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Campania & Amalfi Coast Capri, a Magical Island

"Magical" is the word that comes to mind for Capri, a picturesque island of breath-taking scenery, blooming flowers and cascading vines, pretty streets, and natural beauty. Cliffs and coves make up a good deal of its coastline, pocked with sea caves, while a mountain rises in the middle of the isle. Whether you want to hike, shop or swim, this is the place that offers it up in style.

Location: Italy - Campania & Amalfi Coast - Naples - Capri
On the island there are two municipalities – Capri town and Anacapri. The arrival port is Marina Grande; the luxury boat harbor is Marina Piccola, while Capri's town center is on the hill, accessed by the funicular in Marina Grande. Get a map at the tourist information office in Marina Grande. You’ll need it!

Transportation to Capri: Unless you're one of the jet-set crowd that can arrive by helicopter, the only way to get to Capri is by boat. You can catch the ferries from Naples and Salerno, but some also depart from Amalfi and Positano. Water taxis are available, if you prefer to go on your own schedule.

Transportation on Capri: Taxis are open-topped cars that ooze the cool, carefree vibe of Capri. There are public buses to move between Marina Grande, Marina Piccola and Anacapri.

Walk: The landscape of the island means a lot of walking as there aren't many roads. The majority of streets are narrow lanes. There are lots of staircases and nature paths too.

Shop. Handmade sandals and hand-crafted gloves are two of the products to look for here.

Exploring Capri

Stand in the middle of the famous Piazzetta and feast your eyes on the colors, aromas and people parade. This is the gathering hub of the island and a drink at a sidewalk cafe is obligatory. Walk the glitzy shopping street toward the swanky Hotel Quisisana, then head off in the maze of streets to find those jaw-dropping views. For example, swoon-worthy vistas are found at Belvedere Cannone, looking down at Marina Piccola and the sea; or the path to leads to the Natural Arch. Or walk the easier paved lane to Punta Tragara with its splendid overlook.

From Belvedere Cannone you can visit the Gardens of Augustus, a terraced botanic spaced with 180-degree views, and Villa Jovis, Roman remains that show this island has long been an "in" spot, then continue the scenic stairs called Via Krupp, a switchback paved path that leads to Marina Piccola. (Those who don't want to walk can take a bus or a taxi.) Here you'll find a lovely harbor with sailboats bobbing, spots to swim and sun on the reefs, and those postcard pretty rocks called the Faraglioni that are the symbol of Capri.

Anacapri is the older town that is quaint and quieter than its sister. You can get to Anacapri by bus or taxi - or walk the storied Phoenician Steps, 921 of them in all, that were actually built by the Greeks, not the Phoenicians. Enjoy the bougainvillea-splashed lanes. Gape at the painted tile floor in the church of San Michele, which looks like a tapestry rolled out below your feet.

Take the chairlift up to Monte Solara, the highest point on Capri at 598 meters above sea level (1961 feet). Pack a picnic to enjoy up there!

Just a ten-minute bus ride from Anacapri is the pretty Punta Carena lighthouse, especially gorgeous at sunset.

And of course, no visit to Capri is complete without a trip into the Blue Grotto, the storied cavern that casts a blue hue on the rocks. (Or, if you want less crowds, you can take a boat to the less-known Green Grotto, which is the same principle but perhaps even more enjoyable because the boat operators will let you swim in the grotto for a bit!)

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The Capri arrival port is Marina Grande.

Article contributed by Summer in Italy who offer vacation rentals on Capri, Sorrento and the Amalfi Coast (and the rest of Italy).


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More Photos

Pauline's photos of the Phoenician Steps.

 

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