Capri

Less than an hour by hydrofoil from Naples, the Isle of Capri is a world apart, and not only because dozens of celebrities call this small island their “second home”. Its lush landscape is filled with flowering wisteria, flaming bougainvillea and evergreen trees. The air vibrates with the fluting calls of birds. And the fresh scent of hibiscus seems to penetrate the island’s most remote corners.

The Isle of Capri is as fashionable as it is scenic. The larger of the island’s two towns, Capri, offers several luxury hotels. The town’s main street is lined with smart designer boutiques such as Prada and Armani. You can easily spend hours, even days, shopping for one-of-a-kind items just like Bridgette Bardot and Sophia Loren.

Connected to Capri Town by 500 ancient steps carved into solid rock is the island’s second town, Anicapri (also accessible by funicular and bus). Although the atmosphere is a little less grand, with souvenir stands and tourist menus, it does offer the five-star Capri Palace Hotel & Spa, where you can enhance your beauty with the help of a Tai Chi master! Anicapri is also home to the Villa of San Michele, unchanged since the Swedish doctor Axel Munthe built it in the 1920s, and the church of San Michele with its 15th century floor mosaic.

Despite Capri’s meditative spirit, it offers some thrilling moments. Brave the single-person chairlift to the top of Mount Solaro (600m) for dramatic views of Mt Vesuvius. Or take a rowing boat to the Blue Grotto, the cave known for its incandescent blue colour. (You will be asked to lie down on the boat’s bottom when passing through the cave’s partially submerged entrance!).

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