Are you planning a trip to Naples Italy? Want to know what to see in Naples and what are the best things to do in Naples Italy? I have recently visited Naples and enjoyed it a lot! If you are on your way to Naples, check out my ultimate guide to the best things to do in Naples Italy!
Naples is a city of thousands of faces.
There’s a saying in Naples ‘Chi viene a Napoli piange due volte: quando arriva e quando parte’ (‘Those who come to Naples cry twice: when they arrive and when they leave‘).
The expression indicates the first impression visitors get on their arrival when they face the chaos, noise, and dirt of Naples and the sadness on their departure after discovering the beauty of Naples.
Naples is a city of art, museums, and galleries. But also a city of chaos and crime.
The Historic Center of Naples is a World Heritage Site. This fascinating Italian city has more than 450 churches, 50 palaces, 10 museums, and many galleries. But Naples is also home to Camorra, the local Mafia with an estimated 57,500 members today. (However, Naples is safe for tourists!)
Naples is the city Goethe, Stendhal, Jean-Paul Sartre, Oscar Wilde, and Fedor Dostoevskij wrote about. And the place where the iconic Sole Mio song was composed.
Naples is also a food paradise. Naples is the birth town of pizza (which is the most famous Italian dish, and one of the most famous dishes in the world). Margherita Pizza was invented in Naples. In addition, Naples is a city in Italy with 31 Michelin-starred restaurants!
So, if you are planning a trip to Naples, trust me you won’t lack entertainment and fun in Naples. There are so many amazing things to do in Naples Italy! The only thing you could possibly lack in Naples is the time to enjoy all the city has to offer!
THIS POST MAY CONTAIN COMPENSATED LINKS. PLEASE READ MY DISCLAIMER FOR MORE INFO.
- Where to stay in Naples
- Best things to do in Naples Italy
- 1. Stroll Spaccanapoli
- 2. Head to the Piazza del Plebiscito
- 3. See Basilica Reale Pontificia di San Francesco di Paola
- 4. Visit the Royal Palace of Naples
- 5. Stroll down via Toledo
- 6. See Galleria Umberto I
- 7. See the Castel Nuovo
- 8. Head to the Castel Sant’Elmo for the panoramic views of Naples
- 9. Have coffee at Cafe Gambrinus
- 10. See Naples Cathedral
- 11. Stroll Via dei Tribunali
- 12. Tour Naples Underground
- 13. Rub the nose of Pulcinella for good luck
- 14. Admire the Baroque interior of Chiesa Gesu Nuovo
- 15. See the Chiostro di Santa Chiara
- 16. See Il Cristo Velato at Sansevero chapel
- 17. Walk down Via di San Gregorio Armeno (or Christmas Alley)
- 18. Admire the Seven Acts of Mercy by Caravaggio
- 19. Tour the Catacombs of St Gennaro
- 20. Have the best Margherita pizza in Naples
- 21. Buy Napolitan Cornicello
- 22. Visit the Archeological Museum
- 23. See Caserta Royal Palace
- 24. Sample the traditional food of Naples
- 25. See Toledo Metro Station
- 26. Visit Pompeii
- 27. Hike Vesuvius
- 28. Herculaneum
- 29. See the street art of Spanish quarters
- 30. Knock on the tomb of Father Don Dolindo Ruotolo
- 31. See Castel dell’Ovo
- Napoli tourist attractions map
Where to stay in Naples
But, before we jump to explaining where to go in Naples, what to see in Naples, and what to do in Naples, let me help you with suggestions for where to stay in Naples Italy.
LUXURY: The Britannique Hotel Naples, Curio Collection By Hilton – This exceptional 5-star hotel with elegant and large sea-view rooms is located in the beautiful and safe Chiaia neighborhood. The hotel has excellent facilities: a rooftop restaurant and bar, a fabulous gym, and a solarium with a jacuzzi. The hotel is a little out of the center but near a metro station and within walking distance from the seafront. Couples especially love staying at this luxury hotel in Naples!
MID-RANGE: Comfort Zone Naples -is a 4-star guest house with comfortable rooms in the Port of Naples neighborhood. It is within walking distance of the Piazza Plebiscito, Castle Nuovo, and other popular tourist attractions in Naples.
BUDGET: Municipio Sea – is a lovely B&B in the Port of Naples neighborhood. It is within walking distance of major city attractions and close to the Alibus station for the airport and Mollo Beverello (the ferry port to Sorrento, Capri, Ischia, etc.). It is a great value for money.
