Traveling has always been one of my passions. It exposes us to new cultures and experiences and makes the world a more tolerant place.
If you are planning on visiting the Isle of Capri, and can't decide how best to see the island, then I have a fun and adventurous option for you to consider. Whether you are staying on the island or making a day-trip from either Naples or Sorrento, you will not want to pass up the opportunity to take a private boat tour around the island. We stumbled onto Capri Whales, a locally owned and operated tour company prior to our visit to the Amalfi Coast area. With only one day to spend on Capri, we struggled to decide how to best spend our time there. Well, I'm pleased to tell you that of all the things we did during this two week trip to Italy, this was without a doubt the highlight of our visit.
If the thought of touring the island of Capri by private boat appeals to you then I would suggest making your plans before to leaving for Italy. This is a very popular method of seeing the island and there are no guarantees that you will be able to simply walk up to an outfitter and secure a tour. It always pays to do some due diligence and this is one time when it might be necessary.
Prior to leaving for Italy, we did some research and found a local tour company called Capri Whales. The owner, Wendy, took our information and travel dates and told us to contact her when we arrived in Sorrento and we would arrange a day and time. What we liked about Capri Whales and Wendy, in particular, was that she remained very flexible with us and was aware that our schedule for traveling to Capri was highly dependent on the weather. I'm not sure if this is the standard operating procedure for other tour operators on Capri, but we found this approach a pleasant surprise. No deposit was required, yet we were assured of a boat tour of the island if the weather cooperated.
Upon arriving in Sorrento we called Capri Whales and spoke directly with Wendy, picked a day, and decided to take a morning tour of the island. Again, Wendy was great and told us not to worry if the ferry was running late and to simply come by when we arrived. Our day was set, private boat tour in the morning, then spend the rest of the day in Anacapri and Capri.
What to Expect on Your Tour
After checking in with Wendy, off we went to meet Stefano who would be our captain for the day. For the next couple of hours, Stefano entertained and educated us with his knowledge of the island and took us to places that were beyond description. We navigated around the entire island, went right through the Faraglioni Rocks, stopped at secluded beaches where we swam, and toured some of the not as famous but just as beautiful Grottoes. Did you know that there is a Green and White Grotto on Capri?
Capri Whales stocks all of their boats with everything you will need to make your day enjoyable: bottled water, towels, floats for the water, snorkel mask, etc. You even have the option to end your tour at the location of the Blue Grotto should you still want to see it. For us, the thought of waiting for two hours to spend two minutes inside the Blue Grotto was very unappealing so we had Stefano drop us off and we spent the time touring Anacapri.
When our day ended and we were heading back to the Marina to catch the ferry back to Sorrento we stopped in to see Wendy and Stefano to thank them for a truly memorable experience. We took a bunch of pictures and met Wendy's mom Cindy and her daughter, Nicole. Wendy presented us with a very thoughtful gift, and off we went with a lot of great memories of our visit to Capri.
Perhaps you are wondering where the name “Capri Whales” came from? If you look closely at the pictures of Stefano in the boat you will notice that he is wearing a Hartford Whalers cap. We wondered if there was a connection? Being from nearby Massachusetts and being familiar with the old NHL Hartford Whalers Hockey team we just had to ask. Apparently, Wendy, the owner of Capri Whales, grew up in Connecticut, and no she is not a devout hockey fan of the Hartford Whalers. The name “Whales” comes simply from the many whale watching trips that her family would take from Cape Cod when she was a child. These trips inspired her love of whales and Wendy has incorporated this theme into the name of her business.
If your travel plans have you heading to the beautiful Isle of Capri, give “Capri Whales” and Wendy a call and set up a private boat tour of the island. Hopefully, it will be the highlight of your trip to Italy as it was for us.
Ciao for now.
© 2012 Bill De Giulio
Bill De Giulio (author) from Massachusetts on September 30, 2020:
Thanks Peggy. We really miss going somewhere this fall. We are hoping that 2021 will be different.
Peggy Woods from Houston, Texas on September 30, 2020:
You bring so much of the world to us in your travel articles filled with great information, and fabulous photos. Taking a private boat ride on the island of Capri sounds like a great idea. Thanks! It is now on my wish list!
Janda Raker from Amarillo, Texas on August 13, 2018:
Bill, I've not written a new article in a while, because of lots of family and health issues here, but I'm getting a new one ready to post. I had enjoyed some of yours earlier, so I decided to look at a couple more as I am polishing mine, see how you do what you do. And I found this one, which I thoroughly enjoyed! Nice! Thanks.
Bill De Giulio (author) from Massachusetts on January 29, 2017:
Hi Guy. Certainly the Amalfi Coast if you haven't already been, also seeing Pompeii, which is amazing. On Capri we took the Mount Solaro cable chair to the top, amazing views. In Rome visit the Castel Sant'Angelo, incredible place that many folks skip. Have a great trip.
Guy R on January 29, 2017:
Thank you Bill. We are finalizing our late May visit (might be a little cool to jump in) - we went to Rome 2 years ago so this will be our second trip to Italy. Any other suggestions for cannot miss stops down that way?
Bill De Giulio (author) from Massachusetts on January 28, 2017:
Hi Guy. Actually we were there in mid September. The weather happened to be excellent and the water was definitely warm enough to jump in. Thanks for stopping by, enjoy your visit if you are heading there.
Guy R on January 28, 2017:
at what time of the year did you visit? - I assume a little swimming suggests a July or August visit.
Bill De Giulio (author) from Massachusetts on January 27, 2015:
Hi Mary, when we went it was 150 euro for a half day ride around the entire island with numerous stops. We were two couples so we split it and at 75 euro per couple for a 4 to 5 hour boat tour around the island we thought it was a great deal.
Mary on January 27, 2015:
How much do the tours cost?