Following MY Riviera: The Perfect Italian Itinerary

By Ben Roberts

Flying Charter, the Italian-based charter firm, has introduced a stunning itinerary to take guests across the Italian West Coast in true style on board motor yacht Riviera; the grandiose Alalunga 78 Fly built in 2009.

Day 1
Boarding in Ischia, a.k.a. the Emerald Island due to her vibrance and lush vegetation, guests are introduced to the swimming waters of Punta San Pancrazio and Citara before heading to the charming Ventotene. Taking a cruising tour of the island, with various stops Riviera then takes guests ashore for a visit to the village and offers the chance to observe the perfect sunset from the Roman Port hill.

Day 2
Riviera departs for Ponza, the largest island of Italy’s Pontine Archipelago, in order for her guests to take in the island sites and dive back into the crystalline waters. Charmingly fringes with dramatic coves and cliffs, the main town features colourful homes and is widely seen as the less-spoilt Capri. Here, guests can tender ashore to take in the sites, sounds and gourmet food of Ponza Porto, the island’s main settlement.

Day 3
The Captain will take Riviera and her guests from Ponza to Palmarola, one of the most charming places in the remote islands of Italy’s Pontine Archipelago. Guests can cruise the island’s transparent blue waters, anchor in a bay off Palmarola for a light lunch and relax in the sun. This has been heralded as a sun worshipers paradise, and a wonderful area to dust-off the snorkel and see some underwater life.

Day 4
Morning departure for the island of Procida, the ideal destination for those who enjoy going off the radar, away from the mass-tourism attractions. Long a favoured fishing port, the tradition of Greek and Roman fishing is still alive in the seaside village of Corricella, where you can talk a stroll down the beach, watch fishermen mend nets and enact their art. Of particular interest is Terra Murata (meaning walled up land). It was the first settlement on Procida built at the highest point on the island at 298 feet above sea level to provide the best defense against Saracen raiders. A stroll to the settlement will reward you with marvelous views of the surrounding waters.

Day 5
Guests are now on their way from Procida to Capri. Here Riviera will take a trip round the island and cruise along the backside of Capri to reach parts of the island which are completely inaccessible otherwise. Discover the Grotta Bianca, the Natural Arch, the Farangoli rocks and the bay of Marina Piccola. After some swimming and dinner, guests can wander through the winding streets of Capri where they will find chic shopping boutiques. Alternatively, the island’s other town, Anacapri, is generally less crowded and more relaxed. In calm weather there are many places in which to anchor off, but in any kind of wind or swell, finding a calm anchorage can be difficult.

Day 6
After absorbing the wonder of Capri, Riviera will depart for Amalfi for guests to take in some swimming near Conca dei Marini e Capo dell’Orso, a breathtaking area of natural beauty. The setting is spectacular and the town is colourful and attractive. Guests can also visit Ravello, one of the gems of the Amalfi coast, 350 meters above sea level with breathtaking views and spectacular panoramas that have no equal in the world.

Day 7-8
Around the half-way point in their adventure, the guests will now depart from The Aeolian Islands (Isole Eolie), a group of remarkable volcanic islands in the Tyrrhenian Sea about 25-50km north of Sicily. What lies off the beaten track is becoming a growing trend in the yachting community as the realisation emerges that they have access no other vehicle can provide.

These seven little islands surrounded by a warm and deep sea, surrounded by an out-of-time atmosphere, recall a history of sea adventures tracing back 5000 years: main island Lipari, the green landscapes of Salina, the wild nature of Alicudi and Filicudi, the charming Vulcano and Stromboli and the sophisticated Panarea. Starting from Panarea the tour of the Eolian island you can stop for a swim at Basiluzzo (a huge rock facing Panarea) and at Cala Junco from where you can reach by foot the prehistoric village of Punta Milazzese. However, come 7pm the island comes to life and guests can enjoy aperitifs and go all night long.

Day 9
Tour of Lipari, an area full of charming coves, with a swim to the pumice caves before being taken to Vulcano for a romantic dinner. Waking up, guests take their breakfast whilst Captain Carrano sails Riviera for Stromboli where it is worth going ashore in the late afternoon both for visiting the island and for an aperitif at Stromboli village. Do not miss a sea tour to the fire volcanic scoria if not even a guided tour up on the volcano

Day 10
Salina becomes today’s stop. Don’t miss a swim in the enchanting bay of Pollara, an ancient sunk crater and a paradise for underwater fishers. Waking up at Salina with a swim at Pollara, Riviera then sets sail for Filicudi Pecorini the nicest place in the island, here guests can find the only two bars and a restaurant that will be enough to set your clock back twenty years.

Day 11
Destination: Alicudi. This is geographically the farthest amongst the Eolie islands - and the most Spartan one as well. Alicudi is a volcanic cone characterized by sheer cliffs inhabited by gull colonies. If you feel like going ashore remember there are no streets but only paths to go on foot or on a donkey! From now on you start the way back among the Eolie islands, via Maratea.

Day 12
Maratea is a mix of ancient history and elegant architecture, as well as a famous tourist town. The landscape of the coast, a typical Mediterranean one, is made of an unbelievable mix of cliffs, promontories hiding wonderful small beaches where kingfishers and the herons live. The seabed is very deep and uncontaminated: scuba divers love it. This why Maratea is a not to be missed stop during your cruising holiday. On the top of S.Biagio Mountain there is the statue portraying the Redeemer. Only the statue in Rio de Janeiro is bigger than this one. Around the statue, there are the remains of the ancient hamlet, in a wild nature.

Day 13-14
Nearing the close of the adventure, Riviera now departs for Positano, known as “The Gem of the Divine Coast”. Cruise in the heart of the sea park Punta Campanella, one of the most spectacular sea reserves in the world. Stop at anchor near the Li Galli Island, allowing guests to relax on the sundeck and to swim. Take lunch on board or alternatively at the restaurant “La Conca del Sogno”, a splendid place to just relax and have some truly incredible food.

Late in the afternoon, gaze out at the town of Positano. Positano is linked with a network of steep streets which rise up and down the town where you'll find all kinds of small ateliers and boutiques offering what is known around the world as "Positano Fashion". The town is also famous for its handmade sandals. Some of the artisan shops will make them for you while you wait. The restaurant offer delicious typical dishes. The choice is yours ... the typical cuisine the ancient flavors of the past, with typical local dishes featuring fresh fish cooked according to ancient customs Positano. The yacht will remain at anchor off Positano.

Motor yacht Riviera is available for charter through Flying Charter, for more information, click here

By Ben Roberts