Best things to do in Naples Italy
TOP 10 NAPOLI ATTRACTIONS:
The Veiled Christ in the Sansevero Chapel
The Cloister of the Monastery of St. Clara of Assisi
The Church of New Jesus
The National Archaeological Museum
The Seven Acts of Mercy by Caravaggio at the Pio Monte of Mercy
The Royal Palace of Naples
What to do in Naples Italy
1. Stroll Spaccanapoli
Spaccanapoli is the main street of Naples. It is the heartbeat of Naples.
This 1.2 mi (2 km) street goes through the historic center of Naples. Spaccanapoli means ‘Naples splitter’. Spaccanapoli Street architecturally divides the Old City of Naples.
Spaccanapoli is a landmark of the historic center of Naples (a UNESCO World Heritage Site). Naples Spaccanapoli Street is one of the three ancient Greek-Roman decumani streets. Spaccanapoli is the ancient Decumanus Inferiore that connected the northern and southern parts of the city. Spaccanapoli is Decumanus Inferiore, while Via dei Tribunali (another street in Naples, Italy) is Decumano Maggiore.
Today Spaccanapoli is the heartbeat of Naples and the main promenade street with access to the many major tourist attractions in Naples, like the most significant ancient churches, squares, and palaces. In addition, Spaccanapoli Street is full of bars, restaurants, shops, and street vendors. There is no visit to Naples without strolling Spaccanapoli.
Strolling Spaccanapoli is one of the best free things to do in Naples, Italy. Locals and tourists enjoy roaming this high-vibe street of Naples. You will love it too!
2. Head to the Piazza del Plebiscito
The Plebiscite Square is the main Naples square and the heart of Naples.
It is a semicircular-shaped square with a rectangular ending in the historic center. The colossal Plebiscite Square covers 25,000 m2. As such, Plebiscite Square in Naples is among the largest piazzas in Italy.
The Piazza got its name after a plebiscite (referendum) that annexed the Kingdom of Sicily (whose part was Naples) to the Kingdom of Italy in 1860.
There are four dominant buildings surrounding the Plebiscite Square. The main building on the Plebiscite Square is the Royal Pontifical Basilica of San Francesco di Paola, while the Royal Palace (Palazzo Reale di Napoli) stands opposite the San Francesco di Paola Basilica. Two places (Palazzo della Prefettura and Palazzo Salerno) are on the sides of the square.
3. See Basilica Reale Pontificia di San Francesco di Paola
The Royal Papal Basilica of San Francesco di Paola in Naples is one of the finest examples of neoclassical architecture in Italy and beyond.
The Royal Papal Basilica of San Francesco di Paola in Naples resambles Pantheon in Rome.
Pantheon in Rome inspired the architecture of the Royal Papal Basilica of San Francesco di Paola. The 53 m (174 ft)-high dome of the Royal Papal Basilica of San Francesco di Paola dominates the architecture of the circular-shaped building with two side chapels. The main church has a frontal portico with six columns and two Ionic pillars. Royal Papal Basilica of San Francesco di Paola got completed in 1846 and has been one of the most important churches in Naples ever since then.
There is no admission fee for visiting the Royal Papal Basilica of San Francesco di Paola So, if you are looking for free things to do in Naples, add a visit to the Basilica to your list.
4. Visit the Royal Palace of Naples
The Royal Palace stands opposite the Basilica on the Plebiscite Square. The Royal Palace of Naples, built in the 17th century, became the royal residence of Burbouns one century later.
Go to the main gate, and see the courtyard and the garden. It is one of the free things to do in Naples, Italy. You can even see the main entrance hall with an impressive palatial staircase through the glass door.
However, there is an entrance ticket to see the rest of the palace complex. The complex includes gardens, the Vittorio Emanuele III National Library (which has a collection of more than 1 million books), and the San Carlo Theatre (the oldest still-operating opera house in the world).
The Royal Palace of Naples is open every day from 9 am to 8 pm, except on Wednesday.
5. Stroll down via Toledo
Via Toledo is one of the most important commercial streets in the heart of Naples. It goes parallel to Spaccanapoli.
The street connects the north with the south of the city. It links two significant squares of Naples: Piazza Dante and Piazza Trieste e Trento (the latter is close to Piazza Plebiscito).
Via Toledo is the most important shopping street in Naples. It is about 0,75 mi (1,2 km) long with many shops and stores (from luxury stores to ordinary souvenir shops and small pizzerias).
Via Toledo is popularly called Pizza Street for the number of pizza stores and street vendors that sell pizza.
Taking an evening passeggiata (stroll) along Via Toledo is among the best things to do in Naples Italy. So, stroll down via Toledo and get yourself a slice of authentic Margarita pizza during your evening passeggiata.
