A Getaway To This Italian Island Is A Great Addition To Your Wellness Travel Bucket List

As much as we love mainland Italy, the Italian islands are a special type of paradise. Case in point: Ischia, an enchanting island nestled in the Tyrrhenian Sea just off the coast of Naples. In addition to its natural beauty and rich history, Ischia is the perfect destination for a European wellness getaway.

So why is Ischia so perfect for relaxation and rejuvenation? It's thanks to the volcanic island's plethora of therapeutic thermal springs, wellness centers, and natural springs. Because of Ischia's volcanic origins, the island is full of thermal springs that are renowned for their healing properties. In fact, research presented by geologist and Renaissance scholar Ann C. Pizzarusso to the 20th EGU General Assembly in 2018 showed that the water from the over 100 springs in Ischia "are able to ameliorate ailments such as rheumatism, arthritis, osteoporosis, sciatica and a host of respiratory illnesses, allergies, and skin conditions."

Soak up the healing waters of the thermal springs

Kick off your wellness journey at the Negombo Thermal Gardens. Relaxing amidst lush greenery and overlooking the sea, Negombo is the perfect place to unwind. The gardens, which are carved into the volcanic rock, offer a range of thermal pools, each with varying temperatures and mineral compositions. Negombo also has a private beach, waterfalls, volcanic caves, a Turkish bath, as well as six bars and restaurants. The park also offers a wide range of spa treatments, including massages and mud baths, which make use of the healing properties of local volcanic mud. 

"I have been to different thermal spa[s] before and I found Negombo spa was very effective. All my back, neck, and shoulder pain has gone! Money well spent!" wrote one reviewer on Tripadvisor. "There are many small thermal pools at different temperature[s]. Some thermal pools with natural setting. All were very nice. Do try all of them if possible."

The Poseidon Gardens, with its mythical name, is another "don't-miss" destination. Perched on a cliff overlooking the sea, the Poseidon Gardens are home to a series of interconnected pools, each fed by different thermal springs. The park also offers wellness packages that include massages, beauty treatments, and access to exclusive relaxation areas.

According to Ischia Insider, Terme di Cavascura rounds out the list of the best thermal spas on the island. In addition to the baths, which are located in volcanic caves, you can get a massage or mud treatment at the wellness center.

Don't miss out on the culinary scene

Italy is well-known for its incredible food, so it's no surprise that Ischia has an incredible culinary scene. You'll find traditional recipes (can't go wrong with traditional Italian!) made with fresh local ingredients.

Ischia has several indoor and outdoor markets where you can find fresh fruits, vegetables, meats, and fish. Forio Market and Casamicciola Market are recommended — and the latter also sells vintage clothing and accessories (perfect for multitasking!).

Ristorante La Terrazza di Mimi is the perfect spot to eat authentic Ischian food — and it has an amazing view of the sea. Full of local flavors, menu highlights include Coniglio all'Ischitana (Ischian-style rabbit) and Risotto al Limone. "Amazing food, service, and sunset view! This place was so cool that we went two days in a row for dinner, wrote one reviewer on Tripadvisor. Other reviewers commented that it has a local vibe rather than a touristy one, and sang the praises of the restaurant's seafood. 

In the quaint village of Forio, go to Trattoria Il Focolare at sunset so you can take in the incredible view. A family-run restaurant, it's best known for its seafood dishes. The friendly owners are known to invite guests to the wine cellar, where they'll share information about the restaurant's traditions and give you a drink to enjoy.