Is the Capri Blue Grotto worth it?

The question of asking if a world-famous destination is worth visiting really is a matter of opinion. There are certainly factors that may hinder or add to your experience, but at the end of the day, only you will have the ability to confidently say if it’s worth it or not by going there and seeing for yourself!

Whilst a quick search on TripAdvisor and Google will tell you that to some travellers it is not worth it, others could not disagree more, and loved their visit to the cave.

A brief history lesson:

The Grotto is believed to have once been a temple, as ancient Roman statues were discovered inside the cave. These statues were removed though, as the cave was suddenly believed to be inhabited by demons. The grotto was rediscovered after some time in 1826 by a local fisherman Angelo Ferraro, who was accompanied by a German author and painter, and has been a popular area to visit ever since.

What is so special about it?

Any photo or video you’ve seen are not edited – the glowing blue water is illuminated by the sunlight and positioning of the cave opening and a hole beneath the water, directly below. When entering the grotto via rowboat, you first go through darkness and emerge in the cave, where you are greeted by the most incredible glowing blue colour.

It may seem tempting to jump in, and your skipper may be swayed with a tip, but it is generally not advised to swim in the grotto, as unpredictable conditions can lead to injury. Some locals and risk-taking travellers do often enter the cave at the end of the day, when the rowboats are gone, and the ticket offices are closed to take a dip. We would suggest a boat with the experts is best.

How to get to the Blue Grotto

Located in a cave on the side of the mountain, the Blue Grotto is found on the island of Capri in Italy. You can stay in Capri, or if you’re just coming for the day, it is easy to visit via ferry from several spots in southern Italy, including Sorrento, Naples and Positano.

Once in Capri, you have a couple of options to get to the grotto itself.

  1. On foot: You can walk from the centre of Anacapri, which will take around 45 minutes to an hour, directly down to the grotto where you will then need to jump into a rowboat
  2. Private boat: The more expensive option, a private tour will mean a less crowded boat, and will likely include a tour around Capri with additional stops at white and green grottos.
  3. Boat from Marina Grande: Buy your tickets on the day from Laser Capri or Motoscafisti and get taken directly to the cave.

When you arrive at the cave, you will need to jump into a small rowboat (which can be tricky if the water is choppy) and pay a fee of around 15 euro – this covers both the boat and the entrance fee. The entrance is only a metre high, so you will need to lay flat to get through without knocking your head on the rock!

You can tip your rowboat captain to stay inside a little longer, but generally speaking, you will have about 5-10 minutes inside the Blue Grotto, and your captain will most likely be singing in Italian while you’re in there.

When is the best time to go to the Blue Grotto?

Given that the enchanting glow requires a good dose of sunlight to illuminate, it is not a great idea to visit on a very overcast day, as you will not get the full effect. You may also find it is shut, as the skippers will check conditions every morning, and if it is too rough, they will not operate any tours for the day. This also means tours are open sporadically during winter, only when conditions are very calm.

The summer months of June to September are heaving with travellers and you may be waiting 1-2 hours in the sun before getting your turn inside. SO, if you are going there in summer, bring a hat and some water, and warned it may be a waiting game.
The best time is between 12pm to 2pm, when the sun is highest in the sky, but to avoid long wait times early morning is also a recommended time to go.

The bottom line is this – places that hold such beauty as the Blue Grotto are popular for a reason, and if you do happen to find yourself in Capri, or close enough to get yourself there, you should consider a trip to this magical cave. You don’t often regret seeing something so breathtaking in real life!

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