Napoli

We actually had a plan for visiting Naples…none of this wandering around and discovering things by being lost for this city!  Brittany’s friend Maria Antonietta is from Napoli and she happily provided us with a massive list of things we need to see and do.  Unfortunately, the best laid schemes of mice and men go often askew.  It was raining for a good portion of our visit, and when it wasn’t raining…the wind made it ridiculously cold.  Brittany had picked up a pretty severe cold in Rome (where is was also cold and raining…just not quite as harshly), and it got steadily worse in Naples.  But the show must go on!  And Brittany was a champ and tried her best to power through…with the help of a few different medications, lots and lots of cough drops, and every form of tissue imaginable.  I suppose I digress…on to the actual trip.


 

Day 1:

It was late afternoon by the time we got off of the train and to our fantastic little Bed & Breakfast, so we broke out our itinerary of things to do and searched the food section.  Now, if you’ve read any of this blog before, you’ll know that Italians eat dinner quite a bit later than Americans do.  This is fine, but the side-effect of this is that many Italian restaurants don’t even open for dinner until around 7PM, and often times that is for Apertivo (snacks with drinks) so you can’t get dinner until closer to 8.  I explain this because our first choice for food didn’t open until 7:30PM…meaning we would need to wait about two more hours to eat.  Neither of us wanted to do that, so we decided on the most natural course…pizza.  After all, ask anyone from Naples and they will gladly remind you that Napoli is the birthplace of pizza.  So we found a little spot (that had a heater) in a beautiful little piazza and had some delicious pizza.

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Day 2:

Stazione Marittima

Day two led to some exploring.  Don’t let the blue sky fool you…it rained all night and part of the afternoon, but we were able to find a few really interesting places…like Stazione Marittima, what used to be known as Fleet Landing.  (Fleet Landing was the port Brittany’s dad used when he was in the Navy.)

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The Totem della Pace (Totem of Peace) stands in front of the main building

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This Appeal for Migrants was written on the backside of the totem, and Brittany and I both really liked the message…

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Castel Nuovo

Across from the port is Castel Nuovo (New Castle).  Castel Nuovo was built in 1279, and while its backside is large and imposing…

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The triumphal arch at the entrance is spectacular.  Wikipedia says it was “built in 1470, (to) commemorate Alfonso of Aragon’s entry to Naples in 1443. It stands between two western Towers of the castle.  The first level sculpture depicts a triumphal quadriga (chariot) leading Alfonso parading.  The second upper arch is surmounted by lions and four niches with statues depicting the virtues of Alfonso. Above this is a rounded lintel with two genii with horns of plenty surmounted by Alfonso in attire of a warrior.”

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Overall, an absolutely beautiful castle situated right beside the sea.

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San Francesco di Paola

We ended up looping back around to the San Francesco di Paola and the city’s main square, Piazza del Plebiscito

 

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Charles III statue in Piazza Plebiscito

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Ferdinand IV statue in Piazza Plebiscito

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Statue on top of San Francesco di Paola…

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Palazzo Reale di Napoli

Opposite the San Francesco di Paola, across the Piazza del Plebiscito, is the Royal Palace of Naples.  Unfortunately, the exterior of this entire building was covered for repairs, but we were still able to go into the museum inside (even though large portions of the museum were also not on display…it seems like several repairs were going on simultaneously).

The main stairs…

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The theatre room…

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Paper mâché statues of the Muses lined the theatre wall.  Here are Melpomene (the Muse of Tragedy) and Thalia (the Muse of Comedy)…

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A random room in the palace with a sphinx table…

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As I said…rain, cold, and the fact that Brittany wasn’t feeling well kept us from going too many places, but our Bed & Breakfast, o’Beb, was very nice.

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They even had a tasty house-made drink to try… (Note that this tasted like heavenly nutmeg in a bottle, and I was a little obsessed. -Brittany)

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Day 3:

We actually spent day 3 in Pompeii.  That will be the next blog I post.


 

Day 4:

Finally, on our last day we got some nice weather.  There was still a bit of a nip in the air thanks to the wind, but at least we got some fantastic blue skies.  We decided to just walk the coastline and enjoy the sun.

Napoli coastline…

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Castel dell’Ovo (Egg Castle), which has a pretty cool legend associated with it – “The castle’s name comes from a legend about the Roman poet Virgil, who had a reputation in medieval times as a great sorcerer and predictor of the future. In the legend, Virgil put a magical egg into the foundations to support the fortifications. Had this egg been broken, the castle would have been destroyed and a series of disastrous events would have involved the city of Naples.” – Wikipedia

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Another shot of the Napoli coastline…

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Mount Vesuvius…the infamous volcano responsible for the destruction of Pompeii in 79AD…

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Fontana del Gigante (Fountain of the Giant) also called Fontana dell’Immacolatella with Vesuvius in the background…

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We really enjoyed walking around the city…just wish there weren’t so many storms (and construction) while we were here.  Still, Napoli is well worth a visit…just maybe wait until the spring or summer months.

 

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