I landed in Naples from Canada in September, three months ago.
It’s been an incredible trip with about five weeks in Puglia, five weeks in Sicily, a week in Malta and a week getting back to Naples.
I headed over the east coast when I landed, figuring Trani was a more gentle place for jet lag!
So I ended up in Sorrento and Naples in the cold December rain. Not very tempting to explore the Amalfi coast further when I can’t even get a decent photo!
I’ll have to come back when the sun is out and there is a calm sea.
Sorrento is another cliff town. No where is that more evident than from the main square.
There is a Christmas tree in the centre of a traffic circle, and behind you can see flags.
If you stand under the flags, and look down
I love the beautiful Christmas lights around the square.
Down the streets
I did go to Pompeii, and was fortunate the rain held off except for a brief shower.
It was an incredible moving site.
So hard to imagine that a whole city was covered with ash, and then gases and lava from 24-25 August AD 79.
Mount Vesuvius erupted with a plume up to 25 km high.
Remains of 2000 people have been found in Pompeii and Herculaneum, another town close by, so far. But the population was 15,000-20,000 so many survived by being away or leaving immediately. The refugees moved to other towns in the area.
Casa del Menandro had a courtyard, frescoed atrium, private bathhouse
Orto dei Fuggiaschi (Garden of the Fugitives) contains the plaster moulds of 13 bodies found in the area.
Great Teatro Of Pompeii completed in 55 BC. Could seat 4000 to 5000.
There were numerous thermopoliums, which were restaurants where people could buy ready-to-eat food that was kept hot in the inserts.
The easiest and cheapest way to travel between Naples and Sorrento is on the Circumvesuviana train, which stops at Pompeii (along with up to twenty or more stops unless you catch a Campania Express time). Officially the train is part of the EAV (Ente Autonomo Volturno) company. All of which was confusing when I was researching and it looked like three separate companies!
Lemons, lemons, lemons🍋
This area is famous for their lemons.
My favourite has been limoncello! Surprisingly smooth for it’s alcohol content, it is served ice cold. It would be much more appreciated if I wasn’t so cold! I need my waterproof shoes!
Homemade Gnocchi alla Sorrentina
My favourite choice – Mixed Grilled fish. And the best I’ve had so far, but also the most expensive
And a first for me – dessert! But I love Panna Cotta and wanted to see how mine compares!
Then a last train trip back to Naples for three nights.
My little Circumvesuviana train arrived in Station Garibaldi, which is just a floor down from Naples Centrale. And a floor below that is the Metro which looks new and shiny.
I stayed in the Centro Storico where the streets are narrow and crowded.
And where there are some serious street eating going on!
On the bottom are patties of fried pasta. Judging from the street, they were very popular. But no room to try it!
Via del Tribunali is known for its pizza. I opted for the takeaway Margherita which is called Pizza a Libretto because it comes folded in fours like a booklet. Mine is a little unfolded here.
Everyone is eating while walking or standing.
Because there was a sunny forecast for a day, I headed up to Castel Sant Elmo for a panoramic view.
Looking down at Certosa e Museo di San Martino where I went next.
Every room of the prior’s quarters of the old monastery was more and more elaborate. Then there was the church!
MANN – Museo Archeologico Nazionale di Napoli was in a massive old palazzo.
Excellent Pompeii video where they brought it to life, and all the valuable treasures
So many marble statues, but I loved the fabric draping on this one
More quirky Naples! Someone I met said it reminded them of Hanoi. And I agree. High energy, traffic that doesn’t stop, and horns.
There is a civic debate about which Stogliata is best. Same sweetened ricotta with candied orange filling, but then rich pastry or crispy outside. I had the Frolla, but think the crispy would give more contrast with the filling. But only one chance left tomorrow morning to find out!
I’ve got my pre-departure negative covid test, I’ve completed my ArriveCAN, and I’m registered for an arrival covid test in Vancouver. All new hoops to jump through!
It’s time to fly home.
I have very mixed emotions because I don’t know when I’ll leave again. I’ll have to wait and see how travel restrictions go with Omicron🤞