Capri, the little island located in the South of Italy where sun and sea are never short, evokes dreamy sighs and picturesque golden afternoons spent indulging in fresh seafood and handmade gelatos.
Melissa Sin was one of the lucky few who were in the region during the short 6-7 months the island is open to visitors. She shares with us more of its breathtaking harbours and sunset views that seemed specially made to complement equally delicious sea urchin pasta and egg parmigiana.
Most of Capri is only open 6-7 months a year since it caters to the spring and summer seasons when the weather is just right for sun and sea lovers. We visited during the end of May and the weather was just right where the sun wasn’t too hot and the breeze was lovely.
On our first night, we enjoyed the generous view from our balcony at Relais Maresca and it is strategically located right next to the cable car ride up to town. It is decorated and furnished with Italian hand painted tiles and comes with very good service that is ready to throw in one or two dinner places for you to enjoy Capri’s best.
For the rest of our stay, J.K. Place was an exceptionally different host to its guest where its rooms are furnished with Capri accents such as pastel blue and white stripes and cosy furniture. We were lucky enough to have a room with an amazing view of the harbour, cliffs and mountains joining the sea. Service was excellent and the shuttle service was one of the best ways to roam through Capri’s narrow roads.
I’ve been to most of Italy except the south, but Capri was friendly and generous. Tourists and locals often shout out “Buongiorno" or “good day'" or "hi" in Italian and service staff are always chatting with us and asking if we have checked out the local places. They will also give their personal recommendations on lookout points or good food.
What I love about Capri is that despite being a popular tourist place, the setting and the ambience isn’t too commercialised and made to accommodate tourists. It still remains very true to its Italian spirits and lifestyle.
Sailing off to the sea is also highly recommended as Capri from far is as beautiful as when you’re standing on it. Its landscape with houses built to take advantage of the sea view becomes a postcard view. Going around the island on a boat also gives you a chance to appreciate the natural wonders that make up Capri and its surroundings like Faraglioni rocks and blue and green grotto.
Island shopping in Europe is very different from Asia. In Capri especially, most would be proud to tell you that Cruise collections comes from Capri and very often, Capri gets the first hand on the latest arrivals before any part of Italy. I reckon that speaks for everything!
You can make your own Capri sandals in Capri. Capri is famed for its linen garments and Capri sandals. As I am a shoe-lover, I was swayed towards making my very own Capri sandals. You could choose the heel height, the different colours of strap and ornaments or designs to be sewn to your sandals. Many shops offer custom-made selections on the spot and you can watch them make your shoes by hand with simple essential tools.
In Capri, I’d say restaurant hopping is prevalent over cafe hopping. Capri has many good restaurants that come with breathtaking views of Capri both day and night. With the summer day starting as early as 8am and ending around 8.30pm, one should never rush whenever dining so you'll appreciate the delicious food and generous view that Capri has to offer.
Capri is famous for its limoncello and in Malaysia we are so used to seeing lemons that are as small as a tennis ball. Here in Capri, lemons are as big as papayas! They are also surprisingly sweet and juicy, perfect for a sweet lemonade. You can get fresh lemonade frizz and limoncello in many places.
I love the sea urchin pasta which I thought wasn't too common in many parts of Italy.
Last but not least, one should not miss the gelato in Capri. The weather was perfect for at least twice a day! There’s one not too far from the harbour and they have so many different flavours that can only be found in Capri!
My partner and I are not so much of a fan of alcohol and loud music but we enjoyed sitting at the outdoor lounge areas in the evening or at night at our balcony with some snacks and fruits we bought while sightseeing during the day. It was very calming and a good opportunity to spend some quality time.
Capri poised itself as a classy prestigious holiday destination that welcomes holiday goers with breathtaking views and delicious food. Locals and seasoned Capri travellers are dressed in classy linen dresses and shorts, pastel print mid-length dresses and bejewelled sandals. So pack your linen tops and bring along your Panama hats!
(Photos: Melissa Sin)