Shopping in Capri

Capri is famous for many things: Caprese salad, Tiberius, Gracie Fields… but when it comes to shopping, Capri equals pants. Even if you've never seen photos of Brigitte Bardot, French sex siren of the 1950s and '60s, you'll have seen her imitated a thousand times wearing those slim-fitting, cropped black trousers with skinny T-shirts cinched at the waist (and probably dancing wildly with the likes of Gene Kelly).

Then there are the sandals, so beloved of Sophia Loren and Jackie O: the perfect footwear for Capri pants – usually flat, dainty, bejewelled sandals exposing as much of the foot as possible.

Thankfully, both are still possible to buy: Antonio Viva is now making sandals with his two sons at L'Arte del Sandalo Caprese (Via Giuseppe Orlandi 75; 081 837 3583) for women as well as children and men (not necessarily with jewels). To complete the look (assuming you already look like Bardot) get the pants by heading for La Parisienne (Piazza Umberto I 7; 081 837 0283;; 9am-8pm daily; closed Oct-Mar); you can still get a made-to-measure pair within a day!

Another one not to miss is a visit to the Carthusia perfume factory shop (Viale Parco Augusto 2; 081 837 0368; The legend goes that in 1380 the head of the monastery made a flower arrangement in honour of the arrival of Queen Giovanna d'Angio; he forgot to change the water for several days but discovered that it had created a wonderful fragrance. Then there is the historical fact, which states a perfume recipe was discovered in 1948 by one of the monks and he was given permission to create a small laboratory for its production. Who cares? The perfumes are delicious, some made with essence of rosemary picked from Monte Solaro or citrussy lemon (men's) while others are made from the Capri wild carnation (women's). 

Those lemons have also made their way into Limoncello di Capri (Via Roma 85; 081 837 5561;; 9.30am-6pm daily May-Sept; 10am-4pm daily Mar-Apr and Oct-Dec; closed Jan-Feb).

For more advice on shopping in Capri and the Neapolitan Riviera, visit Shopping in Neapolitan Riviera.