We had a lovely sail from Capri to Ischia and this time we tried to do bit more research on the Thermal pools. James spoke to the Captainerie and they gave us the name of two, but he thought Poseidon was much the better. Anne and I couldn’t persuade the boys to join us, so we jumped in a cab and we were delivered to Poseidon, the Disneyland of thermal pools. Six azure blue pools starting at 28 degrees and then working up to 38 degrees with a 15 degree plunge pool, laid out in a garden setting. If you are in the area you should find Poseidon, we were so relaxed, it was just beautiful. We thought of Ulysses and realised it wasn’t a seductress that would kidnap the weary sailors, they just couldn’t bear to leave the pool of Aphrodite or the silky warmth of the pool of Ariadne.
The next morning, after one of James’ famous omelettes, we motored over to Ponza. This volcanic island is another that caters to mainland Italians on holidays.
We had a quick scout through the village and then jumped on a bus which took us over half the small island, vistas over cliffs to the Med, up terraced hills and all around incredible rock shapes, some like something out of a nightmare, craggy faces that could haunt your dreams.
Many of the beaches of Ponza are only accessible by water, so after unsuccessfully trying to walk through the Roman tunnels to Chiaiadiluna, a crescent shaped sand beach, we discovered the tunnel closed so we walked further up the hill to see if there was stair access, but it looked like there had been rockfall from the sheer cliffs surrounding the beach. The beach was deserted and people were swimming off the back of their boats.
Anne and Cam decide to take the ferry back to Napoli, so we make our farewells and head over to Palmarola, another of the Pontine Island chain. We circumnavigate Ponza and then head west to Palmarola.
Arriving at Palmarola, which has a summer restaurant and a few holidays houses was akin to arriving first at Smiths Creek, when no other boats are there. Sunshine, blue water, BBQ is readied and the books are out, in place for those minutes right after your swim. (nb: I don’t swim in Smith’s Creek but Shelley does, you get the jist. Also I would swim if I could see the bottom of Smiths Creek and I hadn’t seen that baby Hammerhead at Sharks Point). The description of us would have been “relaxed, fully relaxed”.
We realised no longer had a reason to sail to Nettuno, that was to drop Cam and Anne over to the mainland, so we slept at anchor and motor sailed the 60 miles to Ostia on Sunday.
Now the hard part, clean and prepare the boat for the hard stand. Thus ends our sailing blog, but we will still keep in touch with the tourist portion of the trip. If you have any wonderful tips for “winterising the boat”, please send them.
Happy Birthday to Erin and Ed, see you both soon.