Breathtaking Photographs of the Isle of Capri, home of the world-famous Blue Grotto

Photographs of the Isle of Capri

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Just across the Bay of Naples from Sorrento lies one of the world's most famous islands. Beloved by the Roman emperors, it has been a major resort destination for two millennia.

When you take the hydrofoil or ferry from Naples or Sorrento you will arrive at Marina Grande.

 Walk to the end of the wharf and take the funicular railway up to the top of the hill, where you step out into the heart of Capri Town: La Piazzetta.

Locals and tourists alike congregate here in the shadow of the island's

But few people are here to pray! Most come to participate in the quintessential Italian activity: Dolce Far Niente. In this case that translates to "relax at a cafe with an aperitif and watch the people go by."

It's always bustling, from dawn to dawn – because Capri's nightlife is world famous.

Fanning out in all directions from La Piazzetta are narrow winding alleys. Some of them are deserted....

...many are lined with tiny kitchen gardens and colorful flowers that bloom year-round....

....others wend their way past miniature vineyards...

....others afford stunning views across the traditional coved rooftops that keep the homes cool by allowing the heat to rise.

Flowers are everywhere, even growing out of terracotta pots set into the walls.

Here and there a Madonna sits inside a display case, protecting the residents.

From almost anywhere in Capri Town, you can see the ruins of Villa Jovis, a huge palace erected by Emperor Tiberius in 25 AD. Pliny called this son of Caesar Augustus the gloomiest of men, and indeed this palace is one of the few foreboding places on the island. It makes for a great hike up to visit the ruins!

Far from gloomy are the Faraglioni, perhaps Capri's most famous landmark. These two gigantic outcroppings emerge from the sea in front of Punta Tragara, and are an essential part of any visit to the island.

Locals go to the Faraglioni for a day at the beach. You make your way along a tiny path that hugs the hillside, and when you round a corner you see the characteristic white domes of the beach resort below.

At the very base of the hill is a rocky cove that might be disdained by the denizens of Miami Beach. But Italians love this sort of place, where you can stretch your blanket out on the rocks....

....or for a fee, you can hire a lounge chair and umbrella.

There's no beach at all. You just climb down the ladder and drop into the warm, clear waters.

Good swimmers can head straight out through the Faraglioni into the bay.

Or you can just hang around and talk to your pals.

Only from the water can you catch a glimpse of our favorite Capri villa.

After a refreshing swim, climb back up the ladder and treat yourself to a succulent Italian seafood lunch. Then after a nap you can make your way back to Marina Grande and sail off into the sunset.

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