We really liked Naples and knew the potential of this area, plus many other beautiful places to visit, so we decided to go back and enjoy our vacation in these blessed places.

We chose accommodation close to the train station in Naples, a small and charming studio equipped with air conditioning, so necessary in the summer, and a typical Italian breakfast at a nearby cafe.

Given that the historical center and a somewhat more modern center start from the train station, we could opt for walking or had easy access to transportation (metro, bus, ferryboat).

Piazza del Gesu, Naples
Piazza del Gesu, Naples

For us, the perfect vacation is composed of several elements that we somehow manage to combine brilliantly: relaxation, beach, visits, shopping. For this, we made a plan that allowed us to do as much as possible in the seven days of vacation.

On the first day, as usual, we take a city tour, visit the most important sights, look for places where we can eat or drink something in peace, and make plans for the second day.

Naples Historic Center Walking
Naples Historic Center Walking

On the second day, we decided to take the Circumvesuviana train from the Naples station to Sorrento (the train has a special platform, marked with signs, and this train also goes to Pompeii).

After about 2 hours, we got off at the small station, came out to the square and on the first street in front of us, we turned left onto a beautiful little street full of gelaterias, boutiques, and lemons as big as a child's head!

We reached the center of the small town, another square, and crossed a stone bridge to get to the port. Immediately at the end of the bridge on the right side from the station, there is a stone staircase that leads us down to a street that goes to the port.

Sorrento city center
Sorrento city center

We went down and in about 10-15 minutes we were there. We chose the ferryboat (Alilauro) to take us to Amalfi by sea so we could see the coast in all its splendor.

It stops in Positano, which looks better from the sea than Amalfi (probably it doesn't have the same reputation) and possibly in Praiano. Anyway, it was a great choice, the landscapes are incredible, you can't see such things if you choose to go on the coastal road with the SITA buses from Sorrento.

positano amazing view
Positano amazing view

Please take a cap, a scarf, a hat, and sunscreen with you; you'll need it for how strong the sun can burn. Also, bring a swimsuit, flip-flops, a towel, phone battery, sunglasses, and lots of good mood. Places to swim in the sea are in all towns; we foolishly didn't bring our swimsuits!

Instead, we had time to explore the small town of Amalfi (the old part near the port), narrow streets, crowded like a madhouse, church, gelato, a cold beer + some real pasta.

We were impressed by Amalfi, quickly back to the port to take the bus back to Sorrento + the train to Naples, ah, you know the saying about plans... At the bus, it was madness, lots of people, sun, nerves, fatigue.

I said let's ask about alternative routes to not waste time, talked to a bus driver, and he said it would be better to take the SITA bus to Salerno, less crowded, coastal road (the narrow one we would have taken towards Sorrento) and from there take a direct bus to Naples on the highway route, no change.

We did so and it was a good decision; in the summer, the coast and the islands are literally invaded by tourists (you risk losing a lot of time because of this). Once at Salerno station, we asked for information and were directed to the station from where we could take the bus, which came in about 20 minutes, and the travel time to Naples station was 2-2.5 hours.

The next day, Naples, Castel Sant'Elmo for a panoramic view of the city (gorgeous!), the Spanish Quarters, meal at a restaurant with local food, shopping (it was the beginning of July, there were good sales).

From Castel Sant'Elmo the most beautiful 360° panorama of Naples
From Castel Sant'Elmo the most beautiful 360° panorama of Naples

Ischia. We went to the port of Naples, at Molo Immacolatella Vecchia, which is the departure point for ferries to the islands and where the Alibus bus from/to the airport also stops.

We bought a one-way ticket, deciding to choose our return time based on what we find on the island and to buy tickets there.

We headed to Ischia and, being Sunday, it was full of locals from Naples and nearby towns who were heading to Procida and Ischia for family fun on motorboats, with a short stop at Procida before reaching Ischia.

Aragonese Castle Ischia
Aragonese Castle Ischia

From the port to the beach along a street lined with lemon trees, we found sun loungers for a fee at a reduced price considering it was already lunchtime, ate locally, and headed to the port in the evening.

To our total surprise, it was again crowded, we couldn't find tickets for the time we wanted, so we had to wait about 50 minutes for another ferry, then boarded an overcrowded ship where we mostly stood or literally sat on the floor.

We only saw a little of Ischia, but we loved it immensely. We read that it's an island full of unique places and beaches, so we've planned to return. We arrived at our accommodation tired but happy.

We continued our vacation exploring Naples, sunbathing at Bagno Ideal on Via Posillipo, wandering through the old center, eating near the Naples Cathedral and at small local businesses, experiencing the freedom of walking through the narrow streets of the dirty, crowded, and enchanting Naples.

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