Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Isle of Capri



On our second day in Sorrento, we decided to take the ferry over to the Isle of Capri and spend the day there.  Like Sorrento, Capri was one of those places that people really seemed to had a "love it" or "leave it" attitude about.  Some people really love the island and some people said it was a waste of time.  We figured since we were there, we might as well check it out because really, is any day spent on an island in Italy a waste of time?  No.  So we took a ferry on over to the island (about a 30 minute ride from Sorrento).

It was a very hazy day, but the views of the coast and Sorrento from the ferry were fantastic.





As we approached Capri, it was immediately apparent to us that one of the biggest gripes about Capri was completely true - it's CROWDED.  And touristy.  Not quite the quaint authentic Italian island experience we were looking for, but the harbor was very beautiful and very colorful.  I wish it had been sunnier so I could have gotten some pictures of how beautiful the water was and I wish it was less crowded so I could get some pictures of the marina.  


We walked around a while, trying to figure out where to go or what to do and finally jumped in a cab to take us to the little town of Anacapri at the top of the island.
The cab was a convertible (so cool!) and the drive was absolutely spectacular.  Very vertical!



Once we made it to town, we booked our tickets to ride the gondola up to the very top of the island.


The ride up was slow and peaceful and really beautiful.  It was pretty neat looking down on the homes and backyards of Anacapri and getting a little glimpse into their everyday lives.




And at the top, the views were even better. 
You could see the whole island from this point.
It was still pretty hazy, but spectacular nonetheless.



We weren't the only ones enjoying the view.




After walking around a while in complete awe, we were starving, so we headed back down to town.

The little town of Anacapri was very cute.  
Horribly overpriced, but cute.
Streets lined with shops and restaurants.

Beautiful churches.
Colorful buildings.

Giant lemons!
And fabulous food and coffee.  We sat at this little cafe and ate massive bowls of pasta, followed by delicious little cappuccinos and watched two little Italian girls ride their bikes around the plaza chasing each other.   

After lunch, we had to decide whether to hit the town or check out the Blue Grotto.  Thousands of people visit Capri each year to see the Blue Grotto.  It's a sea cave off the coast of Capri that glows blue in the sunlight.  Unfortunately, we didn't have much sunlight on the day we visited.  It was pretty hazy the entire time we were on the coast, unfortunately.  So, we skipped the cave and headed to Capri town proper for a little luxury.  Back in the convertible cab we went.
Capri town was beautiful too, in a completely different way.  It's all about the money here.  The streets were lined with stores like Prada, Gucci and Louis Vuitton.  And as much as I love that kind of shopping, I really wasn't interested in dropping a fortune for something I could easily get back home.  Plus, the whole place was packed with rich (and rude) American tourists pushing and shoving and giving us all a bad name.  Needless to say, we didn't spend much time here.  



So we took the Funicolare (gondola) down to the marina to hang out for a while (eat gelato) before catching our ferry back to Sorrento, stopping to admire the views here and there.



All in all, it was a nice day.  I hate to say it, but if I had to do it again, Capri would definitely not be on my list of places to go and things to see.  The views were beautiful, but it was also very overpriced, very crowded, very touristy. We were hoping for a real authentic Italian feeling and we just didn't get it in Capri.  We probably should have known better from what we'd read, but alas, sometimes you just have to learn the hard way.  I'm glad we went just to say we've been there, but if you're crunched for time, this is a place I'd skip.  

Next: Amalfi Coast

7 comments:

  1. My favorite part of this was you guys watching the two little Italian girls on their bikes. Can you imagine growing up there?! Wow.

    Anyways. I had a similar impression of Capri as you guys did, although it wasn't so crowded the day we went. Oh well, like you said - is a day in Italy a day wasted? :)

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  2. How beautiful!! I'm not sure I would have ridden that gondola!

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  3. As always, gorgeous photos! Ryan got a fantastic one of you on the gondola! Love the couple y'all got together...gorgeous!

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  4. Your pictures are making me drool!! Even crowded Carpi looks gorgeous- just like the rest of your pics! They're making me want to go back to Italy so bad!

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  5. I love all of your Italy pictures - so fun!

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  6. Wah, wah, wah-- life is so hard Ella Mae!! Even if it was crowded and meh, your pictures are AMAZING as usual. And, that picture of you at the restaurant is just perfect! So very chic. Love it. Love you more.

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  7. Wow! Just... wow- those views!!! Amazing!

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