HIKING ITALY’S AMALFI COAST (THE PATH OF THE GODS)

Path of the Gods hike positano

Italy’s Amalfi Coast. You’ve likely seen photos of this unbelievably beautiful Italian wonderland in the pages of a travel magazine or heard about it in a Jay-Z song (it’s where he goes when he needs a vacation from the South of France).

This region is home to soaring mountains, clear blue water, fresh and delicious seafood, and an assortment of colorful seaside and mountain villages with luxury and budget accommodation to suit a variety of travelers. But it doesn’t matter if you’re stepping off Jay’s yacht or staying in a no-frills guest house, one of the most memorable things to do on the Amalfi Coast is completely free — hiking The Path of the Gods.

The Path of the Gods Amalfi Coast Positano | Trevor Morrow Travel

The Path of the Gods runs between Positano and Agerola, and deciding where to start the hike will likely depend on where along the Amalfi Coast you’re staying. In addition to starting in Positano or Agerola, you can also start in Praiano by climbing a thousand or so stairs past the Convent of St. Domenico (this article and this article have more information on the Praiano route). I stayed in Positano, so that’s where I began the hike. If you’re also staying in Positano, another option would be to start at the opposite end in Agerola, then take the path westwards to Positano. Walking the path in this direction (from Agerola or Prainao to Positano) tends to be slightly more downhill then walking in the other direction.

It’s possible to take busses to the path’s starting points, but from the accounts I’ve read in online forums, that can sometimes be difficult (although necessary if you’re not staying nearby and not willing to spend a fortune on a taxi). If you’re up for the adventure and want to take a bus, I’d suggest asking an employee at your hotel or guest house to provide you with the local insight you’ll need to get there via public transportation. Luckily my hotel provided a shuttle to the starting point in the small village of Nocelle, high above Positano, and picked me up in Agerola when I was done.

Splurge: If you’d rather save yourself the time and potential headache of taking the bus, ask if your hotel provides a shuttle or can arrange for a taxi to take you.

The Path of the Gods Amalfi Coast Positano | Trevor Morrow Travel

However you get there, and whatever it costs you, once you begin walking The Path of the Gods all of your cares will fade away and you’ll realize you’d pay 10x whatever it is you paid to see what you’re seeing. Being on top of these mountains, which until now you’ve only looked up at from the coast and thought, “How the hell does anyone get up there?” is an experience you’ll never forget.

As you walk along the path, with sections of thousand-foot sheer drop offs to the side of you and no railing, you’ll notice that people live up here and this path is part of their daily life. They also farm the land, creating terraces to grow their fruits and vegetables. It feels like one of the most peaceful, unconnected, and natural places to live (and like me, you’ll think about trading in your life for a new one in a little house in these mountains).

Another thing you’ll notice, although perhaps it’s dependent on the season, is that the weather can change quickly (I hiked the path in May). From below you’ve watched the clouds drifting in from the sea and colliding with the cliffs, and now you’re on top of those cliffs and in those clouds. My hike started covered in gray clouds, but about a quarter of the way through they disappeared and sunny blue skies took their place.

The Path of the Gods Amalfi Coast Positano | Trevor Morrow Travel

If  you begin your hike in Positano, once you near signs for Praiano you’ll have the option to head inland through the mountains to Agerola where you can end your hike. You can also follow the signs for Praiano and end your hike there, or turn around and walk back to Positano (Nocelle). The path to Agerola is equally as impressive as the section between Positano and Prianao, although there are less views of the sea. If you decide not to continue all the way to Agerola, at least take the path up and over the hill to get an amazing view of the valley on the other side.

Whichever way you decide to go, make sure to pack water and a lunch. Stopping and sitting along The Path of the Gods is easily one of the best places in the world to enjoy a picnic.

When To Go:

Spring and autumn are the best times to hike The Path of the Gods as there’ll be fewer crowds and slightly cooler temperatures. If you’re visiting in the summer, however, it’s still worth the trip — just be prepared to share the path with more people and go in the morning when temperatures are more enjoyable.

If you’d like a local to guide you through the hike, here are a few providers who offer guided tours of The Path of the Gods (guide, guide, guide). I haven’t personally used any of these guides myself.

Explore The Area:

*This post it not meant to be a definitive guide to hiking The Path of the Gods. Always check for current information and conditions before you hike.

