Capri

Capri guide

Welcome to the ultimate guide to Capri!

The legend of Capri.

Once upon a time, there lived two young people deeply in love. His name was Vesuvius and hers was Capri. Unfortunately, much like many of Shakespeare’s plays, the families of the two lovers were against this pairing. In order to separate the couple, Capri’s family took her far away so she couldn’t see Vesuvius anymore. Capri, who was pregnant, was heartbroken and jumped into the sea killing herself and becoming an island. When Vesuvius found out what happened to his beloved he morphed into a silent mountain/ volcano that looks over Capri. At times when he could not contain his anger anymore he would spit ashes and lava. Don’t believe it? Well take a closer look at the shape of Capri Island, it does look like a pregnant woman’s body lying in the sea.

History and legends about Capri
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Some history about Capri

Did you know that the awe-inspiring island of Capri, Italy has been mesmerizing visitors for more than 2,000 years? Since ancient times, this magical island has provided a sanctuary for Roman emperors, an inspiring retreat for artists, and a glamorous destination for celebrities. Its rich history dates to ancient times, with the Greeks establishing a colony there in the 8th century BC. During the reign of Emperor Augustus, Capri was utilized as a Roman resort. The island changed hands several times throughout history, with the Byzantines, Normans, Angevins, and Aragonese all occupying it at various times.

history of Capri

The island’s name, Capri, has several meanings. Romans referred to it as “goat island” because of the abundance of animals, the Latin form of this is capreae. Another thought on how Capri got its name stems from the Greek word Kapros, meaning wild boar. Either way, the name stuck and to this day it is known worldwide. Modern excavations on the island have found that this enchanted place was also inhabited during the Neolithic period about 12,000 years ago. Greeks that came before the Romans established a home in Capri in the 8th century and constructed the Phoenician steps that connect Marina Grande to the town of Capri.

A fascinating piece of trivia: Emperor Augustus exchanged the island of Ischia for Capri in 29 BC, which eventually became a favored hideaway for his successor, Emperor Tiberius. Over the centuries, the island continued attracting various rulers, scholars, and creatives bewitched by its enchanting beauty and undeniable allure.

During Augustus’ time on the island, artifacts were discovered such as stone weapons, giant bones, and animal remains, all of which point to a civilization from the Stone Age. Augustus displayed such eagerness for them to be preserved that a museum was constructed and dedicated to the findings.

Augustus’ successor, Tiberius continued to develop the island, adding twelve more villas. He spent the last ten years of his life on Capri and historians have speculated that this was because of his fear of being assassinated.  Tiberius had Villa Jovis constructed on one of the most remote parts of the island making it difficult to reach and those coming up on the villas would have found it heavily guarded. No one is certain how Tiberius died at the age of 77, speculations have ranged from poisoning to smothering. After his death, Capri was rarely visited by other emperors until the banishment of the wife and sister of Emperor Commodus. Not a bad place to be exiled to in my opinion.

At the end of the Western Roman Empire, Capri was returned to the authority of Naples and suffered attacks by pirates and raiders. One such pirate was Barbarossa, aka Redbeard, who plundered then burned Capri seven times! He even built a castle on the island which you can visit known as Castello Barbarossa. Be forewarned, it is a hike not for the faint of heart; very steep pathways await you.

You can still find many ruins from the Roman Imperial Era that tell us a lot about Capri. For example, numerous ancient cisterns are found around the island. These cisterns were used to collect rainfall for the watering of animals and humans. Now Capri relies on an undersea aqueduct that brings fresh water over from the mainland of Italy. This was completed in 1978 and most likely was the reason for the island’s rise in tourism in the years to follow.

Some history about Capri

In modern times, Capri has become a highly sought-after destination for tourists, known for its stunning landscapes, crystal-clear waters, and luxurious lifestyle. Visitors can immerse themselves in the island’s cultural and historical offerings, including the aforementioned Villa Jovis, the tranquil Gardens of Augustus, and the captivating Blue Grotto. Capri is truly an island paradise that offers a wealth of experiences to those who visit. And while you’re there, don’t forget to snap some unforgettable photos of the iconic Faraglioni rock formations!

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Things to See

There are so many amazing places to explore in Paris, France. To see more about individual attractions, click here to skip to that section.

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Downloadable Guide

Welcome to the ultimate guide to Capri!

Want a FREE printable downloadable itinerary on this city? Simply click the image and it will take you to the PDF itinerary, download it, and print it for easy use.

