Neapel & Ischia & Capri & Costa Amalfitana

No visit to Naples is complete without a free walking tour through the charming and vibrant old town, which impresses above all with its unique joie de vivre. Here you will also find the best pizza in the world. The narrow main street - Spaccanapoli - is the heart of the city and cuts through the historic center of Naples.  There are a number of churches, palazzi and historic houses in Naples - so it's no wonder that the old town of Naples is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Around the Gulf of Naples there are beautiful islands, Mount Vesuvius and the Costa Amalfitana, an area that you should definitely have seen.

1. Naples - Old town

Naples is a real paradise for shopping. Many factories located here sell fine clothing, shoes and bags at reasonable prices. Boutiques of all kinds are lined up along the famous shopping street Via Toledo. Naples is a real paradise for shopping. Many factories located here sell fine clothing, shoes and bags at reasonable prices.Boutiques of all kinds are lined up along the famous shopping street Via Toledo.

 

The 13th-century Chiostro di Santa Chiara complex, consisting of a church, a monastery and a museum, invites visitors to explore the religion and architecture of bygone eras. The Mallorcan rococo-style tiles are beautiful, as are the intricately decorated cloisters. From the center of Naples you can reach the Chiostro in about 12 minutes on foot.

 

The Museo Archeologico Nazionale in Naples houses one of the most important archaeological collections in the world and is therefore one of the most famous museums of its kind. Here you will find, among other things, numerous well-preserved finds from Pompeii, which was destroyed almost 2000 years ago when the volcano Vesuvius erupted. You can marvel at entire murals and mosaics from the legendary city and be transported back to a bygone era. From the center of Naples you can reach this museum in about 16 minutes on foot.

 

Galleria Umberto I: Also located on Via Toledo is the beautiful Galleria Umberto, a magnificent 19th-century shopping arcade. This Galleria is not only a shopper's paradise, but also an architectural marvel. Under the huge curved glass roof, visitors can discover a collection of cafes, souvenir shops and exclusive brands. From the center of Naples you can reach this gallery in about 30 minutes on foot.

2. Naples - Museums & palaces

Castel Sant'Elmo & Certosa di San Martino: The medieval fortress and the adjacent monastery Certosa di San Martino are enthroned on the Vomero above Naples. Tourists can take an elevator up to the fortress from the center of Naples and from here enjoy the breathtaking view over Naples, the Gulf and Mount Vesuvius. Convent of San Martino: Located in the immediate vicinity of Castel Sant'Elmo, the Certosa e Museo di San Martino is a beautiful 13th-century convent that can be visited when visiting Naples. In addition to the beautiful courtyard, vast art collection and stunning architecture, the historic monastery offers spectacular views of the Bay of Naples and the Vomero Hills from its balconies and gardens.

 

The majestic Palazzo Reale on the Capodimonte hill is impressive. Here you will find one of the finest collections of paintings in Italy, spread out over the vast expanse of the museum. Take your time and discover works by Botticelli and Michelangelo, among others. You can also have a picnic in the museum park on the Capodimonte hill. Located on the site of a royal palace Reggia di Capodimonte, the Capodimonte Museum houses the National Gallery, with works of art from the Middle Ages to the 21st century. Stroll through the decadent rooms of this attraction and admire some of the famous works by Titian, Raphael, Caravaggio . From the center of Naples you can reach the Palazzo Reale in about 35 minutes on foot.

 

Caserta Palace (Reggia di Caserta): Marvel at how kings once lived, soak up the unmatched opulence of 1,200 rooms and experience hundreds of years of history at the 18th-century Royal Palace of Caserta. While the interior of the palace is a sight to behold, its extensive gardens, adorned with manicured greenery and artwork, are an attraction in their own right. The Reggia di Caserta is about 33 km north of Naples.

 

The ancient temple city of Paestum is one of the most famous archaeological sites in Italy. Located south of Naples in the beautiful Cilento region, it can be reached by car in 1.5 hours from Naples. Here you will find well-preserved temples (Tempio di Cerere and Tempio di Nettuno, built around the years 450 to 500 BC), theaters and buildings from pre-Christian times. Valuable finds are exhibited in the National Archaeological Museum.

