It’s difficult to believe how different can be two places situated close to each other. How claustrophobic the hectic and crowded Naples could make us feel and how peaceful and calm the islands around the second biggest city of Italy appeared to be.
It was a revelation. It was the South of Italy we never knew and which now we do hope to see again in the nearest future. And it is definitely and doubtlessly a must-see outside Naples.
Our One Day Itinerary:
Naples – Procida: A regular 40 minutes ferry connects Napoli Beverello with the island Procida. The ticket can be either booked in advance or bought on the spot. Check out with different companies the rates and schedules.
Procida – Ischia: 20 minutes more and we got to Ischia – the biggest island of the Phlegrean Islands. The moment we got to the harbor, we took a bus to get to Ischia Porto, grabbed a quick pizza and fulfilled a silly cliché dream – rented a small Vespa for a highly romantic trip around the island.
Ischia – Naples: Finally a last ferry from Ischia Porto back to Naples. As we traveled in the middle of November, the daylight was over too soon to enjoy the lazy warm nights on the beach, so the trip back was quite early.
However, we do advice you to split this itinerary at least for two separate days in order to enjoy it fully.
This tiny island is a little marvel. Difficult to say what it looks like during the touristy season, but in November it’s a bliss. No tourists, only warm and caressing sun. Empty streets, light wind and a perfect harmony. We could have lost ourselves in this late autumn sun for hours and hours (which we have). If only we had had more time, we would have walked through the island in a more thorough way.
Mediterranean houses, cats, fruits, colors – the associations that arise when thinking about Procida.
No wonder that the Phlegrean Islands attract so many filmmakers – according to the signs, “The Talented Mr. Ripley” was one of the famous movies to be filmed on the beaches of Procida (even if Anthony Minghella, the director, hasn’t revealed where exactly Mongibello was placed).
Ischia is a much bigger place, which requires more time and attention (which we didn’t have, what a shame!). The solution was to squeeze all in one by seeing as much as we could by that legendary Vespa scooter!
Where to hire a scooter: Anywhere. It appears to be such a demanded item, that even off-season it won’t be a problem to find a scooter (or car rental). (around 30€ per day)
What to see and what to do?
Due to its volcanic origin, Ischia is basically one huge health resort. A health resort so famous that crowds of tourists (among which quite a lot of celebrities from different epochs) have been visiting the island since the Roman Empire. Today it still attracts the visitors for the same reason in addition to the gorgeous sceneries and beaches.
Ischia might be small, but there are still several towns with their points of interest. Such as Castello in Ischia Porte, Castello Aragonese, Parco Negombo or La Mortella, ancient churches, caves and a tiny anglers town Sant’Angelo. 1 hour of climbing can bring you to the highest summit of Ischia – Monte Epomeo with a spectacular view (according to what people say lol).
But let’s be back to the reality – our visit of Ischia can be summed up in two amazingly beautiful hours on Vespa and a true hot chocolate in one of the local bars.
Check out: Visit Guide to Pompeii