Day 1-Naples Arrive in Naples and spend the night
Naples is the most vibrant city in Italy -- a steaming, bubbling, reverberating minestrone in which each block is a village, and everything seems to be a backdrop for an opera not yet composed. It is said that northern Italians vacation here to remind themselves of the time when Italy was molto italiano --really Italian. The Palazzo Reale, Teatro San Carlo, and Naples’ cathedral, Duomo, are just a few things worth seeing in Naples.
Head to Capri morning of second day
The islands off Naples are so different from each other that you wonder how they can possibly be in the same bay -- indeed, some would say they are not true water mates, as they lie just beyond the bay's outer fringes. The contrast goes beyond mere geology and vegetation. They all occupy different niches in the traveler's mind, with Capri pandering to the whims of the international great-and-good. Chosen by the Greeks, the supreme connoisseurs and aesthetes of antiquity, as their first base in Italy, the islands of Capri, Ischia, and Procida combine a broad gamut of experiences.
The town of Capri is a Moorish stage-set of sparkling white houses, tiny squares, and narrow medieval alleyways hung with flowers, while its hillsides are spectacular settings for luxurious seaside villas.
Head for Grotta Azzurra and excursions around the island. See the Grotta Bianca, the Natural Arch, the Faraglioni rocks, and the bay of Marina Piccola from the sea and reach parts of the island completely inaccessible by other means.
This bold Arch is what remains of a large grotto that penetraded the mountain. The waves of the sea extended its aperture and washed away its debris. After the uplifting of the island during the paleolithic era, the grotto was freed from the erosive action of the waves and the wind and the rain trasformed its surface. On returning from the Natural Arch, a flight of steps descending to the valley below leads to the Matermania Grotto, an impressive natural cavern trasformed during Roman times into a luxurious Nymphaeum. To-day few remains of the wall, which were originally lined with mosaic "tesserae" made of glass paste and decorated with multi-coloured plaster, shells and marine valves, have survived.
Head to Positano after 3rd day
Positano is situated in the Campania region of Italy, on the Almalfi Coast. Once a wealthy maritime power, it began the last century as a fishing settlement, and ended it as a popular, and rather chi-chi resort, famous for its hotels and boutiques as well as for the winding stairways that connect the town, and the towering cliffs above. Every inch of land is prized; buildings are stacked up one above the other on the steep slopes, and open areas are intensively cultivated with fruit and vegetables thriving in the fertile volcanic soil. The mountainous interior of the peninsula rises above the town, and Positano boasts one the world's few 'pierced' mountains; a giant shoulder of rock with a hole punched through it!
Head for the Amalfi coast the following day
Day 5-Amalfi Coast
6 miles, 50 minutes
The Amalfi Coast, Italy is a beautiful and much-praised stretch of mountainous coastline south of Naples, in Campania. The southern end of the Bay of Naples stretches out in a peninsula that reaches towards the Isle of Capri and Sorrento, another major tourist destination, looks back towards Naples from the north coast of the peninsula. The southern side of the peninsula is dotted with picturesque villages and towns clinging giddily to cliffs; this is what is known as the Amalfi Coast.
For decades these fishing villages, stacked precariously above the sea, have been one of Italy's major tourist attractions. Nowadays the area's principal industry is tourism, and a staggering number of hotels have been squeezed into the restricted spaces of the small towns.
Well-accustomed to catering for affluent foreign tourists, the area offers a generous selection of restaurants, bars, boutiques, boat trips- just about anything self-indulgent that
you can spend money on.
The coastal road along the Amalfi Coast is famous for its hairpin bends, fantastic views and general scariness. But afford you glimpses of blue sea directly below. The towns are all built at a very steep angle, so streets zigzag backwards and forwards. Many buildings - including hotels - are only accessible by steep alleys and stairways.
The town Almafi itself is small, but you can easily while away an afternoon exploring the narrow white alleyways and browsing in the shops for souvenirs - including every variation on the famous local lemon products. You can sample the Amalfitana specialities, such as the strong limoncello. There are plenty of nice cafes where you can rest with a drink, eating pastries and watching the world go by. A stroll along the sea front is another pleasant diversion. The town's harbour is to the right as you face the sea, and past the public ferry ports there is a marina where luxury yachts rub shoulders with working fishing vessels laden with nets. Walking out along one of the breakwaters provides good photo opportunities back towards the town centre. When you're tired of admiring Amalfi's charms, you can take a stroll up the valley through lemon groves and old paper mills. For keen walkers, the steep mountainsides offer many challenging walks.
Head to Ponza & Palmarola the next day
Day 6-Ponza & Palmarola
75 miles, 6.5 hours
This is a beautiful place to go snorkeling
Spend the day here and then head to Cala Di Volpe the next morning.
Day 7-Cala Di Volpe
150 miles, 13 hours
Located in Costa Smeralda, Sardinia, the famous Hotel Cala di Volpe, designed by Jacques Couelles, was inspired by a fortified village and a little fishing town. The Cala di Volpe Hotel is considered today one of the best hotels in Costa Smeralda, where rich businessmen use to stay when they are in this area.
