Isle of Capri Italy travel

Travel can be quite ugly at times. It’s not always sunshine and roses. It can be frustrating, exhausting, and even messy… like when I threw up on the boat in Italy.

I never was the greatest with being on water. It messed up my equilibrium in ways that did not end pretty. But this was a special occasion. I was on vacation in Italy with my family back when I was in high school. We had a nice day trip planned, and despite the fact that there was a boat involved, it was expected to be a short ride.

It was all smooth sailing at the beginning (pun intended). I felt great, it was a gorgeous day outside, and I was in Italy after all. This was all good to be true, of course. Soon enough, the waves got increasingly choppy until it seemed like we were in The Perfect Storm. Okay, slight exaggeration. But the waves certainly were picking up, and I wasn’t the only one feeling it.

The crew began walking around with the dreaded “barf bags,” passing them out to the pale faced passengers. The crew themselves did not seem to be phased at all. “Look out at the horizon,” they said, which sounds great in theory, but I was glued to my seat. Any sudden movement and I was sure I would explode.

Just a little longer, I kept telling myself. We should be there any minute now.

Apparently my inner monologue wasn’t enough to keep the seasickness from making its mark. Just minutes before our arrival, the sea got the best of me. Thankfully I wasn’t the only one green with nausea. There were plenty more passengers on board who were having just as hard of a time fighting off the queasiness.

The question is, why put yourself through all that?

Because travel is so beautiful that it conquers the ugly.

There comes a time for everyone to have a bad travel experience. Whether that be getting sick, robbed, or simply having a bad case of jet lag. Whatever you do, NEVER let the negatives define what travel means for you. The world has enough debbie downers.

Think about what you learned from these bad experiences. How can you help others to make sure the same situation doesn’t happen to them? You never know what may come from a travel mishap. I have multiple friends that have lost their passports while in a foreign country. Not too fun at the time. However, they tend to make great stories looking back! If losing your passport means you get an extra day in Barcelona or Athens, it may not be such a bad thing after all!

As for throwing up on the boat in Italy? That boat was heading to the beautiful island of Capri.

Island of Capri Italy

Capri Italy

It ended up being my favorite part of my trip to Italy. Traveling is all about stepping out of your comfort zone and challenging yourself to seek out new experiences. Take the risk of being uncomfortable for a while and the reward will be even more worthwhile.

It’s been years since I’ve been to Capri and would love to visit again. Nowadays, there are plenty more options to cure motion sickness. But even if there weren’t?

I’d do it again in a heartbeat.

What would you do for a spectacular travel experience? Hitchhike across the country, eat caterpillars, or give up technology? I’d love to hear from you in the comments below!


  • myline
    January 14, 2021 at 10:27 pm

    Absolutely! Home to many of the world’s greatest works of art, architecture, and gastronomy, Italy elates, inspires, and moves like no other.

  • Lauren
    January 21, 2015 at 7:43 pm

    Wow…I’ll have to keep it in mind when we visit Capri in a couple of months! I am not prone to being seasick thankfully. That sounds like an awful situation but I’m glad that you ended up loving Capri which made it all worthwhile! I have a story about seasickness….LOL. I was on a ferry between Cozumel and Playa del Carmen in Mexico which was a particularly choppy ride. This was a ferry where we were all inside the boat…even I could feel my stomach churning, and I don’t really get sick like that. There were only 4 bathrooms on board this ferry, and sure enough, people were getting up and running to the bathrooms every other moment. I’d hate to be in that line-up waiting for the bathroom to be free, yikes!

    • Marissa Sutera
      January 21, 2015 at 9:22 pm

      I have to admit.. I’m a tad jealous that you’re visiting Capri 🙂 Waiting in that bathroom line can be pretty bad, and scary that you’re about to pop at any moment! On the boat to Capri there was no chance people were getting in the bathroom since the majority of the passengers were all sick. Beware that it even affected many people who thought they were prone to seasickness! Can’t wait for you to write about it so I can re-live Capri’s beauty!

  • Evanne | Poplar Travels
    January 18, 2015 at 4:40 am

    Great post! I get motion sickness so badly in cars (luckily not as badly on boats!) and it can be a real day ruiner. It’s all a part of travel though, like you said. After doing tons of research and having lots of debates, I decided to take my Dad’s old iPhone to Spain when I studied abroad in college and got a basic international plan…. I was pick-pocketed on the 5th day. Didn’t need it anyway!! Haha and now I know.

    • Marissa Sutera
      January 19, 2015 at 8:11 am

      Thanks Evanne! Sometimes us humans need to learn lessons the hard way 🙂 One of the best parts about travel! It teaches us so much that we may never learn without it.

  • Sally Munt
    January 18, 2015 at 3:49 am

    Haha I love this. I feel your pain. I get it all… motion sickness, food poisoning, heat stroke… The list continues. But it is the price we pay for adventure and in the grand scheme of things it is a very small price !

    • Marissa Sutera
      January 19, 2015 at 8:09 am

      Glad to hear you are also a trooper! I totally agree, it really is a very small price to pay. Thanks for reading Sally!

  • Emma
    January 18, 2015 at 12:22 am

    I had a similar experience on a dive boat in Thailand, mortifying but I was so pleased I wasn’t the only one! 😀

    • Marissa Sutera
      January 19, 2015 at 8:08 am

      It’s always better when there’s others who are feeling queasy 🙂 Stepping off the boat is the best part!

  • SJ
    January 17, 2015 at 11:17 pm

    I love your adventurous spirit that you’d do it all again, without meds 🙂 True travel warrior 😀

    • Marissa Sutera
      January 19, 2015 at 8:07 am

      Thank you! For a place like Capri, it sure is worth it 🙂

  • Bron
    January 17, 2015 at 10:35 pm

    I love real travel stories! Those island shots are beautiful. Once when I was 17 I tried to backflip off a boat into the water, it didn’t work and I dislocated my collar bone…..but after it was fixed and in a sling we went 4wd to the most beautiful lake in the middle of a sand island. All worth it plus I still get to tell the story 20 years later! Bron

    • Marissa Sutera
      January 19, 2015 at 8:05 am

      Thanks Bron! Sometimes a good story is the best takeaway 🙂 It’s always great to look back on these moments and see how you look at them differently than when you were in the moment!

  • Katrina Elisabet
    January 17, 2015 at 8:04 pm

    Any amount of pain would be worth it for time in Capri! We were in Sorrento this past summer, but didn’t make it over to Capri this time due to itinerary restraints. I really regret not trying to finagle a visit, though; your pictures are beautiful.

    • Marissa Sutera
      January 19, 2015 at 8:03 am

      Thanks Katrina! It certainly was worth the trip, I hope you get a chance to make it back there someday!

  • Vicky
    January 16, 2015 at 12:43 pm

    As someone who has been so seasick that I had to crawl off the boat at the quayside, I feel your pain. The good experiences balance out the bad, and after a while you forget just how terrible things were at the time and remember the highlights.

    And the best cure for seasickness? Go and hug a tree.

    • Marissa Sutera
      January 19, 2015 at 8:03 am

      So true! I’m not one that typically does well with boats, or even some other methods of transportation. But when it comes to destinations like Capri, it’s always worth it in the end!


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