Italy
Naples

Here you’ll find travel reports about Naples. Discover travel destinations in Italy of travelers writing a travel blog on FindPenguins.

189 travelers at this place:

  • Day6

    Sorrento

    October 4 in Italy

    Eine Stadt auf Felsen gebaut 😃

    Ohhhh wie wundervoll ist diese Stadt und dann noch dieses Wetter. Ein Traum 🌞 Leider waren wir nur bis 14 Uhr mit dem Schiff vor Anker. Ich hab mich mit meiner Arbeit beeilt und bin um 11 Uhr schnell rausgegangen. Hab dort eine leckere Pizza und ein Eis zum Nachtisch gegessen - mjami. Hinter jeder Ecke gab es so schöne Dinge zu sehen, wäre gern da geblieben.

  • Day272

    Pompeii

    March 25, 2017 in Italy

    Camping Zeus was only a few hundred meters away from the entrance to Pompei ruins. The entrance ticket only entitled us to one entry, so with a picnic in our bag and camera in hand we headed in. The site was huge, but we took it one bit at a time, looking first at the covered baths whose walls depicted erotic art deemed unsuitable for children by the Vatican. We like to think of ourselves as quite liberal minded but in this case there may have been some justification, as even Will wouldd have classed it as pornography rather than erotic art!

    There was a mixture of emotions looking round, in one sense it was amazing to see the remains of such a large Roman settlement (20,000 people) so well preserved. In another sense, the reason for this state of preservation is so tragic. Despite the majority of residents having been evacuated, it is thought that some 2000 people perished here when Mount Vesuvius erupted and covered the town back in 79AD.

    Continuing further into the ruined city we saw room after ordinary room, helping to build up the impression of a functioning civilisation, an element that wasn't present at other Roman sites where the sole focus was on a large Amphitheatre or grand temple. Alongside the houses there was a basilica, a market place and several temples, their tall columns in various states of preservation. Large smooth dark cobblestones, sometimes interspersed with flecks of white marble, lined roads between the buildings. Will was particularly interested in the 'house of geometric mosaics' where the floor of each room displayed a different design. While the high walls often obscured any view beyond the city, the assembly areas frequently had a view of the still active Vesuvius volcano that wreaked such devastation.

    At around midday we were on the lookout for somewhere to eat our picnic when Will partially lost vision in both eyes. He had experienced this nearly a year ago and it had been diagnosed as a TIA (mini stroke). It lasted for around 30 minutes and had returned to normal when the site doctor and nurse arrived to check his blood pressure and pulse. They advised we go to hospital and called an ambulance that arrived at the entrance. The paramedics checked his vitals but by this time the site doctor had left us. The crew asked whether he had been wearing a hat and had drunk water, both of which we confirmed, but because there were no lasting symptoms, they advised we return to the van and have something to eat in the shade. It was a good thing Will had his European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) with him! We have been attempting to live healthier lives since last year's TIA but will redouble our efforts in light of today's sobering experience.
    Read more

  • Day25

    Day 25 - Capri - Best Day Ever

    October 4, 2017 in Italy

    Today was absolutely the best day ever. And Capri is absolutely the best place ever. It is basically a giant island made up of giant cliffs and giant rock formations that stick hundreds of feet out of the Mediterranean Sea, with views of the Bay of Naples, the Sorrento Coast, the Amalfi Coast, Mount Vesuvius, and, at some points, just water as far as the eye can see. About three quarters of the island is beautiful empty cliffs while the other quarter manages to squeeze a couple of small towns - Capri, down on the water, and Anacapri - up in the cliffs.

