What to do in the Bay of Naples

The Bay of Naples, also known as the Gulf of Naples, is a semicircular inlet that lies along the south-west coast of Italy. Its waters start from the island of Ischia and loop around the coastline to the island of Capri. Named after the city of Naples, the third-largest city in Italy, the bay contains a myriad of places to visit. But what are the great sights to see in the Bay of Naples?

Bay of Naples

Things to do in the Bay of Naples

Ischia

Beginning at the most western point of the Bay of Naples sits the island of Ischia. This volcanic island is often called the ‘affordable’ Capri due to its less flashy façade but it still offers much to anyone that visits it. Home to over 100 thermal springs, it is the perfect place for a ‘wellness’ trip as the waters are said to have healing properties. Pair this with the superb sandy beaches and you will find yourself enjoying the most relaxing holiday you’ve ever experienced.

But that’s not all, if you feel the need to factor in some exercise to your wellness vacation then Mount Epomeo will provide you with a one-hour trek which will help you see why Ischia is called ‘the green island’. Enjoy the dramatic views from here before sampling some delicious cuisine at one of the many restaurants and heading to your next relaxing activity. You deserve it!

Procida

Procida

Nestled between Ischia and the mainland, the Bay’s smallest island, Procida is well worth the trek. This breathtaking island is speckled with brightly coloured yellow, pink and orange houses that beautifully compliment the aquamarine blue of the sea and sky. It is not a common tourist stop, but it could be called the Bay’s best-kept secret providing a great look at the local life of the Italian community. Set sail to this picture-perfect island and have your Instagram followers turn green with envy.

Naples

The city along the harbour, Naples is one of the top tourist destinations in Italy. Start your day with a traditional espresso and a delicious pastry and then stroll through the narrow streets of the city to take in the historic churches, palaces, and houses. Learn about the history of the area and cast your eyes over ancient artefacts by visiting the National Archaeological Museum, listed as the best in the country. For all the pizza lovers out there (and let’s face it who isn’t!) Naples was the birthplace of the delicious wood-fired pizza. The ingredients used in this region are some of the best in the world so make sure you tuck into some of the local traditional slices served.

For those wanting to take a different look at the city, be sure to adventure into the Napoli Sotterranea or Naples Underground. 40 meters below the city you’ll discover the geothermal tunnels and rooms carved into the rock over 2,400 years ago. Candlelit tours will take you through the labyrinth of passages and reveal to you some of the secrets of ancient Naples.

Pompeii

Pompeii, Italy

No trip to Italy is complete without a visit to Pompeii. The famous archaeological site was once a thriving city until it was destroyed by the volcano Mount Vesuvius. Step into the Ancient Roman times as you stroll down the cobblestone streets of this incredibly preserved city. See fabulous attractions such as the enormous amphitheatre, once holding over 20,000 people and the brothels with their erotic frescoes. Discover the past community’s daily lives, learning about their culture and wealth in the past ancient times.

Whilst roaming the ruins of Pompeii allows you to see the devastation of Mount Vesuvius up close, a hike to the top of the volcano will allow you to see its impact in much grander style. Take in the towns that live in the shadow of the volcano as well as enjoying the incredible views this vantage point affords.

Herculaneum

After seeing Pompeii, discover this small historic treasure a short drive away. Herculaneum was a wealthy village that met a similar fate to Pompeii. Arguably better preserved, the city of Herculaneum was encased in volcanic debris but the unique combination of ash and ground humidity meant that even wooden structures and paper scrolls survived. The town is rich in beauties, including incredibly designed houses, sculptures, and communal bathhouses. Less crowded than Pompeii, you can wander in peace to discover this village’s secrets.

Capri

On the south end of the bay sits the island of Capri. This small island offers a vast amount of adventures. Famous for its luxurious hotels and shops, jagged landscape, and pristine waters. If heaven was on earth, it would be Capri! Explore the ruins of Villa Jovis and take in the fabulous views before heading to Marina Piccola where Odysseus is said to have been called by the sirens in Greek Mythology. Next, take a boat tour around the island and see the massive rock formations of the Faraglioni as well as the towering cliffs that form the edges of the island. Venture into the breathtaking, glowing cave of the Blue Grotto before sailing on the Grotta Verde and taking a swim in the green-tinted waters. Then move on to Grotta Bianca, famous for the white stalactites which hang from the roof of the cave. Or if boats aren’t your thing then simply spend a day at the beach, soaking up that Italian sun.

The Bay of Naples is home to an array of different Italian places, all overflowing with history, culture, and natural beauty. Whether you’re a newbie, a long-time traveller or just stopping through, this list of attractions is for you.