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Clockwise from main image: A view from
Capri; the harbour at Procida; Capri's
bustling Piazzetta; snapper is one of many
shy feasts; Castello Aragonese in Ischia
food. At Gabbiano Beach, enormous platters
of shell sh and char-grilled seafood were
followed out of the kitchen by cooks banging
pots and pans in a rendition of the tarantella.
Diners are handed rattles and tambourines to
complete the racket.
At family-run Il Focolare guests rst enjoy
prosecco in an atmospheric cellar. In an
equally eccentric dining room, I tucked into
delectable braised rabbit with garlic and
tomato accompanied by lashings of honeyed
Ischia Forastera DOC. The owners radiated
such bonhomie that by the end diners were
all best friends.
I overnighted at impressive ve-star
L'Abergo della Regina Isabella, which boasts a
ne health spa. I settled for a transformative
Ayurvedic massage and was soon skipping
like a yogi on to the Procida ferry.
First impressions are of charmingly
dilapidated pink and yellow shermen's
houses lining the harbour, baroque chapels
and 18th-century residences, criss-crossed by
steep stairways and tiny streets.
Atop the Terra Murata, whitewashed Abbey
St Michele emanates a calming stillness;
nearby the vast, former prison Castello
d'Avalos teeters on the cli edge.
I stopped for lunch then followed
my nose to Il Limoneto, an orchard
bursting with 300-year-old trees
bearing sweet, luscious lemons the
size of grapefruit, for a glass or three of
the region's famed Limoncello.
I bunkered down at La Suite, a hip,
modernist hotel with spa and pool, and dined
alfresco on signature salata caprese and
garlicky, smoked aubergine with oregano and
parmigiano: simple but sublime.
Come to think of it, sublime sums up all
three islands nicely.
easyJet and British Airways fly
numerous times daily to Naples from
£68 return. From there, take the
Caremar ferry or SNAV hydrofoil.
WHO TO TRAVEL WITH
Bellini Travel offers 3 nights
BB at JK Place, Capri, in a deluxe
double with sea view, for £1,275 pp (or
7 nights for £2,980), excludes flights
and transfers; and 3 nights BB at
Regina Isabella, Ischia, in a junior suite
with sea view for £965 pp, excludes
flights, transfers and treatments.
WHEN TO GO
It gets very hot and crowded
in summer, so opt for September to
WHERE TO STAY
Capri: JK Place, doubles from
Ischia: L'Albergo della Regina Isabella,
doubles from £170; reginaisabella.it
Procida: La Suite Hotel Spa, doubles
from £135; lasuiteresort.com
WHERE TO EAT
Capri: Il Riccio, ristoranteilriccio.
com; Gran Café, Piazza Umberto
Procida: La Suite, lasuiteresort.it;
Il Limonetto, procida.net/limoni.it
Ischia: Gabbiano Beach,
gabbianobeach.net; Il Focolare,
FIND OUT MORE
FIRST IMPRESSIONS OF PROCIDA
ARE OF CHARMINGLY DILAPIDATED
PINK AND YELLOW FISHERMEN'S
HOUSES LINING THE HARBOUR