The colorful island of Procida is the tiniest in the Naples gulf, and still remains undiscovered. Most of tourists choose Capri and Ischia for their vacations, but I decided to visit Procida: a rainbowlike hidden gem that instantly caught my attention when I saw the pictures of Corricella on instagram.
It’s not the first time I visit a place influenced by this social network. It had happened in the past with Sarakiniko beach and the colorful villages of Cinque Terre. And I’m glad that reality usually overcomes instagram!
Regardless Procida’s reduced size (around 4 square km) this volcanic island is highly populated – also by tons of beautiful cats. Actually, Procida is famous for being the island of the cats, the island of the cinema – The talented Mr. Ripley and Il Postino were shot here – and the island of the mysteries.
What to see in Procida
Under Terra Murata, Marina Corricella it’s the most picturesque place in Procida. It’s like if Santorini and Burano mixed together to create this dreamy place. Colourful houses painted in pink and yellow hues lie on the cliff creating this idyllic postcard heaven, where fishermen are still working on their daily routine, repairing their nets and not caring about the curious tourists.
Marina Corricella is especially magical at sunrise.
Marina Chiaiolella is a pretty natural harbour and also one of the best places in Procida for sunset. Besides, it’s a perfect place to enjoy a spritz with a view and why not, one of the best pizzas in the island.
Marina Grande is the main harbour of Procida, where the ferries from Naples arrive and the first impression visitors have from Procida and it’s where most of cafés, restaurants and shops are located. It’s also painted in beautiful pastel colors.
Good news! Faraglioni are not exclusive from Capri and fortunately, Procida has its own version at Chiaiolella beach.
Vivara island is the only part of Procida that remains uninhabited. It’s a natural reserve but it still belongs to a rich family, so it’s in a compromising situation: although it’s protected, its architectural buildings are now abandoned.
In my humble opinion, if you don’t have much time in Procida you can skip this visit.
Palazzo d’Avalos / Old Prison
What started being a palace (named Palazzo d’Avalos), became a huge prison that locked around 1500 inmates. It’s a very interesting visit especially for the stories.
The Old Prison and the island of Vivara are now open for tourists, but it’s only possible to visit them taking part of an organized tour.
You can book your guided tour in Visit Procida website.
When I realized I could sail from Marina Chiaiolella to Marina Corricella, I couldn’t hide my smile! Sailing is one of my favorite activities and for me it’s one of the best things to do in Procida.
Procida’s houses are painted in different colors as in Burano and other fishermen’s villages, so they could identify their homes from the sea. By sailing we could get that feeling while enjoying the best view of Corricella, with its watercolor reflection on the water.
Where to eat in Procida
Best pizza in the island is served at night in Crescenzo, located in Marina Chiaiolella. My recommended choice is the pizza buffalina with a spritz!
Do not miss the chance to eat in any of the various Marina Corricella’s terraces, where you can enjoy the delicious seafood and pasta while observing the fishermen repairing their nets or the cats sleeping in the sun. We ate at La locanda del postino, the same that inspired Neruda in the film.
An essential during your stay in Procida is lingua di bue for breakfast, a cake filled with lemon cream. Procida’s lemons are the sweetest.
How to get to Procida
Getting to Procida is easy from Naples Molo Beverello harbour. It takes around 30 minutes to get there with any of the 2 companies that offer this service (Caremar and Snav).
You can use the free shuttle from Castel dell’Ovo to Molo Beverello if you’re staying in Lungomare while in Naples.
Where to sleep in Procida
Do not listen to those who recommend visiting Procida for a day tour only. The island has much to offer so if you can, stay at least a couple of nights there, especially if your Italy itinerary is not very tight.
During our days in Procida we stayed in an apartament in Gioia 13, with a very central and convenient location.
Will you include Procida in your next itinerary in Italy?
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