Useful tips for your trip to Naples
Naples is colorful, hectic and loud. If you travel to the southern Italian city for the first time, you can easily be overwhelmed by its liveliness. Therefore, I would like to share with you some helpful tips for your trip to Naples that will surely make your visit a unique and beautiful experience.[You can find specific sights and places you have to see in Naples here: Naples – The City of a Thousand Impressions ]
… over the city
Naples (Italian Napoli) is the third largest city in Italy with almost a million inhabitants. And you can tell! Car engines, children screaming, loud conversations or the rattling of a motorcycle – the city never feels really quiet.
Despite its large population, the city is not overly large. As a tourist it is almost everything within walking distance – in the one week I was there I didn't have to take the metro once (which of course also had to do with the conveniently located B&B where I stayed).
The Port city is the capital of the Campania region and is considered the economic and cultural center of southern Italy. Naples has a long history and was originally a Greek settlement that then came under Roman rule. The “Centro Storico”, the old town, is characterized by numerous historical buildings and has been declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
Even though the city is so old, you don't necessarily find the classic structure of an old city. There is no visible city center in which important buildings can be found and to which everything more or less leads. Rather, the city is one A series of different neighborhoods and buildings. This can make it difficult to get an overview at first. However, exploring the Old Town is a good place to start (you can find out more about this below).
The old town with its many narrow streets and its overpopulation stands in contrast to the partly large suburbs. Also the difference between rich and poor can be recognized quite quickly; the richer parts of the city are to the west of the center.
... about crime in Naples
With poverty often comes crime. Many websites warn you about how dangerous Naples is. And yes, Naples has a problem with crime. As a tourist, however, you usually don't come into contact with it - provided you are a little careful. I was almost paranoid when I arrived in Naples because of the many warnings from the internet and relatives. I hardly dared to take out my phone or take my eyes off my bag for even a second. However, that quickly became too strenuous for me. I restricted myself to not walking around alone at night and keeping my bag securely closed and in sight. So nothing happened to me at all. So it is a little caution is required – but you definitely don’t have to go crazy.
… about your stay in Naples
Ideal for a city trip, just a few days are enough to get to know the city and get an idea of it. However, many can be done from there Excursions into the surrounding area or go on islands. It is worth staying a little longer and “taking in” popular tourist attractions such as Pompeii, Herculaneum or the Amalfi Coast.
In Naples there are mainly B&Bs . This has the advantage that you can stay quite cheaply. In general, a vacation in Naples is a must unexpensive become. You can get pizza from 4-5 euros and tickets for local transport, for example, are pretty cheap. Yay!
You should know that Naples is a “pure” port city and cannot boast of miles of white sandy beaches. There is a tiny “beach section” at the harbor – but it is more like a small hole with a bit of sand sprinkled around it. At least the locals don't mind - they still swim there.
However, we spoiled holidaymakers are not satisfied with this in most cases. But there's no need to worry - there are plenty of options in the Naples area Opportunities to lie down on the beach and swimming in the sea: in the beach resorts “Bagno Elena” and “Il Bikini” or on the shores of Sorrento, for example (not to mention the islands of Capri and Ischia – absolute recommendation from me!). The only catch: Here you almost always pay entry or a fee for loungers or parasols.
Tips for your trip to Naples
The traffic in Naples, like most other Italian cities, is really crazy. It feels like everyone does what they want, and it's not uncommon to see cars that look pretty worn out. There is little consideration for pedestrians and motorbikes crowd through the tiniest of alleys. Everything still works surprisingly well, somehow it always fits. It works best for us as tourists if we simply adapt as best we can - i.e.: go with the flow .
Save money with the artecard
If you spend more than two days in Naples, I can give you that artecard very much to heart. The Citypass is available in different versions (3-days / 5-days / only Naples / also the surrounding area / etc.) and is extremely worth it. With the Campania 3-day pass for 32 euros, for example, you get 100% of the entry price on your first two entries and up to 50% on all subsequent entries from then on. Local transport (bus, metro) in Naples and the Circumvesuviana line (see next point) are also included. The artecard can be ordered online and then picked up at the airport or train station in Naples. It is valid for three days (72 hours) from the first activation.
If you would like to visit the crater of Vesuvius, please be sure to say so when you pick up your ticket! I have heard of cases where entry to Mount Vesuvius was not discounted… Better safe than sorry.
The only train line you need to know
The Circumvesuviana connects Naples and Sorrento and stops at important sights such as Pompeii, Herculaneum or Vesuvius. A trip to Herculaneum costs 1.30 euros; To Sorrento you pay 3.90 euros (one way). The trams are quite old and rickety, but they are also a cheap way to get to your desired destination. It takes about 20 minutes to get to Herculaneum, about 40 minutes to Pompeii and a little over an hour to Sorrento. The Circumvesuviana is included in some artecard city passes (see above).
PRO TIP: If you are traveling from Naples and can reach both major train stations (Napoli Garibaldi and Porta Nolana) equally well, then leave Porta Nolana away. This is the first stop of the Circumvesuviana and you are much more likely to get one of the coveted seats here than in Garibaldi. This is where most tourists get on and it gets extremely crowded…
You almost always pay in restaurants 1.50 – 2 euros per person for the service (The tip is added on top).
I definitely recommend one as a “secret weapon” against the very high temperatures in the summer months subjects to take with you. At least that was my salvation!
If you want to take a ferry to one of the nearby islands (Capri or Ischia), then it is always better early enough before the boat leaves the harbor to be. Boat travel times often change spontaneously and some trips are sold out or full early on. The crossings are usually not very cheap and there are various providers right at the port. A trip by ferry to Ischia (round trip), for example, costs around 35 euros per person. It's best to buy the return ticket together with the outbound ticket!
If you want to take a tour of the island on Capri, it is a good idea to buy the tickets in Naples as a combined ticket. Unfortunately, on Capri itself you can quickly get ripped off.
In general, I can highly recommend Ischia. Capri is beautiful, but also very touristy. Ischia is large and overgrown with greenery. Here you meet more locals than tourists and you can get away for a lot cheaper on the island than on Capri.
A Neapolitan specialty
In addition to pizza, which originally comes from Naples, there is another specialty that you should definitely try and that should definitely not be missing from your tips for Naples: Sfogliatelle . The small puff pastry bag is filled with ricotta and cinnamon and tastes truly heavenly! You can find sfogliatelle everywhere in the city - whether at a street stand, in a bistro or in a bakery.
Do you need a break?
This item on the list of tips for Naples is aimed at those of us who want to relax a bit on their trip. So my tip: Consciously look for places to rest . Anyone who has ever been to Naples knows how hectic things can be there. A constantly high noise level, a lot of traffic and streets full of people. This can be exhausting and stressful. Nevertheless, there are of course some places in Naples where you can retreat. The beach promenade Via Partenope is great for escaping the hustle and bustle of the old town for a bit and being on the Piazza Bellini you can enjoy a cold drink in a relaxed and beautiful atmosphere.
A few final words
Naples is not Rome …or Milan, or Florence. Naples is rougher, stormier and more chaotic than the cities just mentioned. Not every corner shines here and you sometimes end up in poorer places. The nice thing about it is that it also makes it less touristy and more “real”. This city is truly unique due to its many facets and has a more Mediterranean flair than other major Italian cities.
If you liked my tips for Naples, would like to get more travel tips or learn something about healthy eating, mindfulness or sustainability, take a look here over.
If you have any other tips for a trip to Naples, please share them with us in the comments below this post.
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