In addition to its shops and stores, Via Toledo has many historic buildings (churches, palaces, etc.) and beautiful neoclassic and modern structures. The famous Galleria Umberto I shopping gallery is at the end of the street.
6. See Galleria Umberto I
Galleria Umberto I in Naples is a famous public shopping gallery from 1890. It is one of the most beautiful examples of the Risanamento architectural period.
The grand Galleria Umberto I in Naples reassembles the Vittorio Emanuele II shopping gallery in Milan (the oldest shopping gallery in Italy, opened in 1877).
It has businesses, shops, and cafés. It is also a place of active social life (meeting up for coffee, eating, etc.) in Naples.
Galleria Umberto I stands opposite the Teatro San Carlo in Via Toledo, near the Plebiscite Square and Castel dell’ Ovo in Naples.
7. See the Castel Nuovo
Castel Nuovo (New Castle) is a symbol of Naples.
Castel Nuovo is a medieval Renaissance fortress built in the 13th century. It was a royal residence of the kings of Naples, Aragon, and Spain from the 13th century until the beginning of the 19th century.
The castle has five round towers connected by untraversable stone walls. The main marble-carved arched entrance is between two watchtowers.
Today Castel Nuovo is home to the Municipal Museum of Naples. The Municipal Museum has an imposing collection of sculptures, paintings, and various objects made by Napoletean artists from the medieval period until the 19th century.
Castel Nuovo is open from 8:30 am to 7:00 pm every day except on Sundays. The entrance fee to Castel Nuovo is 6 €.
8. Head to the Castel Sant’Elmo for the panoramic views of Naples
The Castel Sant’Elmo is a medieval fortress castle located on the top of Vomero Hill in Naples. This monumental hill castle dominates the city and Naples Bay.
The first fortress was built in the 13th century. But the hexagonal star-shaped building as we see it today dates back to the 16th century. This hill fortress had a strategic position in the past overlooking Naples and the Bay of Naples. The Neapolitan Republic was proclaimed in the Castel Sant’Elmo after the revolution in 1799. Today Castel is the headquarters of the Museum Centre of Campania (Polo Museale della Campania).
Castel Sant’Elmo provides the best panoramic views of Naples, the Bay of Naples, and Mount Vesuvius. So, head to Castel Sant’Elmo to enjoy the stunning views of Naples, Vesuvius, and the Bay.
Castel Sant’Elmo is open seven days a week from 8:30 am to 6:30 pm. An entrance ticket to Castel Sant’Elmo costs 5 € (It is free for EU citizens under 18). However, it is free for visits on the first Sunday of each month.
9. Have coffee at Cafe Gambrinus
Gran Caffè Gambrinus is a historic cafe and pastry shop in Naples. It belongs to the Association of Historical Places of Italy.
The Art Nouveau-style decorated Gran Caffè Gambrinus has marble floors, chandeliers, elegant stuccos, statues, and paintings from the late 19th century. The entrepreneur Vincenzo Apuzzo founded the cafe in 1860. The Gran Caffè Gambrinus immediately became a favorite place of Napoleteans.
It is located in Via Chiaia Street, next to Piazza Plebiscito. If you like historic cafes as much as I do, you will enjoy this stunning cafe! (Read about historic cafes in Vienna Austria)
Sit in the dining area of Gran Caffè Gambrinus, order Italian espresso and traditional Naples pastries (like sfogiatelle, zeppole di San Giuseppe, rum baba, etc.), and enjoy the unique atmosphere of this historic cafe.
Gran Caffè Gambrinus in Naples is open every day from 7 am until midnight.
10. See Naples Cathedral
Napeles Dumo is an outstanding example of Gothic and Neo-Gothic architecture in Italy. The Cathedral of Naples was completed in the 14th century.
The Cathedral is the most significant church to Napoleteans. Naples Duomo hosts the Museum of the Treasure of San Gennaro, which holds the relics of St Gennaro (or Saint Januarius), a 4-century martyr and the saint patron of Naples.
Napoleteans believe that San Gennaro protects Naples from the eruption of Mt. Vesuvius, earthquakes, plagues, fires, and droughts. The feast day of San Gennaro is September 19.
The famous Miracle of Blood is related to San Gennaro. The Naples Cathedral keeps an ampoule with the dried blood of San Gennaro. The solidified blood has been liquefied on the Holy Mass three times a year for centuries. The first recorded Miracle of Blood happened in 1389. The Miracle of Liquefaction has been happening on September 19 (The Feast Day of St Januarius), December 16 (the anniversary of the eruption of nearby Mount Vesuvius in 1631), and the first Saturday in May (in the commemoration of the transfer of the saints remains to Naples).
