Capri

Capri needs no introduction. Its breathtaking landscapes, crystal clear waters, boat trips, delicious dishes and nightlong parties perfectly represent the renowned dolce vita of Capri

The incredible natural colouration of its waters has earned it the name of the blue island. Undoubtedly, Capri is the right place if you love sea holidays. However, if you do not like to stay all day on the beach, the island offers spectacular and wild trails, too. 

Also, Capri is rich in historical and artistic beauties for lovers of cultural holidays.

As you can see, this island is versatile. It is suitable for a quick getaway, family holidays, couple or group vacation and solitary breaks away from worldliness. 

 

Here are some of the attractions blue island offers.

La Grotta Azzurra - The Blue Grotto

The Blue Grotto is perhaps the most famous attraction of the island and one of the most appreciated in the world. This natural jewel has been known since Roman times. Indeed, according to some legends, the cave is connected to one of the villas that Emperor Tiberius commissioned as his refuge on the island. 

 

The intense blue resulting from a particular phenomenon of sunlight refraction represents the Blue Grotto charm. With a width of 25 meters and a length of 60, the cave is not a very large space. However, it still hides unexplored tunnels above and below sea level. Two statues of pagan gods, including one of Poseidon and one of a triton, were found on the Grotto waters seabed. The Museum of the Charterhouse of San Giacomo preserves both of them. 

 

You can access the Blue Grotto entrance in several ways:

 

  • At the port of Marina Grande, you can purchase a boat tour of the island + stop at the Blue Grotto package. Once the island tour is over, the boat will stop you at the cave entrance. From there, you will have to switch to the small rowing boats to access the Grotto.

 

  • From Piazza della Pace in Anacapri, you can take a bus and reach a staircase that leads to the place where you can queue to get on the boats.

 

  • Alternatively, from the centre of Anacapri, you can walk to Via Grotta Azzurra and get in line for the boats there.

 

Keep in mind: it is forbidden to dive into the waters of the Blue Grotto. The traffic of boats makes it impossible as well as dangerous to venture a dip during the excursion.

The Faraglioni

Positioned south-east of the island and a few meters from the coast, the three gigantic spurs of rock rising from the sea are the iconic symbols of Capri. The name comes from the Greek term pharos, meaning lighthouse. Because of their proximity to the coast, these towering rock formations served as guides since ancient times, when people were used to lit fires on their peaks as light signals for navigators.

 

Each cliff has its name and its peculiarity:

 

-the first one is Saetta. It is the highest of the three rock formations (more than 100 meters) and the only one still attached to the mainland;

 

-Stella is the most appreciated by tourists thanks to its natural 60 meters-high arch that allows taking unique photos; 

 

-Scopolo hosts a rare species of blue lizard, a subspecies of the common reptile that has adapted to the island environmental characteristics until it reached its peculiar pigmentation.

 

The only way to see the stacks up close is through a boat excursion you can rent at the Marina Grande port. However, if you want to observe the Faraglioni on the entire island background, you can reach strategic heights - such as Mount Solaro, the highest peak on the island - and enjoy the view as a whole.

Here is a fun fact: There are similar rock masses in the Aeolian Islands (Sicily) and Apulia. Then, why are the Faraglioni in Capri so famous? Well, their glory is due to the legends told in the great classical works. In Homer's Odyssey, the Faraglioni are supposed to be rocks thrown by Polyphemus. On the other hand, in Virgil's Aeneid, the cliffs are identified as the rocks where the terrifying sirens lie to emanate their diabolical songs to attract navigators.

Villa Jovis

As early as the first century AD, Emperor Tiberius fell in love with the beauty of Capri. He had 12 villas built around the island, and he decided to retire to Villa Jovis, the largest of all. Situated on the top of Mount Tiberius, the splendid Roman imperial villa dominates the entire mountain offering a spectacular view of the Gulf of Naples, Salerno and Ischia and Procida islands. The remains of the residence have been disregarded for a long time. Later, at the beginning of the last century, they have been restored and finally open to the public.

Marina Piccola

Marina Piccola, one of the must-visit beaches of Capri, opens on the southern side of the island with views of the Faraglioni. Scoglio delle Sirene (the Mermaids cliff) divides the bay into two small beaches, Marina di Mulo and Marina di Pennauro.

Marina Piccola is a popular destination during the summer season, even though many people dare a dip in those mild days that characterize the Italian winter. Indeed, the bay is sheltered from the wind currents, and this is why the climate is often some degree higher than usual.

La Piazzetta

Piazza Umberto I, or - as most people know it - Piazzetta is the beating heart of the dolce vita of Capri. Here tourists from all over the world gather to enjoy good ice cream and chat next to famous people. Not surprisingly, the Piazzetta is also known as the living room of the world. However, the Piazzetta has not always been a meeting place for Capri leisure. In fact, until the last century, it housed stalls and markets.

