Entertainment and Attractions in Naples, Italy
As befits a port city, Naples, with its front facade, faces the Gulf of Naples. To the west of the port, far into the sea, the Castel dell’Ovo castle juts out, which for centuries served as a state prison and has seen many famous prisoners in its lifetime. From it it is convenient to start acquaintance with the sights of Naples. See JIBIN123 for Italy customs regulations and visa requirements.
Closer to the port, the New Castle hangs over the bay – the medieval residence of the Neapolitan kings. In the 18th century, the monarchs moved from here to a more comfortable place – opposite the Royal Palaceoccupying an entire city block. In the niches of its main facade, there are statues of the rulers of Naples, including the son of an innkeeper, Marshal of France Murat, who wore the Neapolitan crown for 7 years.
The Plebiscite Square in front of the palace is the most beautiful in the city. Its idea belongs to Murat, who decided to create a forum named after himself. On the opposite side, it is closed by the Basilica of San Francisco di Paola, built by King Ferdinand I in gratitude to God for delivering the kingdom from the same Murat.
Adjacent to the palace from the north is the San Carlo Theatre. It was built by the king-patron Charles III, who wished to have the largest theater in the world. The nearby cafe Gambrinus with luxurious interiors is a great place for a coffee break. It has long been chosen by celebrities and even the royal family went here on foot to drink coffee.
From royal Naples, the lively Via Toledo begins, going deep into the historical center with a labyrinth of narrow streets like cracks. To her left lies the colorful Spanish Quarter, reputed to be the “nest” of the Camorra. If a meeting with the mafia leaders is not included in your plans, turn off Via Toledo to the right – to the picturesque Gesu Nuovo Square, where the Jesuit Church of the Gesu Nuovo and the Basilica of Santa Chiara, which served as the tomb of the Neapolitan kings, stand opposite each other.
Getting around all 450 Neapolitan churches is an impossible task, but some of them are impossible to miss. The real secret treasure of the city is the San Severo Chapel. Pushing through an unremarkable door, you will find yourself in an amazing place – the fruit of the crazy imagination of the Prince of San Severo and the brilliant Neapolitan masters.
The center of the religious life of Naples is concentrated in the Cathedral, where a reliquary with the relics of St. Januarius and ampoules with clots of his blood are kept in a magnificent baroque chapel. Every Nepolitan deeply reveres the heavenly patron of the city and knows that if twice a year the dried blood of St. Januarius becomes liquid, nothing will happen to Naples.
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The beaches of Naples
In the city, by and large, there are no beaches. Its coastline is reinforced by huge boulders, and the purity of the water leaves much to be desired. The only beach within Naples is Bagno Elena in the Posilippo area. There are bars, sunbeds, umbrellas and changing rooms. But because of the dirty water, it is difficult to recommend it for swimming, although the beach is never empty.
The sea is cleaner – 30 km from the center in the Positano area. There is a wide and crowded pebble beach “Spiagia Granda” and a quiet beach “Fornillo” with pebbles and volcanic sand. Very clear water on the sandy beach “Lucrino” in the Bagnoli-Pozzuoli area. This free beach with good infrastructure is located next to the railway station, it can be easily reached from the city by train in about half an hour.
On all beaches you can sit with your own towel. The price of umbrellas and sunbeds, where they are, is 10-20 EUR, depending on the place and day of the week.
The Neapolitans themselves prefer to go swimming on the islands. The closest one is Procida. Its best beach area Lido di Procida with golden sand is located in the western part of the island. The beautiful “Pozzo Vecchio” beach in the northwest is famous for the movie “The Postman”. It has a flat bottom – a great option for families with children.
5 things to do in Naples
- Experience the taste of the best pizza in the world at the legendary Da Michele Pizzeria.
- Take a selfie with Vesuviusin the background.
- Listen to Neapolitan songs performed by street artists.
- Try not to lose your wallet.
- Turn on your heel with your zodiac sign laid out on the mosaic floor of the Galleria Umberto
Naples for kids
Neapolitans, like all Italians, adore children, although there are few pure children’s entertainments in the city. But if your offspring have completely driven you crazy, it’s not a bad idea to take them to the Aquarium in the city park or to the zoo to see lemurs, giraffes and monkeys.
But where you should definitely come with children is the pedestrian street of San Gregorio Armino. The British call it Christmas Avenue. She is known for her shops and workshops, where they make figurines for Christmas scenes “presepe” – in Russian – nativity scenes. This art, rooted in the deep Middle Ages, has been raised in Italy to an unprecedented height.
From November to January, San Gregorio is a bustling place with presepe exhibitions.
Regardless of the time of year, here you can always look at the work of masters and buy your favorite doll, house, animal figurines or household utensils. In addition to biblical heroes and saints, shop windows are inhabited by other famous characters: pop stars, athletes, politicians from all countries and continents.
The Museum of the Convent of San Martino houses the largest collection of Christmas “presepe” dating back to the 18th century.