So after Rome we took a southbound train to Naples. We were told the city of Naples was a bit dirty and very “city-like” but I don’t think I really prepared myself for the change from Rome. Graffiti everywhere, lots of pollution, crowded streets, trash overflowing from each and every trashcan. We luckily stumbled upon a fantastically charming hostel called 6 Small Rooms. Australian owned and very homey, safe feeling inside a large city.
Our first half day was spent just walking through the city. We made our way down Toledo Street (one of the main avenues) and to the coast. Of course on the way we stopped to get a gelato. FIrst difference to Rome other than the atmosphere of the city, not so much english speaking! So we picked flavors based on color and instinct….but really can you go wrong with ice cream?
We walked through one of the three castles in the area, Castle dell’Ovo and then made our way up the huge hill to Castle San Elmo where we could see a 360* view of Naples and the coast! Having absolutely NO plans we stayed up there for a while and just took in the view. On our way back down to the hostel and the center of town we stopped in a farmacia (Italian is a phonetic language) because I badly wanted a nail file. I know I’m weird but its annoying when you need one and you don’t have it for a week! After playing charades with the workers I got my file and we sat on a bench. This is where we met Giovanni (I think that was his name) who told us about his workshop where they make jewelery (we declined a visit but got his card) and then told us about some good places to eat. We were situated in a “local” area of town so we knew we would find cheaper and better food just staying up on the hill for dinner. We ended up hitting a jackpot meal of spaghetti and pizza and salad and bread and wine and I want to say we got dessert but I might be wrong; all for 30 euros! The place was called Gorizia pizzeria.
The next day we did what most people staying in Naples do: take a day trip. We took the very memorable Circumvesuviana to Pompeii and then on further to Sorrento. Pompeii was HOT and we ended up doing a very “Amanda/Beth adventure thing” where we don’t have a map or a tour. Instead we listened to the tours around us for some explanations and just got lost in the ancient buried city. Surprisingly enough it worked out for us and we had a great time.
My whole trip I wanted to be on the coast of Italy. I wanted to take the pictures of houses on the cliffs and go swimming in clear water. In Sorrento my dreams came true! Sorrento is a little town filled with tourists. It is very beachy chic if you will and we enjoyed every second of our afternoon there. We took the “Fun Tram Tour” (literally the name) and got to stop at Villa Angelina which might very well be my wedding destination. hehe! This villa was filled with lemon trees for lemoncello, yum! It also had a perfect view of Capri which is on the list for the next Italian adventure.
After our tour we did a little shopping and eating. We actually ended up eating on a terrace overlooking the whole coast. It was wonderful! By this time we are tired and hot. With the water so close and everyone just kind-of jumping in off of the rocks, we couldnt resist!! Best decision ever and top part of my week for sure.
Our last day in Naples was spent wandering again. We checked out in the morning and then sat by the water and had a bite to eat before getting the bus to the airport. This was also an adventure because as I said before, English in Naples is not too common. I had a very fun experience trying to count change with the lady who sold us bus tickets (which ended up being the wrong ones anyways). Meanwhile, when I got stuck in Italian/English communication I would stick some French in there too…this had to have thrown people even more off track. Oops.
From here we said “arrivederci” to Italy and Bonjour to Paris..