There are so many amazing places to explore in Paris, France. To see more about individual attractions, click here to skip to that section.

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Getting Around Capri

Getting Around Capri

Between the months of mid-March to the beginning of November, no non-resident vehicles are allowed on Capri. However, there is no need to bring a car as there is very little parking and most roads are for pedestrians only. You can leave your car on the mainland at Naples port Parcheggio Buono or Sorrento’s port at Parcheggio di Marina Piccola.

To reach the island, simply take the ferry from the marinas in Naples or Sorrento. I recommend using Ferryhopper to purchase your tickets as it is user-friendly and convenient. The app stores your tickets on your phone for quick access.

Once you arrive on the island you will find porters in blue shirts to help you with your bags. Let me be very honest with you. If you are staying on the island… use the porters to get your luggage to your hotel. Trust me. The cost varies but it is usually around €14 for each piece of luggage, and you will pay for the service at the hotel at the checkout. If you use the porter’s service after 7 pm the cost is €17 for each piece of luggage. You do not want to lug your crap up all the steps and hills that Capri is famous for.

Navigating Capri is quite effortless, and there are several transportation options to choose from. The island provides easy access to the surrounding areas through buses, funiculars, taxis, and walking. With so many choices, you can explore the island at your leisure and take in all the stunning scenery that Capri has to offer.

For more on bus schedules and cable cars check out the City of Capri’s website.

I have mapped out a list of things to do below.

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Weather and Best Time to Visit Capri

The best time to visit Capri is the beginning of April to mid-June or September to mid-October when the weather is warm but not sweltering and the nights are cooler. Also, flights and hotels are generally cheaper during this time. Tourist season generally runs from Easter to the first weekend of November.

Weather in Capri and the best time to visit Capri

Capri is at its most beautiful during the spring season, which runs from March to May. The weather is pleasant, and the entire island is covered with blossoming tropical flowers. It’s also a great time to visit as shopkeepers and restaurant staff have just returned to work after their winter break. This also means that there not be a long line to see the Blue Grotto (Grotta Azzurra).

Throughout the summer season from the months of June to September, the weather can become quite hot, with temperatures frequently reaching the 90-degree mark. Furthermore, this time of year is commonly regarded as a high season for tourism, so it’s important to take that into account when planning any travel or activities.

The transition from September to October brings about a pleasant season with cooler temperatures that are still warm enough to enjoy the beach clubs. Shopping enthusiasts can take advantage of the numerous sales offered during this period as stores prepare to shut down for the winter.

During winter, the daytime temperatures in Capri average in the 40-50s range and drop below freezing at night. As a result, many restaurants, and hotels close down during this time. However, visiting during this season allows you to experience Capri like a local. It is important to keep in mind that you should be prepared for lower temperatures and a strong sea wind.

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Capri Restaurant

Capri Restaurant Recommendations

  • Sciue’ Sciue’
    • Via Giuseppe Orlandi 73, 80071 Anacapri
    • Da Gelsomina is located in an area known as “La Migliera” in Anacapri, a scenic hillside in the open countryside. You can reach us in 30 minutes on foot along the panoramic Via Migliera, or use the free shuttle service to and from the center of Anacapri available free of charge for guests of the restaurant and B&B (9 am to midnight).
  • Ristorante Panorama
    • Traversa Lo Palazzo 2, 80073, Capri, Island of Capri Italy
  • Ristorante Pulalli
    • Piazza Umberto I, 4, 80073, Capri, Island of Capri Italy
  • Lo Sfizio
    • Via Tiberio 7/e, 80073, Capri, Island of Capri Italy
  • Da Paolino Lemon Trees
    • Expensive but the tables are under lemon trees and the atmosphere is beautiful
    • Via Palazzo a Mare 11, 80073, Capri, Island of Capri Italy
    • 15 minute – Walking distance from the harbor 30 minutes from center
  • Da Gelsomina
    • Da Gelsomina is located in an area known as “La Migliera” in Anacapri, a scenic hillside in the open countryside. You can reach us in 30 minutes on foot along the panoramic Via Migliera, or use the free shuttle service to and from the center of Anacapri available free of charge for guests of the restaurant and B&B (9 am to midnight).
  • Ristorante Da Gemma
    • Via Cristoforo Colombo, 7 Close to the port of Marina Grande, 80076, Capri
    • Ristorante Da Gemma is a well-established restaurant on Capri’s seafront, close to Marina Grande. Opting for a table on the outdoor terrace will give you an unparalleled dining experience by the sea. The terrace partially extends over the waters, allowing the crystal blue waves to lap against it.
  • Gelato at Buonocore Gelateria
    • Italy is renowned for its amazing gelaterias, and in Capri, Buonocore Gelateria is a must-visit. Their ice cream is considered the best in town, and no trip to Capri is complete without indulging in a sweet treat or snack here. Buonocore Gelateria also offers a delectable selection of savory dishes and cakes, all made with fresh local ingredients on the same day. Don’t miss out on trying their Caprilu al Limone cakes or their mouthwatering quiche!
    • You’re probably here for the gelato and for good reason. It’s fresher, more delicious, and more reasonably priced than anywhere else on the island. The range of flavors is incredible, and you can’t go wrong with any of them. The strawberry and crema flavors, in particular, are worth trying! Plus, the cones that the ice cream comes in are freshly cooked to order in the cafe, and you can even smell them baking from down the street.

