Naples sights in Italy
The first thing any tourist sees in Naples is the legendary volcano Vesuvius. This landscape dominant gives the panorama of Naples an amazing view. Vesuvius itself is 15 km from the city and it is not only the most famous but also the most dangerous sight in the suburbs – the only active volcano in continental Europe.
Castel del Ovo
Castel del Ovo is located on the small island of Santa Lucia in the Tyrrhenian Sea. This castle has a rich history: since ancient times it managed to be a manor, a fortress, a prison and a museum. It is considered that the “Castle of the Egg”, as its name is translated from Italian, is in the same place where in the 6 century B.C. the Greeks founded Naples.
Royal Palace in Naples
The Royal Palace in Naples is the residence of the monarchs of the Kingdom of the Two Sicilies of the Bourbon dynasty. It was built in the 17th century by the architect Domenico Fontana and was enlarged and restored several times after a fire, sometimes dramatically changing its appearance.
A little closer to Vesuvius to Naples are the excavations of the famous Pompeii and Herculaneum, actually buried alive under a layer of volcanic ash during the eruption in 79 AD. The ruins of ancient cities are included in the list of UNESCO protected sites and for over three centuries have been of great interest to tourists.
Piazza del Plebiscita
Piazza del Plebiscita or Piazza Municipio is the center of Naples and the largest square in the city. This is where the tour of Naples usually begins: first, most of the tourist buses leave from here for the city tour, and second, there is also something to see here.
St. Januarius Cathedral
The current official name is the Cathedral of the Assumption of Saint Mary, the cathedral of Naples dedicated to the city’s patron saint, Saint Januarius. Its main relic, revered since the Middle Ages, is the vessel with the blood of St. Januarius. Twice a year it is shown to the faithful and the blood inexplicably boils and fills the entire vessel.
Archaeological Museum of Naples
No less interesting place to visit is the National Archaeological Museum of Naples. It is where most of the archaeological finds from Pompeii and Herculaneum “settle”, and where there are several exhibitions reconstructing some or other structures of ancient cities. The first floor of the museum is completely occupied by the collection of antique sculpture, while the second floor has several rooms devoted to the history of Naples itself.
Umberto I Gallery
Opposite the Teatro di San Carlo is the Galleria Umberto I. At the end of the 19th century this arcade in neoclassic style had not only a commercial purpose but also a social one: the site of the Gallery was previously the site of a network of alleyways between the theater and via Toledo that had a bad reputation.
San Severo Chapel
The small Chapel of San Severo hides in the narrow streets of Naples not far from the Palazzo Venezia. In the 16th century, when it was first built, it was quite tiny. The Sangro family, who held the princely title of San Severo, erected the church in honor of two miracles.
Castel Nuovo or “New Castle” was built in Naples in the 13th century by order of Charles of Anjou. The city already had one castle, Castel del Ovo, so the question of the name was solved simply. It was built in 3 years, Charles officially moved the capital from Palermo to Naples.
Standing on a hill of the same name, the medieval castle Castel Sant’Elmo was built in the 14th century to defend Naples from the sea and had participated resolutely in all the historical events of the city. It is now home to the Bruno Molajoli Museum of Art History and hosts historical and art exhibitions.
Royal Palace of Caserta
The Caserta country residence was built in the second half of the 18th century by Charles III Bourbon who ruled Naples at the time. He decided that it was too dangerous for the royal family to live in Naples itself because of the frequent attacks from the sea.
The Capodimonte Museum
The Museum of Capodimonte, which houses one of the best collections of Italian art, occupies the former royal residence Palazzo Reale di Capodimonte on the hill of the same name. The palace was built by order of King Charles VII specifically for the huge collection of ancient paintings and sculptures.
Not far from Palazzo di Capodimonte is Napoli Sotteranea – “Underground Naples” – consisting of the catacombs of San Gaudioso, San Gennaro and San Severo. The first tunnels began to be built in the time of Hellas, over time their network has expanded as well as their functional purpose has changed. Walking around the Neapolitan catacombs without a guide is not recommended, there is a high probability of getting lost.
Palazzo di Capodimonte
The Palazzo di Capodimonte, the former palace and summer residence of the Bourbons, is world famous; today it displays collections of arms, bronzes and other objects of art, including paintings by famous Italian masters: Botticelli, Bellini, Michelangelo, Raphael and Titian. Under the palace are the catacombs, dating back to the 2nd century, where the body of St. Januarius is buried.
Santa Chiara – The Church of St. Clara of Assisi is a complex of religious buildings in Naples, including a monastery, the tombs of the kings of the Angevin dynasty, and an archaeological museum. The convent was built in the 14th century in Provençal-Gothic style, then rebuilt in Baroque style. The covered gallery, columns and benches of the church are decorated with majolica with pictures from life in Naples.
Teatro di San Carlo
Once upon a time, in the 18th century, the opera house San Carlo, which had just been built, was connected to the Royal Palace so that the king could go straight from the opera to his chambers. Built in the 18th century, at the time the theater was the most spacious in the world, seating up to 3,300 spectators. In addition, the Teatro di San Carlo is the oldest opera complex on the Apennine peninsula.
Sunny and colorful Naples on the one hand is a typical Italian city of pizza, soccer, noisy celebrations and cheerful, friendly and a bit inconsiderate Neapolitans, but on the other hand it is a place with a very special coloring, which shows in everything, from the accent of the locals to the architecture.
Naples is not only the home of organized crime and pizza (and they say that “genius and villainy are two incompatible things”), but also a beautiful beach resort and a place with an amazing atmosphere. This atmosphere gives the city its many attractions.
The first thing any tourist sees in Naples is the legendary volcano Vesuvius. This landscape dominant gives the panorama of Naples an amazing view.
So, the city at the foot of the famous Vesuvius is a two-in-one museum and resort. From the excavations on the slopes of the volcano (visit the ruins of Pompeii and Herculaneum, you won’t regret it!) to the exhibits of the many local museums.
The historic center of Naples is literally stuffed with sights: all tours start from Piazza del Plebiscita with the Royal Palace and the Church of San Francesco di Paola, past the Teatro di San Carlo and the famous Umberto Gallery. The medieval castles of Castel Nuovo, Castel Sant’Elmo and Castel del Ovo are preserved here.
There are 448 churches alone in the city. The most important are the small chapels of Sangro di San Severo, San Lorenzo Maggiore, Gesù Nuovo and Santa Chiara, the fortress-like church of San Domenico Maggiore and the chapel of San Gennaro.
Miles of catacombs stretch beneath the city, where the walls breathe history – not always happy, but always colorful: ancient churches, ancient tombs and numerous corridors that once sheltered the inhabitants are hidden here.