Capri island or Amalfi coast in Italy on a shore excursion?

Started Jul 9, 2012 | Discussions
georgec
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Capri island or Amalfi coast in Italy on a shore excursion?
Jul 9, 2012

Hi , I am to go on a Princess Ruby cruise this Summer. One stop is Naples. I have two choices on the shore excursion
1) 9 hr $180

Naples -------------> Amalfi coast, cruise/village------> Pompeii (lunch) ------ > Naples.
2 hr 3 hr
or
2) 10 hr $240

Naples -----------> Pompeii---------> Sorrento (lunch)--------> Capri island ------> Naples
2hr 2h 2 hr

Option one has 3 hours in Pompeii vs Option 2 has 2 hours in Pompeii

My questions is
Is 2 hour guided tour enough to cover most of the Pompeii?
Is Capri island better than Amalifi coast? or similar

Is it better to see Amalfi coast from sea by a boat , or better to see it from cliff. I found it is hard to take photos if I take the land option by coach. It may be better to take photos from a boat while it go alone the Amalfi coast

But if Capri is much better, I am wailing to take that option.

There is a time limitation by the cruise so I decide to take one of the option offered by the cruise. I know someone missed the boat and have to get on a speedboat and chase the cruise ship.
If you have been to both places , please give your advice. It is tough I know.
Thanks.

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DFPanno
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Re: Capri island or Amalfi coast in Italy on a shore excursion?
In reply to georgec, Jul 9, 2012

My questions is
Is 2 hour guided tour enough to cover most of the Pompeii?

It would be for me.

Is Capri island better than Amalifi coast? or similar

Similar; Capri is dramatic because it is a mountain.

Is it better to see Amalfi coast from sea by a boat , or better to see it from cliff. I found it is hard to take photos if I take the land option by coach. It may be better to take photos from a boat while it go alone the Amalfi coast.

You will get better pictures from a boat than you will from inside a bus.

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Jeff Pitman
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Re: Capri island or Amalfi coast in Italy on a shore excursion?
In reply to DFPanno, Jul 9, 2012

I would go with option 2. Pompeii, Capri and Sorrento are all spectacular. While two hours in Pompeii is really not enough you'll love the chair lift on Capri and Sorrento is one of the nicest cities on the Amalfi coast.

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Alekhine
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Re: Capri island or Amalfi coast in Italy on a shore excursion?
In reply to georgec, Jul 9, 2012

georgec wrote:

Hi , I am to go on a Princess Ruby cruise this Summer. One stop is Naples. I have two choices on the shore excursion
1) 9 hr $180

Naples -------------> Amalfi coast, cruise/village------> Pompeii (lunch) ------ > Naples.
2 hr 3 hr
or
2) 10 hr $240

Naples -----------> Pompeii---------> Sorrento (lunch)--------> Capri island ------> Naples
2hr 2h 2 hr

Option one has 3 hours in Pompeii vs Option 2 has 2 hours in Pompeii

My questions is
Is 2 hour guided tour enough to cover most of the Pompeii?
Is Capri island better than Amalifi coast? or similar

Is it better to see Amalfi coast from sea by a boat , or better to see it from cliff. I found it is hard to take photos if I take the land option by coach. It may be better to take photos from a boat while it go alone the Amalfi coast

But if Capri is much better, I am wailing to take that option.

There is a time limitation by the cruise so I decide to take one of the option offered by the cruise. I know someone missed the boat and have to get on a speedboat and chase the cruise ship.
If you have been to both places , please give your advice. It is tough I know.
Thanks.

Hi george,

I live here so I could give you some suggestions, but keep in mind that's just all about personal taste. One could prefer amalfi over capri and viceversa.

Capri is a wondeful island and may offer great opportunities for landscape photography (I'm assuming you are interested in landscape), even though you should know where to go and especially what time of the day.
Capri is expensive! Amalfi coast as well but perhaps a little less.

Shoting amalfi coast can be quite tricky as actually the sun sets behind the surrounding mountains and not on the sea, thus you won't have good light unless you shoot very early in the morning.

For sure it's a better idea shooting the coast from the boat, while it's much better to see it from cliffs. If you decide to get off the boat then don't miss Amalfi and Ravello.
The ancient Pompei is a must see.
Hope this helps...
have a nice trip!
Guido

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MikeFromMesa
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Re: Capri island or Amalfi coast in Italy on a shore excursion?
In reply to georgec, Jul 9, 2012

Which ever itinerary you choose please post the photos when you get back!

And have a great trip.

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tiberiousgracchus
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Re: Capri island or Amalfi coast in Italy on a shore excursion?
In reply to georgec, Jul 9, 2012

Difficult choice. I think my vote would be with number 2.
Have a great time and look forward to the pics..please !

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thinkfat
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Re: Capri island or Amalfi coast in Italy on a shore excursion?
In reply to georgec, Jul 9, 2012

If you're not in control, take option 2. The Amalfi coast is amazing, but if you're not free to stop where you want you will mostly miss the interesting, spectacular locations. And a coach is boring, boring. The coastal street is clogged up every time of the day. If you ever go there, do it by motorbike

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wolfpuppies3
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Do not miss the Isle of Capri
In reply to georgec, Jul 9, 2012

You will remember it all your life. Incredibly beautiful.