But if it fails to liquefy, it signals a disaster to come. For example, blood did not liquefy in 1939 and 1940, and WWI started. The blood did not liquid on September 19, 1980, and an earthquake hit Irpinia (nearby Naples) that killed about 3,000 people.
It is free to enter Naples Duomo. But there is an admission fee for the museum. Naples Duomo is open daily from 8:30 am to 1:30 pm and from 2:30 pm to 7:30 pm.
11. Stroll Via dei Tribunali
Via dei Tribunali is the main street of the Old City of Naples.
It was Decumanus Maggiore that connected the east and the west of the Old City of Naples.
The street is a little larger than half a mile (850 meters) long and has access to the largest concentration of historical monuments in Naples (more than 20 churches and several palaces).
Today Via dei Tribunali is filled with bars, restaurants, and souvenir shops. It is one of the busiest streets in Naples.
12. Tour Naples Underground
Napoli Sotterranea (Naples Underground) is an underground network of tunnels, rain cisterns, caves, passages, and a water cistern. The complex is 131 ft (40 m) under the ground. It stretches for 280 mi (450 km) under the city and the surrounding area. The complex spreads from Mt Vesuvius, Pompeii, and Herculaneum to Naples and the Naples Bay area, and it covers over 2,000,000 square meters.
Ancient Greeks dug the first underground using the material for the first settlement called Neapolis (aka New City) in 4 BC. They made the first aqueduct for the water supply of villas and palaces. Romans enlarged the complex, which was in use until the 1884 cholera epidemic. The complex got abandoned until WWII when Naples Underground became a bomb shelter for over 200,000 citizens of Naples.
Book Naples Underground Guided Tour and explore the complex. See a 4th-century water cistern, walk the narrow underground passages, see the ruins of a Roman theater and remains of furniture of people who took shelter in WWII. A tour lasts 2 hours on average. An entrance to the Naples Underground complex is in Via dei Tribunali. Click here to read more about this fascinating tour!
13. Rub the nose of Pulcinella for good luck
The iconic Pulcinella statue is close to the entrance to Napoli Sotterranea in Via dei Tribunali. It stands in a small alley at a corner via dei Tribunali.
Pulcinella is a traditional Neapolitan mask. It is a half mask with a big curved nose, small eyes, and a wrinkled face.
Pulcinella represents a clever common Napolitean man who likes joking, pranking authorities, gossiping, who lives in present, and who faces life issues with a smile.
There is even an expression in Naples: Il segreto di Pulcinella (Pulcinella’s secret). It refers to a well-known fact.
A tradition also says that rubbing the nose of the Pulcinella statute brings good luck.
14. Admire the Baroque interior of Chiesa Gesu Nuovo
The Baroque interior of Chiesa Gesù Nuovo is a must-see in Naples. The exterior of the Church of New Jesus looks somewhat plain, but the interior is simply breathtaking. The church holds a rich collection of Baroque paintings and sculptures. The church interior is famous for being the most beautiful in Naples.
The Chiesa Gesu Nuovo is on the Gesu Nuovo square, near the Basilica of St Claire. The Chiesa Gesu Nuovo is open daily from 8 am to 1:30 pm and from 4 pm to 7:30 pm.
15. See the Chiostro di Santa Chiara
Santa Clara complex in Naples includes the Church of Santa Chiara, a monastery, tombs, and an archeological museum.
The complex is a few meters away from the Chiesa Gesu Nuovo.
The cloister of the monastery of Clarisses is the most beautiful part of the complex. It is famous for its Rococo-style majolica tiles and frescos-decorated arcades. The tiles show rural, maritime, and mythological scenes, while frescoes depict images and scenes from the Old Testament. The cloister garden of Santa Chiara in Naples is the most photographed place in Naples. I enjoyed the beauty and the peacefulness of this oasis in the heart of Naples on my visit. Visiting The Monumental Complex of Santa Chiara is among the best things to do in Naples Italy.
The church got destroyed in a WWII bombing in 1943. The original church was built in the Gothic style and had a Baroque-style interior. However, the church got renovated in the Gothic style.
Visitors can enter the church for free. But there is an admission fee of 6 € for visiting the cloisters and the museum. The Monumental Complex of Santa Chiara is open from Monday to Saturday from 9:30 am to 5:30 pm and on Sunday from 10 am to 2:30 pm.
16. See Il Cristo Velato at Sansevero chapel
The Veiled Christ sculpture of Sansevero Chapel in Naples is among the most famous sculptures in Italy.
The sculpture of tortured body of Jesus shows His suffering. The sculpture of Veiled Christ is carved from one single block of marble. The statue shows the lifeless body of Jesus with a veil. The tissue-like veil is particularly impressive. It is made of the tiniest-possible cut of marble, and it seemingly rests on the face of Jesus.
