The Bay of Naples is a hotspot for tourists. Thousands flock to the city every year to visit the nearby islands of Ischia and Capri. However, just forty minutes away from the mainland lies a hidden gem, the tiny island of Procida.
This 1.5 square foot island is home to about 10,000 residents. Procida is a spectacular coastal oasis that has often drawn comparisons to Portofino, located on the Italian Riviera. However, while Portofino overflows with tourists, Procida is a local hideaway that sees most of its traffic in August when local Napolitanos escape the summer heat in the city.
Though the island is small in size, there are at least six beaches to choose from, each with their own unique allure but all equally stunning. The most popular beach is Chiaiolella Beach. Located on the far end of the island, Chiaolella is near the harbor offering easy access to boat travelers. Additionally, the waters are calm and shallow enough to make a great swimming spot.
If travelers are looking for a bit of sightseeing, they should start their day in Marina Corricella. As the oldest marina on the island, this town offers visitors an exciting look into daily coastal living. However, this town is tricky to navigate as visitors have to use stairways and passages partially hidden amongst the buildings. The challenge adds to the allure, and the chances of getting lost are slim. Plus, the best adventures always start with a wrong turn.
Following the journey through Marina Corricella, to the Santa Maria delle Grazie church located in Martyrs Square. The baroque style exterior and the gold detailing inside is sure to leave onlookers breathless.
Afterward, tourists should make their way up to the highest point on the island, the village of Terra Murata. Housed behind medieval fortress walls, Terra Murata was once a safe haven for residents against 15th-century invaders. If visitors are searching for the best views on the island, this is where to find them.
While in Terra Murata, make sure to stop at one of the most prestigious churches in the south of Italy, The Abbey of San Michele Arcangelo dates back to the 11th-century. Though the original structure has long been demolished, portions of the existing structure date back to the 15th-century. This abbey is the cultural and religious center for the village of Terra Murata.
The beautiful island is the perfect place to escape the crowds in the city and get a taste of coastal living.