3. Vesuvio & Pompei & Ercolano

Vesuvius is the most famous volcano on earth, dominating the Gulf of Naples with its distinctive cone formed during the 79 BC eruption. arose. Vesuvius has been in a state of dormancy since 1944. This can last for several hundred years. The crater of Vesuvius can be reached with a 30-minute walk from the parking lot on Vesuvius. During the walk along the crater, at about 1,200 meters above sea level, it is possible to see the entire Gulf of Naples when visibility is good.

 

In 79 AD, Pompeii was buried when Mount Vesuvius erupted. At the end of the 18th century, the lost city was accidentally rediscovered. Since then, the ruins of Pompei have attracted visitors from all over the world. The excavations can be visited on your own, but Pompeii is a confusing maze. The red brick walls all look pretty similar. Many streets and alleys lead to nowhere. Without a proper plan, it's easy to get lost in the big city of Pompeii. That's why it's worth taking part in a guided tour.

 

The Greek city of Herculaneum (now called Ercolano) was founded around the 6th century BC. Founded around 300 BC and was a vacation spot for Roman aristocrats. During the eruption of Vesuvius in 79 BC. BC Herculaneum was buried by a river of mud that flooded the city and solidified in the form of tuff, the best protection against the elements. In Ercolano you get a very good insight into the life of that time.

 

It is worth visiting the National Archaeological Museum of Naples before visiting Pompeii and Ercolano. There you can find a lot of things that shaped life in Pompeii and Ercolano, from cooking pots to gladiator armor. The museum conveys a lively, multi-faceted picture of the people there enjoying, loving, working and celebrating. With all these interesting impressions, you can better fill the two excavation sites with life.

4. Ischia & Procida

Ischia Island is the largest island in the Gulf of Naples. Due to the mild climate and the thermal springs there, the island became one of the most popular travel destinations early on. Ischia can only be reached by ferry (journey time 1 to 1.5 hours) either from Naples or from Pozzuoli (also car transport). On the island, the public buses and taxis run around the island.

 

Lacco Ameno is an elegant town with chic hotels and exclusive bars. Here is a nice shopping street along the sea and you can admire the mushroom-shaped rock in the sea. A nice walk through the car-free town leads to the beautiful bay of San Montana.

 

Bay of San Montano. This dreamlike bathing bay offers one of the most beautiful beaches on Ischia. The bay is sheltered from the wind and can be easily reached on foot from the nearby town of Lacco Ameno. Here you will also find the fantastically beautiful Negombo thermal park, as well as a section of beach where you can rent loungers and parasols, and then on the left side of the bay a free beach, also with changing rooms. Beautiful sandy beach along the whole bay, everything very clean, with a unique ambience and romantic. The water is shallow for a long time, so bathing here is also suitable for children. A beautiful hiking trail leads from this bay, first through the forest and then along the sea towards Forio, with a beautiful view. After a hike of about 30 minutes you reach the equally beautiful sandy beach of Spiaggia di San Francesco, from where you should definitely watch the sunset over the sea while having a cool drink at a bar.

 

Giardini Ravino & Giardini La Mortella. Two wonderful flowering estates on Ischia are waiting for you in the west and north-west of the island. While Giardini Ravino has one of the most beautiful collections of succulents and whisks you away to the realm of cacti, Giardini La Mortella awaits you. This botanical garden impresses with its exotic flora and is definitely one of Ischia's highlights.

 

The Poseidon Gardens Parco Termale Giardini Poseidon are the ideal place for rest and relaxation. Here you will find 20 pools, extensive terraced landscapes, and a beautiful beach by the sea. The water pools have different water temperatures from 22 to 35 degrees Celsius, the hot, health-promoting thermal water comes from a volcano and is mixed with cold water as needed.

 

In the west of Ischia is the town of Forio. The beautiful city center and the pilgrimage church of Santa Maria del Soccorso are particularly worth seeing, from where you can enjoy wonderful sunsets from a unique location.

 

The village of Sant'Angelo d'Ischia in the south of Ischia is a pretty, car-free town with a small beach, a few shops and a few nice cafés. From one of these cafés, which also offers good Neapolitan sweets, you can enjoy wonderful sunsets. If you continue walking from Sant'Angelo, after climbing a small hill, you will reach the large, 3 km long sandy beach Spiaggia dei Maronti.

Monte Epomeo, which towers 780 meters above the island, is Ischia's landmark. The ideal starting point for the hike to the summit is the highest village, Fontana, which is 500 meters above sea level. From there you have to overcome a difference in altitude of only around 300 meters over a distance of 3 kilometers. On the way to the summit you will find small snack bars or restaurants where you can take a short break. When you reach the summit you will find peace and a breathtaking view over the entire island but also far away, up to Vesuvius or the much-sung about island of Capri.

