The famous proverb “Vedi Napoli e poi muori”, literally “See Naples, then die”, is the perfect emblem of the beauty of this city: once you see Naples, you can die in peace, knowing you’ve seen the best.
This sentence, reportedly pronounced by the poet and novelist Johann Wolfgang Goethe in the 19th century, was inspired by the exceptional views of what was then the capital of the Kingdom of the Two Sicilies. Of course, just a few decades later Italy was unified and Naples was no longer a capital, but it remained a very important city, strategic for transportation and business alike.
What to see in Naples?
Today, around 3,8 million tourists coming from all over the world visit Naples every year, and they don’t do it only for the best pizzas in the world, the mouthwatering mozzarella, the delicious seafood dishes or the appetizing pastiera Napoletana, struffoli or babà, but also for the richness and historical interest of its amazing city centre, listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
Amongst the most exceptional monuments and landmarks in the city of Naples, there is so much not to miss: the stunning Royal Palace, former residence of the House of Bourbon, the Archaeological Museum with its rich collection of Roman history, the Royal Theatre of Saint Charles (Teatro San Carlo), the oldest continuously active opera venue in the entire world, opened in 1737, the various Catacombs disseminated all over the area, the luxurious Royal Palace of Capodimonte with its baroque interiors and its beautiful gardens, and so much more.
The surroundings of Naples
The view of the Vesuvius is a constant presence from any corner of the city, and its beautiful mountain can be explored on a hike on its Trail. Not far from its magnificent slopes, the archaeological sites of Pompei and Ercolano, buried under the volcano’s ashes in 79 A.D and perfectly preserved ever since, are a truly unique experience.
Continuing South, the lovely town of Sorrento introduces its tourists to the world-famous Amalfi Coast: a magnificent peninsula stretching inside the waters of the splendid Gulf of Naples, the ultimate romantic getaway. The town of Amalfi, which was in the Middle Ages one of the 4 Italian Maritime Republics, and the picturesque cliffside town of Positano, with its labyrinth-like streets and its lovely beaches, are true gems that no one should ever miss.