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Adventure Travel

Sea Kayak in Napoli, Italy

Exploring the Italian coastline by sea kayaking in Napoli is one of the best adventure travel activities you can do.

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Kayak Napoli, Things to do in Napoli, Things to do in Naples

Ripples extend away from the end of our paddles as each stroke breaks the surface of the warm Mediterranean Sea. Sunlight flickers and reflects off the surface as our kayak cuts through the glassy waters off the coast of Napoli. The only sounds are the splashing of the paddles and the odd laugh echoing from kids diving off the rocky shoreline.

This is kayaking Napoli at its best.

Kayak Napoli, Things to do in Napoli, Things to do in Naples

Kayak Napoli

On a recommendation from the awesome staff at Hostel of the Sun in Naples we had grabbed our togs, lathered up with sunscreen and donned our sunnies for a morning of adventures and sea kayaking with the friendly folks at Kayak Napoli.

Even getting out to the kayak Napoli centre proved to be an adventure as our only directions were to hop off the local bus at supposedly one of the best restaurants along the Napoli coast. Apparently every bus driver in the city knew where this was. Apart from the one driving our bus of course.

With fumbling Italian and hand gestures we somehow managed to stop just 200m from where we were meant to get off anyway.

Cute town Kayak Naples

Hiking down the long winding road to the coastline our backs were soon sticky with sweat and all we wanted to do was get started on our kayak Napoli trip. However, as with all things Italian, everything is done at a slow and gentle pace. Our 10.30am start time neared 11am and then flew on by before our guide showed up on his trusty Vespa.

Can’t say we were too disappointed getting to chill out for a half hour in such a cute village on the seafront anyway.

Everyone partnered up and we dipped our paddles in the water slowly stroking away from the beach.

Kayak Napoli Adventure Travel

With only 6 of us, including the guide, on the kayak tour in Naples it really felt personal. And even with our limited kayaking skills we were actually the best of the small group with two of the girls careening into a small dinghy when they couldn’t figure out how to turn or stop.

Luckily the sea was flat and the guide experienced enough to keep us close to the shoreline should anything go drastically wrong.

At over 3 hours in length it really is an awesome and unique way to see one of the most spectacular coastlines in Italy. Away from the hustle and bustle of Naples the cliffs plunge straight into the deep blue sea. Houses perch precariously on the cliff edge with rough stone stairs carved straight into the rock leading to the sea below.

With no beaches here the locals sunbaths on the rocks with ladders to help them climb back out.

Kayak Naples Swimming

Our local guide knew all the best swimming holes and spots to rest our weary shoulders every half hour or so. With masks provided we could explore under the surface at every stop too.

We even had the chance to kayak into ancient caves that had been eroded from the relentless sea. Unsurprisingly these same magnificent caves have been used in the past for homes and storage for the wealthy.

Kayak Napoli, Things to do in Napoli, Things to do in Naples

Each cave had winding steps leading into the blackness behind gates where we couldn’t venture. Apparently some still lead into the basements of houses.

Kayak Napoli Adventure, Things to do in Napoli, Things to do in Naples

My favourite stop on the Napoli kayak tour was when we  stopped at the Roman ruins which were visible above, and below, the sea surface. Snorkelling gear was again donned to explore these ancient structures. I only wish we had more time here as this was definitely the highlight.

Kayak Napoli Adventure, Things to do in Napoli, Things to do in Naples

Oh apart from helping catch our guides dinner in the form of an octopus. If only he had offered to share it with us!

It was such a fun few hours and a totally different way to explore Napoli. We definitely recommend you to check out Kayak Napoli as they run adventure trips every day and it’s a great way to escape the Italian heat.

Have you ever kayaked in Napoli or Italy? Any other recommended spots for us to explore?

Cole is one half of New Zealand's leading adventure travel blogging couple who have been wearing out their jandals around the world since 2009. He loves any adventure activities and anything to do with the water whether it is Surfing, Diving, Swimming, Snorkeling or just lounging nearby on the beach. You can follow Cole on Google+. Or consider following us via RSS Feed, Twitter, Facebook and subscribe to our Newsletter.

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36 Comments

36 Comments

  1. Karen @ Trans-Americas Journey

    June 25, 2012 at 4:02 PM

    What a peaceful and beautiful way to experience Naples. I’d love to see submerged Roman ruins and help catch (and eat!) an octopus. Beautifully written lead, by the way.

  2. Laurence

    June 25, 2012 at 5:40 PM

    A gentle paddle, a gentle laze in the ocean. Cave exploration… coastline vistas. I’m almost there in my mind 😀

    • Cole Burmester

      June 26, 2012 at 2:25 PM

      Glad we could take you on a journey today!

