|Naples - beautiful city by the Bay||| Print ||
Naples Italy - a truly beautiful city
Naples is Italy’s third most-populated city and the biggest one in Southern Italy. Its name originated from the Greek word “neapolis,” which means new city. It is located in the Campania region, which is around two hours south of Rome.
The city has a close proximity to many interesting tourist sites like Pompeii and the Bay of Naples – considered to be one of the country’s most beautiful bays. It is also a sunny and vibrant city, with a captivating mix of colors, sounds and aromas. As such, many tourists find the city a good base and well worth exploring.
How to Get Around Naples
Before getting to Naples, you should be warned that traffic there may be extremely heavy. Thus it makes sense to avoid touring the city by car. However, traffic problems aside, the city does have a good public transportation. It has a large, albeit crowded, network of buses, trams, funiculars, and subways (subways in Italy) that will take you to Sorrento, Herculaneum, and Pompeii. The quickest way to go around the city is by taxi, but it is not cheap. But if you do decide to take one, just make sure it has license by seeing to it that it bears the city crest on its door.
Going around by foot would be a good decision, too. There are interesting spots on every corner and at short distances from one another, so they can be easily walked within minutes.
You can also get around Naples by boat or hydrofoil to see some of the other popular sights like Amalfi and Capri.
Food, Food, Food!
One of the things you ought to know about Naples is that this is where pizza originated. So Naples pizza is a must-try. But aside from this, you also need to try Eggplant Parmesan and spaghetti, which became popular here, too. Seafood, like clams and mussels, is also abundant and really good in Naples.
But your gastronomic adventure in Naples shouldn’t end here. Cheese-making in the Campania area has long-standing traditions, so make sure to try the types of cheeses they specialize in: burrata, mozzarella fiordilatte, and mozzarella di bufala. The fertile Campania soil also makes for premium quality and tasty produce like San Marzano tomatoes, Annurca apples, Montella chestnuts, and Giffoni hazelnuts.
And lest you forget, coffee is a ritual that you must not miss out on in Naples. Once made using the traditional Neapolitan coffee-maker, today’s coffee is made following some technical tricks with the Italian moka espresso coffee maker.
Where to Go in Naples
Naples has its fair share of magnificent churches and museums. Make sure to visit any of these:
* Cathedral-Duomo, which was built in the 12th century and which houses the relics of San Gennaro – the patron saint of Naples.
* Church of Santa Chiara, which is a Provencal Gothic style church and is a mere walking distance from the Convent in Piazza del Gesù where you can find the majolica-tiled Cloister.
* Church of San Gregorio Armeno, which is a great example of Neapolitan Baroque architecture. This church’s interior is totally covered with frescoes and has cloisters designed in 1580, with a lovely marble fountain.
* Church of San Lorenzo Maggiore, which is a charming 13th century structure restored in the 17th century.
* Church of Gesù Nuovo, which is known for its opulent interior, filled with multi-color marble and altars inlaid with semi-precious stones.
* National Archeological Museum, considered to be the most important archeological museum in Europe and houses the collection of the Bourbon family.
* San Martino Museum, which is a museum dedicated to Naples’ history and culture.
* Capodimonte Museum and Gallery, which is home to 13th-18th century works of art that belonged to the Farnese family and that were later inherited by the Bourbon family. Among the works in its "Roman Collection" are those by Michelangelo, El Greco, Botticelli and Raffaello.
* Royal Palace Museum, which keeps the furniture, porcelain, sculptures, paintings belonging to the Bourbon dynasty.
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