Food and Wine


What to do on Ischia: Discover the Green Island

The island of Ischia, the largest of the Phlegraean islands in the Gulf of Naples in the Italian region of Campania, is a true gem of the Mediterranean. It's renowned in Italy and beyond for its thermal waters, golden beaches, delicious restaurants, and rich culture. Ischia is an ideal destination for those seeking a well-rounded vacation with lots of variety. If you want to explore this island in depth, here are some ideas for an authentic and unforgettable experience in Ischia.

Thermal spas: dive into well-being

The island of Ischia is famous for its thermal springs, which have been known since ancient Roman times for their healing properties. The spas of Ischia are a must for anyone visiting the island. Poseidon Gardens, Negombo, and Castiglione are among the best-known thermal parks. Here, you can relax in pools of various temperatures, immersed in lush gardens overlooking the sea. These thermal complexes also offer a wide range of wellness treatments, from massages to thermal muds, which are ideal for regenerating body and mind. Don't miss the chance to also visit the oldest spa on the island, Cavascura. Here, the thermal water flows directly from the mountain, creating natural caves, fumaroles, and outdoor saunas. Nitrodi Springs, located in the town of Barano d'Ischia, are among the oldest and most well-known on the island. Known since the times of the Greeks and Romans, these thermal springs are famous for their healing properties. Rich in beneficial minerals, the waters of Nitrodi are ideal for dermatological and therapeutic treatments, offering relief and healing to those suffering from skin problems such as eczema, psoriasis, and dermatitis. Surrounded by lush vegetation and located in a natural setting of rare beauty, these springs are thermal gardens that are ideal for relaxing with a view of the surrounding panorama.

Magnificent beaches: sun and sea

Ischia offers a variety of beaches to suit all tastes, from sandy bays to rocky coves. Maronti Beach, the longest on the island, is perfect for those who love long walks on the shore and getting lost in the view of the open sea. For a more intimate atmosphere try San Montano Bay, a charming beach of fine sand surrounded by lush vegetation. With its calm, shallow waters, it's ideal for families with children. If you're looking for a quiet and secluded place, Sant'Angelo Beach, which is accessible only on foot or by boat, offers an exclusive and scenic atmosphere. The Bay of Citara, in the town of Forio d'Ischia offers enchanting natural views with the promontory of Punta Imperatore. Don't forget to also explore the small hidden coves, such as Sorgeto Bay, famous for its natural pools of hot water where you can swim even at night under a starry sky.

Hiking trails: nature and adventure

For nature and adventure lovers, Ischia offers numerous hiking routes that allow you to discover the island from a different perspective. One of the most fascinating trails is the route that leads to Monte Epomeo, the highest point on the island. From here, you'll enjoy a breathtaking panoramic view that ranges from the Gulf of Naples to the Pontine Islands. The trail is suitable for hikers of all levels and offers the chance to explore ancient hermitages carved into the rock and picturesque mountain villages. Another unmissable excursion is the Sentiero dei Pizzi Bianchi, which will take you through lunar landscapes of white rocks and unique geological formations. For a more peaceful experience, stroll along the Path of the Hermitage of San Nicola, a trail surrounded by greenery that leads to an ancient hermitage with spectacular views of the sea.

Cultural sites: history and tradition

Ischia is not just natural beauty; the island also has a rich cultural history that's worth exploring. Aragonese Castle, located on an islet connected to Ischia by a stone bridge, is one of the most iconic symbols of the island. Built in the 15th century, the castle offers incredible panoramic views and hosts art exhibitions, cultural events, and an enchanting garden. Another place of great interest is the Archaeological Museum of Pithecusae, located in Villa Arbusto in Lacco Ameno. The museum is home to finds dating back to ancient Greek and Roman times, including the famous Cup of Nestor, one of the oldest examples of Greek writing. The La Mortella Gardens in Forio are another cultural jewel of Ischia. Created by Susana Walton, wife of English composer William Walton, these botanical gardens host an extraordinary variety of exotic and Mediterranean plants, as well as chamber music concerts during the summer. Don't miss the opportunity to also visit the Chiesa del Soccorso in Forio, a picturesque white church overlooking the sea, famous for its striking appearance and the stories of sailors and fishermen who took refuge there during storms.

Ischia cuisine: authentic flavors

The cuisine of Ischia is a journey into the authentic flavors of Neapolitan tradition, with influences that reflect its history and culture. Ischia's restaurants offer dishes based on fresh fish, homemade pasta, and locally grown vegetables. Among the specialties not to be missed are the coniglio all'ischitana (Ischia-style rabbit), a traditional recipe made of rabbit cooked with tomatoes, white wine and local spices; and the zingara, a sandwich stuffed with ham, mozzarella and lettuce, which is perfect for a quick and tasty lunch. For an unforgettable culinary experience, visit Il Focolare restaurant, located among the vineyards, where you can enjoy dishes prepared with fresh seasonal ingredients and accompanied by local wines. Don't miss the chance to also try Ischia pizza topped with local products, and traditional desserts such as pastiera and rum baba.

The towns of Ischia

Each town on Ischia has its own unique character and specific attractions that are worth exploring. Ischia Porto is the beating heart of the island. Famous for its lively nightlife, elegant shops, and the port from where the hydrofoils arrive and depart, it's the ideal place for an evening stroll. The village of Ischia Ponte is the oldest part of the island, where the majestic Aragonese Castle stands and where you can wander through historic streets and visit artisan shops. Forio is famous for its breathtaking sunsets, striking churches such as the Chiesa del Soccorso, and the La Mortella botanical gardens, an oasis of tranquility and natural beauty. The town of Lacco Ameno is known for its "mushroom," an unusual mushroom-shaped volcanic rock in the sea. It's also famous for the Archaeological Museum of Pithecusae, which tells the ancient history of the island. Casamicciola Terme is renowned for its thermal springs and historic center, while Serrara Fontana offers spectacular views and hiking trails that lead to Mount Epomeo. Finally, Barano d'Ischia is famous for Maronti Beach and Cavascura spa, perfect for relaxing far from the crowds. The village of Sant'Angelo has the most impressive appearance, with shape of an islet connected to the mainland from a narrow isthmus. We recommend visiting during sunset and then stopping for dinner in one of the restaurants in the village.

Boat tour of the island

A unique and fascinating way to discover the island of Ischia is through a boat tour. With its rugged coasts, hidden bays and crystal clear waters, Ischia offers breathtaking views that can only be fully appreciated from the sea. Embarking on one of the numerous tours available will allow you to explore otherwise inaccessible places, such as the evocative Grotta del Mago and the picturesque beaches of San Montano and Citara. Sailing along the coast, you will be able to admire the Aragonese Castle, which stands imposingly on an islet connected to Ischia Ponte, and discover small corners of paradise such as the Bay of Sorgeto, famous for its natural hot water pools. Some tours also offer the possibility of snorkeling or diving, to explore the seabed rich in marine life. There is no shortage of excursions at sunset, where the sea is tinged with spectacular colours, making the experience even more magical. During the tour, it is possible to make stops in the picturesque coastal villages, such as Sant'Angelo, with its colorful houses and narrow alleys, or Forio, where you can visit the Church of Soccorso and the La Mortella Gardens. From Ischia it is also possible to leave for boat tours in the direction of Capri and Procida.