Ischia rises up out of the Bay of Naples, reaching 789 meters above sea level at its highest point, the summit of the extinguished volcano Mount Epomeo. Thermal springs and lovely beaches have made Ischia a favorite vacation spot since Roman times.
The Castello Aragonese, the most impressive historical monument of Ischia, stands on a mass of volcanic rock connected to the island by a causeway built in 1438 by Alfonso of Aragon. The Castle, overlooking the vast horizon of the sea, was originally built as a castrum in 474 BC by Gerone of Siracusa and, after a long period of abandonment, reached its golden period during the fourteenth century. Under the Aragonese dynasty, it became a political, cultural and spiritual centre of notable interest. The Renaissance court of the noble poet Vittoria Colonna, saw the peak of the castle's splendour. Her court raised the Castello to heights of unheard glory: it breathed new life into the place; the arts and sciences flourished as never before under these skies - even Michelangelo was enticed here - but the decline had already begun in the 15th century and continued for more than 100 years.
Today this unique location contains four holiday apartments and a hotel. We are proud to include these apartments in our portfolio! This is an exceptional and unbelievably impressive holiday location. While the majority of holiday-makers are banished to the foot of the fort and can only admire it from a distance, you have the privilege of residing within it and gaining an insight into the private rooms of the castle! There is just nothing to compare to it: the castle walls house churches, courtyards, antique archways, terraces, gardens and arcades with outstanding views of the sea, the peninsula, the harbor of Ischia and the wide horizon in the distance ... simply unique! Enjoy the view while watching the seagulls circling above you... It may sound exaggerated but we feel it is justified: you feel nearer to Heaven here than anywhere else!
You will need to take the lift from the bottom to reach the top part of the castle, approx. 80 m above sea level, where the apartments are situated. They have been recently renovated by the owner, the son of a famous artist whose paintings grace the apartment walls. They are all different and at a distance from one another, each has its own entrance. All of the apartments have windows and outdoor spaces with unforgettable views. It is hard to feast enough on the wonderful view from up here. Guests are welcome to enjoy many services from the adjacent hotel, including porter and concierge services, computer with high speed Internet access, and lovely terrace dining. The hotel concierge can give invaluable help - booking ferries to nearby Capri or Naples, renting cars or scooters, as well as information about Ischia's attractions. Parking is a problem on the island, but frequent buses as well as taxi service makes it easy to get around without a car.
The next village, Ischia Ponte, is nearby, just hop into the lift, go downwards and walk across the water: wander along the boardwalk, with the tang of salty sea water in your nose. Arriving ferries dock at Ischia Porto, the island's main town. Its colorful harbor is filled with shops and restaurants and stretches eastward to the smaller village of Ischia Ponte, where the causeway leading to the Castello is located. Ischia's spas and picturesque beaches are some of its most popular draws. Relax in a thermal bath, take a boat trip around the island. Visit vineyards and gardens. Explore the island on foot. Archaeological treasures can be found in the museum at Villa Arbusto and the site at Santa Restituta. And of course, visit Capri, Positano, Pompei, Naples, Herculaneum, and Paestum.
The hot baths at Negombo, in the Bay of S. Montano, near Lacco Ameno in the north-west of the island, are particularly chic: the facilities are well cared for and there are many different pools, as well as an attractive bay, surrounded by almost African flora, with palm trees and a wealth of flowering trees and bushes (opened from April to October). Another tip: the appealing (and yet simple) small Gondola baths at the wonderful sandy beach of Maronti, in the south of the island: a small hot water pool situated right on the coast and a natural sauna carved out of the rock: hot steam rises up from the earth - so hot that you even feel the need to cool off on the sea, during the winter. The hot springs explain the special climate on the island - they provide mild weather all year round.
What is there to do apart from looking around and sunbathing?
Boat trip around the island with a skipper and his mate. A whole-day trip: Euros 155 for a maximum of 4 people.
A boat trip including fishing and dining on your catch! From dawn until early afternoon during the months of April/May/June and July: Euros 250 for a maximum of 4 people.
A visit to the Spadara Vineyards and the Pararazzo Wines of Ischia cellars, including wine-tasting. A half-day trip: Euros 155 for a maximum of 4 people.
Guided country walks, to discover the most ancient dwellings on the island. A half-day trip: Euros 95 for a maximum of 4 people.
A guided tour of the La Mortella Gardens.
A 3-hour trip: Euros 95 for a maximum of 4 people.
A guided visit to the Archeological Museum at Villa Arbusto. A 3-hour trip: Euros 95 for a maximum of 4 people.
A guided visit to the archeological site at Santa Restituta. A 3-hour trip: Euros 95 for a maximum of 4 people.
Scooter hire: Euros 30 a day. Car hire: from Euros 40 to Euros 60 a day, according to car type, plus Euros 10, optional insurance.
The above mentioned prices are of season 2007. Please check the actual prices of the above mentioned offers upon arrival.
Additional information: The Castello Aragonese is now host to several cultural events - there are art exhibitions and concerts. This can disturb the peace in August. You will be given a standard first dinner in the restaurant of the nearby hotel, on your first evening, after a long trip (only available from Easter until end of October).
Arrival and departure transfer: The journey to the castle is easily solved: you can be picked up at the airport, train station or a hotel in Naples and taken to the Castello. The cost of the transfer (taxi to the Port of Naples, ferry to Ischia Island, mini taxi from the harbour of Ischia to the Castello/journey there and back) is available at extra charge and to be requested upon booking.
Please note: The castle is not suitable to people with walking difficulties. Since the castle is perched above the water, it could be dangerous for children. Children are allowed, but parents have to be aware that the there are stone steps and drop offs. Children have to be under adults supervision. Parking is a problem in Ischia. Cars cannot be brought to the castle, but must be parked at Ischia or in Naples. We strongly recommend to arrive without a car! On the island there is a well organized shuttle service: by bus and taxi services you can easily explore the island.
Additional amenities include: possibility to have breakfast, lunch and dinner on the hotel terrace (not included in the price), availability of internet wifi connection in the hotel (free of charge), lift from from the bottom to reach the top part of the castle, air conditioning in all units.TripAdvisor property ID 2049342...Read more
As featured in USA TODAY and recommended by Travel + Leisure in its annual Villa Guide:
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