    We started our day by walking the short but steep walk from our beautiful bed and breakfast down to Anacapri town (with a friendly kitten) to catch the chair lift to the top of Mount Solaro. I am terrified of heights and was terrified to get on this single-person chair lift to the highest point on the island. I didn't do well. I gripped the railing and either stared at the cliff on my left or closed my eyes the entire way...not once looking at the beautiful view of the water and town and cliffs on my right. Once we made it to the top, we got off and walked around and I got to actually take in the beautiful scenery. It was amazing. I am so glad we took this trip in September/October because there were not that many people on the mountain. I imagine in the summer there is barely room to stand, let alone grab a seat overlooking the cliffs. We had a cold beer and relaxed and I built up the strength to take the lift down instead of hiking all the way down. The ride down was beautiful.

    Once we got back down, we had a quick pizza, and took the crazy bus down to the Capri marina for a private boar tour around the island. I'm not sure what to say about this tour except that it was the absolute highlight of the trip. I can't think of much else I've ever done to top it. We spent three hours in a private boat, riding around the entire island of Capri, sipping wine and beer, swimming, and taking in the views. We went into several caves, swam in caves and grottos, and saw the island in the best way imaginable. The white grotto was amazing, with it's natural Madonna statue. The green grotto was beautiful, and Tim was able to scale the rocks inside and dive in. But nothing could ever compare to the blue grotto.

    I had read so much about the blue grotto this past year. I knew it would be amazing. But everything I read said that you paid a small boat a lot of money to take you inside the grotto with a dozen other boats, turn you around, and you're out in 2 minutes. I had also read that, before and after hours (9-5), the boats and the cops leave and sometimes the locals just swim in. I had wanted to do this and had told everyone I would do this for the past year. Well that's how our boat trip ended. He dropped us off near the entrance and told us to have fun. We swam over to the tiny opening (I have no idea how any boat can fit in), we pulled ourselves in on the rope, and we saw the most beautiful thing imaginable. The entire cave is lit up with a glowing bright blue water that I can't even describe. We spent a long time in the cave, swimming and climbing and diving off rocks. It was unreal.

    Then we rode back to the marina, dried off, changed, had a good pasta dinner, and now we're ready for bed. What a day!
    Read more

  • Day23

    Day 23 - Kayaking Naples

    October 2, 2017 in Italy

    Well...the slightly sore throat that I've had for a couple of days turned into a full blown cold overnight. But I decided to push through and make it to our 11:00 kayaking tour that we had scheduled. And I'm so glad I did! We were the only people on the tour. We basically paid less than it costs to rent a kayak for an hour in a tourist beach town for a 3 hour kayak tour around the cliffs and caves of Naples with a private guide. We were the only people in the water and had an amazing view of the entire Bay of Naples. It was awesome and beautiful - definitely one of the highlights of the trip so far. But by the time it was over, I had no energy left for the underground tunnel tour we wanted to do so we went back to the Airbnb for a much needed rest day. We napped, ate pizza, and watched Netflix all day and night. It's been great. Hopefully I feel better tomorrow as we set off to Capri!!Read more

  • Day24

    Day 24 - Capri!

    October 3, 2017 in Italy

    Wow...Capri is beautiful! We left Naples this morning for the short ferry ride to Capri. Then we hailed a cab from the ferry port and rode in the back of the open convertible up through the mountains and along the windy rode to our Airbnb in the highlands of Anacapri. We decided to stay up here in the quieter Monte Solaro area instead of down in the crazy packed Capri, filled with day trippers. Our Airbnb, which is actually a family owned bed and breakfast, is probably the highest point that we could be staying, with gorgeous views of the cliffs, the Mediterranean Sea, and the island of Ischia. We ordered delivery salad and pasta and set up on the pool deck for a late lunch. Then we walked down the steep hill (about a 5 minute walk down...but about 20 minutes back up) to the Anacapri town. We walked around for a little bit and then returned to the pool deck for the beautiful sunset. We decided not to go back down for dinner, since I am still not feeling great. We are going to have another relaxing night and hopefully I will be feeling better tomorrow to explore the island.Read more

