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Naples, Italys 3rd Largest City

Aug 17, 2007
Naples, Napoli in Italian, is the third most-populated city in Italy and the biggest city in Southern Italy. Its close proximity to many interesting sites, such as Pompeii and the Bay of Naples, makes it a good base.

Naples is a lively and vibrant city, full of wonderful historical and artistic treasures and narrow, winding streets with small shops, making it worth at least a few days visit. The name comes from the Greek Neapolis meaning new city.

Set around the beautiful bay of Naples and lying in the shadow of Mount Vesuvius, . One of Europes most densely populated cities, it is chaotic, overcrowded, dirty and noisy. And yet this is part of its unique charm.
With charismatic narrow streets overhung with endless rows of washing, ancient churches, a medieval university, noisy street markets and hundreds of cafes, bars and restaurants, Naples is an unforgettable experience.

Visit the citys grand cathedral the Duomo, Originally dating from 1272, it has undergone numerous alterations. The Chiesa dei Girolamini, a beautiful baroque church with two facades, lies directly opposite.

Dont miss the Chiesa del Gesu Nuovo on the piazza of the same name. Dating from the 16th century, the church is one of Naples finest examples of Renaissance architecture. Wander north of the Spaccanapoli district and visit the Museo Archeologico Nazionale.

Naples has one of the best New Year's Eve fireworks displays in Italy. During Christmas, hundreds of Creches decorate the city. There are many decorations for Easter, too, and a huge parade. Two huge religous festivals are held in September, the Festa di Piedigrotta on the 7th and San Gennaro on the 19th. During the summer, there are music festivals, too.

It boasts one of the most comprehensive collections of Graeco Roman artifacts in the world, including some discovered at Pompeii and Herculaneum. It also houses the Borgia collection of Etruscan and Egyptian relics.

Subterranean Naples consists of old Greco Roman reservoirs dug out from the soft tufo stone on which, and from which, the city is built. Approximately one kilometer of the many kilometers of tunnels under the city can be visited from the well known Napoli Sotteranea situated in the historic centre of the city in Via dei Tribunali.

There are also large catacombs in and around the city and other visits such as Piscina Mirabilis, the main cistern serving the bay of Naples during Roman times. This system of tunnels and cisterns cover most of the city and lies approximately thirty metres below ground level. Moisture levels are around 70%. During World War II these tunnels were used as air raid shelters and there are inscriptions in the walls which depict the suffering endured during that time.
About the Author
Douglas Scott works for The Rental Car Hire Specialist. and is a free lance writer for The Naples Rental Site
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