The largest island in the Bay of Naples is famous for its hot thermal springs, spas, fine beaches and good hiking through spectacular scenery and is only 45 minutes by high-speed hydrofoil from both Naples and Sorrento.
Ischia is ideal for escaping the rigours of sightseeing in Naples on a day trip, overnight outing or longer. Less crowded (and more affordable) than neighbouring Capri, Ischia offers all the ingredients you need for a great island honeymoon in Italy.
Discover a choice of white-sand beaches that lie between steep green hillsides and the deep blue sea of the Bay of Naples.
Choose an organised beach where, for a fee, you have towels, deck chairs, sun loungers and changing rooms; these beaches will typically also have beachside bars, cafes and restaurants.
Or hire a water taxi and find a secluded spiaggia libera (free beach) where you can relax in privacy and picnic with your own provisions.
The best beaches on Ischia, include…
Unwind on Ischia's most renowned beach, a 3km-long crescent of off-white volcanic sand that sits between a wide turquoise bay and low bush-covered cliffs framed by steep rocky promontories.
Soak in therapeutic waters at the open-air natural thermal spring at Cava Scura.
The central private area of the beach offers facilities such as towels, umbrellas, deck chairs and beachfront cafes and restaurants. Alternatively, head to the free sections at either end of the beach and take your own supples with you.
Spiaggia dei Maronti is located on the south coast, around 2km north of the village of Sant'Angelo.
Dig your toes into the soft golden sand of this gorgeous wing-shaped beach that lies beneath steep bush-covered hills and a beautiful turquoise bay.
Natural thermal springs flow into the sea from the southern end of the beach, above which sits the magnificent beachfront gardens of the thermal spa, Giardini Poseidon.
Facilities include towels, umbrellas, deck chairs and beachfront cafes and restaurants. Spiaggia di Citara is located south of Forio.
This narrow stretch of golden sand sits beneath a craggy bush-covered cliff face and faces a small cove framed by calm turquoise water and scenic rocky headlands.
Facilities include towels, umbrellas, deck chairs and beachfront cafes and restaurants.
Spiaggia di Cartaromana is located on the east coast of Ischia near the village of San Michele.
Unwind on this long white-sand beach that stretches east of the tiny fishing village of Sant'Angelo at one of Ischia’s most scenic spots.
Sant'Angelo clings to vertiginous cliffs and sprawls across a rock headland and small isthmus before ending beneath a dramatic mountain promontory surrounded by deep blue water.
The beach at Sant’Angelo is exclusive and secluded but you can still avail of sun umbrellas and deck chairs.
Sunbathe on the soft sand, swim in the clear turquoise water and breathe in the majestic scenery of this beautiful spot.
Inland from Sant'Angelo are several hilltop villages such as Serrara Fontana, offering good hiking trails and spectacular views.
Nearby lies an area of hot springs, easily reached on foot or by water taxi. Try the Parco Termale Giardini Aphrodite-Apollon, an indoor/outdoor spa that is part of the Park Hotel Miramare.
Sant'Angelo offers a range of hotels, bars and restaurants and is located on the south coast, around 11km south of Ischia Porto.
With more than 56 different mineral springs to choose from, Ischia is spa heaven.
Many hotels have their own on-site hot springs and there are also a large number of terme (spas), which offer a range of hot pools, saunas, massage centres and all manner of health, relaxation and beauty treatments.
Try the elegant 5-star Hotel Il Moresco, which has its own thermal spring and spa offering an extensive range of health and beauty treatments.
The 4-star Ischia L’Albergo della Regina Isabella Resort & Spa in Lacco Ameno is another good choice, or visit the Parco Termale Giardini Poseidon, an open-air terme with 22 pools, a long private beach and several restaurants overlooking the Bay of Citara, south of Forio.
Choose from several sandy beaches that alternate with rugged cliffs along Ischia’s 37km-long coastline. Try the soft golden-sand beach at Citara then stroll the well-preserved historical centre in Foria, crammed with winding streets lined with medieval and Baroque buildings.
See the 15th century Torrione and white church of Santuario della Madonna del Sorccorso, both of which offer beautiful panoramic views, then unwind in a thermal pool at the nearby Giardini di Poseidon.
In the capital, Ischia Porto, stroll streets fringed with lemon and Indian fig trees and lined with chic boutiques, bars, restaurants and hotels.
Follow the narrow causeway and climb up (or take the lift) to the impressive picture-perfect Castello Aragonese (photo), which crowns the promontory at Ischia Ponte (and is perhaps familiar to many as the backdrop for Hollywood film The Talented Mr Ripley).
Here, you can choose from two golden sand beaches – Spiaggia San Pietro and Spiaggia degli Inglesi – that sit between Ischia Porto and Ischia Ponte.
Inland, choose from a network of pleasant hiking trails that wind through a green and hilly landscape dotted with chestnut forests and picturesque hillside towns. For panoramic views, hike to the summit of Mount Epomeo (787m), Ischia’s now dormant volcano and highest peak.
Visit the picturesque Lacco Ameno, renowned for its mushroom-shaped rock a few yards from the sandy shore, then relax in a spa at nearby Casamicciola. Follow winding paths that give you an opportunity to spot the more than 300 rare and exotic plants here, including the world's largest water lily – Victoria amazonica, at La Mortella.