Leave for Porto Cervo in the morning
Day 8-Porto Cervo
12 miles, 1 hour
Porto Cervo lies at the heart of Costa Smerelda, Sardinia. A modern purpose-built resort begun in 1962, the village is a contrived but nonetheless a stylish collection of traditional-style Mediterranean low-rise buildings in peach, cream and white stucco with terracotta-tiled roofs. The village proper comprises an attractive pedestrian-ized centre known as the Piazzetta, along with a web of narrow hilly roads behind a sizeable harbor. During the daytime beach and water activities including sailing, diving and windsurfing are popular pastimes. And for shopping, a number of up-market boutiques, fashion outlets and jewelers (Gucci, Cartier, Bulgari and so on) are concentrated in the pedestrian-ized Piazzetta area. As for the nightlife it is mainly confined to hotels, although there are a number of restaurants, bars and cafes providing live music around the Piazzetta.
Head to Magnolia Island morning of the 9th day.
Day 9-Maddalena Island Group
13 miles, 1 hour
They are located inside the Straits of Bonifacio along the north-eastern coast of Sardinia. La Maddalena Island is surrounded by Budelli, Caprera, Razzoli, Santa Maria, Santo Stefano and Spargi. This group of small granitic rock islands has been inhabited since prehistoric times.
Budelli is one of Italy's most enchanting beaches and it is famous for its pink sand produced by the coral shattered by the raging sea. Today, it is a highly protected island. The best mooring places are the almost deserted little beach of Cala d'Arena (southeastern point) and the Spiaggia Rosa (Pink Beach).
Caprera island has been declared a natural reserve for the particular species of seabirds living on it. You may visit Garibaldi’s house, now a museum and a memorial chapel. La Maddalena: the largest island. It has a triangular shape, a surface of 20 km2, nearly 45 kilometres of generally high and jagged coasts and a rich vegetation of berry trees, myrtles and cysts. An ideal island for holidays.
Leave for Bonafacio the next morning
25 miles, 2 hours
Located at the bottom of the island of Corsica, Bonifacio has some nice sights to see while here for instance its port and its old city (the High-City). Bonifacio, on its limestone cliffs, is surrounded by sea and sandy beaches. With many small splits. Bonifacio is like an old warlike citadel and as one can see it, Bonifacio is protected from the sands of time by massive walls. The High-City of Bonifacio was primarily built on a calcareous peak and its cliffs courageously fight flows and thousand-year-old backward flows of the Mediterranean Sea.
Head to Northern Corsica on day 11
Day 11-North Corsica 130 miles, 12 hours
It was during the tertiary era that the alpine system's shake-up created the fracture of a part of the old continent called tyrrhenide and raising it up, through the ages, to this dazzingly beautiful isle which is now called Corsica.
Situated at the junction of the maritime roads leading from France to Italy and the East, and from Central Europe to Italy and Spain, Corsica with 8772 km2, 183 km long and 83 km wide and 1000 km of coasts, is the third largest isle of the Western Mediterranean and the highest too because it reaches its highest point at an altitude at 2710 km! Churches from Pisa, (the San Michele Murato and La Canonica) and works of architecture by the Genoese are just a few of the sites to see in beautiful Corsica.
Take off for St. Tropez the next morning
The French Riviera
Day 12-St. Tropez
105 miles, 9 hours
The fashionable French Riviera resort of St. Tropez enchants visitors from the world over. Tropez. Perhaps visit the musee de l'Annonciade located next to the Old Port, which contains an impressive collection of modern art, with works by Matisse, Bonnard, Dufy and Signac. Continue through the old streets passing the old fishing quarter of la Ponche, the Tour Suffren and the Church of St. Tropez built in the 1785 an a Italian Baroque style. The Citadel, built in the 16th century, dominates the hillside overlooking St Tropez. Spend time exploring the charming streets and boutiques of St. Tropez.
Leave St. Tropez for Cannes the morning of the 13th
Day 13-Cannes 24 miles, 2 hours
Cannes is the "star" of the French Riviera, famous for the International Film Festival and the glitzy hotels, cars, beaches and its visitors attracted here. It would be a shame to visit the South of France without experiencing the city for yourself.
The city of Cannes is centered around the old port, with the central part quite compact. The famous "Croisette" is the boulevard and the beach that extends around the bay to the east of the port, in the protected "Rade de Cannes". Out around the point at the west side of the port, the Boulevard Jean Hibert runs along the coast to the west, with even more fine sandy beaches. The Rue d'Antibes is the main street running east-west through the center of the city, where some of the best known designers have shops and is the last word in luxury and elegance, Cannes is also a festival of shopping.
Head for Monaco the next morning
20 miles, 1 hour and 45 minutes
Monaco, an ancient principality steeped in a rich and colorful history, is considered by many to be Europe's most fascinating country. Though the Principality covers but one square mile, it stands as a proud monarchy with his Serene Highness Prince Rainier III as its head of state. Today people visit Monaco and its glittering district Monte-Carlo not simply to vacation, not just to test their standing with lady luck, nor merely to see and be seen, but to revel in the memorable life-enhancing experience
that is Monaco. Cathedrals, gardens and churches are just some of the gems found in
Monaco. These places, rich in culture and history are definitely worth seeing.
End of Day 14
Head to the Monaco Airport, Bon Voyage!