The entire island of Capri, just off the coast of Italy in the Tyrrhenian Sea, is mesmerizingly gorgeous (there's a reason it's been a vacation destination since the Roman Republic), but the prettiest spot on the whole island might just be Via Krupp, a cliffside footpath that leads down to a lovely grotto. Via Krupp looks like an exhausting hike, but the constantly changing views and breathtaking scenery along the hairpin switchbacks keep travelers from even remembering that the path scales an impressive 100 feet-- vertically. It has delighted and charmed Jean-Paul Sartre, Thomas Mann, Pablo Neruda, and thousands of visitors in search of beauty. The beautiful path has a dark secret, though...It was commissioned by Friedrich Alfred Krupp, a wealthy German industrialist who spent several months a year at the nearby Hotel Quisisana, and it was designed and constructed in 1900 by an engineer named Emilio Mayer. Krupp said he wanted the path for easy access from the hotel to his marine biology research vessel, which was anchored just offshore. However, the path was pretty convenient for the orgies he held with local youth at the Grotta di Fra Felice. When the orgy scandal broke in 1902, he was kicked off the island, never to return. Oops. The path was closed in the late '70s due to a devastating landslide, but after over 30 years (and an 8.5 million dollar restoration project) it reopened in 2008. It had been so popular with tourists that they would frequently evade the gates to get a taste of the one-of-a-kind scenery along Via Krupp-- potentially dangerous, but probably worth it! If you'd rather play it safe, there's always the Natural Cave Entrance - Carlsbad Caverns National Park or Walter's Wiggles which are both equally impressive switchback hikes... minus the orgies with minors. -Roadtrippers Via Krupp is a historic switchback paved footpath on the island of Capri, connecting the Charterhouse of San Giacomo and the Gardens of Augustus area with Marina Piccola. Commissioned by German industrialist Friedrich Alfred Krupp, the path covers an elevation difference of about 100 m. Built between 1900 and 1902, ostensibly Via Krupp was a connection for Krupp between his luxury hotel, Grand Hotel Quisisana, and Marina Piccola, where his marine biology research vessel lay at anchor. Secretly however, this path also conveyed him to Grotta di Fra Felice, a grotto where sex orgies with local youths are supposed to have taken place. When the scandal surfaced, Krupp was asked to leave Italy in 1902. Since 1976, Via Krupp has been closed most of the time due to the danger of falling rocks.
It's open on occasion, when conditions are safe (ie no falling rocks or landslides!)
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