The best bars on the Amalfi Coast

The Amalfi Coast has everything for evening entertainment, from classic cocktails served by waiters in white jackets to more casual seaside spots where you can go from sunbathing to sunset drinking Campari spritzes in a single day. You can even go all out at a cave club with a glass dance floor so you can dance the night away to the crashing waves.

For even more inspiration on the Amalfi Coast, check out our guides to the best hotels, restaurants and activities in town.

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Positano and surroundings

Piccolo bar

There is probably nowhere else in the world as glamorous a place to sip a cocktail as Capri’s famous Piazzetta, an achingly picturesque open-air salon of a small square filled with the tables of four rival bars vying for customers. The Piccolo is the oldest of the four and a locals’ favourite, so grab a table, order a Campari from one of the white-clad waiters and sit back and watch the world go by; everyone passes through this seen-and-be-seen square at some point, and the fashion parade is second to none. Address: Piazza Umberto 1, Capri

Prices: €£

piccolo bar, amalfi coast, italy

The Piccolo is the oldest bar on Capri’s glamorous Piazzetta, which itself is a meeting place for the international jet set.

Music on the rocks

With the recent demise of Praiano’s historic L’Africana club, Music on the Rocks (located at the eastern end of Positano’s Spiaggia Grande) is Costiera’s only real club. Opened in 1972 and housed in a vast sea cave carved out of the rock beneath an ancient tower (accessible from the beach), the dance floor – where both resident and internationally renowned guest DJs spin mainstream house and disco tunes – looks out directly onto the water. There are two restaurants; Rada serves upscale food on an upper terrace with sweeping water views, while the more casual Beach Bistrot sits right on the sand. And if you’re looking to chill out after dinner, the rooftop Flybar offers live jazz and other chilled-out music.

Prices: Entry is free out of season; ££ in high season including a drink

Franco’s Bar

Franco’s is a chic, intimate al fresco addition to the coastal cocktail scene that harks back to an era “when bars were bars.” Seasoned mixologist Mattia Pastori’s signature cocktails include Franco’s Fizz (a citrusy combination of bergamot, lemonade, local Amalfi lemon juice and almond milk), but there are also the classics (Hemingway Daiquiri, Moscow Mule, Old Fashioned et al) plus top-notch spirits and bubbles. Aside from the occasional gourmet bite, there’s no food to distract from the spectacular views or the quality of the drinks, although the sleek design may be a standout: the pearly white floor with hand-fired tiles, the bespoke tubular-steel chairs and tables, the blue-and-white striped Murano tumblers and the bright yellow ceramic fountain by Giuseppe Ducrot.

Prices: €£

francos bar, positano, italyfrancos bar, positano, italy

Franco’s Bar serves premium spirits, classic cocktails and sparkling wine in a beautiful clifftop setting.

Aldo’s in hotel Le Sirenuse

Named after Aldo Sersale (one of the founders of the Sirenuse hotel and the late uncle of the current owner), Aldo’s epitomizes casual costiera chic. The pretty terrace overlooks the pastel-colored houses that characterize Positano and the sea, and from early evening on it’s often filled with beautiful people. On warm summer nights it’s a magical spot for a casual dinner of oysters and caviar, sea bass tartare, veal Milanese, or even a simple insalata caprese, but the secret is to linger with an after-dinner drink as the temperatures cool, the lights twinkle, and the sky turns inky black. Please note that you can reserve a table for dinner, but tables for drinks only are on a first-come, first-served basis.

Prices: €££

Praiano to Amalfi

The pirate

Reached by a narrow cliff path from Marina di Praia, this is one of those multi-purpose spots that doubles as a beach club, restaurant and cocktail bar. You can top up your tan by day (sun decks are built into the rocks), tuck into a salad in the afternoon and later order a Campari spritz at the cocktail bar carved into the sheer cliff face. With tables directly above the lapping water and regular live music sessions, it’s a cool night-time hangout, and if you want to make a night of it, the restaurant’s menu includes pasta with sea urchins (a local delicacy) and calamari fritti.

Prices: €£

the pirate, amalfi coast, italythe pirate, amalfi coast, italy

With tables directly above the lapping water and regular live music sessions, Il Pirata is one of the coolest evening spots you’ll find along this stretch of coastline. – VALERIO GARGIULO

Café Mirante

If you take the long, stepped path down to Gavitella beach from Praiano’s main street, on the way down you’ll pass the tiny Café Mirante, an unassuming coffee and aperitivo bar with a menu of delicious snacks, perched on a hillside with some of the best views on the coast. Although there’s not much room on the tiny terrace, it’s a magical spot at sunset; grab a table overlooking the sea, pull on your sunglasses, order a Campari Spritz or Lemon Zest (the house specialty with a strong chilli kick) and enjoy the relaxing background sounds as you watch the sun set over the length of the Sorrento Peninsula and the faraglioni of Capri.

Contact: 00 39 3661718593;
Opening hours: May-October, daily, 9:30am-10pm

A fire

Gavitella beach (reached by about 400 steps from Piazza San Gennaro in Praiano) is about the only place on this stretch of coast where the sun shines until sunset, so it’s a great place for an aperitif and there are fantastic views over the coast all the way to Capri. One Fire is a cool little bar with a relaxed, informal atmosphere and lovely ice-cold beers, good cocktails and a great soundtrack. It also doubles as a lido with sunbeds and parasols for hire, so you can make a day of it. If you can’t manage the steps back up, there’s a boat service to Positano.

Address: Cala Gavitella, Praiano
Contact: 00 39 338 3508555, Facebook
Opening: Daily 10am-7.30pm

How we choose

Every bar, venue or experience in this curated list has been tried and tested by our destination expert, who has visited to give you his insider perspective. We cover a range of budgets and styles, from casual pubs to fancy cocktail bars – to best suit every type of traveller – and consider service, drinks, atmosphere and price point in our recommendations. We update this list regularly to stay on top of the latest openings and provide up-to-date recommendations.

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