Naples II
 Galleria Borbonica 

Galleria Borbonica 

SEE

 Cimitero delle Fontanelle 

Cimitero delle Fontanelle 

Galleria Borbonica/Bourbon Tunnels- Once an aqueduct, an escape route for the Bourbon king, and later an air raid shelter during WWII. The tunnels contained decades of debris and rubble, and still includes some cars that were once stored in the tunnels after being confiscated, and a Fascist monument to Aurelio Padovani that is now in pieces among random objects left behind from the many people that used it as a shelter. It is a really interesting tour with many layers of the history of Napoli.

 Catacombe di San Gaudioso

Catacombe di San Gaudioso

Cimitero Delle Fontanelle- Wow! This place is impressive! It's a cave filled with bones. Many of the deceased were brought to this cave during the Black Death epidemic, but it was also where poor people that couldn't afford a proper burial would be brought. In 1872 Father Barbati started organizing all of the bones with the help of female volunteers, and eventually people started taking care of the skulls and became a Cult of the Dead, which grew after WWII, because many people were looking for answers or peace from all the death they had experienced. It was thought that the skulls they took care of would visit them in their dreams, and maybe even grant wishes. There are rows and rows of bones and skulls in the cave, and they estimate at least 40,000 souls here, but most likely more .It's free to enter and it really is an amazing experience.  

 Chiesa di Santa Maria

Chiesa di Santa Maria

Catacombe di San Gaudioso- An important note: the tours are only on the hour. Even though the website says it's open from 10-13:00, you have to get there on the hour to go on the tour. This catcamob is interesting, because it doesn't actually have bones. They were removed for sanitary reasons in the 1800s, but what it does have are these wonderful frescoes that were the tombs of 17th century nobility where their skull would be held at the top of their painted skeleton for a huge fee. I've never seen anything like these frescoes, and I found them to be quite special. From here you can also visit San Gennaro.

 Tandem Ragu

Tandem Ragu

Chiesa de Santa Maria delle Anime del Purgatorio ad Arco- A 17th century church dedicated to the Cult of the Dead at one time. The most famous skull kept in the crypt is the Virgin Bride, whose skull has become a symbol for women seeking marital help to address. It is adorned with a veil. The church and crypt area is now open to tourists, and the religious order hopes to deter the Cult of the Dead, but so far it has not worked.  *Note: the tour is only in Italian and photos are not allowed in the crypt. 

EAT

 Pizzeria Starita 

Pizzeria Starita 

Tandem Ragu- We allowed ourselves a meal that wasn't pizza this time around, and we were happy we did. The ragù here is fantastic! The service is great too. We sat at an outside table where we could watch the hustle and bustle of the city, and the occasional street performer. It was a perfect experience dining here. If I were you I would only focus on the ragù. The other dishes are good, but the ragù is the star. 

 Gino Sorbillo-this is what it looks like for a 20min wait

Gino Sorbillo-this is what it looks like for a 20min wait

Pizzeria Starita- A great place to stop after your visit to the catacombs. We tried the Sausage and Friarielli pizza, which sausage and friarelli is a typical dish of Naples, so  we basically killed two birds with one stone by getting it on pizza. The restaurant was very busy, but they were still able to seat us right away, and the service was good. They also do fried pizzas here. 

Gino Sorbillo- We tried to go here a couple of times, but we thought we might beat the rush. We never did, so we finally put our name down and waited. Even though the crowd looked huge the wait was only 20 minutes, so don't be too discouraged. They also have an organized system where they take your name and then call it out on a microphone. In the end, we were both happy we waited, because it was one of the best pizzas we had both times in Naples. The service is a little gruff, but they are very busy, so we didn't mind. There is a lot you don't mind when you are eating one of the best pizzas of Naples. 

 Libreria Berisio

Libreria Berisio

DRINK

Libreria Berisio- It's a super cute place for a drink and a break to read a book. Like so many places in Europe the hours posted are not accurate, but keep trying and it might be open, or maybe you will get lucky on the first attempt.

Spazio Nea- The best thing about this cafe/bar is it's beautiful location on the steps of a gorgeous old building in the historic center. I think at different times they play different music. I was there when it was cheezy pop music or EDM, so not the best, but perhaps during the day I could imagine it being better. The location can't be beat. They also have various art exhibitions, which is always a nice bonus. 

DeRomo's Gourmet Market- This is a wonderful market to get a bottle of wine to bring back to the room. They have a great selection of wines at good prices. It's also a great place to get a snack.

STAY

Dimora Partenopea- A sweet B&B that's close enough to the center and close to a metro stop. The owners are very friendly, it's clean, and everything works, like hot water and wifi. 

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EXTRA

DAY TRIP TO HERCULANEUM 

Herculaneum- Again make sure you check your hours very closely for this site. Note: They close the ticket office 1 hour 30 minutes before the actual closing time, and they are very strict about this.

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Some of the highlights of Herculaneum: skeletal remains of the people that were hiding from the volcano, a wonderfully preserved mosaic floor in a bathhouse, gorgeous frescoes, wooden partition that survived in carbon form, and various statues. 

Getting there: We walked to the Garibaldi station, and caught the Napoli Salerno train to Portici-Ercolano. It took about 20 minutes on the train (only 4 stops). Once we got there it was about a 15 minute walk to the site. 

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