Eyewitnesses about the city of Naples
A year ago, I was unexpectedly offered three days to go to Naples. Of course, it is impossible to get to know this city in such a short line, unless you get a general impression of it. But this is enough for the first time. I hope that somehow I get there again. The journey began as usual with an airplane. But the sky that day was special. My friends and I could not tear myself away from the windows, now and then clicked the shutters of our cameras to capture amazing clouds that we thought were amazing. Naples met us with rain. It was the second half of October, at this time in the south of Italy it was still quite warm.
But we were not lucky, even the Neapolitans themselves did not remember such a cold in October. But then we saw a unique phenomenon – snow on Mount Vesuvius. For the sake of this, it was worth enduring the cold. We hid from the rain in small cozy cafes and warmed ourselves with hot cappuccino with croissants. Neapolitan cuisine is not in vain considered the best in Italy. The lasagna here is very tasty, you just can not tear yourself away from it. For those who are afraid to get better – a huge selection of dishes from vegetables and herbs. And the traditional Neapolitan pizza is completely different from the Roman one.
And even more so, it does not resemble the one we used to eat in our pizzerias. It looks more like a pie – a diverse filling between two, rather thick, pieces of dough. What can you say about the city of Naples Naples is a city of contrasts. Wealth is adjacent to poverty, there is no clear division into elite and simple neighborhoods, as in most cities in Europe. Next to the magnificent palaces of the former capital of the Kingdom of Naples, small streets huddle, rather dirty, with linen hung between houses and graffiti painted walls. In general, dirt in Naples is a common occurrence. And while I was there, the general strike continued and garbage was not taken out of the city for several weeks. One of Naples’s biggest problems is crime. You need to carefully monitor documents, money, cameras and mobile phones.
Thieves who ride motorbikes and tear off their bags on the go are the reality of the city, not a movie story. Tourists are not even recommended to enter some areas. We lived in a small hotel on the outskirts of the city. One night, with breakfast, cost about forty euros. They got to the center by bus, which traveled most of the way along the upper tier of the freeway. To be honest, it was a little scary, the freeway seemed very unreliable. But the view of the city was amazing. Naples, like Rome, is located on seven hills. Most of them go down to the sea. The houses have stuck to the slopes and look like they were built on top of each other.
The sea in the days of my stay in Naples was not very pleased with its beauty. It reflected a gray sky and rain clouds. Actually, we were not able to bask in the notorious southern sun, the wrong season and weather. One of the few places that I managed to visit during my short stay in Naples is the San Carlo Opera House. It was built in 1737 and is the oldest permanent opera house in Europe. The theater is designed for 3300 spectators. At one time it was the largest in the world. A huge ground floor, several tiers of balconies and loggias, a large number of gold ornaments, frescoes under the dome – all this creates the impression of truly royal grandeur. Not far from the theater, on Plebiscite Square, is the Basilica of St. Francis of Paolansky. In its form, it is very similar to the Roman Pantheon.
Opposite the basilica is the Royal Palace. Noteworthy is the Cathedral of St. January, built in the seventeenth century. Saint Januarius is considered the patron saint of Naples. The worship of his relic, a vessel of blood, has turned into a whole cult that still attracts devout Neapolitans. On the coast of the Tyrrhenian Sea there are two fortresses – Castel del Ovo and Castel Nuovo. Their names in translation means the Palace of Eggs and the New Palace. Castel del Ovo stands on a small island. A small mound connects it with the city. They say that it was on this island that the history of Naples began. The inhabitants of Naples are quite noisy, but have their simplicity and sociability. Here it is simply impossible to leave the store and not buy anything. Moreover, the prices in Naples are quite low.
And a trip to coffee for me and my best friend always ended with getting to know the bartenders. One gets the impression that the bartenders in Naples consider it a matter of honor, get to know all the visitors to their cafe. Another amazing number of wedding salons in the city. At every step you can see the windows with beautiful wedding dresses for every taste and budget. Well, how not to fall in love with some friendly Neapolitan in such an atmosphere. We left Naples with sadness. There was so little time to truly know this city. You can’t help falling in love with him, even if he meets you in bad weather. Before departure, we all threw coins at the port to once again return here.