Several times on our trip Naples reminded us of a South Asian city, with its tightly clustered buildings, a fairly dirty and chaotic streetscape, and commerce seemingly everywhere. So while you can see something quite European on Sunday morning:
Large parts of the old town look like this:
We walked quite a bit through the old town, and wow, so many churches!
Piazza and the stunning Church of Gesù Nuovo
And the Cathedral Santa Maria
Also, wow, so much stuff! The lanes are packed with with kitsch, in some sections with parts for amazingly detailed nativity scenes, in others, just magnets and other trinkets.
Oh, and you need to keep an eye/ear out for mopeds coming through these laneways too!
We were also lucky to see a processional after lunch one day.
After explorations of the old town we wanted to try some other sections. First was the Capodimonte museum, either a long walk through a scruffy area or a long wait to ride a bus. We walked going and took the bus back, neither was particularly pleasant! The museum is part of a much larger park that we didn’t have much time to explore, but looked lovely on our sunny Saturday.
The museum had some nice pieces, but a large percentage were iconography, which gets quite repetitive. Overall it is rather overpriced at 12€.
Later that afternoon we took the funicular – surprisingly, much of it was underground – up to Vomero. This neighborhood was quieter, with some very interesting houses and nice view of Mt Vesuvius peeking out between buildings.
And the sunset view near Castel Sant’Elmo, with the famous Mt. Vesuvius in the background.
After sunset we walked around the Vomero business district, stopping at a busy Carrefour to envy the cheese, and left with some chocolate. Many people were out, and quite a few dogs too. At one point we stumbled on a store’s anniversary party with free jazz too.
And one last note, several of the metros have artwork and designs:
For us Naples was interesting, but it just didn’t capture our senses like many other Italian cities. You definitely have to dig a little deeper in this city.