The volcanic island of Ischia is situated in the bay of Naples. This is one of the top islands to visit when you are in Italy. It is said that this piece of paradise was discovered by the Greeks and later became a popular destination because of the hot springs it houses. Ischia Porto or Ischia as it is popularly known is the main town part of the island, Ischia Ponte is where the famous Castello Aragonese is located. You can get around the island quite conveniently and take in all its sights.
How to Get to Ischia
It will take you about 90 minutes to reach the island of Ischia from Naples. You can catch a ferry from the Porto di Massa or hop on a hydrofoil from Porto Beverello. Check the timetable for the ferry here. You can also book a private boat trip from Naples to Ischia here. Either way, you get to enjoy the waters of the bay as you take in the sun on your ride to Ischia.
What To Do in Ischia
You can indulge in a wide array of things that the island has to offer. From crystal clear waters and thermal spas to ancient architecture and delicious delicacies, Ischia has it all.
The Castello Aragonese
The castle stands out as the main attraction on the island. You can admire its striking beauty as the sun shines on it. It was built in 474 Bc by Gerone, was used by King Alfonso but it was later converted to a jail. You can take a tour of the castle and take a close look at the history and artifacts that it has to offer. It will cost you a 10 Euro ticket to enter the castle and it stays open until 10 PM at night.
Mount Epomeo is the highest point on the island and offers some of the best views of the island and the bay around it. You can explore the mountain and the vineyards on its slopes via various trials and also visit some of the lower peaks. It’s a physically demanding task so be ready to sweat if you want to hike up the mountain.
It is a small village on the coast of the Tyrrhenian sea. Le Fumarole Beach is the main attraction here, this beach is famous for air vents and hotspots due to volcanic activity underneath. There are also thermal parks close to the village which you can visit.
Rejuvenating Thermal Springs
The thermal springs of Ischia are world-famous and because it is a volcanic island, there are over a hundred thermal springs. You have various options to choose from during your visit. Select from a thermal park, a water park, or even a luxury spa on the island. Here you can enjoy the therapeutic benefits of the thermal springs just like the Romans did.
Sorgeto Bay is the place for you if you want to bathe in the thermal water as it runs into the sea. The water here is always hot, even in the colder months of the year. Even though there are more than 100 thermal springs all over Ischia, Sorgeto Bay is one of a kind.
The Chiesa del Soccorso
The Chiesa del Soccorso is a small church that overlooks the bay and the island, giving you an amazing view to admire. It is the perfect romantic spot for you to enjoy the sunrise or sunset with your loved one.
The Botanical Gardens
The world-renowned botanical gardens on the island let you explore the flora and fauna found on the island. The Giardini La Mortella and the Giardini Ravino are the two main gardens that you can visit and explore.
Lacco Ameno is a small town somewhat in the northwestern part of Ischia. You can explore the place in no time as it is relatively small. It’s famous for the Il Fungo or the mushroom which is a rock formation that looks like a mushroom in the sea.
Spend a Night on the Beach
You can spend a night on the beach and enjoy the sky full of stars. As there is little to no light pollution here, you can enjoy the rising stars and watch them fly by, and listen to the waves crashing at the same time.
Basilica Di Santa Maria Di Loreto
Basilica Di Santa Maria Di Loreto can be a short visit as it is a religious center on the island. You can enjoy the intricate designs of the architecture or attend a mass at the basilica.
Villa Arbusto Museum
You can visit the Villa Arbusto Museum to explore the mythological side of Ischia. You can see the cup of Nestor that was one of the early historical discoveries made on the island.
Bays of Ischia
You can rent a boat and explore the Bays of Ischia. You can take in the breathtaking sights of the gulf as well as the island. The rock formations around the island and the overwhelming colors of the houses make for an absolute sight.
Sunbathe at the beach
The beaches around Ischia are full of pebbles or volcanic sand. You can visit any of the beaches and enjoy a whole day there. You can get a drink and bask in the sun, or take a dip in the refreshing water. Some of the most popular beaches around Ischia are Citara, San Francesco, San Montano, and Spiaggia dei Pescatori.
Take a Cooking Class with a Local
You can book a cooking class with a local and learn how to whip up some typical Italian and Ischian delicacies.
Take Day trips from Ischia to Nearby Islands
You can visit some of the islands that are nearby from Ischia for a quick day trip. Procida is the closest to Ischia and is a great place to visit for a day. You can also visit Capri for a day tour and ride the chair lift.
Hidden gems in Ischia
- The Pilastri Aqueduct is located around Ischia Ponte. This used to be a vital source of water around the island and is an architectural marvel.
- Cava Grado is a hidden grotto where you will find crystal teal waters made for snorkeling. It has a little beach where you can sit and take in the views of the cliffs and the ocean.
- Corbaro Park is a place where you can enjoy the beauty of Ischia in its complete form. This park offers amazing panoramic views as well as the essence of island life. You can spend an afternoon here wandering about and taking in the beauty.
- Casa D’Ambra is the best place for you to visit if you want to taste some of the best locally made wines. You can find wines made from grapes grown in the local vineyards here.
What to eat in Ischia
The Limoncello and Amarancio are drinks that you can’t miss when you explore the island. You can try the Coniglio all’ Ischitana, a rabbit cooked in a typical Ischian way. Sandwich Zingara is a local sandwich made especially with the taste of the island in mind. Fresh fish is available almost all over the island and they taste amazing however way they are prepared.
Ischia has a long history of local wine, so taste as many as you can! They’re incredible, and you won’t be able to find them anyplace else. Some of the local wines that you must try are the Ischia Bianco, Ischia Rosso, Ischia Biancolella, Ischia Forastera and Piedirosso. Breakfast pastry at Bar Calise is something of a tradition in Ischia and a must-try.
Transportation in Ischia
You can get around pretty easily when on the island. There is a public bus service that functions throughout the island and a ticket will cost you 1.50 Euros valid for 90 minutes. Getting a taxi on the island is expensive and there is no application support available as well. So you will need to go to a stand to get a taxi or call a driver personally. Renting a car for a day is the most convenient option as it will only cost you around 24-25 Euros.
Where to stay in Ischia
Finding accommodation on the island isn’t hard. Hotels, guest houses, Beds & Breakfasts are widely available. Check your options here. You can also find some luxury hotels as the island sees a lot of people year-round. You can also rent apartments for a more private and homely stay.
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