The port of Ischia consists of a natural basin surrounded by hills, formed by the ancient crater of a volcano. In ancient times it was used for breeding fish, but it was under the Bourbons that it became a port. Ferdinand II, who had fallen in love with the lake that he could admire from his villa on the slope above, had a canal dug between two hills to create a protected curved harbour, without a jetty.
Here the church of Santa Maria di Portosalvo was built, while the villa and the spa building, which now forms the council premises, were reconstructed. Today it is the first point of arrival with a short jetty, offering a view over the two spits of land that encompass the sea to form a pool in a splendid landscape offering a safe haven.