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Italian Dolce Vita

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Island hopping on the gulf of Naples
From Naples to the Amalfi Coast and the Isle of Capri, this 8-day adventure explores some of Italy’s most remarkable sights. Southern Italy’s Mediterranean landscape is magical and magnificent. Rugged coastlines give way to clear, blue waters, and quaint towns set the scene for some of the most mouthwatering Italian meals. This trip provides the chance to explore these great places by foot and by kayak. Hike the Path of the Gods and watch the sunset from Positano. Hop on a hydrofoil and speed across the Gulf of Salerno to the Isle of Capri. Take a scenic walk along the trails to discover the island’s hidden coves and grottoes. Ferry to the island of Ischia to visit the medieval Aragonese Castle, which stands on a volcanic rock connected to the island by an impressive stone bridge. Along the way, the warm Mediterranean waters beckon us for a swim. Our adventure culminates in Naples with a visit to the UNESCO World Heritage site of Pompeii, and a hike on stunning Mount Vesuvius. We take time to reminisce on a journey filled with tradition, unforgettable adventure, and the chance to explore picture-perfect towns in the company of like-minded adventurers

Highlights:

  • Trek to the crater rim of Vesuvius and discover the fate of the lost city of Pompeii
  • Kayak the Amalfi Coast for views of dramatic cliffs, natural arches and sea caves
  • Hike the Path of the Gods for vistas of the Tyrrhenian Sea and Amalfi's coastline
  • Explore the Isle of Capri and visit a medieval castle on the Isle of Ischia
  • Learn the art of making authentic Italian dinner

Daily itinerary

Napoli

Day 1 : Meet in Naples and transfer to Minori on the remarkable Amalfi Coast
Arrive at the airport in Naples, Italy by 12pm today. We provide one group pick-up from our Naples host hotel at 1pm, then proceed to the Naples airport for a second group pick up at 2pm. A two hour drive brings us to our hotel in the picturesque village of Minori on the Amalfi Coast. An orientation meeting is followed by dinner at a nearby restaurant. (Meals -/-/D)   
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ischia

Day 2: Kayak past secluded beaches and rugged cliffs, visit Amalfi village (3.00 hours kayak, 4 km)
We begin the day with a kayak excursion along the Amalfi Coast to take in the views of dramatic cliffs, natural arches and sea caves. Pebbled beaches provide an opportunity to come ashore for a swim in the clear turquoise waters. In the afternoon, a short transfer brings us to the lovely village of Amalfi. We stroll the narrow, cobbled streets to the Duomo di Amalfi, a cathedral with a beautiful Arab-Sicilian influenced exterior that sits dramatically atop a steep flight of steps. Our walk continues to the beginning of the Ferriere Valley, where we taste the famous Amalfi Coast lemons at a local farm. We have free time in Amalfi for sightseeing, shopping and sampling gelato. Returning to our hotel in Minori, we enjoy dinner at a nearby restaurant. (Meals B/-/D)       

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ischia-vettaDay 3: Hike iconic the Path of the Gods and view the sunset from colorful Positano (3.30 hours hiking, + 350 mt –500 mt, 6 km)
The village of Bomerano is the starting point of our panoramic hike along the Path of the Gods. This aptly-named trail offers remarkable views across the Tyrrhenian Sea to the Isle of Capri. Upon reaching the hamlet of Nocelle we eat a picnic lunch while enjoying the scenery. Next, we transfer to Positano, a lovely hillside village of colorful Moorish-style houses built above a pebble beach and small bay. We stroll the streets past the Chiesa di Santa Maria Assunta, famous for its colorful majolica-tiled dome. The afternoon is free to relax at the beach (umbrella and beach chair provided), stroll the steep walkways and stairs of Positano to shop and explore, or walk along the Via Positanesi d’America to see Trasita Tower and Fornillo Beach. Dinner on the terrace of a pizzeria presents outstanding coastline views. We return to Minori for the night. (Meals B/-/D)                    
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Capri skaly Faraglione

Day 4:  On Capri, hike to Grotta di Matermania (3  hours hiking, +300 mt -300 mt, 9 km)
Dressed in hiking clothes and ready to explore, a ferry transports us to the rocky Isle of Capri. We walk to the Grotta di Matermania, a series of caves tucked into the island's limestone crags, then continue to an iconic rock arch and an overlook to view the Faraglioni Sea Stacks. Following a picnic lunch, we visit the terraces of the Gardens of Augustus. The afternoon is free to explore in Capri, or if conditions are good, go for a swim. A transfer brings us to our hotel in Anacapri, a quiet town located on the slopes of Monte Solaro. There is time to relax before we gather for dinner, or join your guide on an optional hike to the summit of Monte Solaro (600 mt) to enjoy sweeping views of the Faraglioni Sea Stacks and the Sorrento Peninsula. (Meals B/L/D)

