How to plan a trip to both Rome and the Amalfi Coast in Italy for the ultimate two-stop experience.

How to plan a trip to both Rome and the Amalfi Coast in Italy for the ultimate two-stop experience.


Each year, I insist on experiencing the Mediterranean lifestyle, at least for a short period of time. Despite my husband’s preference to keep his shoes and socks on at the beach, I must have at least one week of indulging in grilled sardines while seated on a sky-blue Van Gogh chair in a seaside taverna, even if my seat is still damp from a swim in the bay.

I was eager to experience this on the Amalfi Coast, but we began our journey in Rome. Due to the effects of global warming, the summer season now lasts until mid-October. This resulted in me feeling exhausted in the 32 degree heat at the Trevi Fountain in Rome, with two choices in front of me.

I had two options: to push through the crowds of people taking selfies (who I doubt have seen the iconic moment between Marcello Mastroianni and Anita Ekberg in her stunning black strapless dress in “La Dolce Vita”) and step into the shallow, lively pools to cool off like the well-dressed Swedish man on the edge, or to walk back to my hotel for some relief from the heat.

The Anantara Palazzo Naiadi Rome is situated in a palace from the 19th century.

I chose the latter option, particularly because the hotel was the beautiful and stylish Palazzo Naiadi located just a short distance away on Piazza Della Repubblica. The building has a unique curved design reminiscent of a colossal colonnade surrounding the bustling Piazza della Repubblica. Additionally, upon arrival in our junior suite, we were greeted with a box from a skilled pastry chef containing a white chocolate disc layered with spiced cream and sour cherry on top of a crunchy pastry base – a true taste of the sweet life.

This historical building in Rome is a neoclassical establishment that used to serve as a college for hospitality. It was built on top of the remains of the Diocletian baths, and the lower level has glass floors that allow you to view the caldarium and frigidarium.

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Located in the heart of Rome, the Termini station and Palazzo Espozione are within walking distance. I had a wonderful spa experience called the Diocletian Bath Treatment, where I was exfoliated with salts and herbs, followed by a warm mud treatment and a 10-minute steam session. After showering, I received a rejuvenating massage, which helped me detox from the cocktails I indulged in the previous night at SEEN, the hotel’s rooftop bar with a pool.

We truly experienced the essence of the Mediterranean when we were taken to a lift on a scenic road overlooking Amalfi. The town, with its charming red roofs, resembled a postcard-perfect toy village built with Lego bricks, nestled between the mountains and the sea.

We took a quick train ride from the Palazzo to Naples. During the journey, the flight attendant gave us complimentary water, almond cookies, and peanuts. We arrived in the city after an hour, stopping at the modern and polished Naples station to savor an espresso.

Our experience of the Mediterranean truly began when we arrived at a lift on a scenic road overlooking Amalfi. The town, with its picturesque red roofs, looked like a toy town made of Legos nestled between the mountains and the sea. We took the lift up to a former convent that has been transformed into a luxurious hotel where we spent the next two days in peaceful reflection (well, mostly). This included enjoying limoncello cocktails at sunset, strolling through the monks’ groves filled with olive, lemon, lime, and pomegranate trees, admiring their kitchen gardens, and following their “meditation” trails. Of course, we also took advantage of the pool, dined at the two exceptional restaurants (one fancy, one focused on pizza), and ventured down to Amalfi for a refreshing swim in the crystal blue waters of the Mediterranean and to take a leisurely walk.

In the afternoon, we visited Ravello, a hilltop town that is adored by writers such as Gore Vidal and EM Forster, as well as filmmakers, painters, musicians – and now, predictably, influencers.

Anantara Convento di Amalfi is a former monastery turned luxe hotel

I came to appreciate the reasons why the monks dedicated themselves to the Anantara Convento di Amalfi Grand Hotel after spending two days there. The serene surroundings and stunning views, as well as the convenient access to bustling boat activity in the nearby bays, are truly captivating.

First La Dolce Vita, then White Lotus with a monastic twist. Rome and Amalfi on the bounce – this was one of my most satisfying “tastes of the Med” so far.

Travel essentials

Getting there

Travelling flight-free

Travel from London to Paris on the Eurostar, transfer to a train heading to Turin, and finally take a connecting rail to Rome (it is feasible to complete the trip in a single day).

Travelling by air

Direct flights from the UK to Rome are offered by Ryanair, Wizz Air, easyJet, Vueling, and British Airways.

Staying there

Rachel Johnson was a visitor at Anantara’s Palazzo Naiadi in Rome and the Convento di Amalfi.

The Anantara Palazzo Naiadi Rome is located within a palace from the 19th century, situated on Piazza della Republica.

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