The beautiful island of Capri is the perfect location for you to visit year-round. One of the three islands in Italy’s Bay of Naples, it is the perfect place for you and your family to relax in. With shimmering blue waters, breathtaking scenery and captivating charm, there’s really something to do for everyone there.
When planning your next vacation, discovering some interesting facts about the island can be an exciting activity for getting the whole family excited. Below, we’ve compiled a list of seven to get you started!
1) Capri has been inhabited since 8 BC
It is widely believed that the first inhabitants of Capri were the Teleboi from ancient Greece. After the remains were found in 1882, it was suggested that these inhabitants could have been living on the island as early as 8 BC and had travelled over from mainland Greece at Cumae.
After travelling to Capri, the settlers formed two towns that later merged to form one. The fortified remains of walls that once formed buildings within the town have since been discovered and are visible from the terrace of the funicular railway.
2) Capri’s most famous dish is the Caprese Salad
The Salad of Capri, translated to ‘Salad of Capri’, is thought to have first graced the island in the 20th century as a dish for the visiting royalty. The vibrant and contrasting colours of the salad represent the flag, paying homage to its Italian routes. In addition to this, the salad shows the best of Italy’s fresh ingredients, with each element originating from the region.
Composed of basil leaves, tomato and mozzarella, the Caprese Salad is widely used as an appetizer and is not served with vinegar dressing. One of the reasons for this could be due to its origins as a sandwich filler, much like the light snack that was reportedly given to King Farouk when visiting Capri in the late 1950s.
Today, there are some adjustments to the salad, such as replacing the traditional mozzarella vaccine with buffalo mozzarella. However, the dish still remains widely available and as popular as ever.
3) The island’s largest attraction, The Blue Grotto, was previously used as a personal swimming hole for Emperor Tiberius
Capri’s largest tourist attraction, the spectacular Blue Grotto draws in large crowds of visitors all year round, with tour guides taking boat-fulls of individuals to witness the sparkling azure water regularly. As the light passes through the small entrance to the cave, one that is just big enough to fit a small rowboat through, you can rest your eyes on the attractive shimmer of the ocean.
So, what makes the Blue Grotto so blue? Due to the way the light is filtered into the small opening in the rock, the red reflections are filtered out, allowing only blue rays.
Recent visitors to Capri are not the only ones to marvel at the sight of the Blue Grotto, however. During the reign of Emperor Tiberius, the grotto was lavishly decorated for his viewing pleasure while he enjoyed a dip in the cobalt waters. In 1964, three statues of Roman Sea Gods, Neptune and Triton, were removed from the waters, with seven further statue bases excavated from the waters in 2009.
4) One of the most recognizable landmarks of Capri is the Faraglioni
The three jutting rocks of Faraglioni are perhaps the most recognizable feature that the island of Capri has to offer. Mere meters away from the southern coast of the island, each rock has been given its own name. The first, Stella, is still attached to the mainland island, with Faraglione di Mezzo and Faraglione of Outwards stretching into the sea.
The dramatic landscape that Faraglioni provides can be seen in a variety of different ways, with boat trips offering you the chance to travel through the stone archway created in the centre of Faraglione di Mezzo. If a boat trip is not for you, the plethora of nearby beaches offers you the chance to view the nature of your own statues from the ocean.
5) Over 80% of Capri’s summer tourists are on day trips from nearby Sorento and Naples
If you’re looking to book one of our luxury Capri villas, you may be wondering how busy Capri can be, especially if you’re planning a holiday over the peak summer season. Due to the popularity of nearby Sorento and Naples, visiting the island of Capri has become an increasingly popular day excursion for tourists to experience. However, with 80% of tourists on the island at any given time having only booked to experience the island for a day, you’re left with peace and quiet at the end of the day.
6) Almost half of the population of Capri died due to the plague in the 17th Century
When the plague arrived at the island in the 17th century, there were only 755 inhabitants on the island. The epidemic devastated the island, killing over 300 individuals who had once lived there. During this time, the monks from Certosa di San Giacomo, Capri’s Carthusian monastery, remained isolated, living within the confines of their charterhouse. With the death toll rising as the plague rampaged the island, islanders levels of resentment aimed at the monks had dramatically increased due to their unwillingness to help. So the residents of Capri took revenge, throwing the corpses of the diseased over the monastery walls.
7) Over the summer season, tourists are prohibited from using cars
Over the summer season, non-residents to Capri are prohibited from using cars on the island. With most of the roads on the island being very narrow, manoeuvring around the island can be seen as near-impossible for some. So, despite the ban, you’ll be able to go for the duration of your visit without a vehicle!
With excellent public transportation, the island, which is the same size as New York City’s Central Park, is easy to navigate for families. For those of you who can enjoy a more challenging walk, there are several hikes of varying abilities that you can tackle over your time there.
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