Ischia in the Gulf of Naples

Monday, 17 December 2012 - 01:10 pm (CET/MEZ) Berlin | Author/Destination:
Category/Kategorie: General
Reading Time:  6 minutes

S Angelo d'Ischia © ischia-hotel.net

S Angelo d’Ischia © ischia-hotel.net

Ischia is a volcanic island in the Tyrrhenian Sea. It lies at the northern end of the Gulf of Naples, about 30 km from the city of Naples. It is the largest of the Phlegrean Islands (the four picturesque islands are Procida, Vivara, Capri and Nisida). Roughly trapezoidal in shape, it measures around 10 km east to west and 7 km north to south and has about 34 kilometres (21 mi) of coastline and a surface area of 46.3 square kilometres (17.9 sq mi). It is almost entirely mountainous, the highest peak being Mount Epomeo at 788 m. The island has a population of over 60,000 people.

Ischia is the name of the main comune of the island. The other comuni of the island are Barano d’Ischia, Casamicciola Terme, Forio, Lacco Ameno and Serrara Fontana.

The main industry is tourism, centering on thermal spas that cater mostly to European (especially German) and Asian tourists eager to enjoy the fruits of the island’s natural volcanic activity, its thermal hot springs, and its volcanic mud. For many of the inhabitants on the Italian-speaking island, German and English are second languages. This is because of the large number of German- and English-speaking tourists who visit the island each year.

The Aragonese Castle (Castello Aragonese, Ischia Ponte) was built on a rock near the island in 474 BC, by Hiero I of Syracuse. At the same time, two towers were built to control enemy fleets’ movements. The rock was then occupied by Parthenopeans (the ancient inhabitants of Naples). In 326 BC the fortress was captured by Romans, and then again by the Parthenopeans. In 1441 Alfonso V of Aragon connected the rock to the island with a stone bridge instead of the prior wood bridge, and fortified the walls in order to defend the inhabitants against the raids of pirates. Around 1700, about 2000 families lived on the islet, including a larisses Convent, the Abbey of Basilians from Greece, the Bishop and the Seminar, the Prince with a military garrison. There were also thirteen churches. In 1912, the Castle was sold to a private owner. Today the castle is the most visited monument of the island. It is accessed through a tunnel with large openings which let the light enter.

Porto di Ischia © Roberto De Martino View from Procida © Romina e Retaggio Ponte - Castello Aragonese © Andreas Wahra Forio - Santa Maria del Soccorso © Andreas Wahra Capri and Ischia and the Bay of Naples map © NormanEinstein S Angelo d'Ischia © ischia-hotel.net
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Capri and Ischia and the Bay of Naples map © NormanEinstein
The Gardens of La Mortella, located in Forio-San Francesco, were originally the property of English composer William Walton. Walton lived in the villa next to the gardens with his Argentinian wife Susana. When the composer arrived on the island in 1946, he immediately called Russell Page from England to lay out the garden. Wonderful tropical and Mediterranean plants were planted and some have now reached amazing proportions. The gardens include wonderful views over the city and harbour of Forio. A museum dedicated to the life and work of William Walton now comprises part of the garden complex. There’s also a recital room where renowned musical artists perform on a regular schedule.

The Gardens of Villa Ravino, located in Forio-Citara Bay, resulting of 50 years of great passion and loving work of Captain Giuseppe D’Ambra, the owner of the Villa. Giardini Ravino is a botanical garden with one of the richest collection of cacti and succulents cultivated outdoors in Europe. Giardini Ravino has been awarded from the OPE (European Parliamentary Observatory) as the most ecofriendly property in South Italy. Giardini Ravino is also the location of Meristema Fair, an exhibition dedicated to both professional and quality amateur gardeners, enriched with seminars and hands on experiences handling and discussing for various reasons about biodiversity in nature. Giardini Ravino is also the headquarter of many social associations that organize events, in collaboration with international humanitarian aid organizations, such as MSF (Doctors Without Borders), the non-profit eco-gastronomic member-supported organization Slow Food and many other cultural exhibitions during the year around.

Villa La Colombaia is located in Lacco Ameno and Forio territories. Surrounded by a park, the villa (called “The Dovecote”) was made by Luigi Patalano, a famous local socialist and journalist. It is now the seat of a cultural institution and museum dedicated to Luchino Visconti. The institution promotes cultural activities such as music, cinema, theatre, art exhibitions, work-shops, and cinema reviews. The villa and the park are open to the public.

Read more on Ischia Film Festival, portanapoli.com – Ischia, Wikitravel Ischia und Wikipedia Ischia. Learn more about the use of photos. To inform you about latest news most of the city, town or tourism websites offer a newsletter service and/or operate Facebook pages/Twitter accounts. In addition more and more destinations, tourist organizations and cultural institutions offer Apps for your Smart Phone or Tablet, to provide you with a mobile tourist guide (Smart Traveler App by U.S. Department of State - Weather report by weather.com - Global Passport Power Rank - Travel Risk Map - Democracy Index - GDP according to IMF, UN, and World Bank - Global Competitiveness Report - Corruption Perceptions Index - Press Freedom Index - World Justice Project - Rule of Law Index - UN Human Development Index - Global Peace Index - Travel & Tourism Competitiveness Index). If you have a suggestion, critique, review or comment to this blog entry, we are looking forward to receive your e-mail at comment@wingsch.net. Please name the headline of the blog post to which your e-mail refers to in the subject line.




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