From the Piazzetta, you can explore Capri through its main streets. Among them, the famous shopping street of Capri, Via Camerelle, where tourists can find boutiques of the most popular brands in the world. 

Hence, you cannot leave Capri without going through the Piazzetta.

Anacapri

The blue island is composed of Capri and Anacapri towns.

Situated at the foot of Mount Solaro, Anacapri is the largest one. From here, you can reach the main attractions of the island. As far as tourist life is concerned, Anacapri is a decidedly quieter area than Capri, even though most of the island places of interest located here, including the Blue Grotto. Here you can still see more craft shops than luxury boutiques. What is more, you can walk looking at a landscape much less contaminated by the urban agglomeration, where nature runs its course and the green spaces are left to animals rather than to humans.

In Anacapri, there is also one of the most beautiful churches of the Neapolitan Baroque. The paradise scene created by the painter Leonardo Chianese is depicted on its splendid majolica floor. That is why the church of San Michele Arcangelo is known as the church of Paradise on Earth.

Trekking

If you wear comfortable shoes, take water and a camera with you, and get ready to walk a lot, the island offers two trekking experiences you would have never imagined.

 

-The walk of Pizzolungo starts from the Piazzetta, in the heart of the island, and ends up arriving at the Belvedere di Tragara, overlooking Marina Piccola. In this path lasting about two or three hours, you can enjoy an unusual empty and quiet island landscape. Only a few tourists on the way and the voices and scents of nature in almost sacred silence characterize this path. The first part of the route moves through the historic centre and then enter into the hidden lanes where you overlook ancient villas perfectly camouflaged in the lush nature. Once you reach the Restaurant Le Grottelle, you can travel a short downhill path that leads to a panoramic point overlooking the famous Natural Arch of Capri, an arch-shaped rocky structure formed as a result of natural erosive processes. The walkway winds and plunges between woods and coast, making the walk impressive and rich in several detours leading to small viewpoints. Each of them offers a different and unique view of Capri. Finally, you can return to the Piazzetta by travelling along Via Tragara.

-Starting from Anacapri, you can reach the top of Mount Solaro, the highest on the island (589 meters). The route overlooks Naples and the Sorrentine peninsula. If you feel brave enough, you can walk up the slopes of the mountain for about an hour and a half. Otherwise, you can take the chairlift that in 15 minutes arrives at your destination. Anyway, with this route, you can see the other side of Capri in all its splendour. For the descent, it is worth walking a path that leads to the Hermitage of Santa Maria di Cetrella, from which you can enjoy a little-known view of Marina Piccola. Finally, continuing along the route, you return to Anacapri.

Food and tastes

Capri is a perfect destination for Mediterranean cuisine lovers. Two of the most delicious dishes of Neapolitan cuisine and now famous worldwide are named after the island.

 

Caprese salad is perhaps the typical summer dish to enjoy at the end of an intense day spent at the beach or around the island wonders. It is made of buffalo mozzarella cheese topped with fresh tomatoes, oil, oregano and basil. Thanks to its freshness and light taste, smells and colours, the dish proves to be a delightful recipe.

Turning to dessert, the Caprese cake made with dark chocolate and almonds hides a bizarre and curious story. According to tradition, it would be the result of a culinary error. His inventor realized too late that he had mistaken the cake he was preparing. However, when people appreciated the disaster, he continued to propose the wrong recipe. The rest is history.

Capri preserves the fragrance and flavour of Mediterranean lemons typical of the entire Sorrentine peninsula, Ischia and Procida islands. From the gold-coloured citrus comes one of the typical island products, limoncello. The digestive liqueur is made exclusively with the skins of Capri lemons cultivated naturally without chemical additives and without the addition of dyes. Generally, fresh limoncello is perfect after meals, but it can also accompany ice cream and fresh fruit salads. The colour, smell and flavour of the lemons that the liqueur acquires are unique.

How to reach Capri from Vico Equense

The distance Vico Equense-Capri is not accessible directly. There are several options, and each provides a change in Sorrento. From here, then, you can embark for Capri.

Here are the options.

Train

You can take the route from Vico Equense to Sorrento (last stop) of the service offered by Circumvesuviana (10 minutes). Once you arrive at your destination, you can reach the port (10 minutes walk) and take the direct ferry to Capri (25 minutes) or the hydrofoil (20 minutes).

 

Bus

Otherwise, you can travel from Vico Equense to Sorrento by bus (about 15-20 minutes). Multiple operators provide this route, including EAV and SITA. The bus station is at the Circumvesuviana station of Sorrento, so you can reach the port (10 minutes walk) and take the direct ferry to Capri (25 minutes) or the hydrofoil (20 minutes).

 

Taxi

You can reach the port of Sorrento in 20 minutes by taxi.

Service

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