Artist Giuseppe Sanmartino carved the sculpture in the late 18th century. The Veiled Christ statue stands in the center of Sansevero Chapel. The Sansevero Chapel is among the most famous museums in Naples. And it is one of the best museums in Italy for its Baroque sculptures like Modesty (Pudicizia) by Antonio Corradini and Disappointment (Il Disinganno) by Francesco Queirolo.
Sansavero Chapel is open every day from 9 am to 6.30 pm, except Tuesday when it is closed.
The Sansavero Chapel entrance fee is 10 €, and tickets are available only online. Taking photos in the Chapel is not allowed. By booking this tour you will explore the historic center and see the Veiled Christ in Sansevero Chapel.
17. Walk down Via di San Gregorio Armeno (or Christmas Alley)
Via de San Gregorio Armeno is a must-see street in Naples. The street is popularly known as Via dei Presepi. Via de San Gregorio Armeno is popularly known as the most beautiful street in Naples.
The San Gregorio Armeno street is full of artisan stores and workshops of prespi (nativity scenes). Prespe (prespe sg; prespi, pl) has been a crucial part of the Italian Christmas tradition for centuries.
The nativity scenes (with figures of baby Jesus, Mary, Joseph, the Three Kings, shepherds, and a shooting star) are traditional festive elements of Italian homes and public squares at Christmastime.
Naples is especially famous for its prespi. Via de San Gregorio Armeno is the street in Naples where you can see craft shops of the best nativity scenes.
18. Admire the Seven Acts of Mercy by Caravaggio
Pio Monte della Misericordia (Pio Monte of Mercy) in Naples holds The Seven Acts of Mercy painting, one of the masterpiece oil paintings of the 17th century in Italy.
Seven Neapolitan nobles founded Pio Monte of Mercy as a charity institution that commissioned the painting. The Seven Acts of Mercy painting by Caravaggio turned out to be a Baroque masterpiece.
The painting depicts the Seven Acts of Mercy of Christianity. The painting shows a woman visiting an imprisoned man and breast-feeding him (Acts of Mercy 1: Visit the imprisoned, and Act of Mercy 2: Feed the hungry), two men carrying a dead man (Act of Mercy 3: Bury the dead), a pilgrim asking for shelter (Act of Mery 4: Shelter the homeless), St Martin giving his robe to a bagger (Act of Mery 5: Clothe the naked), St Martin comforting the bagger (Act of Mercy 6: visit the sick), Samson drinking water (Act of Mercy 7: Refresh the thirsty).
Pio Monte della Misericordia is a small baroque church museum in Via dei Tribunali, near Naples Duomo. There is an entrance fee of 10 € for visiting the Pio Monte complex (the church and the palace). Seeing the Seven Acts of Mercy by Caravaggio is one of the best things to do in Naples Italy for art lovers.
19. Tour the Catacombs of St Gennaro
The San Gennaro Catacombs in Naples is the largest catacomb complex in southern Italy.
They are in the Sanita district in the northern part of Naples, popularly called The Valley of the Dead.
The tuff-carved catacombs feature a network of tunnels and passageways, more than 3000 burial places (graves and crypts), beautiful frescoes, a tuff-dug basilica mayor, the tomb of San Gennaro, the Crypt of Bishops, etc.
The catacombs are on two levels. The lower level is older than the upper level. The lower level dates back to pre-Cristian times. The Catacombs were named after St Gennaro (Januarius), the patron saint of Naples who got entombed there in the 5th century (His remains got moved to Naples Cathedral later in the 9th century).
A tour of the San Gennaro Catacombs lasts about one hour. Touring the San Gennaro Catacombs is among the top things to do in Naples Italy. I wholeheartedly recommend it!
The catacombs of San Gaudiose (the burial places amend after the bishop of Abitinia, Gaudiosus) are only one kilometer away from the Catacombs of St Gennaro. You can visit them with the same ticket within 12 months. Check out Catacombs of San Gennaro Entry Ticket & Guided Tour!
20. Have the best Margherita pizza in Naples
Pizza Margherita hails from Naples. Visiting Naples without tasting authentic Pizza Margherita is no option for true food lovers.
Gino e Toto Sorbillo is an iconic pizzeria in Napels. It belongs to one of the oldest families of pizza makers in Naples. This Michelin-awarded pizzeria has a long tradition of making the best pizzas in the city. Gino e Toto Sorbillo is the place to go if you are looking for the best pizza in Napoli.
