The island of Capri is located in the southern part of the Bay of Naples and consists of two plateaus, separated by a fertile plan. Most visitors only go for the day taking the hydrofoil from Naples or Sorrento. However some opt to spend a few nights or longer at a hotel on the island so they can explore the ‘real’ Capri. A holiday on the island can be successfully combined with various centres in Italy including The Amalfi Coast and Rome.
Culture & History
The island has been inhabited since the 8th century B.C., when the Greeks and Phoenicians settled there. Caesar Augustus was the first to discover the beauty of Capri when he visited the island in 29 B.C. and he was so taken with it he traded the nearby island of Ischia for it with the City of Naples. He was followed by Emperor Tiberius, who took control of Rome after Augustus. Tiberius embarked on a building program around 30 A.D. which included the construction of 12 sumptuous villas including the Villa Jovis which is partly restored today. After the Fall of the Roman Empire in 476 A.D. Capri was under the control of Naples bur left to fend for itself being continuously subjected to pirate raids. Control of the island passed from the Normans, then the Swabians (Germans), the Spanish and the French, until the fall of Napoleon.
During the 1800s great writers and artists were attracted to the islands location and great beauty as well as tourists, with the first hotel opening in 1826, the Hotel Pagano.
Places to Visit
There is so much to see and do in Capri it can be problem for visitors to know what to do; some preparation will help you make the most of your day or stay at this beautiful island.
On arrival at the busy port of Marina Grande head for the Tourist Office at the quay entrance and purchase a map and seek advice as to how much you should be charged for any excursion or taxi. The following ideas may be of interest to you:
The regular one hour boat tour of the whole islands’ coast – check what it includes.
A one hour private boat tour – better if there are more than two of you in the party and try and include the La Grotta Azzurra and Arco Naturale.
There are different land tours available of the island to include Capri Town and Anacapri (Capri Towns much quieter neighbour) if time permits or even better price a taxi would cost per hour to cover what you want to see in two to three hours.
Many just take the one hour boat trip and then take the ‘funicular’ ride from Marina Grande up to Capri Town and then if times permits take a quick bus trip over to Anacapri and back. Try and include the much quieter south part of the island at Marina Piccola where singer Grace Fields built a villa.
Make sure you have return tickets which include guaranteed boarding of a particular sailing for your hydrofoil or ferry back to Naples or Sorrento as these get very busy during peak periods.
Contact Simon at Designer Travel Tailor-made Holidays & Cruises
Photo: Marina Grande (RG) – 4