Planning a trip to Southern Italy? Our travel consultant Diana Collini, shares with us why Capri is not to be missed along with her top travel tips that come from both experience and a love for this popular Italian destination:
Ahhh... Capri. The word alone inspires visions of celebrity spotting in high-end luxury shopping alleys and breathtakingly beautiful villas perched precariously on cliff sides. Fresh salty sea air, the smell of lemons used to make delicious Limoncello; what isn’t to like about the isle of Capri? Having a good time is not difficult here but from the time I spent in Capri, these are my tips to make your travel experience a little easier.
Capri can be reached from Naples, Sorrento, Positano or Amalfi by Hydrofoil or by ferry. I had many great experiences on the Hydrofoil from Naples (one hour) or Sorrento (25 minutes) – it’s easy, fast and efficient. Once you arrive you will need to take the funicular (cable run cliff railway) up to the centre of Capri. From here most hotels are a short walking distance away and you can enjoy getting lost in all the little trendy alleys filled with big designer boutique stores.
Capri is not a destination for the budget-conscious traveller but one way to save is to stay in Anacapri instead. It’s situated above Capri and can be reached by a short bus from the main town centre. As the town is so high up on the island it has some of the best views over the bay that you can get. There is also a fairly large shopping area with much more affordable pricing than what you get in Capri. Anacapri is where the locals live and has a bit more of a laid back feeling. Regardless of where you stay, Anacapri is worth a visit and your stay there is not complete without visiting the Villa Axel Munthe Museum, the Church of San Michele and taking a ride up the Monte Solaro chairlift (weather permitting).
Looking for tasty yet affordable lunch in Capri can be difficult – many of the cafes/restaurants will charge a lot for fairly low quality cuisine (think microwaved pizza). The reasoning is that there is such an influx of tourists visiting for the day, that they don’t overly care about impressing the lunch crowd as there’s a good chance they will never see you again.
If you want to eat like the locals, go down the funicular to the ferry port and get a sandwich from one of the smaller grocery shops to the right. Tasty crusty bread, freshly sliced meats and cheeses – it’s affordable and delicious. Dinner is a different story and there is no lack of choices for fine dining. My pick is the Pulalli Wine Bar right above the clock tower in the main town square, they do excellent tasty preparations of the of the island's signature dishes - Caprese salad, ravioli Caprese and torte Caprese.
For those interested in seeing the famous Blue Grotto, be warned that it is all very dependent on the weather conditions and even on a sunny day, there is no guarantee you can get right into the grotto. Regardless of whether you get to see it or not, you will be charged the full tour price (approx 25 euros) to just go on the boat.
They have excellent boat tours around the island for 16 euros which I highly recommend and give you a great perspective of the island and all its beauty.
When travelling to the south of Italy don’t miss out on visiting Capri – the island will leave an everlasting impression on your heart and you will wish you could absorb yourself into the jetsetter island culture forever.