Naples, the third largest city in Italy, is located probably in the most spectacular and dramatic setting in the Mediterranean. Spread out around the Mount Vesuvius, one of the last remaining active volcanoes in Europe, this capital of the Campania region is also close to some of the most breathtaking scenery in the world. The island of Capri, the Amalfi coast, and the glittering blue sea all around with plenty of sunshine are all at a stone’s throw from here.
As are the Pompeii and Herculaneum, the ancient cities that have been buried under the lava of the Vesuvius for centuries. In fact, this city is the main hub for exploring these gems, and millions of people pass through it every year to get to these magnetic places.
Naples is the city of “the mosts” – the largest European old city center (included in the UN World Heritage List), the most-bombed Italian city in the World War II, and by some estimates it is the oldest continuously inhabited location in the world, and one of the busiest passenger ports in the world.
Piazza del Plebiscito, a short walk from the port of Naples
More famous “mosts” are her Majesty the Pizza, the most famous Italian dish (well, one of the most famous ones) which was invented here, and definitely the most romantic, heart-tingling, lovers’ musical instrument – the mandolin – is the most prominent in Neapolitan music.
Panorama of the Naples Gulf
Just try and imagine how many wars, conquerors and other loonies must a city survive when it is almost 3,000 old?
Basically, all the great powers that came and went practiced their military skills in this region, and it all of course left its long lasting mark on the city’s culture, dialect, art, music, food, and especially the architecture.
Piazza del Gesù Nuovo, Naples
The mixture of so many styles created an overwhelming combination of the narrow seedy streets, open squares, old palaces and gardens.
Somehow, this city is not regarded as chic as its super famous competitors up north such as Rome or Florence, but it still is undoubtedly Italian, its flair not diminished by the vast mixture of migrants from Italian provinces, homeless beggars and shady characters straight from an Indiana Jones movie.
Panorama of Naples
It is neither helped by being viewed as the place where corruption and mafia are widespread, however it is so positively Italian that you can’t claim to have seen and felt Italy if you hadn’t explored this place.
Bay of Naples, with the Vesuvius volcano
Do the justice to Naples. Visit it. Explore its streets.
Feel its crazy energy, wild hand gestures when locals speak.
Have a super strong espresso.
Marvel at the decaying centuries-old buildings.
Don’t just rush to Pompeii or Capri. This place deserves at least an afternoon of your life.
Where is Naples?
- 137.9 miles/ 222 km from Rome, Italy
- 31 miles/ 50 km from Sorrento, Italy
- 22.3 miles/ 36 km from Capri, Italy
- 2.9 miles/ 27 km from Ischia, Italy
- 19.2 miles/ 31 km from Procida, Italy
- 34.7 miles/ 56 km from Salerno, Italy
- 4.9 miles/ 8 km from Naples International Airport, Italy
- 146.6 miles/ 236 km from Rome Fiumicino Airport, Italy
- 136 miles/ 219 km from Rome Ciampino Airport, Italy
Things to See
- Piazza del Plebiscito
- Certosa e Museo di San Martino
- Chiesa di Santa Maria del Carmine
- Villa Floridiana
- Archeological Museum
- Castel Nuovo
- Piazza del Gesù
- Piazza S. Domenico Maggiore
- The Marina Grande Beach
- Ischia – Spiagga dei Maronti
- Positano – Spiaggia Grande
- Palazzo Donn’Anna
- Monte Nuovo
- Piscina Mirabilis
- Capri island
- Amalfi Coast
- Ischia island
Naples Port and Vesuvius Volcano
Cruise And Stay Holidays in Naples
If you’re cruising by ship, Naples might easily be the departure port for a number of cruises, or it will be included in your itinerary as one of the top spots.
The city is indeed a very interesting place to cruise and stay, either before or after your Mediterranean cruise.
You can explore the city itself, as you have a good two days worth of things to see, but you can also visit many of the surrounding destinations, making the most of your trip to this region.
Definitely plan on spending at least a couple of days and explore the amazing places and islands around Naples, it would be a real shame just to fly in and fly out for your cruise!
We wish you a fantastic Mediterranean cruise!