      • marcia

        May 15, 2013 at 11:04 PM

        planning to be in naples for a few hours on saturday during a trip to rome. what is your recommendation for a short kayak trip for about 4 people for about 2-3 hours. how would i get to the location you mentioned from the train station. marcia

        • Cole Burmester

          May 17, 2013 at 5:44 AM

          Hi Marcia,
          Thanks for your question and stopping by the blog. Try and get hold of the guys at Hostel of the Sun in Naples and they can organise the kayaking for you 🙂

  3. Micki

    June 25, 2012 at 9:05 PM

    Looks like a fun time. The Roman ruins below the sea surface look like an especially cool thing to check out.

    • Cole Burmester

      June 26, 2012 at 2:34 PM

      They were awesome Micki. Wish we had longer to explore them with our snorkelling gear.

    • T.W. Anderson @ Marginal Boundaries

      July 1, 2012 at 1:45 PM

      I totally agree 🙂 I visited Napoli briefly in 2009, but this wasn’t something we did and I’d have to second this!

      Great article btw!

      • Cole Burmester

        July 2, 2012 at 4:15 PM

        Thanks T.W! We loved it and hopefully if you return you can check it out 🙂

  4. Ayngelina

    June 26, 2012 at 12:25 AM

    Even though I profess to be lazy I would love to do something like this, what a great way to see the city.

    • Cole Burmester

      June 26, 2012 at 2:30 PM

      Definitely an easy day out for even the laziest travellers 🙂

  5. Lesley Peterson

    June 26, 2012 at 1:19 AM

    Now that’s a different perspective! Love the photos of the rock formations and cave…

  6. Caz Makepeace

    June 26, 2012 at 11:06 AM

    Kayaking is such a great way to see a place. I love the sound of this adventure!

  7. Bret@ Green Global Travel

    June 28, 2012 at 1:43 PM

    It’s funny, I’ve actually been to Napoli, but would not have imagined it being such a great place to sea kayak. But it looks like you guys had an awesome time, especially snorkeling those ruins. Get any great pizza while you were in the area?

    • Cole Burmester

      June 30, 2012 at 8:11 AM

      Did we get any pizza? What a ridiculous question 🙂 I think my veins are clogged with mozzarella as I sit here haha! We didn’t think the kayaking would be great either but were pleasantly surprised. Wish we had more time to explore other areas by kayak too.

  8. Turtle

    June 30, 2012 at 9:22 PM

    I would never have thought of seeing Naples this way. What an awesome idea! This is going in the ‘to-do’ folder!!

    • Cole Burmester

      July 2, 2012 at 4:14 PM

      We didn’t think of it either and were going to kayak in Amalfi instead. So stoked we had the chance to explore Naples from the sea.

  9. Ali

    July 1, 2012 at 12:41 PM

    Sounds like a great day! I’m not sure I have the arm muscles for 3 hours of kayaking, but it looks like fun!

    • Cole Burmester

      July 2, 2012 at 4:15 PM

      When we first heard 3 hours we nearly fell out of the kayaks (yes they forgot to mention it before we started). Fortunately it was really relaxed and we were doubled up in the kayaks. Seriously, anyone could do it!

  10. Natalie

    July 2, 2012 at 4:38 AM

    Kayaking is hard work – My arms ached for days after doing it. Next time, I will sit in the back while hubby does the hard work instead! 🙂

    • Cole Burmester

      July 2, 2012 at 4:21 PM

      As you can see I sat in the back so took loads of photos while Adela paddled her heart out without realising I was relaxing 😉 Hahaha

  11. bronwen burmester

    July 2, 2012 at 5:28 AM

    Never would have thought to explore by kayak – thanks for the read and photos, lovely!

    • Cole Burmester

      July 2, 2012 at 4:21 PM

      Would have been really fun to do it with you guys! Maybe around the Pacific sometime in a few years 🙂

  12. Angela

    July 2, 2012 at 7:44 AM

    Beautiful day out, I love Napoli, beautiful landscape and awesome food.

    • Cole Burmester

      July 2, 2012 at 4:22 PM

      We love all of Italy so far and I think I need some bigger pants after all the food 🙂

  13. Natasha von Geldern

    July 3, 2012 at 2:37 AM

    Wow this looks so stunning. I’ve been to Naples three times but this is a great new way to see it. And the food is always, always the best.

    • Cole Burmester

      July 3, 2012 at 6:58 PM

      The food is sooooo good! Surprised our kayaks stayed afloat after all we ate haha.

