Friday, April 11, 2008

Day 1--Capri

When I last left you, I had arrived on terra firma and was walking my suitcase up the hill to my hotel. Unlike Venice which is basically a flat island, Capri is like a mountain island--everything is up or down there. I think I got an upgrade in my room because it was so much more than I expected--and I wonderful bay window that opened to the sea!

I didnt stay long at the hotel as I wanted to start my exploring. My first task was to take this walk suggested by my guidebook as lasting 3-5 hours depending on how fast one goes. I could have taken the funicular up to Capri town from the harbour but was feeling adventurous and decided to climb. While this wasnt the hardest climb I did over the 3 days, it was a bit more than I thought it would be. Most of the inclines there are between 50-70 degrees. At least they were paved or otherwise I would have thought I was hiking Camelback Mountain in Phoenix!

Once you get out of the touristy shop area, the 'streets' become lined with bouganvilla and wisteria and all sorts of trees and plants. The fresh smell is incredible. And birds are chirping just like you were listening to some relaxation CD. True paradise!

I managed to take a wrong turn--big surprise, Susan gets lost! This meant I missed one of the sights on the walk and I figured I would go back and catch it later by retracing my steps. Well, that didnt happen because the climb got more intense. I found the Natural Arch (i.e. a big hole in the rock) and started descending the stairs to this ancient cave where the Romans used to worship pagen gods. I stopped counting after 200 steps because my knee joints were talking. If I had to guess, it was about 500 steps down---mind you I had to go up first in order to go down. Apparently I was wrapping around the island and about to embark on the 3 famous rocks--Faraglioni.

After sighting them, the walk continues along passing a few incredible villas built into the side of the mountain and you eventually end up getting back where you started. All in all, I was 'hiking' for about 3 hours. All this time, I passed 5 people (of which one I asked to take the pic of me as proof that I was there)! I had no cell service and was wondering what would happen if I biffed it here on the rocks (seeing as how I have post traumatic stress syndrome from falling down the stairs in January)!?

I am actually glad I missed the first turn because I was tired as this point and ready for food. After my 1/2 litre of wine and pizza and dessert, I wandered around shopping and snapping photos and took the funicular ride down!! It truly is beautiful there. Very captivating.

Oh, and the best part (as if there could be anything better) was that my limoncello glasses were everywhere!!!! I was like a kid in a candy store.


Gil said...

Your pictures are beautiful as usual! My wife & I were there last July and only went up one level and my pictures hardly compare. Glad to hear you loved Capri.

Anonymous said...

Beautiful, Susan! I love that you found those gorgeous limoncello cups. Yay!