Sorrento lies in the picturesque Campania region on the Amalfi coast of southern Italy. While it is a small town, with only 16,500 residents, it is a very popular tourist destination and is easily accessible from nearby Naples and Positano. Holiday makers flock here every year to enjoy the wonderful Italian way of life and beautiful weather.
Thanks to its location on the Italian coast, Sorrento has a Mediterranean climate. This means that summer is hot and dry, spring and autumn is pleasant and winter is mild but wet. Average temperatures never drop below 8°C and there’s at least 6 hours of sunshine every day.
While summer sees the most sunshine and the highest temperatures, the weather can actually be a little stifling during these months when you want to get around exploring Sorrento’s attractions. If you want to do anything other than lay on the beach, you may prefer to plan your visit at another time as there is lots to see and do nearby.
Sorrento is near Pompeii and Mount Vesuvius and lies within close proximity to many other quaint seaside holiday spots such as the small town of San Angelo. Pompeii and its sister city of Herculaneum are probably the most popular tourist attraction in Sorrento. They were completely buried on August 24, 79 AD when the nearby volcano Mount Vesuvius erupted, under masses of lava and volcanic ash, preserving buildings and bodies in incredible detail. Pompeii can get excruciatingly hot in the peak of summer and wandering the stone streets which absorb the heat can be somewhat of a challenge. If you want to spend a good day exploring Pompeii then winter or spring are excellent times to visit.
While summer is great for topping up your tan and basking in the sunshine, in general, one of the best time times to visit Sorrento is the springtime. Not only are temperatures are pleasant, but the crowds on the beach and in towns are thinner.
View of Mount Vesuvius from Sorrento
Summer is the peak tourism season in Sorrento. As the region enjoys a typical Mediterranean climate, summer temperatures really start in May, when the average daily maximum sits at 22°C and the minimum falls to a comfortable 12°C. However, by June, summer is in full swing and things heat up. The average maximum temperature hits 26°C before rising to 29°C in July and August. Minimum temperatures in summer range from about 16°C to 18°C. Although these temperatures are very high, Sorrento’s coastal location means the heat is somewhat moderated by refreshing sea breezes.
Summer is also the driest and sunniest time of the year. The three main summer months of June, July and August all have 13 glorious hours of sunshine per day, while precipitation is at its lowest in July, which only sees 25 mm of rain and has merely 4 days with rainfall. It begins to pick up slightly around the end of August before reaching 81mm in September. Additionally, the sea temperatures are at their highest in summer, ranging between 22°C and a temperate 27°C; perfect for taking a dip to cool off.
Visitors should take note that prices are generally higher in the summer season and resorts are usually packed out. It is also when Sorrento hosts a music festival that is attended by tourists and locals alike. If you prefer a lively atmosphere in bars and cafes and don’t mind crowds, then this is the season for you.
Autumn is a short season between the beginning of October and the end of November which sees the weather change. Starting in September, temperatures begin to drop and become much milder than the sizzling hot summer months, which many people welcome. The average temperature is 17°C in October and 12°C in November though temperatures can vary quite a lot this season, from highs of 22°C to lows of 7°C. Sunshine levels also drop in autumn, but if you visit Sorrento in October you will still be able to enjoy 9 hours of lovely sunshine a day which is more than enough.
Autumn is a very pleasant time to visit Sorrento, especially if you prefer milder temperatures, but it does have one downfall and that’s an increase in rainfall. November is by far the wettest month in the year, receiving a total of 162mm of precipitation spread out over 15 days. Even October has its fair share of showers, with 12 wet days. Holiday makers should be prepared with an umbrella or some waterproof layers.
October is probably the last month of the year that you can swim in the sea around Sorrento too, as sea temperatures remain at 22°C. After this, they drop to 19°C which will feel a little too cold for most.
Beginning in December and lasting until February, winters in Sorrento are mild and rarely get extremely cold. The average minimum temperature which will occur at night time, is 3°C to 4°C which can feel quite chilly, but maximum temperatures sit at a pleasant 12°C to 13°C during the day. January is the coldest month of the year with an average temperature of 8°C, so you may want to pack some warmer layers if you’re visiting at this time of year.
Winter is also the darkest, least sunny and rainiest time of year. December and January have the least amount of sunshine of the year, though there is still 6 hours to be seen. Though winter sees less rainfall than autumn, there’s still between 99mm and 122mm of precipitation every month and an average of 15 wet days, so showers should be expected. This means that winter isn’t the time to visit Sorrento if you want to visit the beach. Sea temperatures confirm this, as at 14°C to 16°C, the waters are too cold for a swim.
While quite cold and wet compared to the summer, winter is a particularly good time to visit if you want to explore the surrounding areas of Sorrento and take part in outdoor activities. The weather is very mild compared to other countries such as the UK and provides a welcome escape from snow and freezing temperatures.
Beginning in March, spring time is much like autumn in Sorrento, but a little drier. The weather starts to heat up after the winter months and sunshine levels increase. Temperatures are very similar to autumn too, seeing averages of between 11°C and 13°C while highs can reach up to 18°C by the end of April. The coldest temperature occurs at the beginning of spring at just 6°C.
Spring is quite a sunny season in Sorrento, making it a great time to visit, especially if you’re coming from places like the UK which doesn’t see much sun at this time of year. There’s between 8 and 10 hours of sunshine every day.
Unlike autumn, spring sees a decrease in wet weather and is actually quite dry, though not as dry as summer. April sees just 76mm of rainfall and 13 wet days. If you want to swim in the sea on your trip, you may want to wait a few months as the sea still hasn’t warmed up after winter at this time of year. The average sea temperature is just 14°C to 15°C which can feel rather chilly!