What is the Blue Grotto in Capri?

While Capri is surrounded by many beautiful grottoes and caves, there is one that has captured the imagination of travelers from around the world. This is the Grotta Azzurra, the famous Blue Grotto. Many people ask us to explain a bit more about the Blue Grotto in Capri – the history and just what makes it so very special. Read on to find out more!


The history of the Blue Grotto dates back to the Roman times, when the Roman Emperor Tiberius allegedly used it as his private bath house during his retirement on the island. Ancient Roman statues were even found there! Although it was a special place treasured for its beauty, after Roman times it was largely forgotten.

For years, the grotto was avoided by locals, thought to be cursed until a fisherman ventured in with German novelist and tourist August Kopisch. Kopisch subsequently included the Blue Grotto in his book Entdeckung der blauen Grotte auf der Insel Capri in 1838. Many people claim that after this novel was published, Capri and the Blue Grotto sprung into the limelight as a must-see destination.

The Blue Grotto continues to be one of the most sought after sites on Capri.


The sunlight enters the cave through an opening located directly under the cave’s mouth. This limits the amount of light that enters the cave at any given moment, causing the bright blue effect, which seeps through the rock crevices.


Here are some important tips to keep in mind for visiting the Blue Grotto.

  • The entrance to the grotto is very small and to go inside you must get in small row boats and lay nearly flat as the boat is navigated inside
  • The grotto may close due to weather or sea conditions because if there are high waves they will cover the entrance of the cave.
  • It’s important to remember that a visit to the Blue Grotto cannot be reserved in advance.
  • Tickets cost €14, to be paid directly at the entrance
  • Wait time can range anywhere between 1-2 hours and time in the cave is about 5-10 minutes
  • Visiting the cave is optional and of course not required when purchasing a private speedboat cruise with Exclusive Cruises.

If you have any questions please do not hesitate to contact us!


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