• Menu
  • Menu
Ischia, Bild: GoneWithTheWind / shutterstock

Ischia, the gifted island in the Gulf of Naples

Anyone who walks across this island immediately understands why it has developed into a place of longing for people from all over the world, for spa holidaymakers and artists, for connoisseurs and northern Europeans. The Italian island of Ischia has always been showered with gifts. The formerly active volcanoes donated thermal springs in abundance.

Nature gifted the island with lush greenery, with paradisiacal white sandy beaches, cliffs and grottos. Princes and kings brought castles and palaces. The flora participated with dense forests, with bougainvillea violet and orange-red, with lush vegetation and was shaped into a work of art by the botanists with magnificent gardens. Wealthy northern Europeans built magnificent villas. The ancient Greeks brought viticulture and olives to the island.

The local politicians made sure that all Boom always fit into the local conditions and customs. The sea washes the coasts with the cleanest waters in 1000 shades of blue and turquoise. Ischia was created on a Sunday.

Ischia – Gifts of the Sea

Castello Aragonese, Ischia
Castello Aragonese, Image: IgorZh / shutterstock

Anyone who arrives in the small port of Ischia by ferry from Naples will be greeted by an enchanting scenery. Countless boats rock at their piers, locals and tourists meet on the shore in front of the picturesque houses. Bars and restaurants offer an Italian attitude to life and delicious seafood. Perched on a hill above the harbour is the Palazzo Reale, the former summer residence of the Bourbons with a magnificent view. One of the best beaches on the island, the Citara beach, with white sand and blue sea, in a bay near Forio, allows you to enjoy the sun and swim.

See also  Canary Islands – A journey into eternal spring

History and art

Off the east coast lies a rock in the water, which was first built on with a fort 2500 years ago. Since the Renaissance, the island has been connected to Ischia by a bridge. Through history, the fortress has been expanded to protect against raids, pirates and vandals as a safe haven for the inhabitants of Ischia. The Aragonese expanded the complex, the English destroyed it in the Napoleonic War.

After that, the rock was converted into a prison by the Sicilian king. Today, art exhibitions and festivals take place on the still imposing fortress grounds.

On the way to the fortress, the beautiful baroque cathedral of the island stands in the picturesque Italian Via Luigi Mazzella. Numerous other churches and chapels can be found in the streets of the island towns. Above Casamicciola Terme with its listed alley district Perrone towers a villa settlement with a magnificent view over the sea.

Henrik Ibsen wrote parts of his Peer Gynt in the Villa Pisani, the freedom hero Giuseppe Garibaldi lived in the Villa Parodi-Delfino.

The Museo di Santa Restituta presents the life and culture of the Ischitans from the Greek period to the Christian era in an excavation site.

The country and the cuisine

Image: JamesEllison101 / shutterstock

Ischia is a foodie’s paradise, especially for lovers of seasonal Italian cuisine. Even in the markets, the sight of artichokes, aubergines, chard, porcini mushrooms, olive oil and pasta makes your mouth water. All the better if this time it is topped with seafood. In the huge restaurant Calise in Via A. Sogliuzzo, tourists and locals meet for gourmet meals at any time of the day.

See also  Nouvelle Aquitaine - The South-West of France

In Casamicciola, an Italian couple serves regional home food at its best in green surroundings at Il Focolare. The guest is spoiled with epicurean sensations of the season. Viticulture has shone on Ischia for centuries, as the small wine museum of the D’Ambra winery near Panza shows. In Via Mazella, on the way to the fortress, there are numerous shops where you can buy the riches of Ischia’s handicrafts, such as beautiful ceramics at Filippo Cianciarelli at number 113. Opposite, at number 148, the products of agriculture and viticulture can be admired and bought. Noble brands, fashion boutiques and other delights can be found in the nearby Corso Vittoria Colonna.

Volcanic world on Ischia

In the thermal baths in Piazza Bagni in Ischia town, underground springs and the mud treatment plant are visible. Many hotels offer wellness and thermal treatments. The mountains of Ischia are magical. From Fontana in the mountains, the summit of Epomeo can be hiked in about three hours. The reward on the top of the mountain is unforgettable. The island lies at your feet, the view stretches far over the sea. At the summit, the café terrace La Grotta presents fairytale sunsets and refreshments.

Nature in Ischia

In Citara, a cactus garden of superlatives can be visited. In Forio, the earthly paradise of La Mortella, created by landscape architects as subtropical and Mediterranean gardens, enchants. The Villa Arbusto in Lacco Ameno used to be the residence of Herbert von Karajan, Angelo Rizzoli, Sofia Loren and Richard Burton. Today you can visit the magnificent garden of the villa with a breathtaking view over the gulf on Corso Angelo Rizzoli.