The Amalfi Coast and the Sorrento Coast during Christmas
Although they are typically summer destinations, they’re both wonderful also in winter. First of all, the mild temperatures allow you to stay outdoors and explore the towns easily. Then, there are less tourists and this is great if you want to live an authentic experience.
As you can immagine, Christmas gives a special charm to the streets and the squares of the towns on the Amalfi Coast. All the lights and the decorations, together with the scents of traditional sweets, create an atmosphere that is in no inferior to that of an Alpine village, even if it’s completely different.
But which are the best things to do on the Amalfi Coast and the Sorrento Coast at Christmas?
CHRISTMAS ON THE AMALFI COAST AND THE SORRENTO COAST
The Nativity Scenes or ‘presepi’
The towns on the Amalfi Coast are located along the slopes of steep hills overlooking the sea. This particular geographic conformation, with the houses perched on the rock, is very reminiscent of the nativity scenes.
The tradition of the nativity scenes is very widespread in the region; you can find them in every church in every town. Some are very traditional and old, others modern and brand new. Some are living nativity scene, like the one of the village of Vico Equense, in which the inhabitants dress in traditional clothing.
However, the most incredible nativity scene is the ‘presepe’ in the beautiful Emerald Grotto, which is the destination of an unforgettable underwater Christmas pilgrimage.
Another beautiful Christmas procession is held in Positano; it ends at a nativity scene in a natural cave near the beach of Fornillo.
Completely different is the ‘presepe’ of Massa Lubrense, set up in a 2,000 year old olive tree.
Christmas lights, decorations and Christmas trees
During Christmas the streets of the towns are decorated with lights, positioned to enhance the architectural features of the surrounding buildings. The view from the ground is great, but the one from the sea is unforgettable; if you can, take a night boat ride to enjoy it at the best.
When it comes to Christmas lights, Minori is certainly the town on the Amalfi coast that offers the most fascinating atmosphere. If you like Christmas Trees, plan a visit to Sorrento. Every year they set a huge Christmas tree in Piazza Tasso and the lighting ceremony is a major event in town.
Concerts, events and fireworks
Visiting the Amalfi coast and the Sorrento peninsula at Christmas also means participating in both religious and non-religious events.
Speaking of the latter, each town has its own calendar of parties, concerts and shows.
The fireworks shows to celebrate the new year are unmissable. Of course, fireworks are always beautiful, but watching them from one of the many beaches of the Amalfi Coast is something special.
The beach is the set for another special event; the Positano New Year’s Concert which takes place right on the town’s main beach.
However, the most suggestive special Christmas events is probably the ‘Descent of the Star’ in Atrani.
At midnight on December 24th, a large comet made of lighted torches slides along a steel cable from the side of the mountain to the Cathedral. Meanwhile, a roar of bells and fireworks accompanies the descent. It’s almost overwhelming.
Of course, there are other towns and Christmas events to discover on the Amalfi Coast and Sorrento Coast. It is usually easy to find information on the calendar of events. But if in doubt, ask the locals; they will be happy to help you.