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anacapri

Day 5: Experience the Grotta Azzurra and learn  the art of creating Neapolitan cuisine (3.30 hours hiking, +250mt -300 mt, 6 km)
​The Grotta Azzurra, or Blue Grotto, is a natural sea cave that we visit aboard small rowboats. The famous blue light that illuminates the cavern is due to sunlight entering through an underwater opening beneath the cave's mouth. From here, we begin our hike on the ruggedly beautiful Sentiero dei Fortini trail. We follow the coastline, peering into strikingly deep inlets with crystal clear water. Along the trail we can see three ruins called "fortini" (blockhouses), which were fortified by the English in the early 1800s during the Napoleonic Wars. Our hike concludes at the Punta Carena Lighthouse; built in 1866, this is the second tallest lighthouse in Italy. There is free time for lunch and swimming in the blue waters of the Tyrrhenian Sea. We spend the evening with a well-known local chef for a cooking demonstration and dine on our cooking accomplishments. (Meals B/-/D)

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sorrento

Day 6: Hike on Vesuvius, enjoy tasting local wines, and visit Pompeii’s ruins (1.30 hours hiking, +200 mt -200 mt, 3.5 km)
Departing Capri, we ferry to Sorrento and then transfer to Mount Vesuvius (1200 mt), which last erupted in 1944 and currently sits dormant, allowing for closer exploration. We hike to a panoramic viewpoint at the volcano’s crater, the Bay of Naples serving as our backdrop, while our guides share their knowledge of the mountain’s geological and natural history. Today’s lunch is at one of the oldest wineries in the region, located on the slopes of Vesuvius. We sample local produce and vintages and tour a lava cave. Our next stop is Pompeii for a private tour. The catastrophic eruption of nearby Mount Vesuvius in the first century AD buried Pompeii in 60’ of volcanic ash and hid its existence from the rest of the world for 1,700 years. Ongoing excavations have uncovered a city frozen in time, filled with well-preserved buildings, frescoes and thousands of personal artifacts. The day ends with a transfer to Naples where we check into our hotel and have dinner. (Meals B/L/D)


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punta campanella Day 7 : Explore the volcanic island of Ischia and its stunning Aragonese castle
A ferry from Naples brings us to the island of Ischia. We begin our explorations at Castello Aragonese, a 2,500-year-old medieval castle connected to the island of Ischia by a 722’ stone bridge. After a guided tour, there is free time to explore and enjoy lunch at one of the seaside restaurants. Boarding a water taxi, we are whisked to the white sands of Maronti Beach with free time to relax and swim. For those interested in a spa experience, a short walk through a tuff stone canyon brings you to a simple outdoor spa with options for therapeutic soaks in Roman baths. In the mid-afternoon, a short water taxi brings us to the picturesque village of Sant’Angelo to explore and enjoy a gelato. Returning to Ischia Porto we take a ferry back to Naples and celebrate our week of explorations on the terrace of a restaurant that provides panoramic views of the city and Vesuvius. (Meals B/-/D)

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Day 8 : Departure
Our trip concludes after breakfast. Transfer on your own to the Naples airport or rail station. (Meals B/-/-)


Note: B (Breakfast); L (Lunch); D (Dinner)

Grade: This trip is rated Easy Active [2]. Activities include hiking, sea kayaking and optional swimming. Trip members should be capable of hiking up to 4 hours on concurrent days, should know how to swim and be comfortable in the water. A prior hiking and kayaking experience is advisable.

Accommodation :
3 nights in hotel**** in Minori
2 nights in hotel*** in AnaCapri
2 nights in hotel**** with swimming pool in Naples

Equipment: hiking shoes, wind and water proof jacket, hat, flashlight with batteries, sun glasses and sun cream, walking poles, swimming suit


Getting there: the destination airport is Naples. Group arrival and transfer to our hotel. The last day, group transfer to Naples airport.

 

Included:           
- 7 nights in hotel with breakfast included
- All private transportation, boats and hydrofoils from day 1 to day 7 as detailed in the program
- All dinners
- Lunch on day 4 and day 6
- Kayak activity day 2
- Cooking demonstration day 5
- Private guide at Pompeii day 6
- Entrance fees to the Grotta Azzurra, Pompeii and mt Vesuvius
- Local English speaking leader throughout


Not included:
- All lunch exc day 4 and day 6
- Transfer to Naples airport on day 1 and day 8
- Any other services not mentioned in the itinerary

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Destination: Naples, Amalfi coast
Travel Style: Guided walking holiday
Duration: 8 days / 7 nights
Departures: J F M A M J J A S O N D
Group size: from 4 to 15 pax
Airport: Naples