Parco Idrotermale del Negombo

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It is located on the island of Ischia, in the deep bay of San Montano, enclosed between the Vico Mountain and the promontory of Zaro, Negombo’s hydrothermal park is a remarkable example of integration of landscape, garden, art and thermal waters. It was requested and realised by the duke Luigi Silvestro Camerini in 1947. He was an entrepreneur, anti-fascist and great Venetian traveller, who fell in love with Southern Italy after his confinement on the island of Ponza. The park includes 14 marine, thermal, therapeutic pools included in a great botanical-Mediterranean garden; it was designed by the landscaper Ermanno Cascasco. There are also works of contemporary art inside the park, which have been made by international artists such as “Arco Verde” of Arnaldo Pomodoro and “Fulmine Colorato” of Lucia Del Pezzo.

The garden
The duke’s original idea was to realise a majestic botanical garden watered by a complex system of basins walkable thanks to path excavated in the rock of the Vico Mountain. Many years passed before the work was completed, because the soil at the time was divided into many lots belonging to different local families, who cultivated them. After managing to group them, the duke had implanted numerous Cycas Cocos, zamias, Ficus elastica, strelitzias and many more African, Australian, Japanese, Brazilian species, which gave to the garden an exotic character in honour to the garden’s name, “Negombo”, the same of a famous bay of Ceylon.
The duke then, during the seventies, transformed the garden into an hydrothermal park open to the public, in order to financiate himself. The son of Paolo Fulceri Camerini decided to reclaim the project during the eighties, in order to make it more harmonious and then he gave it to the landscaper Ermanno Casasco in 1988. The designer based himself on the original projects and intentions of duke Camerini and he gave to the garden his actual aspect. Casasco recovered terracing, drywalls and the central staircase, but he also introduced waterfalls on ledges and he planted Mediterranean species like olive trees (Olea europaea), rosemary (Rosmarinus officinalis) and myrtles (Myrtus communis), together with many other African, Australian, New Zealander species like Melaleuca spp., Metrosiderosspp., Polygala myrtifolia, which are suitable to the context.

“Ipomea del Negombo”. The hydrothermal park of Negombo offers often theatre shows and manifestations. The exhibition “Ipomea del Negombo” has taken place here since 2003 at the end of May. It is a show market of rare and unusual plants of the Mediterranean area, which underline the botanical importance of this place.

This post is also available in: Italiano (Italian)


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