  14. Escaping Abroad

    July 19, 2012 at 9:10 PM

    Awesome shots! You’re using a waterproof can and a wide angle lens?

  15. Cynthia Alex

    July 22, 2012 at 2:45 PM

    Wow.. I have always loved to go to Italy and seeing this post makes me want to go more! Too bad that I live in Asia and the travel fees would be too much as of now.. maybe one day!

  16. Inma

    January 23, 2013 at 12:46 PM

    We would have ever thought about kayaking in Naples if you hadn’t published this! love it and willing to give it a try next time in the city!

    • Cole Burmester

      January 23, 2013 at 3:06 PM

      We found out about it through our awesome Hostel. They provided all the details and organised it for us. All we had to do was show up 🙂 Perfect day out in Naples!

  17. Inma

    January 23, 2013 at 4:09 PM

    🙂 that’s how things should always work!!!!

  18. Steve

    May 11, 2013 at 7:28 PM

    Very fun looking trip you guys had. I am going to Naples for about 3 weeks this summer mid-july into august for business. Will have evenings and weekends off. The kayak trip looks like something I have got to do. But, what if I have never been snorkeling before? Can I learn there? I also wear glasses. Will that be a problem?

    • Cole Burmester

      May 13, 2013 at 6:16 AM

      Can you wear contacts Steve? Then you can wear the mask over the top easily. The guide will also teach you to snorkel if you ask 🙂 enjoy it!

  19. Katy

    May 28, 2017 at 10:19 PM

    Hi Cole:

    Thank you for a wonderful article. My husband and I are looking into renting kayaks in Naples. Do you recommend the tour? We both paddle a lot and we enjoy exploring on our own in open waters. It’s our first time in Naples so we are not sure what the best way to do it. Could you advise? Thank you!
    Katy

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Adventure Travel

Walking the Camino de Santiago Photos

These are my favourite Camino de Santiago Photos from my pilgrimage along the French Way in March. A truly beautiful way to spend a few weeks.

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Puenta La Reina Bridge Camino Arrow

El Camino de Santiago kicked my ass. Well technically it kicked my feet. Turns out my minimal preparation for the Camino de Santiago was terrible. After a miserable effort of only 4 days, the doctor in Legrono told me that I wasn’t allowed to go on until me feet healed. I had walked just over 100 km’s and my feet were bloodied and blistered.

To be honest, I was relieved.

The thought of putting back on my shoes made my shudder. For the last 9 km’s I had stumbled along in jandals and socks. One of the travelling fashion sins I vowed I would never break.

Jandals on the Camino de Santiago

Jandals on the Camino de Santiago

So while I have unfinished business with the Way of St James (an upcoming post), I did want to share with you some of my favourite photos from the Camino de Santiago. Because I had yet to reach some of the more “unsavoury” parts of the Camino that Sherry Ott had discovered, every step of my pilgrimage had been beautiful.

Puenta La Reina Bridge Camino Arrow

Puenta La Reina Bridge – Camino de Santiago Arrows

There is no way you can get lost on the Camino de Santiago. Arrows, scallop shells and signs point you in the right direction at every bridge, road crossing and intersection.

Camino de Santiago Scallop Shell

Camino de Santiago Scallop Shell

Reaching the top of Alto Pedron gave views back the way I had come from Pamplona, as well as views to where I was going. The rocky path on the way down proved to be my ultimate downfall, as my too small shoes caused my toes to smash into the front.

Alto del Pedron Camino de Santiago

Alto del Pedron Camino de Santiago

Metal Pilgrims on Alto del Pedron

Metal Pilgrims on Alto del Pedron

There were so many beautiful old churches along the Camino de Santiago. But since I was walking in early March, it seemed that most were yet to open for the busier summer season.

Church of Obanos

The Church of Obanos

And between every small village the well-maintained pathways of the French Way wound across the spectacular Spanish countryside.

The French Way - Camino de Santiago

The French Way – Camino de Santiago Photos

Puenta La Reina

Puenta La Reina in the evening

Puenta La Reina has one of the most amazing bridges I have ever seen. It was also the 1st village I had the pleasure of sleeping in after busy Pamplona.

Puenta la Reina Bridge and Sunrise

Puenta la Reina Bridge at sunrise

Most mornings I was up and walking before the sun began to sprinkle across the horizon.

Spring flowers on the Camino de Santiago

Spring flowers on the Camino de Santiago

Pilgrims approaching Cirauqui, Spain

Pilgrims approaching Cirauqui, Spain

Every village and town was built on a small hill. Sure it looks beautiful until you realise you have to go back up again to go through them all!

