This Southern Italian town in the Campania region in Italy often gets overlooked in favor of its flashier neighbors—the Amalfi Coast, Pompeii, and Capri, for example. And while, whether you’re traveling independently or on an excursion, Salerno is a convenient jumping-off point to get to these places, you also won’t regret staying local. Salerno’s charming town center, beach, and fine museums are worth explorations of their own.
What We Love
The Amalfi Coast: This beguiling (and stylish) stretch along the sea has captivated travelers for ages. Picture villages spread over sheer cliffs among terraced lemon groves, and winding roads swerving around precipices. The scene is simply breathtaking.
Capri: This enchanting island is an accessible ferry ride from Salerno. The craggy coast shelters rocky coves, and there’s a touch of glamour to the restaurants and shops. You could wander the winding streets all day, but consider a visit to the gardens of Villa San Michele (especially for the views) or a boat tour around the isle.
Best Known For
Lungomare Trieste: This oceanside promenade studded with greenery is a favorite spot for locals for a sun-dappled stroll; it runs parallel to the Via Dei Mercanti, the town's main shopping street.
Duomo Salerno: Built in 1076, this medieval church holds the relics of Matthew the Evangelist, and is filled with other treasures as well, including a 12th-century bell tower, mosaics, and bronze doors. Don’t miss the column-filled courtyard, and the Chapel of the Crusades, where crusaders’ weapons were blessed.
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Who It's Best For
Everyone: Much of this area represents the best of the boot-shaped country. There seems to be something for everyone, from gorgeous coastal towns and beaches to groves of lemons and hand-painted ceramics as well as fresh seafood and pastries.
Don't Say We Didn't Warn You
There's Too Much to See: Most cruise lines use Salerno as a base to visit the surrounding area. You may or may not get to see much of Salerno, and you certainly won't get to everything. Make your choices carefully in advance.
Lisa Cheng is a New York-based writer for ShermansCruise who also writes for Travel + Leisure.