  • Day22

    Day 22 - Naples Arrival - Pompeii

    October 1, 2017 in Italy

    We woke up early and headed south. Our first stop in Southern Italy is a quick two-night stay in Naples, the birthplace of pizza! We checked into our Airbnb and went straight to Pompeii. The first Sunday of every month, all monuments are free and we were able to get into Pompeii for free! We spent a few hours wandering through the ruins. It was really cool to see, with Mt Vesuvius towering behind. Now we are back in with delivery pizza for an early night.Read more

  • Day274

    9 months away & a visit to Naples

    March 27, 2017 in Italy

    We've been on the road for 9 months today. These monthly milestones seem to be coming closer and closer together as we become more settled in this way of life.
    Our journey happens everyday and although Vicky likes to plan, we've been on our own for the last 6 months and have embraced not knowing exactly where we will be next month, next week or even tomorrow, as our plans often change depending on what we encounter. While we've got a month by month itinerary of which country we'll be in, we don't plan our week by week until close to the time we go. We sometimes set off with a stopover in the sat nav, but if the van is serviced and we intend to wild camp, we don't know where we'll be sleeping. A major advantage is the element of discovery and surprise. A disadvantage, if you can call it that, is that without set plans for specific dates and places, we don't look forward with any level of detail or spend time visualising and anticipating as we would when we used to plan a week's holiday to somewhere familiar like Bala in Wales. Its friends and family to the rescue in this respect because we are lucky to be able to look forward to several highly anticipated visits in the coming months!

    Anyway, enough of this introspection, we are in Napoli, the home of Neapolitan pizza! Our Italian camperstop book told us there was overnight parking available at the port for a charge as well as a campsite a little further out of town. The parking was within walking distance from the centre, so we headed for this first and programmed the campsite in as a backup.

    It was with more than a little trepidation that we exited the motorway and began to negotiate the city streets. We'd met a Dutch couple a few days ago who had just come from Naples and described it as a 'crazy city' (and not in a good way). The Rough Guides description backed this up, so we had our wits about us. After asking two people, we found the parking within the busy port complex and although it was €30 for 24 hours, we decided the proximity to the centre and the on site parking attendant made it worth it.

    After taking care of Poppy, we strode out in search of lunch. The day was overcast and cooler than we'd been used to, with a few rain showers. Vicky found it quite refreshing to see Italy in this weather as she still felt all the warmth and sunshine was a bit unreal.

    Ironically, the marketside pizzeria wanted to flog us a Margherita and seemed not to understand 'Pizza Napoli' until we pointed it out on their menu board. We took it away and perched on a crumbling concrete planter at the side of the road to devour it and the deep fried dough balls they'd thrown in. It was just the ticket, being able to soak in the sights and feel of the city while eating our delicious local lunch.

    We'd come to the Forcella, at night it was apparently a Mafia stronghold but in the day it was a crazy bustling hive of activity, with market stalls lining streets, filling squares and squeezing in any place they saw fit. There was a mix of Italian, west Asian and African cultures that brought a vibrancy to the city, although there was a definite hierarchy, with the African sellers performing their trade from rugs layed on the pavement.

    The city certainly had 'Sass' and there was a hardness to the people that we hadn't seen in other areas of Italy, but when you approached them with a friendly smile and made the effort to talk Italian, the majority were warm and friendly and we didn't have any negative experiences. Strangely enough, although we didn't relax when out and about, it felt like our sort of place. Vicky loved routing through the second hand clothes stalls, Will loved the fresh fruit, veg and fish being sold on the street and we both loved the the diversity. There were many distinct areas, from the Asian district, the markets where locals bought their fare, the tourist section with trinkets and inflated prices, the artisan eateries and the few attempts at modernisation. There was graffiti everywhere, a certain amount of rubbish and most cars had prominent dents and scratches. The majority of houses were ramshakle tenements with flaking plaster, but these had been built around (and sometimes on top of), some beautifully grand historical buildings, many of which had fallen into disrepair, so that you had to actively look about you to see them.