Ischia also offers a good selection of small family run trattorias and restaurants. Don't forget to finish off your meal with a chilled glass of the famous limoncello liqueur, a favourite among locals along the Neapolitan Riviera.
Ischia offers an excellent choice of accommodation options and is renowned for its luxurious 5-star spa hotels, including the magnificent Mezzatorre Resort & Spa, with its spa housed in a 16th century watchtower, and the charming Miramare e Castello, located on scenic Ischia Point…
Hotel Mare Blu Terme
Location: Via Pontano, Ischia Porto, Ischia
Ave nightly price: AUD916 per room
Description: Mare Blu Terme is in Ischia's old town, overlooking the Aragonese Castle and 200 metres from the main shopping street. The hotel features its own thermal and wellness centre. The rooftop terrace is equipped with free sun loungers and parasols, and you have free access to the private beach of a partner hotel. Set in an ancient villa, Hotel Mare Blu Terme features period furniture and elegant halls. Each guest room is spacious, with an attractive Mediterranean design. The water in the outdoor swimming pool and in the thermal pool is kept at a constant temperature of 36°C. The spa includes a Turkish bath, hydrotherapy pools, and hydromassage showers and baths. Snacks and drinks are available throughout the day at the poolside bar. The restaurant serves a generous buffet breakfast and local specialities for dinner.
Mezzatorre Resort & Spa
Location: Via Mezzatorre 23, Forio di Ischia, Ischia
Ave nightly price: AUD532 per room
Description: Located on Ischia, Mezzatorre Resort has an outdoor pool and sun terrace with views across to Naples. There are 2 à la carte restaurants offering regional and international specialities and a lounge with piano bar. Rooms at Mezzatorre Resort and Spa are air conditioned and have satellite TV and a minibar. Set in different areas of the property, most rooms have a balcony or terrace with views of the sea or gardens. The hotel's spa and wellness centre offers a range of treatments using the island's thermal waters. Guests can enjoy a luxurious massage in one of the outdoor gazebos. Sciué-Sciué poolside restaurant has stunning sea views and a roof made of palm tree leaves, and Chandelier restaurant adjacent to the tower. The buffet breakfast of homemade bread and pastries is served on the terrace. The Mezzatorre is situated in grounds where you will find a tennis court and jogging tracks. There is a private dock and a small bay for swimming.
Villa Durrueli Resort & Spa
Location: Traversa Vincenzo Mirabella, Ischia Porto, Ischia
Ave nightly price: AUD483 per room
Description: Located close to La Mandra Beach and the ancient fishing village of Ischia Ponte, Villa Durrueli has a fantastic view of Ischia's Castello Aragonese castle. The property offers a swimming pool and a wellness centre. The gardens are full of exotic plants and flowers. The villa overlooks the pine woods. You can relax on the sun terrace, or take a dip in the large pool or in one of the smaller pools with hydromassage and aromatherapy. Rooms are complete with LCD TV, and free high-speed internet access. Some rooms offer a balcony or furnished terrace. The wellness centre includes an indoor swimming pool, Turkish bath, and a variety of massages and beauty treatments. Meals at Villa Durrueli Resort & Spa are often accompanied by music from the piano. The à la carte menu includes fresh fish dishes, local specialities and a generous buffet of starters and vegetables.
Miramare E Castello
Location: Via Pontano, Ischia Porto, Ischia
Ave nightly price: AUD333 per room
Description: Featuring panoramic views of the Aragonese Castle and Sorrento Bay, Miramare E Castello is set on the island of Ischia. It offers an indoor and outdoor swimming pool, private beach and air-conditioned accommodation with free Wi-Fi. Rooms at the Miramare E Castello all have an elegant décor, and come with a flat-screen TV with SKY channels, minibar and a private bathroom with bathrobes, slippers and free toiletries. Some have sea views. The 5-star hotel includes 2 hot tubs on its sun terrace, and a spa and wellness centre offering a Turkish bath and massages on request. The Lampara à la carte restaurant, with panoramic views, serves Mediterranean cuisine. The property is located 500 metres from the main shopping street of Corso Vittorio Colonna. The port of Ischia, with links to Naples, is 2.5 km away.
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The best time to visit Ischia and the Neapolitan Riviera is from April to June and again from September to October, when the average daily temperature is 22°C (71°F).
Travelling at these times avoids the summer high season crowds of July and August, when temperatures can soar above 30°C (86°F).
Ischia is the largest island in the Tyrrhenian Sea, sitting at the northern end of the Gulf of Naples, about 30km (19mi) from the city of Naples.
The most convenient route to Ischia is by air to Naples International Airport (NAP), followed by taxi to the port of Molo Beverello and ferry or hydrofoil to the island.
By hydrofoil (aliscafo), Ischia is just 45 minutes from the port of Naples. There is also a slower ferry service to and from Naples, Pozzuoli, Capri and Sorrento.
From Naples, hydrofoils leave from Molo Beverello several times daily, with slower ferries leaving from Calata Porta Massa. Ischia's main ferry terminal is in Ischia Porto, with smaller terminals in Casamicciola and Forio
You can also choose to fly into the much larger Rome–Fiumicino International Airport 'Leonardo da Vinci' (FCO), then train or bus to Naples, Salerno or Sorrento.
By train, Rome to Naples takes 1 hour 35 minutes.
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Latest update: Where to Honeymoon in Ischia: 6 February, 2020
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