Gino e Toto Sorbillo pizzeria is located in Via dei Tribunali 32. Head to Via Tribunals and have an authentic Pizza Margherita in a top Neapolitan pizzeria in the heart of Naples.
PS: Expect crowds. After all, it is the most famous pizzeria in Naples. Therefore aim to come at least 15 min before opening (at noon). You might be waiting in a queue, but still, it is worth eating there!
Gino e Toto Sorbillo pizzeria in Naples is open from Monday until Saturday from noon until 11:30 pm, and on Monday from noon until 3:30 pm.
21. Buy Napolitan Cornicello
Cornicello is a traditional red horn-shaped talisman from Naples. It is used for good luck and protection and traditionally hangs on the doorways of homes and businesses in Naples.
Napolitans are devoted Catholics, but cornicello belongs to their superstition tradition that goes back to 3,500 ago. It was associated with the ancient Roman goddesses of Venus and Luna. Corniecello was a fertility talisman and a protection talisman for mums and babies against evil.
Today cornicello is a symbol of Naples. Buying a cornicello souvenir is a must-do in Naples.
22. Visit the Archeological Museum
National Archaeological Museum in Naples is one of the most famous archeological museums in the world and arguably the best in Italy.
It exhibits an enormous collection of Egyptian, Roman, and Greek antiquities, most notably artifacts from Pompeii and Herculaneum. The original Pompeii objects are held in the Archaeological Museum, while replicas are on the site. The Archaeological Museum has the ‘Secret Cabinet’ (The Gabinetto Segreto) with a fantastic collection of erotic and phallic artifacts and sexually explicit frescoes and mosaics from the ancient Pompeii and Herculaneum. The erotic and phallic objects were related to fertility and good luck in ancient Pompeii and Herculaneum.
The famous mosaic from House of the Faun in Pompeii called the Battle of Alexander against Darius, some masterpiece marble statues like the Farnese Bull, the Farnese Hercules, the Donarium of Dying Figures, and a famous Portrait of Terentius Neo and his wife fresco are the must-sees in the National Archaeological Museum in Naples.
Plan to spend at least two hours touring the National Archaeological Museum. However, consider taking a tour with an archaeologist!
National Archaeological Museum in Naples is open for visits every day from 9 am until 7.30 pm, except Tuesdays when it is closed. The admission fee is 22 €.
23. See Caserta Royal Palace
The Royal Palace of Caserta was the main residence of the kings of Naples.
The Versailles-inspired Royal Palace of Caserta and its park are the finest examples of Baroque and Neoclassical art and architecture.
The Royal Palace of Caserta is the largest royal palace in the world. It has 5 floors, 2 underground floors, and 1,200 rooms. It spreads over 135,000 m2. Besides that, a 10-ha park, a 450 m-long square, and a 38 km-long aqueduct belong to the Palace Complex. The palace complex is a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
Versailles, the Royal Madrid Palace, Roman villas, and Tuscan villas inspired the aesthetics of the 18th-century Royal Palace of Caserta. But Caserta Palace surpassed with its beauty all of them.
The Royal Apartments, the Grand Staircase of Honour, the Palatine Library, the Royal Court Theatre, the Royal Nativity Scene Room, the French Garden, the English Garden, and the Italian Renaissance Garden are the most visited sites of the complex.
The Royal Palace of Caserta is 22 mi (35 km) from Naples. A train from Napoli Centrale train station to Caserta will get you directly in front of the Palace.
The Royal Palace of Caserta is open every day from 8:30 am to 7:30 pm, except on Tuesdays when it is closed. An entrance ticket costs 15 €. Choosing a guided tour with an art historian will take you to the hidden corners of the palace and gardens.
24. Sample the traditional food of Naples
Naples sightseeing is fun. But, it is even more fun when you do it while tasting some mouth-watering food!
Naples is a paradise for foodies. Margherita Pizza was invented in Naples. Naturally, Naples is known for the most delicious pizzas in Italy. Besides that, Naples is the city with the highest number of Michelin-starred restaurants in Italy.
So, taking a food tour of Naples is always a good idea. Explore Naples tourist attractions while tasting traditional Neapolitan food (like pizza, buffalo mozzarella, ragu, minestrone and mussel soup, Frittatina napoletana, sfogliatelle, baba cakes, etc.) along your way. Get valuable historical insights into the top Naples attractions and discover the best Naples food at hidden eaters in Naples.
25. See Toledo Metro Station
Toledo Underground Station is a famous metro station in the Spanish Quarter in Naples. It is known as the most beautiful station in Europe.
The station is painted in psychedelic violet-blue color, with some ochre and yellow touches. In addition, there is a large ‘Crater de Luz’ cone hole above the escalator. The cone beams the light onto the passengers.
