The name of this small but popular tourist center of the Procida island comes from the Neapolitan word “chiaia” meaning beach and the diminutive suffix “ella” reffering more to softness. So the name thusly translates into “soft beaches”.
Chiaiolella is a small fishing village on the island of Procida which can be found off Italy’s east coast in Naples. Together with the small island of Vivara, Procida forms the commune with the same name in Campania on the Mediterranean coast.
Formed by now dormant volcanoes, the island is less than 4 square km in surface, with rocky coastline, but the village of Chiaiolella provides a welcoming and safe marina, perfect for sailors who are looking for a sailing holiday.
Travel & Arrival
The only direct link with the island is via ferry which van be boarded by crews fom Naples, Capri and Ischia at reasonable prices. The other ways to get here are all linked to the largest city in the region, Naples.
The airport in Naples is 38 km away if your group follows the A56 highway, a trip that under normal circumstances takes over an hour due to the ferry link. The same route is suggested in case you want to arrive in Chiaiolella by car. All major train and bus lines make trips to Naples, which then acts as an obligatory stop on your way to the village.
Avant & Apres Sail
The first houses were built here by fishermen in the 18th century in what is today the natural cove bordering the town from the seaside. On the other side of the cove the adventurers can find the promontory of Santa Margherita which used to have a Benedictine monastery built on it. Today only the ruins remain, as the monks took their church near the Fortress of Terra Murata.
On the street of Giovanni da Procida, regulars will see the Church of San Giuseppe which is the center around which the old town formed. But the all the tourists coming here congregate on the promenade Cristoforo Columbo, just utside of town. On this one kilometer-long stretch of road there are all the tourist services and also some of the most beautiful views as the steep cliffs fall into the sea.
The scenery here is so beautiful that several movies used it as a backdrop, films such as “Il Postino” and “The Talented Mr. Ripley”. There are also authors that based their novels on the island of Procida (Alphonse de Lamartine’s Graziella).
Even if it’s a very small island, Procida does have its own culinary delights. gourmets will surely enjoy the stewed rabbit or the spaghetti with sea urchin that are served on the 20 or so establishments on the island.
Events & Actions
The good thing about Chiaiolella is that the facilities are highly developed, offering incoming tourists the best services. And if you tire of the sea, there are 6 beaches on the island where you can bake to a perfect Mediterranean golden-brown tan that will last you through the year.
As far as events go, there are numerous religious traditions that take place here around Easter (the Holy Week and the Good Friday in particular). These include a procession in which young men from the iland carry allegorical wagons from the Torre Murat to the port in Marina Grande.
What makes Procida a unique sailing destination in Italy?Procida, the smallest island in the Bay of Naples, is an enchanting and less-touristy destination. It's well-known for its vibrantly colored houses, charming narrow streets, beautiful beaches, and quiet fishing villages, making it a paradise for sailors seeking a serene and authentic Italian island experience.
What facilities are available at the Procida Marina?Procida Marina, also known as Marina di Procida, offers a wide range of facilities including water and electricity supply, Wi-Fi, shower and toilet facilities, waste collection, and technical assistance. The marina is also conveniently located close to local amenities like restaurants, cafes, and grocery stores.
Which are the must-visit anchorages around Procida?Some of the top anchorages around Procida include the secluded Chiaiolella Bay, the vibrant Marina Corricella, and Vivara, a small satellite island of Procida that is now a nature reserve. Sailors also often make trips to nearby Ischia and Capri.
What cultural attractions can sailors explore in Procida?There's a wealth of cultural attractions on Procida. Start with the Terra Murata, an ancient fortified village perched on a rock, and the Abbey of San Michele, a historic church with stunning views. Marina Corricella, a picturesque fishing village, is also a must-see.
What water activities can sailors enjoy around Procida?Apart from sailing, the waters around Procida offer opportunities for swimming, snorkeling, and fishing. The clear, warm waters around the island are home to diverse marine life, making snorkeling particularly enjoyable.
What local gastronomic specialties should sailors try in Procida?Procida offers a rich culinary scene with its fresh seafood dishes like 'Insalata di Polpo' (octopus salad), 'Spaghetti alla Procida' (spaghetti with sea bass sauce), and 'Lingua di Bue' (a sweet pastry resembling an ox tongue). Don't miss out on trying 'Limoncello', a popular Italian lemon liqueur.
Are there any local events or festivals that sailors should be aware of in Procida?The most significant festival in Procida is the Good Friday Procession, known as the 'Processione dei Misteri', where locals carry large wooden structures depicting scenes from the Passion of Christ through the streets. The 'Festa di Sant Michaeli', in honor of the patron saint of the island, is another event celebrated with processions and fireworks.
What tips can you provide for sailing around Procida?The best time for sailing around Procida is between April and October when the weather is warm and sea conditions are optimal. It's also advisable to book a berth in advance during peak season. While sailing, always respect marine regulations and remember to carry all necessary navigational charts and safety equipment.