Thursday, September 19, 2013

Ischia: Gardens and Beaches

A maze of branches!
I visited one of the fabulous gardens that are open to the public in Ischia: La Martella, located near Forio. The garden was created by Susanna Walton, whose husband, William was a famous composer, though I've never heard of him before visiting the gardens. Russell Page, a famous British landscape architect, developed the layout of the garden,. Tropical and Mediterranean plants were planted and some have grown considerably over the years. The gardens include views over the city and harbor of Forio. I spent several hours walking the paths through a variety of gardens.

Walking in La Martella
A fountain to cool off with
A lily pond
Forio''s harbor
But the place I enjoyed most of all was Spiaggia dei Pescatori (Fisherman's beach), back in Ischia Ponte. Once I discovered it was free and a short walk from the B&B, I spent a few hours there every afternoon.

Spiaggia dei Pescatori
It's always entertaining to watch Italians at the beach. They stand in the water and chat, or congregate with friends and family under an umbrella to while the time away. Most women wear bikinis, whatever their age or shape. Since I live in a university town where young, fit bodies are the norm, it's comforting to see folks who aren't in shape and could care less how they look.

Having a chat by the sea
The sea was warm enough to swim in, and I got a good workout swimming out to some boats and then back again. I could easily get used to this kind of life!

Clothing optional for children
I enjoyed a wonderful week in Ischia and it's created more interest in checking out other island destinations in Italy. All too soon, the week was over and I headed back to Naples to catch a train north to the mountains of Trentino-Alto Adige.

No comments: