Spring bank holiday in the Bay of Naples Part I – Capri

This spring bank holiday I headed to Naples and the islands of Capri and Procida for some much-sought after sun and Italian culture, and it certainly didn’t disappoint! I could wholeheartedly spend my entire year’s worth of annual leave in this magical corner of the world. After a brief day trip to Capri two summers ago in sweltering 40 degrees heat which impeded much in the way of physical activity, I was itching to get back to truly explore the island’s many wonders in the reassuring comfort of more mellow springtime temperatures. Whilst Capri excels in the sheer exuberance of it’s natural landscapes and dazzling flora, the much smaller Procida oozes with bygone charm, colourful architecture and black volcanic beaches. A truly magical adventure and a part of the world I hope to return to ancora, e ancora, e ancora.

CAPRI

Early May bank holiday was a surprisingly busy weekend on the island of Capri as flocks of Italian tourists celebrated the long festa del lavoro weekend. However, the crowds didn’t deviate far from the two main centres (Capri and the smaller more rustic Anacapri) so it was easy to escape and seek refuge in the many tranquil parts of the island. Below is a brief snap shot of my sojourn.

Turquoise waters along Capri’s coast and striking wild flowers

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Capri also has an abundance of exotic, towering cacti IMG_8267 cn

I stayed in the delightful little town of Anacapri, on the far west side of the island. The picture below shows the town’s main street.IMG_8131 cnIMG_8079

Cat sauntering over a vineyard IMG_8213

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Patio garden at Il Tramonto, an enchanting little B&B ten minutes’ walk uphill from Anacapri town surrounded by lemon gardens and vineyards. IMG_8186 cn

Chiesa San Michele, Anacapri – this fascinating little church features a huge hand painted ceramic tile floor created by Leonardo Chiaiese in the 18th century. It depicts the expulsion of Adam and Eve from the Garden of Eden, a lush paradise surrounded by trees, vegetation and all types of animals.

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The luxurious gardens of Villa San Michele – one of Capri’s several impressive villas with panoramas overlooking the seaIMG_8117 crop cnIMG_8119IMG_8109 cn

Despite the many attractions on Capri, what I enjoyed most about the island was taking a leisurely walk along one of its many nature trails, winding through the lemon groves and forests with incredible vistas of the coastline and Mediterranean sea. On many of these trails you can find plaques with philosophical musings, such as the one below.

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La grotta azzurra –  Capri’s most famous sight consists of a blink-and-you-miss-it whizz around this beautiful natural cavern in a tiny boat rowed by a skipper singing traditional Neapolitan folk songs at the top of his voice. The intense blue colour of the water inside the cave is, however, a sight to behold, and my photo below certainly doesn’t do it justice.

IMG_8136 cn20150501_150849  Anacapri by night

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