The Bay of Naples, extending from Cumae to Sorrento, has a rich history and is one of the most beautiful Italian bays. It is an area of striking contrasts where one may find in close proximity isolated areas conducive to meditation, such as the archeological sites, the bare slopes of Vesuvius, Sibyl’s Cave or Lake Averno, while at the same time you sure to encounter a city bustling with activity, noisy, crowded with traffic, all of which are enlivened by the exuberance of the local people. Its legendary beauty is somewhat marred by the uncontrolled sprawl of industrial development which has reached the outskirts of Naples. However, its islands, capes, coves and mountains are as lovely and pristine as they were two thousand years ago. from NCL Daily Report
Having a port to visit and tour everyday become challenging after a couple of days as there is always plenty to do both while on shore and when coming back on the Cruise. My family and I had come to Napoles in 2013 and had two days to discover Pompei, Sorrento, and the island of Capri. However, we never had the opportunity to actually discover Napoles. This worked to our advantage this time as we were able to really rest and avoid an early wake up to rush to catch a tour. We still woke up early but took our time eating and preparing for our walk around the city.
We were pretty happy to see that there was still plenty to do in the main city and it was all walking distance from the port wherr our Cruise was docked. We immediately came across an enormous castle across the street which we were able to walk around and take some great pictures. From a distance we could see another palace or castle at the top of the hill but we knew we just wanted to walk around today and stay grounded close to the port.
We met a great local who provided a nice piece of art and explained the path to some great places. He asked for a small donation which I was happy to provide as his approach was helpful and we truly did take advantage of the ideas he provided. We walked past the theater and cross the busy street to a small (in our standards) mall that was impressive given its architecture and design. The family was happy to do some shopping although I had to remind them that space was limited on our luggage for the way back home.
We then made our way to the Piazza Plebescito (I think) which was an enormous town square with some impressive structures overlooking it. For an early weekday, it seemed to be busy for the locals and we tourists got in the way of their daily life. We took plenty of pictures around the square and even peeked inside some of the structures without interrupting too much. I continue to be amazed with history behind these structures and the pride the locals have with respecting and maintaining them.
We then continued our shopping although it was more window shopping at this point as the town had a long pedestrian street of local shops that had a great variety of things to see. My family enjoyed the walk as it was in the shade so it was not too hot and we heard music and saw food along the path in addition to plenty of fashion that they enjoy to see.
The walking made us hungry and we were pointed to a place that had some local cuisine to try. Napoles is said to be the birthplace of Pizza (although when we went to Sorrento last time, they said the same) so we had to try some. We are pasta and pizza lovers so we ordered a number of different options and we each tasted it with happy results as the taste was great. I love myself some spicy food and two of the options were based in peppers so I enjoyed it quite a bit. Luckily, we had a long walk back as I need to digest the food as I could not allow any of it to go to waste.
We got back to the ship with plenty of time to still relax and visit the pool although my daughter opted to head to the kids’ club as she has been making friend there and enjoying the activities and crafts. We took the chance to head to the spa for some pampering as the friends that we are with had some discounts to give us to use (always saving by spending)! I honestly don’t enjoy that much but it was a good addition to the sense of vacation. It provided a good time to reflect on what awaits when we return.
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