 

The Sorgente Nitrodi Thermal Park is located in Barano, in the Buonopane hamlet. At the bridge, a small footpath leads to the Nitrodi thermal spring. The healing tradition of the Nitrodi spring dates back to the Greek period on the island of Ischia (8th century BC). The Nitrodi nymphs, to whom the spring was dedicated, are repeatedly mentioned in numerous classical Graeco-Latin texts. Texts engraved on marble slabs from the 1st century B.C. speak about the healing effect of the spring. Today the therapeutic properties of the spring water are recognized by the Italian Ministry of Health. After redesigning the green area around the Nitrodi spring, there is an aromatherapy path in the park that, through direct contact with aromatic and medicinal plants, enhances the effects of the thermal water. The park offers various showers on the mountainside, where the pure spring water flows out at a temperature of 28 degrees. After a shower, the park's terraces offer numerous opportunities to relax and sunbathe, on deckchairs and with a view of the sea.

 

The picturesque port of Ischia Porto used to be a closed crater lake that was blasted in the 19th century, creating a natural sheltered port. Here you can stroll along the Via Roma and enjoy the luxurious life day and night. A must for most Ischia visitors is the Calise Bar in Piazza degli Eroi (Heroes' Square), one of the oldest bars with a stunning tropical and subtropical garden. A nice walk leads, partly along the sea, to Ischia Ponte, with its beautiful old town, which invites you to linger with its graceful, narrow streets and dreamy courtyards. Ischia Ponte owes its name to the bridge that connects the old town to the Aragonese Castle. This was built in the 14th century by Alphonse of Aragon. In the Middle Ages, the castle offered the residents refuge from numerous pirate raids and can be visited.

 

In the small bay of Baia di Sorgeto you can bathe in the volcanic hot water springs for free. From the bus stop "Panza" it takes about 15 minutes on foot to reach the bay. At the end of the path, 300 steps lead down to the Baia di Sorgeto. The hot springs can be reached via a jetty. Here you can sit in the various natural pools where the hot springs flowing out of the rock mix with the cooler sea water. Right next to these springs is a small lido with a bar.

 

Excursion to the neighboring island of Procida. The island of Procida is only a few kilometers off the coast of Ischia and is particularly enchanting because of the brightly colored houses that welcome visitors in the port. Procida was formed from seven then active volcanoes whose craters are still visible. Due to the picturesque landscape of Procida and its tradition, you can enjoy a quiet, pleasant atmosphere here. After arriving by ship, the fortress on the Terra Murata is not far away. From there you can enjoy the wonderful panoramic view of the port of La Corricella.

5. Capri

Capri is a beautiful island that has been known for its beauty since ancient times. There is so much beauty here that one day is not enough to visit all the wonderful things of this paradise.

 

The island of Capri can be reached by boat from Sorrento, Amalfi, Positano, Naples and Salerno. The picturesque port of Marina Grande welcomes the guests. From the port you can reach the center of Capri in a short time with a cable car (Funicolare). Minibuses and taxis run from here to reach the more distant towns of Anacapri, Marina Piccola and the Grotta Azzura.

 

La Piazzetta di Umberto I in Capri city. You get the flair of this small but famous piazza especially in the evening, when the day tourists have gone and the guests of the surrounding luxury hotels meet here. The adjacent Via Vittorio Emanuele and the Via Camerelle branching off from it are the shopping streets of Capri. A few hundred meters from the center of Capri, things quiet down and the picturesque Via Tragara opens up, a panoramic path that leads to the Punta di Tragara viewpoint, from where you can admire the Faraglioni rocks from above.

 

Capri. The Blue Grotto. Access to the Grotta Azzura is a rock hole in the sea that is just under 1.50 meters high. Behind it is a cave about 60 meters long and 30 meters wide. Below the entrance is another sub-sea level rock hole which reflects daylight into the grotto. The light is filtered and the red components are absorbed. The water inside the cave shimmers in a peculiar, intense blue hue. A little patience is required to get into the blue grotto. From larger tourist boats you change to smaller fishing boats that fit through the narrow opening. When the sea is calm, the grotto is open from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. When it's not cloudy, the grotto shows its glorious colors best between 12pm and 2pm.