    An unexpected treat came in the form of a visit to the Napoli Sotteranea; underground tunnels built by the Romans, in which had existed a meeting place for philosophers and shops such as a bakery, a dyeing shop, a bank and a laundry (Vicky couldn't resist playing at hand washing -she'd been doing so much of it recently!)

    Towards the end of our exploration we bought a couple of pastries and ate them sitting on the slightly damp wicker chairs in a narrow thoroughfare, one of the chairs having recently been righted after being knocked over by a car crawling between the pedestrians and street furniture.

    Vicky had had her fill and so returned to the van and made a salad for tea. She wasn't best impressed when Will returned with a supposed Naples 'speciality' of
    deep fried pizza, considering he is now trying to lose weight!

    We revisited the markets before setting off the next morning and came home with some gorgeous looking fish, prawns, some veg, bread and strawberries that Will later made into jam. There are many people who wouldn't like Naples. Perhaps being pre-warned helped us prepare for its overbearing character, but we both loved our time there!
    Read more

  • Day271

    The Amalfi Coast and Camping Zeus

    March 24, 2017 in Italy

    Our aim today was to drive the Amalfi Coast road. We zipped up the motorway to the start of this famously stunning peninsula and set out on the route that would lead us around its perimeter.

    From this point onwards driving became extremely difficult, the road was of a width that we could pass cars most of the time if we slowed right down and breathed in. Sometimes it wasn't wide enough, so required constant forward planning about possible places to stop in order that we might fit. Towns were worse due to bad parking and people wandering into the roadway without looking or simply using it as a convenient place to stand and chat with their group of amici. Another complicating factor were the overhanging balconies or rockfaces that meant we couldn't pull over to the side of the road because the top of the van would collide with them. Not that the oncoming cars took consideration of this.

    Other places have been difficult to drive and forced us to go slow, but there seemed a real impatience and rush about the other drivers here that wasn't just directed towards us, but any vehicle in front of them that was moving at a pace slower than they thought they could go. As soon as they came up behind they would toot their horns and continue doing it until they could pass- not the easiest of things to do when the angle of the bends often necessitated us to use the other side of the road so as not to scrape the van.

    It wasn't just the car drivers that were bad, bus drivers were very stressed and were often worse at blasting their loud horns, demanding that we pull over at some bend and allow them to overtake. Convex mirrors were everywhere in an attempt to give people advance notice of what was around the bend, but many had been involved in collisions and were either smashed or skewed at such an angle they weren't much use to anyone. One town we came across had a dodgems ride which we sarcastically suggested might be a training facility for local teenagers in preparation for the real thing!

    Poor Will was at the wheel and didn't really get to admire the incredible scenery. The precipitous bare faced cliffs rose dramatically from the sea and civilisation had often been carved out of the rock. Lemon tree plantations, most of them covered in black nets, grew on sharp terraces that stepped up the slopes. Towns huddled in the bays created by narrow rivers cutting a deep course through hundreds of meters of rock until they reached the Tyrrenian. On the seaward side, a vast expanse of rich blue spread out until it encountered a mist (possibly pollution) that shrouded the base of the distant peaks, viewed only in grey silhouette. There was a unique beauty about the area that we were wowed with, despite the white knuckle driving.

    In the end, we were pulled over by the Carabinieri who informed us that motorhomes weren't allowed on the main road between 6am and midnight. They could tell by our pale, overstressed faces that we didn't know this and said they wouldn't fine us, but would escort us to an exit where we could escape the madness (our words, not theirs).

