Thursday afternoon, we braved the whirlpool entrance to Nettuno, with strong current running in, then out and with rocks to the south of us. Once inside, the marina was comfortable and quiet, underneath an old walled village. There was such a nice breeze on the boat, we sat with a plate of chilled watermelon and spring water and just relaxed. It is very warm here in Italy at the moment, at times we are melting. Sailing and motor sailing are great, because we find the wind cool but on land it is hot.
Around six, we went up to the village and found a Bar – more like a Bakery with coffee and alcohol. Aperol and soda ordered, the girl comes out with a full tray of amuse bouche. Tiny little one bite morsels as well as olives and potato chips, some are pastry with tuna or ricotta cheese and others are bite size sandwiches. Sometimes you can’t fit in dinner when you have all of these taste treats.
At Nettuno, we are circumspect and polish off the olives and go wandering into a newer part of town to provision. We discover fresh fruit and vegetables, milk, eggs back to the boat and finally into town for dinner.
We take a different way into the old village and see some people staring at a wall, so we wandered over to see what they were looking at, it was an old fountain, possibly Roman or at least medieval and it was still gushing water at a great rate.
We went to Romolo’s for dinner, famous for their zuppa de pesce and it was so beautiful, we took a photo.
It was an early start the next day, as we had to cover about 50 miles, nice for us we had a lovely breeze on the stern quarter. We arrived at Isola Ventotene, just in time for the start of a mini-regatta. Boats ranged from 25 feet to 60 feet, all starting and finishing just off the nearby island of San Stefano. Magical venue for a Friday afternoon, anchored between the two islands to watch the race.
Eventually, we made our way into the marina and wandered around Ventotene, an island known to be a place of banishment for the Romans and later Mussolini used Ventotene to keep non-Fascists in one place. The small old harbour, was hewn out of rock, this bit of architecture was orchestrated by Agrippa, a right hand man to Cesar Augustus. His wife, Julia had a summer house here. Before they married she created a villa to entertain her paramours out of sight of her father, Cesar Augustus.
We climbed the steep stairs and strolled through the hill top village, enjoying piazza life. It seemed the whole village and day trippers were on the piazza, enjoying the cool breezes at the top of the island.