There is a place on the Amalfi Coast whose name already sums up the beauty of the experience it offers those who visit it. A path that allows one to travel back in time, to the splendours of ancient Greece.
We are talking about the Sentiero degli Dei, which we will try to describe in words in this article, although we are already sure that they will not be sufficient to recount the emotions that are lived there.
After all, if you have ended up on this page, you have probably already decided to live this incredible experience during your stay on the Amalfi Coast.
For this reason, you will find all the information you need to set out to discover one of the most beautiful trekking routes in the world.
If this is your first time on costieraamalfitana.com we welcome you and hope that this content contributes to an unforgettable experience!
Indice dei contenuti
A general overview? Yes, but also poetic!
The path that connects Bomerano to Nocelle, a rural village in Positano some 400 metres above sea level, offers an experience of total immersion in nature and a spectacular view of the Coast that is truly difficult to describe in words.
For the occasion, we will make our own the words of Italo Calvino, one of the many poets and men of letters seduced by the wonder of the place, who defined the Sentiero degli Dei as “that road suspended over the magical gulf of the ‘Sirens’ still traversed by memory and myth”, and this is exactly how the trail begins, with this phrase engraved on a ceramic plaque and welcoming visitors under the best of auspices.
And expectations, we assure you, will not be disappointed.
Leaving aside for a moment the breathtaking view you will enjoy as you walk along the road, what will strike you is the authenticity of the place: the Sentiero degli Dei, in fact, has remained suspended in time and its beauty has hardly been affected by the hand of man.
It is easy, in such a landscape context, to let oneself be carried away by the imagination, trying to hear the sound of Ulysses’ ship sailing along the blue waters of the Tyrrhenian Sea and reaching the Amalfi Coast, especially when, at the end of the route, one can see the island of Li Galli in the distance, where, according to tradition, the Sirens, with their song, tried to tempt the mythical hero.
Book your guided tour along the Sentiero degli Dei
The Sentiero degli Dei, a magnificent trail!
The advice for a complete excursion is to walk the path from top to bottom, i.e. starting from the hamlet of Bomerano (Agerola), located 650 metres above sea level, and then proceeding to the locality of Nocelle, from where, following the ancient route of the Hellenic settlers, once dominated by temples, you will finally reach Positano.
This is the so-called ‘low path’, preferred by many travellers and tourists because it is less strenuous and more evocative. On this side, you can admire Colle Serra, where there is a rock stele with an epigraph dedicated to hiker Ettore Paudano, who discovered and promoted the path.
The alternative is the ‘high path’, which, as the name suggests, is slightly more demanding, because it is uphill: it always starts from Bomerano and ends with a climb, that of Maria del Castello.
Along the Sentiero degli Dei, there are numerous springs of fresh, drinkable water and wooden benches, allowing a well-deserved break, to be spent gazing at the panorama, which from this height allows views of Li Galli, the Faraglioni of Capri, Punta Penna and the chain of the Lattari Mountains.
After a stop at Fontana Vecchia di Monte Pertuso, the journey continues refreshed by the destination finally in sight: from here you can see Positano and the descent of the famous 1700 steps begins.
At Monte Pertuso (352 metres above sea level), it is said that a battle was fought between the Madonna and Lucifer; traces of that fight are also engraved in the rock, which has a hole (“pertuso” in our dialect)
It seems that it was the Madonna who sank her fingers into the heart of the rock. In reality, this is an erosion phenomenon, already seen in other areas of the Amalfi Coast, which has modelled the rocks as if they were stone sculptures.
How to get to the Sentiero degli Dei by public transport
The cost of the ticket varies depending on the distance and can be purchased at authorised sales outlets. From Naples, departures are from the terminus at varco Immacolatella and from Via Marina porta di Massa, with a stop in Via Ferraris (INPS).
In Castellammare di Stabia, on the other hand, departures are from the Terme Nuove with various stops in the city centre, which can be viewed directly on the transport company’s website.
From Amalfi, the departure is from the terminus located near Piazza Flavio Gioia: there is a direct bus to Agerola-Bomerano, the hamlet of the mountain municipality from which the excursion can begin.
The most convenient alternative is the service provided by Travelmar, whose fast ferries make it easy to reach the Amalfi Coast even during the busiest periods, without the risk of waiting in traffic.
In addition to the connections between Salerno and all the towns along the Coast (Vietri sul Mare, Cetara, Maiori, Minori, Amalfi and Positano), the company also offers special connections combining ferry and shuttle, a special service designed for those wishing to reach the coveted destination of the Sentiero degli Dei.
Four ferries depart daily from Salerno to the beautiful town of Amalfi. From here an equal number of buses depart to take hikers to the very popular Piazza Capasso in Bomerano, where they can take the small road that, following the CAI signs, leads to the Sentiero degli Dei.
The ferry + shuttle combo is also available from other towns along the Coast (Vietri sul Mare, Positano, Minori, Maiori and Cetara).
We do not recommend reaching the departure point by car for two fundamental reasons: firstly, to avoid the risk of getting stuck in traffic, especially if you travel in high season.
Secondly, the car forces you to make the journey twice: whether you decide to start from Bomerano, as we recommend, or to proceed in the opposite direction, once you have completed the route, you are forced to go back to retrieve your vehicle. Public transport, in this case, makes life so much easier and allows you to enjoy the excursion without any worries!
Hiking on the Sentiero degli Dei: some useful tips
The Sentiero degli Dei is a truly unique adventure. The conformation of the area through which it winds should not frighten the visitor because it is very easy, although one must wear comfortable shoes (trekking enthusiasts will find bread for their teeth!).
There are many tour operators who provide expert guides to discover the secrets of the Sentiero degli Dei. The duration is about 4 hours and 30 minutes for a total of 10 kilometres.
The start of the hike is usually in the morning and halfway there is a break for refreshments. On arrival in Positano, you can have lunch in a characteristic local restaurant or continue your visit in the seaside town before setting off on your return journey.
The Sentiero degli Dei offers the possibility of alternative excursions, off the usual route. One does not start from Agerola but from Vettica Maggiore, a locality not far away, and via a less strenuous staircase in about half an hour one arrives at San Domenico, a religious complex located 400 metres above sea level.
After visiting the church of Santa Maria a Castro and the 16th-century Dominican convent, we set off again through holm oaks and Mediterranean scrub.
At a certain point, the alternative route intertwines with the ‘official’ route of the Sentiero degli Dei (Gods’ Path), which leads to the small village of Nocelle, where only 150 people live and there is only one restaurant offering an excellent menu of local dishes.
After the ‘gastronomic’ break, you can choose to take a local bus to Positano or continue walking.
Whichever season you choose to venture along the Sentiero degli Dei from Agerola to Positano, remember to bring a waterproof jacket, sun cream and sunglasses. If you travel in the warmer months and think you might like to stop in Positano on your way back, remember to pack a t-shirt and some refreshing towels in your rucksack, to change quickly in a bar bathroom or during your lunch break, if you decide to have something to eat on site.