Capri Hotel Recommendations

For the best hotels check out these in Capri or Anacapri.

During my stay on the island, I had the pleasure of staying at Hotel La Tosca. This spacious gem provided a serene escape from the bustling tourist areas, offering stunning views of the water and gardens below. With its convenient location, exploring the island was a breeze. Although not overly extravagant, the breakfast was delightful, and the rooms were impeccably clean. The owners were exceptionally attentive and accommodating throughout my stay. They have a fantastic rating on TripAdvisor, Booking.com, Planet of Hotels, and everywhere else online.

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 Hotel La Tosca

Fun Facts about Capri

  • The island of Capri is known for its unique fragrance, which has a fascinating history. In the 1300s, Giacomo Arcucci endeavored to offer Queen Giovanna d’Angiò, the former Queen of Naples, flowers from the island. However, after neglecting to change the flowers’ water for a few days, he discovered the captivating aroma of the water. Arcucci then worked to transform the scent of the flowers into the island’s signature fragrance, Carthusia Perfume. Nowadays, you can easily purchase samples and bottles of this perfume on the island.
  • Capri, the stunning island made entirely of limestone, boasts a rich history dating back to prehistoric times. Its mountainous terrain, dominated by Monte Solaro, is a must-see for both locals and tourists. You can hike up the island’s steps or take a chairlift from Piazza Vittoria in Anacapri to reach the highest point of the mountain, which stands at an impressive 1,932 ft.
  • Although the Island of Capri is one of the smallest islands on the Amalfi Coast when looked at on a map, it’s home to around 12,000 people. During the summer months, however, Capri becomes inundated with tourists, receiving up to 20,000 visitors every day between June and September. August is particularly crowded, so if you’re planning a summer trip, be prepared for long lines and crowds.
  • Capri Island has a population of 12,000 and is divided into two towns: Capri and Anacapri. The former is famous for its bustling marina and shopping areas, while the latter offers a unique experience and is less crowded. Anacapri is also home to most of the island’s residents and sits at a higher elevation than Capri. You can take a 12-minute chairlift ride to the summit of Monte Solara from Capri, which provides stunning views. If you’re looking to explore a different side of the island, taking a taxi to Anacapri is highly recommended.
  • The Island of Capri, although small, is quite mountainous and requires a significant amount of walking. Interestingly, the island is walkable from every direction, which means that you don’t need any form of transportation to get around (although you might get tired!). Despite this, Capri has banned tourists from renting and driving cars on the island because of its steep roads and dangerous turns. Given the high number of visitors during summer, traffic would spoil the natural beauty of Capri and be unsafe for those unfamiliar with the area. However, taxis and buses are readily available should you require transportation.
  • Did you know that in the 17th century, the beautiful Island of Capri was struck by a deadly plague? Out of only 755 locals, more than 300 souls perished in this gruesome outbreak. Desperate for help, the Capri residents sought aid from the local monasteries. However, their cries for assistance went unanswered as the monastery dwellers hid within their walls, fearing for their own lives. This lack of aid infuriated the Capri locals. As an act of retaliation, the desperate islanders decided to throw the dead bodies of the sick over the monastery walls, bringing the infection to their haven’s doorstep! History has its ways of unveiling the darker side of humanity.
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Things to do

Kristal Ham

Hi fellow nomads!

Traveler and Photographer

My name is Kristal and I am so happy to have you visit my site! 

I hope that the travel guides, fun facts, and photography you find here will inspire you to explore new places!

Kristal

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