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Naples Vacation and Travel Guide
Naples is the capital of the Italian region Campania. The Metropolitan City of Naples is one of the largest metropolises on the Mediterranean Sea. It is is situated on the Gulf of Naples, on the western coast of Southern Italy. It lies between two notable volcanic regions, Mount Vesuvius and the Campi Flegrei.
The islands of Procida, Capri and Ischia can all be reached from Naples by hydrofoils and ferries.
Sorrento and the Amalfi Coast are situated south of the city, while the Roman ruins of Pompeii, Herculaneum, Oplontis and Stabiae, which were destroyed in the eruption of Vesuvius in 79 AD, are also visible nearby. The port towns of Pozzuoli and Baia, which were part of the Roman naval facility of Portus Julius, lie to the north of the city.
The Port of Naples is one of the most important in Europe, and has the world's second-highest level of passenger flow, after the port of Hong Kong. It runs several public ferry, hydrofoil and SWATH catamaran services, linking numerous locations in both the Neapolitan province, including Capri, Ischia and Sorrento, and the Salernitan province, including Salerno, Positano and Amalfi. Services are also available to destinations further afield, such as Sicily, Sardinia, Ponza and the Aeolian Islands.
Tourism in Naples
Naples' historic city centre is the largest in Europe, covering 1,700 hectares (4,200 acres) and enclosing 27 centuries of history, has left it with a wealth of historical buildings and monuments, from medieval castles to classical ruins. The most prominent forms of architecture visible in present-day Naples are the Medieval, Renaissance and Baroque styles. In 1995, the Historic Centre of Naples was listed by UNESCO as a World Heritage Site. Naples has a total of 448 historical churches, making it one of the most Catholic cities in the world in terms of the number of places of worship.
Culinarily, Naples is synonymous with Pizza, which originated in the city. Neapolitan music has furthermore been highly influential, credited with the invention of the romantic guitar and the mandolin, as well as notable contributions to opera and folk standards. Popular characters and historical figures who have come to symbolise the city include Januarius, the patron saint of Naples, the comic figure Pulcinella, and the Sirens from the Greek epic poem the Odyssey. It is the Italian city with the highest number of accredited stars from the Michelin Guide.
Naples has long been a major cultural centre with a global sphere of influence, particularly during the Renaissance and Enlightenment eras. It is well known for its historic castles: the ancient Castel Nuovo, also known as Maschio Angioino, is one of the city's foremost landmarks; it was built during the time of Charles I, the first king of Naples. Another Neapolitan castle of note is Sant'Elmo, which was completed in 1329 and is built in the shape of a star.
The main city square or piazza of the city is the Piazza del Plebiscito. Its construction was begun by the Bonapartist king Joachim Murat and finished by the Bourbon king Ferdinand IV. The piazza is bounded on the east by the Royal Palace and on the west by the church of San Francesco di Paola, with the colonnades extending on both sides. Nearby is the Teatro di San Carlo, which is the oldest opera house in Italy. Directly across from San Carlo is Galleria Umberto, a shopping centre and social hub. Naples also has two other major public squares: the Piazza Dante and the Piazza dei Martiri. The latter originally had only a memorial to religious martyrs, but in 1866, after the Italian unification, four lions were added, representing the four rebellions against the Bourbons.
Naples is also widely known for its wealth of historical museums. The Naples National Archaeological Museum is one of the city's main museums, with one of the most extensive collections of artefacts of the Roman Empire in the world. It also houses many of the antiques unearthed at Pompeii and Herculaneum, as well as some artefacts from the Greek and Renaissance periods. Previously a Bourbon palace, now a museum and art gallery, the Museo di Capodimonte is another museum of note. The gallery features paintings from the 13th to the 18th centuries, including major works by Simone Martini, Raphael, Titian, Caravaggio, El Greco, Jusepe de Ribera and Luca Giordano.
In front of the Royal Palace of Naples stands the Galleria Umberto I, which contains the Coral Jewellery Museum. The Museo d'Arte Contemporanea Donnaregina (MADRE) features an enfilade procession of permanent installations by artists such as Francesco Clemente, Richard Serra, and Rebecca Horn. The 16th-century palace of Roccella hosts the Palazzo delle Arti Napoli, which contains the civic collections of art belonging to the City of Naples, and features temporary exhibits of art and culture. Palazzo Como, which dates from the 15th century, hosts the Museo Filangieri of Plastic Arts, created in 1883 by Gaetano Filangieri.
Naples is the seat of the Archdiocese of Naples, and the Catholicism is highly important to the populace; there are hundreds of churches in the city. The Cathedral of Naples is the city's premier place of worship; each year on 19 September, it hosts the longstanding Miracle of Saint Januarius, the city's patron saint. During the miracle, which thousands of Neapolitans flock to witness, the dried blood of Januarius is said to turn to liquid when brought close to holy relics said to be of his body.
Of the various public parks in Naples, the most prominent are the Villa Comunale, which was built by the Bourbon king Ferdinand IV in the 1780s; and the Bosco di Capodimonte, the city's largest verdant space. Another important park is the Parco Virgiliano, which looks towards the tiny volcanic islet of Nisida; beyond Nisida lie Procida and Ischia.
If you are planning to travel to Naples, whether for business or tourism, in addition to the passport and visa, we recommend you to check the following information: International Airports, Airport security rules, Type of luggage allowed and weight limits, Most visited cities, Driving in Naples, Electricity, Time Stripes, Business Hours, National Holidays, Weights and Measures, Commercial Practices and Etiquette Rules.
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Naples International Airport (IATA: NAP, ICAO: LIRN) Aeroporto Internazionale di Napoli, is the international airport serving Naples. It is located 3.7 miles north-northeast of the city in the Capodichino district of Naples in the suburb of San Pietro a Patierno. The airport has two terminal buildings: Terminal 1 is for scheduled flights and Terminal 2, located away from the airfield, is used for charter operations. It is the largest airport in southern Italy, with around 140 national and international flights arriving or departing daily.
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