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Between a magnificent coastline and Mount Vesuvius lies the beautiful city of Naples, Campania’s capital. While the city possesses much to offer visitors, its remarkable gastronomy may be the best reason to visit. After all, Naples is the place that pizza was first baked, and the seaside setting provides some of the freshest fish you’ll find in Italy.
The city also offers a wealth of things to see, rivalling Rome in terms of the history and splendour of its attractions. From archaeological sites and historical monuments like the city’s formidable Castel Nuovo, to lively piazzas and excellent shopping, Naples’ almost endless array of sights has ensured the city’s position as one of Italy’s most exciting destinations. With the glamorous island of Capri situated just a short boat trip away, and beautiful Sorrento just along the coast, Naples is also perfectly situated for exploring the Neapolitan Riviera.
Naples offers a charming and stunning place to wander around, drink one of Italy's famous coffees and watch the world go by. The city is made up of lovely piazzas, cobblestone streets and historic alleyways, all rich in history. It is easy to immerse yourself in the bustling atmosphere and lively Italian way of life.
Explore the tangle of stepped lanes in the centro storico, treat yourself to an evening at the famous San Carlo Opera House, and visit Italy's largest palazzo, situated just a short distance away in Caserta. Don't miss the National Archaeological Museum, home to one of the world's best collection of Greek and Roman artefacts, and the San Lorenzo Maggiore, one of Naples' most stunning medieval churches. A must is a day trip to the lovely islands of Capri or Ischia – regular boat and hydrofoil services leave the port of Naples daily.
Direct flights to Naples airport (NAP) are available from Birmingham, Bristol, East Midlands, Edinburgh, Glasgow, Leeds, Liverpool, London Gatwick, London Luton, London Stansted, Manchester and Newcastle and take approximately 2 hours 45 minutes.
Naples is a year-round destination. In summer the weather can get quite hot and many Italians head to the coast for their holidays. If you're interested in visiting Pompeii or Herculaneum it's best to go during spring and autumn when the weather is pleasant but not hot as there's no shelter from the sun on the archaeological sites. May can also be quite busy in Naples due to the 'Monuments of May' cultural festival that takes place every year. Christmas is a wonderful time to spend in Naples with traditional nativities displayed in the city. Due to its southern location, the weather stays relatively mild throughout the year.
Naples is the birthplace of pizza and this signature dish is taken very seriously by the locals. In fact, in 2004, the ministry for agriculture issued regulations outlining how a real Neapolitan pizza should be made, and the city originally conceived two classics now loved around the world – Margherita and Marinara Pizza. Naples, however, is more than just pizza. Thanks to its location on the Tyrrhenian Sea, you will see plenty of fresh fish on restaurant menus. Team your variety of pizza and fish dishes with some of the best wines in the area – Taurasi red wine and Fiano di Avellino white wine.
Naples was founded by the Ancient Greeks. Naples' early days are a little blurry, but it is believed that the city was established around 680 BC. The first settlement is said to be have been on the island of Megaris, where today the Castel dell'Ovo stands. Naples' historic centre landed itself on the UNESCO World Heritage site list in 1995. This ancient part of Naples is home to a wealth of monuments, such as the Church of Santa Chiara and the Castel Nuovo.