Church of Santa Maria - Los Arcos

Church of Santa Maria in Los Arcos

While there were only about 20 pilgrims walking each section every day, it wasn’t uncommon for you to encounter them all. The people I met along the Camino de Santiago were some of the most inspiring and remarkable people I have ever spoken to. They are the ones that make the pilrgimage so special.

The endless French Way

The endless French Way

Irache Wine Fountain - Fuente del Vino

The free flowing Irache Wine Fountain or “Fuente del Vino”

Hay bales along the French Way

Hay bales along the French Way

Every village had at least one ancient church and it wasn’t uncommon to find them dotting the landscape in remote locations either.

Ermita de San Miguel

Ermita de San Miguel

Iglesia de San Andrés de Zariquiegui Church

Iglesia de San Andrés de Zariquiegui Church

I have travelled through Spain in the past, including cycling in Costa Brava and surfing in San Sebastian with both independent planning and a vacation planner. But having the opportunity to walk at my own pace through some of the most beautiful scenery in Spain on the Camino de Santiago has so far topped them all.

Natural arches - Camino de Santiago

Natural arches on the Camino de Santiago

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Adventure Travel

Hammock vs Tent Camping

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Camping with a hammock is slowly but surely becoming more popular in recent years with new and improved hammock designs being preferred by some campers, compared to the traditional tent.

In this article we will discuss some of the key benefits and drawbacks of sleeping without a tent, and analyze key criteria so that you can choose your preferred shelter choice!

Weatherproof

Most tents work well in the rain; however, you’ll need to bring a tarp if you’re using a hammock. Traditional hammocks are not waterproof, and are generally open at the top, allowing water to find itself inside if you don’t have an adequate tarp. Moreover, a decent under quilt is also a good idea so that you can stay warm and cozy during cold and stormy nights.

Packing up your hammock after a long night of rain isn’t too bad, whereas packing up a soaking wet tent is always annoying. You almost always get wet in the process.

Setup

For first time campers, pop-up tents are the simplest to setup. All you need to do is find flat ground, and bam, your setup is complete! The beauty of pop-up tents is that you don’t need to worry about figuring out where to insert the poles and erect the tent. Although, traditional tents are usually more robust, and have a longer life span.

Essentially, a tent is simple, but a hammock can become a little more complicated for first timers. You’ll need to find 2 trees facing a good direction and tie each end of the hammock to them. If your hammock setup is too tight, you will generally wake up with sore ancles, but if it’s too loose, you run the risk of the hammock touching the floor, and insects crawling in with you.

If your campground doesn’t have many trees, or if the trees are dead (they could break and injure you), hammock stands come to the rescue! Basically, hammock stands allow you to pitch a hammock if there are no trees nearby. They are portable, adjustable, and are easy to setup. The only drawback is that the ground should be relatively flat, whereas if you were to hang a hammock between 2 trees, there won’t be any stands touching the ground, so a rocky floor wouldn’t be a problem.

Comfort

One of the main reasons for choosing a hammock is the comfort that it provides you! It has a basically has in-built seat which is arguably more comfortable than a standard blow up mattress. You need to pick your tree’s wisely though! You don’t want a pinecone falling on your face mid-sleep.

If you have constant back pain and find it hard to sleep inside tents, you should give hammocks a try as they cause you to sleep sideways, similar to a banana shape, which a lot people find much more comfortable.

Price

Hammocks are usually lighter and don’t include a wealth of poles and gear that tents do. Depending on the type of hammock that you purchase, they are usually quite similar to tents. You can however, find very cheap tents <$60, but they most likely won’t last long.

A good tent or hammock can cost between $200-500 without accessories. If you need a hammock stand, that will add to your cost, just like a mattress and other tent necessities will to its cost.

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Adventure Travel

Top of Cappadocia day trek – with Middle Earth Travel

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Trekking through the valleys of Cappadocia’s fairy chimneys with Middle Earth Travel feels more like the set of a Star Wars movie than a historical region once carved out and lived in by humans. Churches, homes and pigeon houses are scattered throughout the valleys, all waiting to be explored. The best part is, Middle Earth Travel know all the hidden secrets.