It got decorated as a part of the ‘Art Stations’ project of the Naples Metro. The project aimed to bring art to the everyday life of ordinary people.
You don’t necessarily need to take the metro ride in Naples. But, head to via Toledo in Naples and check out this exceptional art station. Seeing the Art Toledo Metro station is one of the top free things to do in Naples Italy!
Toledo Underground Station is on via Toledo in the famous Spanish Quarter in Naples.
26. Visit Pompeii
Mount Vesuvius erupted in 79 AD and destroyed the ancient towns of Pompeii and Herculaneum. The volcanic ash covered them for the next 1,700 years when they were discovered, appearing frozen in time. Both Pompeii and Herculaneum are the most visited archeological sites in Italy.
Pompeii was a refined Greco-Roman city with Etruscan roots. This highly cultivated city had the monumental main square (forum), a 20,000-seat amphitheater, marvelous villas, elegant houses, bakeries, bathhouses, taverns, brothels, etc. It was home to about 20,000 people at the time of destruction.
Today the most popular Pompeii attractions are the Amphitheater (the oldest amphitheater of Ancient Rome, built in 70 BC), the Large Theater (another theatre with 5,000 seats), the Forum of Pompeii with the Temples of Venus, Apollo, and Jupiter, the grand Forum Baths ( public baths that served people of all social classes), Brothel of Pompeii, the Palaestra (open-air gym of Pompeii), and Villa Dei Misteri (with a famous fresco showing the initiation of a bride into a mystery cult), and the Garden of the Fugitives (with 13 body plaster casts.
The archeological park of Pompeii is a UNESCO World Heritage site. Touring fascinating Pompeii is among the best day trips from Naples Italy.
Pompeii is along the shores of the Bay of Naples and about 5 mi from Mount Vesuvius, 14 mi (23 km) from Naples, and about 16 mi from Sorrento.
The archeological park of Pompeii is open every day from 9 am until 7 pm (April- October) and from 9 am until 5 pm (November – March). The entrance fee is 11 € (free for kids).
By taking this tour you can visit Pompeii and Mount Vesuvius in one day!
27. Hike Vesuvius
Mount Vesuvius is the volcano that destroyed ancient Pompeii and Herculaneum.
It is still an active volcano and the only active volcano in the mainland of Europe. The last eruption of Mt Vesuvius was in 1944. That eruption took 26 lives and displaced about 12,000 people. Vesuvius is still active. But, there is only light steam on the great crater.
Today hiking Mt Vesuvius is on the bucket list of many travelers.
Mt Vesuvius is only 5 mi (8 km ) from Naples and 6 mi (10 km) from Pompeii. An entry fee to Vesuvius National Park is 10 € (free for kids).
Visiting Pompeii and Vesuvius in one day from Naples is among the most popular day trips from Naples. Check out this Full-Day Pompeii and Mount Vesuvius Tour from Naples!
Herculaneum and Pompeii are not too far from each other. Pompeii and Herculaneum are only 11 mi (18 km) apart.
However, the Archeological park of Herculaneum is closer to Naples than Pompeii. Herculaneum is only 8 mi (11 km) from Naples.
In addition, the buildings of Herculaneum are better preserved than Pompeii. But, Pompeii got more famous than Herculaneum for the bodies found in Pompeii. You can see body plaster casts in Pompeii and skeletons in Herculaneum. Besides that, Herculaneum is a smaller site than Pompeii. You can visit Herculaneum in two to three hours, while four hours is the minimum for visiting Pompeii.
The Casa dello Scheletro (House of Skeleton), Thermae (Baths), Samnite House, House of Galba, Casa dell’Albergo (Inn), Casa del Tramezzo de Legno, House of the Neptune Mosaic, Casa del Tramezzo de Legno (House of the Wooden Partition) and Fornici (the warehouses with skeletons) are the most visited sites in Pompeii.
If you lack time on your Naples itinerary to see Pompeii and you would like to see one of the most famous archeological sites in Italy and beyond, consider visiting Herculaneum. Take Herculaneum Skip-the-Line Tour with Archaeologist for the ultimate experience of this unique site!
The Archaeological Park of Herculaneum is open every day from 8.30 am to 6 pm except on Wednesdays when is closed.
29. See the street art of Spanish quarters
Quartieri Spagnoli, the Spanish Quarters in Naples, is one of the most famous quarters in Naples for its unique charm and fabulous graffiti.
