Thursday, May 28, 2015

A VIP in the Isle of Capri

The Isle of Capri. Popularized by art, literature, and music, this island is easily one of Italy's most beautiful--and most glamorous--areas. I was dying to get there during my time in Rome, but the logistics totally overwhelmed me. Luckily, with their VIP Capri tourCity Wonders lifted that stress from my shoulders.

On this trip, we visited the cities of Capri and Anacapri in order to get a more comprehensive feel for the island. Capri actually means "goat island" and Anacapri is "upper goat island," as Anacapri is at a higher altitude. Another funny tidbit that differentiates the two cities--according to our guide, Anacapri has all of the money but doesn't show it, and Capri shows off the money but doesn't have it!

We met our guide, Fabien, and the bus drove us up into Anacapri, winding roads and seaside views included. After a limoncello tasting at Limoncello di Capri, we had free time to explore the shops and even saw Antonio Viva hard at work! Owner of L'Arte del Sandalo Caprese, Antonio is a world-renowned shoemaker who literally molds the shoes to your feet. He's made shoes for a number of celebrities and public figures, including Jackie Onassis and Sophia Lauren. While I didn't purchase a pair (no room in my suitcase!), they're a genuine Caprese souvenir.

Speaking of limoncello, we learned that it's a popular Italian digestivo but is native to Capri and the surrounding Amalfi Coast area. The lemons here are literally the size of babies' heads, and they smell way better than anything you'd find at your local supermarket (or even farmers' market).

After lunch, the group headed downhill to the city of Capri, where Fabien continued to discuss the city's history. For our free time there, the guides encouraged us to visit the Giardini di Augusto, or Gardens of Augusto, for its spectacular panoramic views. The garden entry cost 1€, but the views were priceless. From the highest point, we marveled at the iconic faraglioni rocks and watched boats glide along the glistening water. These pictures really cannot do it justice--you'll just have to visit yourself!

To conclude our visit, we made our way to the Carthusia perfumery, dating back to the 14th century. It has a fascinating history, which I encourage you to read here. These perfumes are truly a gem, and the smallest size that the store offers only put me back 22€--I just had to indulge myself! In true Capri fashion, I chose the Mediterraneo fragrance so I could bring the scent of Caprese lemons back to the U.S.

And as if you haven't seen enough of Capri's beauty, here are a few more photos and even a video with some trip highlights.

Practical Information
  • Price: $146.69 for adults, $138.50 for children; 30€ for optional Blue Grotto add-on (to be paid on day of tour); breakfast and lunch not included
  • Guides: one "chaperone" for the entire duration of the trip and one local guide on the island
  • Transportation: includes bus between Rome and Naples, ferry tickets to Capri, and bus on the island
  • Activity level: low (involves some walking and an optional garden walk down a hill)
  • What to wear: "relaxed" attire (shorts, dresses, sandals, flats--anything goes!)
  • What to bring: water, money for coffee and lunch, money for shopping (optional), camera
In short, this is your best option to visit Capri, as it's extremely expensive to stay on the island and could be difficult to navigate on your own. Take advantage of this beautiful island and book your day trip with City Wonders!

Full disclosure: I was a guest on this trip but this content is entirely my own.

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