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Day two:

Morning:

Wakey wakey – it’s up early for day two! If you overdid it the night before, you’ll be glad to hear that the morning begins with a gentle stroll along the bay, which stretches on for 3km. After taking in the sea air along the tree peppered Lungomare, there are a number of restaurants lining the coast for a caffeine kick and breakfast. The medieval Castel Nuovo can be found along the coast, where guided tours lead you around the chapels, prison and museum inside. Also along the bay, you will find the 19th-century aquarium which, although small, is a satisfying way to spend an hour or so.

Afternoon:

After coming all this way, it’s worthwhile making the short trip outside of Naples to the ruins of Pompeii. Trains depart regularly from the central Naples station, taking around 30 minutes to get to Pompeii Scavi, where the entrance to the ruins is just a short walk away. Alternatively, Viator.com offers a private half-day excursion out to Pompeii, with both transport and tour included. Taking a guided tour of the city that was destroyed by the volcanic eruption of 79AD brings it to life in a way history books never could. Visitors can see firsthand how the Romans lived, worked and bathed, while taking a wander round one of the many brothels and gazing up at the sexual catalogues painted on the walls (those Romans were a dirty lot). Tours up to the top of Mount Vesuvius also run from the nearby station, if you’re brave enough to scale the only active volcano in mainland Europe, that is.

Evening:

For your last night, the city is your metaphorical oyster. The stunning Il Comandante restaurant is located within the five-star Romeo Hotel, where a Michelin-starred chef serves up a creative mix of fish dishes – yet another of Naples’ specialties. If you can draw your eyes away from the panoramic sea view, you’ll be treated to a luxurious fix of contemporary art pieces. Meanwhile, low-key jazz venue, Bourbon Street, brings a dose of New Orleans to the streets of Naples as live bands play most nights on the intimate stage. Dotted around here area few more underground bars, which are usually packed in the evenings. If you’re feeling up to embracing the cultural spirit on your last night, you might even want to catch an opera at the opulent Teatro San Carlo, ornately decked out in gold and red. However you decide to wrap up your weekend in Naples, you’ll wonder why this city is so often overlooked on trips to Italy and feel rather smug that you have uncovered it. The Mafia may have ruled here once, but they haven’t got a chance against us travellers.

Image credit: Thinkstock



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48 hours in Naples: Explore the City of Sun
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