    Climbing up the cliff, the road became gradually wider and quieter and we were very grateful to the police! We stopped off so Will could buy an espresso, then found a pizzarria that did takeout for lunch. Sitting in the van eating a Neopolitan each, we calmed down enough to drive the 30km to Pompeii, where we planned to spend the night. Yet another stopover was closed down so we returned to a site called Camping Zeus, that we'd seen advertised near the entrance to the Pompeii ruins. Being so close to this historic place we were worried they would charge exorbitant prices and be overcrowded and noisy, but found that €18 was an acceptable price and were pleasantly surprised when we were able to park up on grass in an orange grove with no near neighbours. We got the chairs and Poppy's bed out and relaxed in the dappled shade until the sun went down, listening to the evening chorus as the blackbirds hopped about looking for worms and a mate. The good news is that after enforced rest, Poppy is feeling a lot better and able to get about without falling.
    Read more

  • Day273

    Mount Vesuvius

    March 26, 2017 in Italy

    Today we looked into the crater of the only active volcano on mainland Europe; Mount Vesuvius!

    We bought tickets from the campsite reception that covered transport and entry to the National Park, before catching the dedicated bus from just outside. It was a real relief to relinquish responsibility for getting there to someone else. The vehicle hurtled along over the speed limit and beeping at anything in front that dared to go slower. On the cobbled hill road we could hardly hear what each other was saying due to the cacophony of squeaking and banging and the roaring engine of the bus. We sat on plastic seats with bare metal rails and no sign of seatbelts. The driver himself held on to a support rail with one hand as he slung us round bends with the other. The area we travelled through was urban but we were able to catch glimpses of Vesuvius's ominous dark grey slopes, its peak shrouded in white cloud.

    We transferred to a 4x4 bus at the edge of the National Park with padded coach seats and seatbelts (albeit non functioning). The cab bounced about seemingly separately from the coach, so much so it had torn away from the rubber joiner between them, through which daylight now shone. It took us up into the pine forest, on dilapidated concrete, then rickety cobbles covered in grit, kicking up a plume of dust behind. We passed a ranger on a skewbald horse and several cyclists, runners and walkers.

    We climbed and climbed round countless hairpin bends. Evidence of forest fires remained in the charred trunks of trees beside the road. Our ears popped and we attained an altitude where the height of the trees reduced and we could see the bay of Naples spread below, the sun reflecting back from the roofs of factories and shopping centres within the conurbation.

    The 4x4 pulled up at the car park 1050m above sea level. From here we walked up a grit track with the vegetation getting gradually less as the stone and reddy brown rocks took over. Clouds blew over the path as the environment became increasingly inhospitable. We were glad we'd worn trainers and not our walking sandals because the ground was loose and we slipped frequently. 15 minutes later we reached the summit and were able to peer over into the base of the crater. There was the odd small tree, a little grass and a few small patches of ground flowers visible but the rest was rock. From certain places on the sides, smoke was wafting out.

    The path led us half way round the crater, so we were able to see it from different perspectives. It was an incredible feeling to be in such an extreme place; leading down to Naples, you could see the rivers of shingle cutting through the forest and get an idea of the destructive power. The 40 minute drive from Pompeii, the settlement previously obliterated by Vesuvius, had added a sense of scale to the volcano's reach.

    We didn't get to spend as much time up there as Vicky would have liked as the bus driver had showed us a sign indicating we needed to return to the car park within an hour. Being used to doing things at our own pace in the van we hadn't asked if we could get a later bus, so it was a brisk walk back down the slippery shingle slope. We arrived 2 minutes late, but had to wait another 8 minutes for the bus. Getting settled on the warm cushioned seats, it was only after 5 minutes that Vicky realised her seat was wet with goodness knows what. At least it made her appreciate the plastic seats of the bus that returned us to the campsite!

    We don't often go on organised tours such as this because part of the joy of the motor home is being able to do things independently. In one sense it was great because it took all of the stress out of driving, we didn't need to organise where to park or worry about the van suspension taking a battering. On the downside, we felt pressured for time and worried about what would happen if we missed the bus. We'd definitely do something like this again, but learn from our experience and ask about possible alternatives that would suit us better.
    Read more

You might also know this place by the following names:

Provincia di Napoli, Neapel, Naples, Napoles, Napoli, Nápoles

Join us:

FindPenguins for iOS FindPenguins for Android

Sign up now