Enjoy Some Winter Sun In Naples
Head To Naples Out Of Season For A Cultural Treat
Naples in Southern Italy is perfectly located for day trips to Pompeii and Capri and also appeals to art lovers with its thirteen art stations on the Metro.
Italy’s third city of Napoli, known to English-speakers as Naples, is well worth considering for a bit of last minute winter sun this year. With a population of just over a million, it is located in Southern Italy on the west coast which faces the Tyrrhenian Sea and enjoys a mild climate even in winter.
Whilst Naples might have once experienced tales of street crime, piled-up rubbish and traffic jams, it has completely revamped its image and is now seen as a magnet to culture vultures. It also serves some of the finest sea food in Italy.
Art and Theatre
Some of the best art can be found underground, as the Metro Napoli’s publicly funded project has transformed 13 of its stops into ‘Art Stations’ to form a decentralised museum across the city. The renovation of stations has been taking place for over a decade now, but one of the most superb examples is the Metro Toledo station which is situated beneath one of the city’s busiest shopping boulevards – Via Toledo. The station opened in 2012 and was designed by a Spanish firm of architects known as Oscar Tusquets Blanca. The theme of water surrounds the station and incorporates many engaging mosaics which are a treat for the eyes of travellers and commuters alike.
Street theatre also allows the opportunity to be entertained on the move. One of the best spots to enjoy some drama is the Porta Nolana market. This is where you can find many imitation goods such as designer handbags, although the locals descend here to haggle over fresh seafood caught in the bay.
Day Trips From Naples
Naples is perfectly placed to be used as a base for some of the most historic and beautiful sights that Italy has to offer. The Circumvesuviana train allows tourists to easily gain access to the ancient cities of Pompeii and Herculaneum that were destroyed yet preserved during the 79AD eruption of Mount Vesuvius. The towns were covered under a layer of volcanic ash and due to the lack of oxygen and moisture, many objects from the time have been collected, which are now housed in the National Museum of Archaeology in Naples.
Capri also makes for an excellent day trip from Naples. Ferries run to the small island regularly throughout the winter and a high speed boat will get you there in as little as 50 minutes. Travellers will enjoy a trip on the chairlift up Monte Solano which offers spectacular views. The lifts are open until 4pm during the winter. If the weather is good, then another excellent excursion is a boat trip inside the Grotta Azzurra, the Blue Grotto of Capri. If the ticket office is closed, a local fisherman will often be happy to take you.
Where To Stay In Naples
As Naples is a large city, it is able to offer a wide range of ‘pensione’, B&Bs, self-catering apartments and hotels of varying classes. The Historic Centre of Naples is a wonderful place to stay as it is close to the Museo Archeologico Nazionale and also has a plethora of fantastic restaurants. Another lovely area is down at the Bay, which offers fantastic views of Mount Vesuvius. Staying in Naples out of season means that you’re likely to have a better pick of available accommodation and of course there are less queues for everything.
Airlines such as British Airways, EasyJet and Meridiana fly direct from the UK to Naples International airport. Take out some European travel insurance and book your flight today.