Posted by: Debra Kolkka | April 15, 2016

Ischia impressions

We have been in Ischia, staying with some lovely friends from Peak Island USA. One of the joys of writing a blog is the people you meet along the way.

Ischia is a volcanic island about 30 kilometres off the coast from Naples. It is 10 kilometres long, east to west and 7 kilometres north to south. It is almost entirely mountainous, with Mount Epomeo the highest peak at 788 metres.

It is densely populated. There are over 60,000 residents and the population swells enormously in the summer when tourists flock to the island to enjoy the thermal springs. The volcanic activity provides hot springs and volcanic mud.

I can’t show you the hot springs, we were a day too early, but I can show you some of the rest of the island. We stayed at Ponte, named for the bridge that crosses to the Aragon Castle. The castle is fabulous and will get a post of its own soon.

It was hazy when we arrived.

Castle Aragon

The next morning was much brighter.

Castle Aragon

Ponte is a great little area with cute shops and restaurants and it is where fishing boats come to in the morning to sell their catch.



We took one of the local buses to see the island. You can get a day pass, which is great value. Don’t forget to validate your ticket. The inspectors are vicious.

First stop, Porto, where many of the ferries from the mainland come in. It has everything, great shopping, lots of inviting restaurants and much more.


Ceramics are very popular in the area. We bought some ceramic letters to spell out Casa Debbio…I have just the place for them.

Then it was back on the bus. These rickety buses hurtle around the narrow, steep roads flinging people off into villages that stick like limpets into the hillsides. In some places an extra coat of paint could pose a problem. Passing another bus is an experience that will stay with you.

We stopped at Forrio for a wander.


Chiesa di Santa Maria del Soccorso sits out on a point, just waiting to be admired.


There were great views back into the village from the church. Clouds were sitting low over the mountain.


Gorgeous St Angelo provided the perfect setting for lunch.



The beach/boat themed restaurant was great. The food was excellent and the service friendly and efficient.


We spent the rest of the day exploring the castle, but I will show you that another day.

Thank you Stephanie and Paul for a wonderful introduction to Ischia…we will return to try the thermal springs.

We took the ferry to Ischia from Pozzuoli, near Naples. To say that it is a dump would be to flatter the place. We found our way to the port and what we thought was the long term car park. A semi official looking chap assured us that it was, and sold us a ticket for 2 days.

We thought he was a bit dodgy, and he was. We returned to the car to find a parking ticket for €25. We were actually quite pleased to find our car still there and the contents untouched. Next time we go to Ischia we will go by public transport.

Next stop Calabria.




  1. Pooh on the dude in the parking lot, but thank heavens the ticket was only €25, and your car was intact! The photos are amazing. I hope you are enjoying the trip as much as I am, vicariously 😄

    • Ischia was great, the creep just a small bump. We will definitely return to the island.

  2. Deb and Jim we so enjoyed your stay with us…..your pictures and descriptions of Ischia are fantastic and certainly show why we love this isola verde. Posideon was fastastic today……cloudless blue skies…..and the pools with their thermal waters remain the best…….next time we will time your visit when they are open. The girl behind us when we were buying our 12 day passes gasped….but if you are going like we do the more you buy the cheaper they are….enjoy your next adventures and we’ll see you in Lucca next year.

    • I am officially jealous! I really want to go to the spa. We will be back.

  3. There was once a great story about car parking from Bristol Zoo in England. The story goes that the zoo thought the attendant worked for the council and when he didn’t turn up one day the phoned to ask why. The council denied any knowledge of the man and that it wasn’t their car park anyway. Apparently he collected cash there for 23 years.

    • I have heard that story. Ours was much less exotic, he was just a Napolitano crook.

  4. Ischia has quite a varied and interesting history. I am looking forward to your post on the Aragon Castle.
    Sorry to hear about your misadventure at the Pozzuoli car parking.
    And by the way, Sofia Loren grew up in Pozzuoli.

    • Perhaps it was better in her day…but I doubt it.

  5. Beautiful, yet another place to add to the list. I need to just move to Italy and spend the rest of my life exploring this amazing, beautiful country.

    • It would take more than one lifetime.

      • So true!

  6. Ok Deb, Ischia is now top of my bucket list. Thanks for sharing.

    • It’s great in that chaotic southern Italian way. It reminds me of Sorrento 40 years ago.

  7. Another wonderful little jewel in Italy. The magical places to visit are endless. Your photos are beautiful and descriptions great. I laughed at your description of the buses flinging the people off in the villages. So next stop, Calabria. I have been thinking about going to Calabria when I am there in May so I will be very happy to chat with you about it. Looking forward to seeing the Casa Debbio letters. See you soon

    • We can certainly tell you about our Calabria experience when you arrive.

  8. Brings back memories – did you visit the Giardini La Morella? It’s very famous. I loved Ischia & would love to go back. We went by ferry from Naples

    • No, we didn’t. Many things are not yet open for the season…next time.

  9. Ischia is on my list…your photos are very enticing. Just love the whites and blues, and that restless turquoise water!

    • Ischia is a lit of fun, you must go.

  10. How beautiful! Another destination to add to our every expanding list.

  11. […] but Calabria and Sicily called. We drove south stopping first in Ischia where our friends Paul and Stephanie had invited us to stay. We absolutely loved Ischia and […]

  12. […] чрез Иския впечатления – Бани ди Лука и Отвъд […]

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