As a family we almost always travel over the Easter holidays – it is a good excuse to get away for a few days without taking any annual leave. This year we opted to travel to Sorrento, Italy. It has been 10 years since we last visited Italy, and the first time for our daughter. We found cheap flights to Naples so were then tasked with the tough decision of where we wanted to be based for our short vacation. I had heard great things about Sorrento and given its close proximity to Naples, it made it an easy choice to explore this coastal town.
We flew from Leeds Bradford to Naples, Italy with Jet2. The flight was just under 3 hours which is easy enough with a baby or toddler on your lap. I organised a transfer from the airport to the hotel directly through the hotel. It cost €95 which was entirely worth it as I could not face finding a taxi with a toddler in tow in an unknown city. The commute took approximately 1 hour.
The hotel we stayed at was called Sorrento Dream Resort and it was fabulous. There are only 6 rooms in this hotel and it opened in the Summer of 2018. The rooms are ultra modern and our particular room was very spacious (I find this important as a family of three). The hotel is not directly in the heart of Sorrento but approximately a 10-15 minute walk out of town up a slight hill, meaning the setting was peaceful and serene. The view from the terrace is simply stunning – I took plenty of photos but they don’t do it justice. There are sweeping views across the the Bay of Naples featuring Mt Vesuvius in the background – the volcano responsible for crippling the ancient Roman City, Pompeii, in AD 79. The hotel provided a daily buffet breakfast and there was a pool, hot tub and some gym equipment on the terrace. I was happy to spend plenty of time at the hotel and it was definitely a highlight of our trip – I cannot recommend it enough.
FOOD & DRINK
Italy is basically ALL ABOUT THE FOOD. In just 4 days I ate my weight worth in pizza, pasta and gelato. I may have also drank my weight worth in Prosecco (responsibly of course … like any good parent). All the food we ate was delicious and surprisingly my super fussy toddler decided she would suddenly eat anything and everything. There were no notable 5 star restaurants on our agenda, but the ones we chose were delightful none the less:
- Ristorante Verdemare – This family run restaurant was only a few minutes walk from the hotel so a good option if you stay at Sorrento Dream Resort. Note – you have to walk along the road as there is no footpath which is slightly daunting! Mackenzie and I enjoyed a giant pizza and pasta (and I had a glass of local white wine) for just €22. I love that with Mackenzie in tow I can legitimately order two meals without being frowned upon! I took half of the pizza away, which I devoured the following day for lunch.
- Private Dinner at the Hotel – The hotel offer the option of a private chef to cook you dinner on the terrace. It was 4 courses and there was so much food that we rolled back to our rooms and had to save the desserts for the following day. The desserts which were of course divine.
- Basilico Italia – On the final evening we asked the hotel to order us some take away from a local restaurant. We sat on the terrace and enjoyed the sunset whilst eating, you guessed it, more pizza and pasta! An excellent way to finish our mini vacay in Sorrento.
THINGS TO DO
Our days basically consisted of breakfast, swim, nap time, a stroll around town with ice-cream and then dinner and drinks. Rather than doing all of the touristy things I focused on living in and enjoying the moment. I loved wandering aimlessly through the quaint streets with stalls selling all the ‘lemon’ merchandise one could think of, or simply reading my book on the terrace.
I looked for tours to book however most lasted more than 6 hours which didn’t appeal with a toddler. If I had found one that lasted 2-3 hours then I would have definitely signed up. So if my child was a little older or if I were travelling sans child then these are the things that I would have liked to do. I will live vicariously through you in the meantime:
- Day trip to Capri – Capri is an island in the Bay of Naples and is approx. 30 minutes by boat from Sorrento. Its is famed for its rugged landscape and one of its best-known natural sites, the Blue Grotto.
- Sunset Cruise to Positano – We have all seen those Instagram worthy photos of Positano. What better way to see this cliff-side town than a sunset cruise with a prosseco in hand?
- Pasta Making with an Italian Nonna – I love making my own pasta and the opportunity to learn from an Italian Nonna would be a dream come true. Just imagine if you could re-create the memory of your holiday at home with a beautiful home cooked pasta.
I was surprised to learn about the Easter processions that occur in Sorrento. These historic religious processions feature solemn hooded figures whom walk silently along the streets of towns in the Sorrentine Peninsula on the Thursday and Friday before Easter Sunday. I learnt that this ancient custom dates back to the 1300s and is an important part of local culture. I was very pleased that the hotel informed me of this tradition as I think it would have been a little confronting to see on the street for the first time.
SORRENTO WITH KIDS
Is Sorrento somewhere I would recommend traveling with a baby, toddler or kids in general? Italians love children and are very accommodating to your needs as a family. The weather was gorgeous in April and I’m sure the fussiest of eaters will be happy with the culinary options. In fact, Mackenzie had a complete meltdown in the streets once the gelato was all gone. I had a lovely and relaxing time however there were not a lot of children focused activities. I would say a few days in Sorrento with a young family would be a wonderful experience. However, if you are staying for longer then grab yourself a car, explore the beautiful Italian coastline and find a beach to enjoy those summer days.
That’s a wrap on our Easter break in Sorrento, Italy! I hope you have enjoyed my insights on this beautiful part of the world and if you would like some more inspiration for your European holidays then check out Travel Diary | Barcelona and Travel Diary | Budapest. Shell x