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snk666
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Re: Capri island or Amalfi coast in Italy on a shore excursion?
In reply to georgec, Jul 9, 2012

I've been there..option 2 is better

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georgec
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Re: Capri island or Amalfi coast in Italy on a shore excursion?
In reply to georgec, Jul 10, 2012

Thank you so much for the helpful tips! I wish I can have 1 more day to see both places. 2 hours for each place is very tight.
Italy is a much a beautiful country, hopeful I can pay another visit after this

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TimR32225
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I've been there: I would do #2 (or do it on my own)
In reply to georgec, Jul 10, 2012

The prices of the cruise tours are an absolute rip-off and you can do it for 1/3 the price if you do it on your own. But be cautioned that you need to watch your time and make sure you get back to the ship in plenty of time. I didn't do the Amalfi coast per se, so I cannot advise you on that. But we did spend an hour or so in Sorrento.

From your choices, I would rate Pompeii as 'must see' and Capri Island second. You will also have time to stroll through Sorrento if you plan it right.

We spent 3 week in Italy and around the Mediterranean back in 2005, and 14 days of that was a cruise on the (brand new) Carnival Liberty in the 2nd month of its operation. Carnival had similar tour offerings at similar prices.

We got off the ship in Naples and inquired (and purchased tickets for hovercraft) to Capri Island. It was just my wife and myself and I think the tickets were around 8 or 10 euro each. It's about a 40 minute ride to Capri. When we arrived there, the first thing we did was inquire about boat tickets from there to Sorrento, so we could budget our time in each place we planned to visit that day. We chose a departure time to allow us enough time in Capri, and time to get to Sorrento, then time for the train from Sorrento to Pompeii, and also time to tour Pompeii. This allowed us a couple hours in Capri, about an hour in Sorrento, and about 2.5 hours in Pompeii, with enough time to catch the train from Pompeii back to the ship in Naples. I will share a few photos from our trip below. These were shot with my ancient Canon 10d. Bear in mind also that what you see in photos below is jpgs from 7 years ago, at a time when my editing skills were primitive compared to what they are now. These days I shoot everything raw, but I was not doing it then.

(Below:) The island of Capri, viewed from Naples

We explored Capri at our own leisure. There is a monastery at the top of the mountain that is worth seeing, and many other decent photo opps. You'll only want to spend about 1.5 to 2 hours there total, if you want to have enough time to see Pompeii the way you should. At Capri, you can also shoot some cool photos from the top, looking down at the ocean. If you get to Capri, try to get a good photo of the Faraglioni Rocks. This is the double rock formation that rises out of the ocean next to the Island of Capri. I didn't get a good photo because I was facing into the light, so I'm not showing it here.

(below): Looking down from the Island of Capri

Sorrento is a quaint little city but it's probably no different than any other small city in Italy. I would not make it a high priority. We hopped on a bus and took a ride around the city and got off at the train station, then caught the train to Pompeii.

(below:) the harbor at Capri

Pompeii is MUST SEE. It's an amazing ruin that you should not miss if you visit Italy.

The orgainized tours of Pompeii were a rip off from the cruise line. Be aware that you should take a tour in Pompeii rather than wander aimlessly on your own. If you go on your own, you won't see much of it and you will likely get lost. When we got to Pompeii, there were private guides who wanted 90 Euro for a private tour. These guides are licensed and are competent to take you around to see the high points. You cannot see it all in a few hours but you can see the main points of interest.

I was not about to pay 90 Euros for the tour, but after I noticed the guide offer his services to another couple (who also declined) I approached the other couple and suggested that we get three couples together and see if the guide would take all 6 of us for 90 Euro. The guide agreed to this and it only cost each couple 30 Euro. We saw a lot of it, and supposedly saw a couple places that most of the group tours do not see. Our guide also broke through the que in several places and took us inside some of the building ruins ahead of others that were waiting. It was well worth the price. He was a good guide, and had authored several books on the Pompeii ruins.

(below:) ruins of the temple of Jupiter, with Mt Vesuvius in the background

(below:) Pompeii, Basilica ruins

(below:) Pompeii, floor mosaic inside "House of Menander" ruins

(below:) Pompeii, ruins of the 'great theatre'

(below:) More Pompeii ruins

Our friends took tours from the ship and spent $240 each for the day ($480 per couple), and they also saw Capri and Pompeii and I think Sorrento. My wife and I saw just as much, and probably more of Pompeii than they did, and we only spent around 130 Euros between us, and that included a nice lunch.

Whatever you do, you'll likely enjoy yoruself, but I strongly advise you do see Pompeii and Capri at minimum. We had planned to go inside the blue grotto at Capri, but it was not available the day we were there due to the tides and strong current.

Have fun!
Tim
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georgec
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Re: I've been there: I would do #2 (or do it on my own)
In reply to TimR32225, Jul 10, 2012

Thanks Tim for the detailed advice on each site. I know it is expensive (3 of us ) but I do not have choice as we have to get on the ship on time and we will be constantly worry about the time and not enjoying as much. Great photos! I wish I had more time.

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mbaginy
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Be aware...
In reply to georgec, Jul 10, 2012

...that whichever option you chose, you'll only be scratching the surface, so to say, of any historical or picturesque sites. My sister lives some 60km north of Naples, I've visited Pompeii, various islands off the coast of Naples as well as driven the coast of Amalfi numerous times. And still, I find new motifs and interesting new images. I shy away from summertime visits though due to masses of vacationers.

Basically, I suggest to ask yourself, where your interests lie. I'm very interested in ancient Roman history and would find two or three hours at Pompeii far too short except for quickly running through the site, trying to capture those well-known shots we've seen in tourist guides. I could spend days in Pompeii (and Herculaneum) without boredom setting in. Also, I don't care for Capri much - I prefer Iscia, but that's very personal.

Enjoy your vacation and happily participate the tour you finally decide upon - each should be unforgettably nice.
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