Standing at the top of Cappadocia

Top of Cappadocia day trek – with Middle Earth Travel

On the 26th of July (which just so happens to be my birthday!) Middle Earth Travel took us on their private and guided Top of Cappadocia day trek. From Pasabag, along the top of Cappadocia and down through the Gulludere Rose Valley to Goreme, we trekked 15kms in one day! (We recommend getting your bearings with this map)

Upon arrival to the Middle Earth Offices, we were warmly greeted by our new friend Atil whom we had met a few days earlier while mountain biking through the Kizilcukur Red Valley. We were then introduced to our guide and given a briefing regarding the day. Normally, the Top of Cappadocia tour would start from Çavuşin, however, since we had already explored Çavuşin Castle, they adapted our tour to compensate ensuring we would explore new terrain!

With charged cameras, plenty of water and our running shoes on, we were driven to our starting point of Pasabag. We wandered through the fairy chimneys, coming across camels and markets – then the true hike began.

Pasabag in Cappadocia

The police station in Pasabag, Cappadocia

Camel in Pasabag, Cappadocia

Camel in Pasabag, Cappadocia

It was a slow and gentle incline. With no trees to provide shade, I quickly realised why our tour guide had chosen to wear fully covered clothing! As the sweat quickly set in (a waterfall in Moss’s case) we snapped away with our cameras and enjoyed the entertaining shapes of Imagine Valley and the amazing view. We also passed a lot of rock piles, which according to our guide mean ‘father’ and are built to help lead the way.

Animal shaped formations in Imagine Valley

Animal shaped formations in Imagine Valley

Middle Earth Travel, Cappadocia

Making our way to the top of Cappadocia

Father leading the way (rock pile)

Father leading the way (rock pile)

The higher we trekked, the more breath taking the views became! As we walked along the summit of Bozdag mountain (the Top of Cappadocia) we could see EVERTHING – Pasabag, Çavuşin Castle, Kizilcukur Red Valley, Gulludere Rose Valley and Goreme. We were on the Father of Valleys! After a quick nod of agreement to the guide, we pushed ourselves the extra distance and made our way to the flag, as this HAD to be the highest point and was definitely worth a photo and a selfie or two!

View from the top of Cappadocia

View from the top of Cappadocia

Flag at top of Cappadocia

From the flag we looked down upon Aktepe Hill which is known as a popular destination for watching the sun set and could spot Kizilvadi Restaurant, our destination for lunch! Kizilvadi Restaurant is an attraction of its own. With its own historic winery and Grape church, plus some Middle Earth Travel treks even stay there for the night! After having a massive feed of soup, salad and pasta plus a surprise birthday cake, we made our way down into Gulludere Rose Valley.

Kizilvadi Restaurant

Kizilvadi Restaurant

The scenery is amazing, with strong colours visible in perfect layers on the chimneys, you would wonder what an artist was thinking, had it been a painting. Also, hidden to the side of the track we walked across a little bridge and not expecting anything to be there we were wowed by the massive church carved. It was absolutely huge and hard to believe that its most recent use has been as a pigeon house!

Coloured chimneys in Cappadocia

Coloured chimneys in Cappadocia

Pigeon houses in Cappadocia

Pigeon houses in Cappadocia

Church in Gulludere Rose Valley

Hard to believe this Church is carved inside a fairy chimney!

Middle Earth Travel Review

  • The team at Middle Earth Travel were extremely knowledgeable and certainly know Cappadocia’s hidden secrets. They have friendships with local tea garden owners which is also of benefit as it gained us entry to locked churches and hidden rooms that we would not have otherwise seen.
  • We covered a lot of ground, however we did not feel rushed. The whole day focused on showing us the region, therefore we had as much time as we needed to explore each church and to take ‘just one more photo’.
  • It wasn’t all about trekking. With a whole day and 15kms to cover, there were a few silly poses (especially in Imagine Valley), and we learnt a lot about the myths, legends and way of life in Cappadocia.
  • In conclusion I highly recommend Middle Earth Travel if you wish to go trekking or mountain biking in Cappadocia.
  • Cost: Day treks with Middle Earth Travel range from 50-90 euro, depending on the number of people taking part. This includes lunch, guide, vehicle transfers and entrance fees to historical sites, but excludes alcoholic and soft drinks.
  • Middle Earth Travel are outdoor enthusiasts and offer multi-day over night treks, mountain biking, abseiling, or custom made itineraries, in multiple regions throughout Turkey.
  • www.middleearthtravel.com

Disclaimer: We were provided with a discount for the trek with Middle Earth Travel, however, as always our thoughts on our adventure travel blog our own.

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Meet Cole and Adela

Cole and AdelaWe have been wearing out our jandals (Kiwi for flip-flops) on our travel adventures around the world since 2009. We think our blog is thought provoking and a little witty. But we have been proven wrong before. Find out more about us here...

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