Spanish Quarters is the soul of Naples. Picturesque narrow alleys with shops, stores, small taverns, pizzerias, homes, and hanging clothing in the sun make Spanish Quarters one of the most charming neighborhoods in Naples. The neighborhood is famous for its exceptional street art, especially Maradona graffiti. Diego Maradona played for Napoli from 1984 until 1991, when Napoli won several trophies. Even since then, Maradona has been enjoying a cult status among Nepoleteans. There are a bunch of Maradona graffiti and even altar-like spots in Spanish Quarters. Today there are some of the most visited places in Naples.
The district got its name after Spanish troops who lived there with their families after the Spanish conquest of Naples in the 16th century.
The district belongs to the historical part of Naples and has been one of the most densely populated neighborhoods of Naples for centuries. Spanish Quarters have been associated with crime, prostitution, and lustful amusement. However, today it is one of the most visited neighborhoods in Naples because of its authentic Naples vibe and charm. Strolling Spanish Quarters is among the most fun things to do in Naples Italy. The Spanish Quarters district is west of Via Toledo.
30. Knock on the tomb of Father Don Dolindo Ruotolo
There is one place in Naples that is very dear to my heart. And that place is the tomb of Father Don Dolindo Ruotolo.
Don Dolindo Ruotolo was a Catholic priest from Naples. He was a preacher, spiritual guide, writer, and mystic. Don Dolindo Ruotolo is best known for ‘Jesus, you take care of it!’ Surrender Novena.
‘Jesus, you take care of it!’ Surrender Novena
… Surrender to me does not mean to fret, to be upset, or to lose hope, nor does it mean offering to me a worried prayer asking me to follow you and change your worry into prayer. It is against this surrender, deeply against it, to worry, to be nervous and to desire to think about the consequences of anything.
It is like the confusion that children feel when they ask their mother to see to their needs, and then try to take care of those needs for themselves so that their childlike efforts get in their mother’s way. Surrender means to placidly close the eyes of the soul, to turn away from thoughts of tribulation and to put yourself in my care, so that only I act, saying, “You take care of it.”
How many things I do when the soul, in so much spiritual and material need, turns to me, looks at me and says to me, “You take care of it,” then closes its eyes and rests. In pain you pray for me to act, but that I act in the way you want. You do not turn to me, instead, you want me to adapt to your ideas. You are not sick people who ask the doctor to cure you, but rather sick people who tell the doctor how to. So do not act this way, but pray as I taught you in the Our Father: “Hallowed be thy Name,” that is, be glorified in my need. “Thy kingdom come,” that is, let all that is in us and in the world be in accord with your kingdom. “Thy will be done on Earth as it is in Heaven,” that is, in our need, decide as you see fit for our temporal and eternal life. If you say to me truly: “Thy will be done,” which is the same as saying: “You take care of it,” I will intervene with all my omnipotence, and I will resolve the most difficult situations..
Father Dolindo Ruotolo was a humble servant of God who lived in simplicity, chose great poverty, faced many life adversities, and experienced many sufferings. He advocated a spiritual practice called the ‘spirituality of surrender’.
Probably you already know who Padre Pio was and how much Padre Pio worshiped is in Italy and beyond. Neapolitans love St Padre Pio and pray for his intercession. There are numerous small altars with images and sculptures of Padre Pio in the streets of Naples.
Padre Pio respected one priest from Naples a lot. That was his contemporary Don Dolindo Ruotolo. He referred to Don Dolindo as a saint in whose soul the whole paradise existed.
Father Dolindo Ruotolo suffered for everyone and prayed for everyone. He had gifts of prophecy and miracles.
Father Dolindo died with a promise that anyone in need who knocks on his tomb three times will get the answer. Today many faithful come to the tomb and knock on the tomb three times.
The tomb of Father Dolindo Ruotolo is in the church of San Giuseppe dei Vecchi e Immacolata di Lourdes in Via Salvatore Tommasi in Naples.
31. See Castel dell’Ovo
The Castel dell’Ovo (Egg Castle) is the oldest castle in Naples and a landmark of Naples. The 12th-century castle stands on a former island but today a peninsula.
This ancient Roman castle got its name after an egg that, according to a legend, Roman poet Virgil put in its foundation.
While Castle Nuovo and Castle St Elmo have admission fees, entrance to Cestel dell’Ovo is free.
The castle is known for its great location for romantic sunset views. So, if you enjoy magical sunset views, head to Castle dell’Ovo in Naples.
Napoli tourist attractions map
Popular tourist attractions in Naples Italy
- Best Truffle Hunting in Italy: When & Where to Go Truffle Hunting in Italy - November 4, 2023
- Best Barcelona Food Tours: 11 BEST Food & Wine Tours in Barcelona - October 31, 2023
- Traditional Foods of Barcelona: Barcelona Food Guide (2023) - October 25, 2023