Despite the pun, the best way to spend a short time in Capri, is exploring it by sea!
We decided to stay in Naples for the night, because it is way more economical and you can take a short ferry over to Capri. If you want to spend more than a day in Capri though, you would be better off staying on the island. The ferry is about $40 round trip from Naples. The ferry does give you a nice view of the island on arrival though.
Basically, the whole point of me writing this is to rave about Gianni’s Boat. They recently updated their website and apparently added some extras like on deck massages, champagne with strawberries, oysters, and all the fancy stuff you can think of. But even without the extras the service was incredible and I can’t say enough good things about this company.
We opted for the 4 hour tour starting at 2pm. That gave us time to walk around Naples, take the ferry, and walk around Capri near the Marina Grande, and near all the souvenirs. After snagging a magnet, and tons of wine and snacks to take aboard with us, we met with someone from Gianni’s Boat who walked us over to our own private Gozzo (an awesome boat).
Our skipper for the day was Gianni’s brother Paolo. The company is so family focused, which makes the whole experience have an even more genuine feel. Paolo told us about how he grew up in Capri and how he’s been sailing his whole life. He answered every question we could think of about Capri, legends, sailing, and Italy in general and had great stories to tell. Paolo knew all the best spots to swim, the coolest grottos, and the hidden beaches, which we spent most of our time exploring. He leveled with us that the famous Blue Grotto was a bit of a rip off and a bit of a long wait, but also agreed that we’d probably regret not seeing it, so we did.
The only thing I would do differently is book the full day trip next time. They can take you to one of a few restaurants for lunch, or pack a picnic for you on board. When we were booking last August one of the options was a pasta lunch made by Gianni’s mamma herself. However, the onboard option now is just described as, “Caprese sandwiches made with slices of fresh tomato and local mozzarella….washed down with some crisp white wine, of course!” So it’s possible Gianni’s mamma got tired as business picked up. I have to admit, I’m a little bummed about missing out.
After our day of sailing and swimming we tried to go to a restaurant I was dying to eat at. I’m still willing to recommend it because the reviews are stellar. It’s called Da Paolino and you’re literally eating under lemon trees (which Capri is also known for). Except, when you go, don’t be foolish like us and MAKE A RESERVATION. This was literally the only part of our trip I didn’t micromanage months in advance and I regret it! Especially because of what happened after.
We walked back down to the Marina Grande, and picked a touristy restaurant overlooking the ocean (can’t complain about the view). It was cheap, which is saying a lot for Capri. They brought out three of our food orders and forgot mine. We reminded them, and I shared Kevin’s while we waited….and waited. Until we said never mind cancel the order. Instead of cancelling the order, they brought out the meal when we asked for our check, after everyone had long finished eating. One of the worst eating experiences I’ve had. You definitely get what you pay for. So, if you’re going to Capri, I think you should commit and treat yourself to something a little more upscale and in line with the island’s luxurious reputation.
Our walk up to Da Paolino did provide us with really pretty views and cute little roads though. I would recommend taking a walk past the marina even if you have just a short time.
See the video version of what happened here, including all our grotto and secret beach exploring!