Keep On Traveling! Check Out These Other Articles From Trevor Morrow Travel:

Best Water Bottles For Traveling

The 8 Best Water Bottles For Traveling

Best travel backpack

The Best Backpacks For Traveling

Best Camping Gear Glamping Gear

Great Gear For Comfortable Camping

John Muir Way | Visit Scotland | Walking Trails Scotland

Walking Across Scotland: The John Muir Way

San Pietro Positano

The Splurge: Il San Pietro di Positano (The Amalfi Coast’s Most Luxurious Hotel)

 

Trevor Morrow
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Trevor Morrow

Trevor is a traveler, writer and video maker on a mission to help you craft the best travel experiences possible. From adventurous trips with friends, to romantic trips with someone special, to splurge-worthy trips of a lifetime, he's got you covered.
Trevor Morrow
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11 Responses to “HIKING ITALY’S AMALFI COAST (THE PATH OF THE GODS)”

  1. theKacarSeptember 3, 2013 at 8:22 am #

    Great article, brother. Can’t wait to go myself.

    • Trevor MorrowSeptember 3, 2013 at 9:20 am #

      Thanks man. The Path of the Gods alone is worth the trip over. Hope you can make it there soon.

  2. joanOctober 15, 2013 at 5:13 pm #

    Thanks for posting! We visited the fall but our camera was stolen after we left. Your pictures bring back to my memory what a great time we had!! Thank you for sharing

    • Trevor MorrowOctober 16, 2013 at 8:51 pm #

      Hi Joan,
      Thanks for you comment, I’m glad you liked the photos! That is a huge bummer about your camera — I’m sorry to hear that! Hopefully you can make it back one day to take more, but at least you have the memories — that’s what’s most important!

  3. MarciaDecember 26, 2013 at 2:09 pm #

    We are planning a trip for October 2014 and this hike will absolutely be added to our things to do ! Thank you!

    • Trevor MorrowDecember 28, 2013 at 1:38 pm #

      Hi Marcia, thanks for your comment! Have an incredible time in Positano or wherever your travels along the Amalfi Cost take you. The Path of the Gods is a must-do. I can’t wait to go back and hike it again myself one day. Travel on!

  4. Karen canderleMarch 18, 2014 at 9:05 pm #

    This is a must do, amazing views and so enjoyable.

  5. andrew medreckiMay 7, 2014 at 4:24 am #

    Hi Trevor … thanks for the enthusiatic write up . I’m planning to take my wife along this route. She’s a good walker but does have vertigo moments., though heights with a widish path are ok. Between Bomerano-Nocelle are there points where it’s a feel your way along the path or sections where you would consider some people would say ” not for me this bit ” and want to turn back? Could you kindly expand on your comment ref the 1-2,000 ft drop with no railing and how stressful/fearful is that section. Too good an experience to miss but just need a bit of reassurance.
    Many thanks and kind regards.

    • Trevor MorrowMay 20, 2014 at 1:15 pm #

      Hi Andrew, thanks for your comment! Great question. Well, I don’t want to mislead you, because I don’t know how badly your wife suffers from vertigo and I think everyone’s level of “not for me this bit” is different. However, I can say that, in my personal opinion, some small parts of the path could be considered scary to some and exhilarating to others. Personally, I wouldn’t call any portion of the trail treacherous or death defying (you won’t be hugging a cliff with the drop of right next to you and there is room to breath). It’s truly one of the best walks on planet earth and hopefully you’ll be able to see it. Good luck!

  6. DianeMay 1, 2015 at 8:38 am #

    I found this thread looking for information about hiking the Path of the Gods. Its a little old so I hope to get a response. I will be in Positano in June with a group of girls and we are planning on doing the hike from Positano to Priano. If we want to hike up to the trail from Positano, how difficult is it? And, approximately how long would it take to hike from Positano to Priano? So excited about this trip and including this hike.
    Thanks!

    • Trevor MorrowMay 6, 2015 at 8:01 pm #

      Hi Diane. That’s awesome you’re headed to Positano! And you can’t visit without hiking The Path of the Gods so I’m glad you’re doing it. If you’re starting the path from the Positano side, you’ll want to start in Nocelle, a tiny hamlet/neighborhood high above Positano. You can hike up to Nocelle, but that’ll involve hundreds if not thousands of stairs. If you are hiking from Priano and ending in Positano, then you can take the stairs down (much easier) ending in Positano. In terms of time, it’s a tough call as everyone has their own pace which really effects things. It also depends on if you’re hiking the trail round trip or one way. I hiked it one way — and it very roughly (it’s been a few years) took about 3-5 hours (we took out time and stopped for lunch). But I’d recommend looking for some other time estimates and asking locals/your hotel staff before embarking. Happy Travels.

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