center in town told me that Sorrento is a town for basing yourself to explore other nearby towns. Yes, I understand this but when all the other towns are also super busy, who wants to explore?! This is why I will only visit outside the high season and I already know which non-touristy towns to explore.
- When staying in Massa Lubrense, I was taking the bus to Sorrento town. The trip had too many stops and it was really hot. The hotel where I stayed didn’t have a shuttle bus going to Sorrento although it was a five-star hotel. But that’s another story. On the positive side, I had a more local experience while in Sorrento because I learned how to take the bus from Massa Lubrense to central Sorrento and back. So in the end, I always manage to have a local experience no matter where I end up going!
- No sandy beaches! I repeat this point because I think I spent most of my week in Sorrento trying to find a real beach! The nearest sandy beaches are in Nerano, Meta di Sorrento and other towns that are not easy to get to if you don’t drive.
I promise that the next blog post will be more cheerful and happy. I spent my last ten days in a coastal town off the beaten path. It was great to be somewhere with an actual sandy beach! Would I go back to that town? The answer is no and you’ll find out why in the next blog posts.
Did you visit Sorrento? If so, how did you spend your days and nights there? Did you like it? Would you go back?