Ischia Porto is the biggest of Ischia’s six towns, situated on the north coast. With its high-end shops and the horseshoe-shaped harbour bobbing with flash-looking yachts, Ischia Porto has more than a whiff of Capri about it! However, there’s much more to Ischia Porto holidays than just some high-end retail therapy, and you’ll find everything from golden beaches and bustling bars to the natural springs in the town’s thermal parks and gardens.
Head to the Castello Aragonese castle to discover more about Ischia Porto’s past, or explore the medieval churches that are dotted around the town. If this destination looks a bit familiar, it might be because it’s acted as the backdrop for several films including Cleopatra, starring Richard Burton and Elizabeth Taylor, and The Talented Mr Ripley, starring Matt Damon. Whether you’re whisking your better half off for a romantic break or travelling with the family, Ischia Porto holidays offer a little slice of paradise.
The best time to travel is early spring or early autumn, when the temperatures hover around the mid-to-late twenties.
Approximately two and a half hours.
Naples International Airport is approximately 44km north east from the resort. Including the ferry trip to Ischia, it should take around one and three-quarter hours to get to the island from the airport.
Explore the island’s medieval history and relax in an open-air spa when you book your holiday to Ischia Porto with Thomas Cook.
While it’s very easy to spend your holidays soaking up the rays on one of the island’s golden sandy beaches, there are plenty of things to see and do. If you’re on a romantic break, sip on a glass of limoncello from a harbourside restaurant and watch the fishing boats, expensive yachts and pleasure boats come and go. If there’s a shopper in your ranks, head to the main street’s trendy stores, where you’ll find everything from high-end fashion brands to quirky, backstreet boutiques selling handmade goods and souvenirs.
For a dip into the island’s past visit some of the town’s spectacular medieval churches. Alternatively, take a walk along the 22-metre-long bridge to the island’s iconic Aragonese Castle, before heading to one of the many open-air springs and spas to soothe your skin and relax those muscles.
If you’re a beach bunny, you’ll find some superb sands to soak up the sun from, on your Ischia Porto holidays. The golden, powder-soft stretch of San Pietro’s beach is the biggest and most popular, with both holidaymakers and tourists. As you head east, Pescatori, known as the Fisherman’s Beach, is just as pretty but less crowded: great for sunbathing and enjoying the thrill of water sports. For real peace and quiet, head to the tranquil Bay of Cafiero for its small stretch of fine gold sand. It can only be reached by boat and, with a gently-shelving shore that’s safe for paddling, it’s great for families or couples who want to escape the crowds.
People flock to Ischia to experience its famous hot springs and volcanic mud. The Poseidon Thermal Gardens in the bay of Cetara and the Giardino Eden are both great places to visit for an unforgettable open-air spa experience. Many hotels on the island have their own thermal spa for you to enjoy: look out for the word ‘terme’ in the hotel name to make sure you don’t miss out on one of these luxurious and indulgent experiences.
Explore the selection of grand churches scattered across the island. The beautiful Santa Maria delle Grazie has a lava-stone courtyard and dome, covered with green and yellow majolica tiles. If you like art, take a trip to the St Mary of Portosalvi, which has three enormous oil paintings dating back to the 18th century. You can walk from there to the medieval Castello Aragonese, linked to Ischia Porto by a bridge. If you’ve got a head for heights, take the elevator to the top for stunning sea views.
Best for beach lovers: If you’re looking for Ischia Porto holidays on the beach, there are plenty to choose from, secluded sandy bays and bustling seaside spots to family-friendly beaches.
Best for foodies: Gourmets, gourmands and gastronomes are spoilt for choice in this town! You’ve got everything from beachside bars and perfect pizzerias to upmarket, fine-dining restaurants.
Best for spa lovers: Relaxing is a full-time job on the island! With spa hotels and open-air thermal springs, travelling on holiday here is the fastest way to slow down!
Language: The language spoken here is Italian, although most of the staff in hotels, bars and restaurants have a good command of English.
Currency: You’ll need to change up your pounds and pence for Euros (€), before zipping off on your Ischia Porto holidays.
Local time: Ischia Porto is 1 hour ahead of GMT/UK time.
Fly to: Naples International Airport. Including the ferry to the island, it takes 1 hour and 45 minutes to transfer to the island of Ischia Porto.
Flight time from UK: The flight time to Ischia Porto is 2.5 hours.
Tourist information: Further tourist information can be found at www.italia.it.
Visa & Health: Before you travel, visit www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice/italy for recommendations and advice on visas and health for your holiday.
Temperature: The winters here are mild, with temperatures from 12°C to 15°C, making it an ideal destination for a winter break. The summers are perfect for tan-topper-uppers, with the mercury hovering around the mid-twenties up to highs of 31°C.
Best time to visit: For fewer crowds and less intense heat, book your Ischia Porto holidays in early spring or early autumn. Summer sees the island bustling with tourists and sunseekers. While winter is quite mild, many of the attractions and services are closed until summer.
By foot: Ischia Porto is small, so it’s easy to explore on foot. The neighbouring resort of Ischia Ponte is a short stroll away.
By bus: By far the most cost-effective way of seeing the island, bus services run from very early in the morning to late at night. You can buy tickets from the driver, as well as some hotels, tobacconists, newsagents and shops.
By taxi: Slightly pricier, but much quicker, taxis are a great option, particularly if you’ve got bags! Don’t forget to agree on the price before you set off.
For traditionalists: If you’re visiting at the end of July, don’t miss the celebration of the patron saint of fishermen at the St Anna Festival. To begin with, the harbour’s the place to be, where you’ll see parades of elaborately-decorated boats and some fiercely competitive races. The festivities culminate with the simulated burning of the Aragonese Castle and a fantastic firework display.
For film buffs: The Ischia Film Festival celebrates the unsung heroes of the film industry: the behind-the-scenes workers. Hosted at Aragonese Castle in June, you’ll get to watch some great films and do some serious celeb spotting!