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Naples..love it/ hate it

michele29

10+ Posts
The city that evokes strong opinions…I love it, mostly, and this was my third visit to chaotic messy fascinating lovable Napoli. The Veiled Christ, the Underground tour, the Bay, both castles and the San Martino museum / monastery are all intersting, but my favorite thing to do is people/ traffic watch. Entire families on Vespas, and someone is usually carrying a box of pastry, one young man riding his Vespa had a large German Shepherd sprawled across his lap, the exquisite body language used in everyday conversation, and everyone from seniors to kids out at night, seniors strolling, kids playing soccer, familles having dinner..real sense of old school community.
Yeah, it’s noisy, beat- up and unrefined, but it sure is fun.

Tip: day trip to the Royal Palace and Gardens of Caserta. About an hour by train ir bus. We hired a guide and spent a peaceful afternoon there. It’s quite a place.
 

NoSpin

100+ Posts
You know we take 1 or 2 trips to Italy every year since 2011. The closest I've been to Naples is passing by it on the Autostrada. I really want to go there. I know there are so many sights that I would absolutely love. I've always been put off by concerns about theft.
 

Alpinista

100+ Posts
We passed through Naples twice and could never find a place to park, street or garage. Know it sounds odd, but we circled for the better part of an hour both times before continuing on. We finally made it into the city when we docked on a cruise and could walk in. We really loved the sound and frenzy of the city (although our life expectancies took big risks trying to cross streets). The antiquities museum was gold and the bars and pastry shops gave us plenty of opportunities for little treats as we wandered around.
 

Ian Sutton

1000+ Posts
Hate is too strong a word for sure, and I don't think love will ever happen.

I'd say the key emotion is feeling intimidated by it, *passing through on a few occasions, but each time easily feeling enough edginess to dispel any thoughts of staying there to see if that changes things for us.

* never a great way to experience any city, but Napoli above all others, has made us feel on edge.
 

sharonov

10+ Posts
I've been to Naples twice, each time for a week at the end of a trip to the Amalfi Coast. I LOVE Naples. But then, I'm a city girl who lives in downtown Chicago so am not put off by the chaos and noise. It is all music to my ears and a feast of images for my eyes. Yes, the underground tour is fabulous. The museums are fabulous. Just walking around the streets (Tribunali!) is fabulous. And the ferries that can take you to Ischia (my favorite island), Capri (Pretty but not special) or any of the Amalfi Coast cities--wow, I could spend a year in Naples and not get tired of it.
One interesting thing we noticed: although Naples is not a rich city by any means, we only saw one beggar. This was 5 years ago, so maybe things have changed, but we're used to seeing beggars on virtually every street corner in our city. We wondered if there was a law against begging. Chicago tried that but it was struck down by the ACLU.
 
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SMJ

100+ Posts
Contest 2019 Winner!
I've been to Naples twice; once for a week and the last time for four days.
I love it as I am a fan of big cities and all that goes with them.

I did not feel unsafe at all.
The first time I was there I had checked into my apartment and had gone out at dusk to find the grocery store.
I ended up asking a shopkeeper in a small shop if he knew where it was as I was getting lost.
He closed up the shop, took me by the arm and courteously escorted me to the grocery store which turned out to be on the next street.
I also think the food is much better there than further north in Florence, Tuscany area, Rome, etc!
 

Lucy BC

New Member
I’m glad to hear from people who love Naples. After much hemming and hawing I’ve booked us for a week at the beginning of March (as part of a 26 night Italian trip). It just sounds like there’s so much to see in Naples itself, not to mention all the daytrip possibilities. I’m a bit nervous but generally just looking forward to it. I worried about visiting Marseille and we really enjoyed it.
 

Allen

10+ Posts
Also loved Naples and also live in Chicago….hmm.
Great art, great street scenes, great food. You can stay in more upscale neighborhoods near the center if preferred too. (e.g., Chiaia). Definitely worth a couple of nights visit.
 

ellen

100+ Posts
At this point I've spent months in Naples but I was pretty intimidated the first time I went there. I'm not sure how much of that was due to not having done enough research ahead of time to feel comfortable, and how much was down to listening to all of the negative stuff. I had learned more by my second trip and really started to feel drawn to the place, at least as much as I am to Rome (which I didn't think was possible).

My family's parish church is in one of the worst sections of Naples, an area that tourists wouldn't find. The first time my cousin and I went to see the church we had to ask three different cab drivers before we found one who would drive up there (Secondigliano). It was an experience, to say the least, but now that I know the area I'm perfectly comfortable going up on the bus by myself.
 

NoSpin

100+ Posts
You people make me feel badly about my avoiding Naples. :)

I appreciate the encouraging comments. At some point we are going to go back to the Amalfi coast. I'll have to make some time to visit Naples whenever that happens.
 

Joe Baumann

10+ Posts
Don't feel bad about avoiding Naples. It's not for everyone. Growing up in Newark, NJ, it takes a lot to intimidate me. However, it is a fun city with lots of energy and the people are very nice.

Ellen, you helped me on my first trip there back in 2010 on the SlowTrav site.
 

hatterbury

New Member
I'll be spending next March 2023 in Naples. Watching the TV series "The Bastards of Pizzofalcone" - shot in Napoli in 2017 - is getting me psyched. The beauty and the grit! And my Italian is benefiting as well.
 

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