If you are already venturing out to the Amalfi Coast, it is likely that you have considered paying a visit to Italy’s colorful island of Capri. This whimsical island provides an experience that would be difficult to replicate elsewhere in Italy, nonetheless the world. Kept diminutive and remote from the cerulean waterscapes that encapsulate it, Capri and the smaller town of Anacapri are a lovely stop-off from your Italian itinerary. The island’s captivating vibe can easily be experienced in one or two days.
Here are the best things to do in Capri and all the useful information you need to know.
How to Get There From Naples
Situated in the Gulf of Naples, Capri is one of the most popular tourist destinations of the Peninsula of Sorrento. Since the only way to arrive is by boat, the ferry from Naples could get chaotic during the summer months. Be prepared to wait in line, then pay 20-30 euros per passenger. The ride is only about 45 minutes. The ticketing agents likely won’t speak English, so it might be a good idea to translate a few key sentences or questions and write them down before you leave wifi range. In our experience, the Gulf’s waters were choppy and several passengers ended up becoming sick. However, landing in Capri’s Marina Grande is well worth the trip. And you will certainly earn some great stories along the way.
Things to Do in Capri and Anacapri
Capri is split into several different areas, each characterized by its distinct style. So if you are only on the island for a day or two, you must prioritize where you want to book the hotel. The ferry will arrive in Marina Grande, where you could take a bus directly to the small town of Anacapri.
Distinctly quieter than the main town of Capri, Anacapri is nestled atop several small mountains and offers a myriad of different elevated areas that boast striking views of the entire island. Monte Solaro is the island’s tallest point and you can reach it by hiking or taking the scenic chairlift to the top. Trust me, the chairlift is well worth in the extra expense. The gardens of Villa San Michele, just outside of Anacapri, houses some of the most breathtaking pergolas in the area. If you like to explore, Anacapri also has many walking trails through quaint vineyards and orchards (just ask the locals). In comparison, most of the paths in Capri are coastal or up steep inclines through the town.
Here you can also visit the Roman ruins. Take a bus to Villas Jovis in the northeast or to Villa Damecuta outside of Anacapri. Hire a guide to make the most of your time.
You can’t see everything in Capri in one day, so indulge in the Italian art of slow living by prioritizing your sightseeing. Luckily for you, this is easier since most of Capri’s beaches are rocky cliff faces. This dissuades most people from taking a plunge, but not all. After you intentionally wake up late and eat an early lunch, take to the streets and meander through the town.
There’s a 1-hour walk called the Pizzolungo that takes you along the coast, as well as an uphill climb called the Punta Tragara. Or you can explore Capri’s famed winding street Via Krupp and end up in Marina Piccola, a small port. The Gardens of Augustus offers great views of Marina Piccola as well as Via Krupp, but nothing beats the sapphire-like waters of the famed Blue Grotto. Remember to check the availability of tours in the Blue Grotto before you commit mentally. If the tide is too high or the waters too rough, the Blue Grotto might be closed to tourists.
Where to Eat
Seafood in Capri is considered excellent, as it is mostly anywhere in Italy. In Capri, you will find a dizzying assortment of fish and seafood. It’s usually caught same-day from the surrounding sea and prepared by local cooks who have spent generations perfecting their heritage recipes.
Though you could walk into any Capri restaurant and delight in a culinary experience, there are several staples that simply must be sampled whenever the opportunity arises. The most familiar of which might be the panino caprese, named for the island, and comprised of crusty white bread, mozzarella cheese, fresh tomatoes, and bright basil. In Capri’s main square there is a kiosk selling citrus granitas. On a hot day, it’s sinfully refreshing (think: ice slushie with the sweetness and bite of a lemonade-orange-mojito). Gelato from Buonocore, in central Capri, is a must-try for sure. Don’t be afraid to ask around to find other high-quality restaurants that are surely just off the beaten path.
About the Author
Rachel ‘Rosie’ Young is a writer and yoga teacher who explores the globe as a digital nomad. A former PR executive for several Fortune 500 Companies, she now shares her philanthropic messages and yogic teaching via online journalism and directly to remote communities across the American continents. She encourages her readers and students to blast through their personal limitations and live life to their fullest. Rachel can we found on www.swellwomen.com and www.barnaclebabes.com for everything environmental/wellness travel. And on www.therachellaurenyoung.com for her prose and other miscellaneous writings.