 

Gardens of Augustus. The small and inimitable Gardens of Augustus are historical heritage of Capri and were created by the German Friedrich Krupp at the beginning of 1900. Flora typical of Capri grows here, there are hundreds of sculptures and there are spectacular views of the island's legendary rock towers, the Faraglioni. These steep rocks, about 90 meters high in the middle of the sea, are a popular photo motif. The most impressive are boat trips through the needle eye of the middle rock.

Via Krupp is right next to the Gardens of Augustus. The German industrialist Friedrich Alfred Krupp had this spectacular serpentine path cut into the rock in 1900 in order to be able to descend more quickly from his favorite hotel up in Capri town to Marina Piccola. One of the most spectacular serpentine paths was created, on which you can overcome a height difference of approx. 100 m with an overwhelming view. Marina Piccola. Here we are on the south coast of Capri, the best point to see the "Faraglioni" rock towers. The rocks have divided Marina Piccola into two mini bays with beautiful bathing beaches.

 

Arco Naturale (Natural Arch). This rock, in the shape of an elephant's head, is located in the east of the island in one of the most scenic parts of the island of Capri. Through this arch there are breathtaking views of the bays and the wide sea. The Arco Naturale is about an hour's walk from Capri town. Then it is worth the walk along the steep cliffs to Cape Tragara with a view of Villa Malaparte and the Faraglioni rocks.

 

Villa Jovis. The first Roman emperor Augustus had this monumental palace built on Capri, and his successor Tiberius moved his seat of government from Rome to Capri and lived in the villa himself. The ruins, which are still preserved today, give an idea of ​​how monumental and magnificent the villa must have been. The fantastic view must have been the same then as it is today.

 

Villa San Michele. This former villa of Axel Munthe enjoys a fantastic location on the edge of a precipice on the road from Capri to Anacapri and offers an unforgettable panorama. The light-flooded villa built in Saracen-Romanesque style with antique marble fragments is now a museum. There are many beautiful architectural corners in Villa San Michele, such as the head of Medusa and the marble bust of Emperor Tiberius. Here you can stroll in the most picturesque gardens of the whole island of Capri.

 

With its picturesque streets, Anacapri is more rural than Capri Town. From Anacapri you can also reach the highest mountain in Capri, Monte Solaro, at 589 meters. A chairlift takes you up the mountain and you will be rewarded with a magnificent 360 degree panorama across the island, with views across to Ischia, Procida, the Gulf of Naples and the Sorrento Peninsula. In the center of Anacapri is the Church of the Archangel San Michele in Piazza Armando Diaz. The Baroque church from the 17th century has a great attraction, the floor mosaic depicting Adam and Eve being expelled from paradise on earth by an angel, surrounded by plants and animals.

6. Costa Amalfitana

Positano is certainly the most famous place on the Costiera Amalfitana (Amalfi Coast)! The former fishing village attracts numerous tourists with its picturesque houses towering in terraces on high cliffs. ​

 

Vietri sul Mare. This place is famous for its tradition of hand-painted ceramics. The colorful majolica art can be admired in the village and you can always find a special souvenir to take home.

 

Amalfi is a pearl on the Gulf of Salerno. The highlight in the heart of Amalfi is the majestic Cathedral of Sant'Andrea with its cloister and its characteristic Arabic-Sicilian architecture.

 

Ravello is a hidden little gem on the Amalfi Coast. It is elegant and noble high on a mountain. In Ravello, the imposing villas with their exotic flower gardens, which are considered to be the most beautiful on the entire Amalfi Coast, are particularly worth seeing. The main magnets here are Villa Rufolo and Villa Cimbrone. Both offer a breathtaking panorama of the sea.

 

At Atrani and Maiori there is one of the few large beaches on the Amalfi Coast. But along the coast there are many small beaches and coves to explore, such as the Furore fjord and the Baia di Leranto.

 

The Amalfi Coast is a true hiker's paradise. One of the beautiful hiking trails is the Sentiero degli Dei, the path of the gods. It leads along the coast from Bomerano to Positano, with magnificent views.

View of Naples from Vesuvio

Vesuvio

Ischia - Baia di Sorgeto , with thermal water

Procida - Fishing village Marina della Coricella

Capri

Abbazia di Montecassino

Naples

Ischia - Castello Aragonese

Naplesl - Certosa di San Martino

Capri - Entrance to the Grotta Azzurra

Pompei

Napales

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© by Team Marsilva 2022