Mediterranean winters are still probably our favourite. Ok, the temperature has dropped down low but with the majority of days still seem to be clear blue skies. It’s almost wrong to call it winter. So here is our post on Naples in the Mediterranean Winter – 10 Things to do!
Naples (commonly known as Napoli) was a last-minute decision, and we booked a flight for £25 one way within a week of leaving. We’d basically just got home from our four-month backpacking adventure, Fani’s job wasn’t ready to have her back for another few weeks, for me (Dan) I was jobless and looking for a new challenge.
Oh and we had all of our stuff in storage with no apartment to call home either.
Within only 2 days we found a new home but it wouldn’t be ready for nearly two months, and there was no way we could afford that long in an Airbnb or hotel close to the city … so we left everything in storage and packed a bag each for Italy, and planned to move on to Greece after.
Anyway back to Naples, the route from the airport is not as direct as it seems, with the huge highway stretching along the seafront for the ports. But it will give you extra time to see the landscape of the city.
From photos, we’d seen from the city we expected Naples would be hilly but when we arrived in the centre, every connected road was a steep climb. With so many thin roads we had to walk (actually climb) the last three streets to our Airbnb apartment.
10 Things to Do in Naples (and close by)
We booked 3 nights in a beautiful place in the heart of the city and spent literally no money doing it either. As a bonus, all the walking around got us super fit too.
Here are our recommends for things to do when visiting Naples, in the summer or winter, in no particular order:
1 – Castel Ovo
The first photo on this post shows Castel Ovo in all its glory. You can scale for free and soak up the views from the top but if you want to explore inside the museum you’ll have to pay a small fee.
2 – Enjoy a Neopolitan Pizza
Find yourself a little family-run Italian pizza restaurant, the city is filled with so many options for you to choose from. We tried a place close to our apartment called Pizzeria Da Attilio (Via Pignasecca), literally heaven for pizza!
Staying at an Airbnb we also took advantage of buying fresh pasta and seafood cooking for ourselves at lunch and a few dinners.
3 – National Archeological Museum
Visiting here you are going to be overwhelmed by the items on display, and the beautiful building they are housed in. You’ll get up close to hundreds of items from the Roman Empire, and also a huge collection of Egyptian artefacts.
You can find out more visiting museoarcheologiconapoli.it.
4 – Royal Palace of Naples and Museum
We kept reading that this Palace was so underrated on the reviews, so we gave it a visit. It is a huge building, and with lavish high ceiling room and with a museum available to visit too.
So very central location (in the same area as San Carlo Theatre), so you can potentially walk to this one from your central hotel / Airbnb.
5 – Underground World!
Naples has so many tunnels underneath the city, built over thousands of years and largely left forgotten now.
6 – Coffee Stop & Browse Along Lungomare
If you’re new to Italian coffee culture, advance warning it can be very different from what you may be used to. Throughout the country, you will typically see small shops with a long counter serving espresso & small cappuccinos. Most of the time none of these places will have a seating area, you get in pay and then put your receipt on top and wait for your drink. Friends and colleagues will socialise with one another but we never saw anyone, individual or group, stay for more than 5-10 mins.
A big bonus is a coffee at these bars is super cheap! If you want more of a relaxing sit-down, we recommend heading along Via Partenope. There are plenty of options for you to choose from and it’s still quality coffee. If you get beautiful weather in Naples in winter, why won’t you sit down and just enjoy.
After you have time to browse the other shops and open space around you.
7 – Watch the world go by at Piazza del Plebiscito
This huge open area every day is filled with people walking through or meeting friends and colleagues. Sitting down for just a few minutes and you really start to get a sense of how many people live in this huge city.
8 – Pompeii
Around the world, this ancient town is famous for its past tragedy, and the near-perfect preservation it is available to see today. Both of us grew up learning about the disaster that hit the Roman citizens of Pompeii. Not once did I personally think the town was actually so massive and well-architected.
Really easy to get too by train, and the price for the journey, as we remember it, is low too. Once you get there, there are shuttle buses available to pick up at the station and you can buy your ticket inside one of the shops. Or if you fancy a flat walk, it will take you about 20 minutes on foot.
We spent at least 3 hours walking around exploring, and you can so easily do many more hours. Even in winter, there were a fair few tourists around, but we could imagine this being a lot busier in peak season for Naples.
The history kept including the roads, buildings / structures, not to mention the art is so incredible, not don’t miss your chance to visit Pompeii.
Recommend you take some food with you, or stop off at the big supermarket on route if your walking. There is a cafe inside with good coffee but the food (on the day we visited) was ok, not great for the price.
9 – Herculaneum
This site is not as famous as Pompeii but still holds some incredible reminder of history. It was destroyed by the same eruption of Vesuvius that took out Pompeii.
The artwork preserved throughout this site is fantastic, and we cannot recommend enough that you consider visiting.
For more information please visit ercolano.beniculturali.it which is the official website.
10 – Vesuvius
So we actually didn’t hike up Mount Vesuvius in the end, but we both really wish we made the time to do this. This volcano has helped shape this land for countless years and is still very much active.
If you’re interested more in the geology of the area and its history, we recently watched a National Geographic episode, part of the series “Drain the Oceans season 1 episode 12“. Available on Disney +.
Airbnb – Holiday House “True Love” – a cute, clean and comfortable flat in the heart of Naples, in a beautiful residential spot. So many little shops close by for basic food, and a street market selling fresh fruit, vegetables and seafood.
If the can’t find something for you on Airbnb, then there over 5,000 options to choose from on Booking.com.
Our Expenses (Highlights)
Accommodation – approx €100 for 3 nights, this wasn’t even the cheapest option for staying in Naples in the winter either
Flights – £50 total price for us both, using EasyJet leaving from London to Naples (one-way)
Food – Eating out and cooking in the apartment, we spent less than €50 (including coffees).
Taxi – Airport to accommodation, return approx. €35, options to save further with the buses.
In peak season expect everything to cost more, so don’t miss your chance to visit Naples in the winter.
Getting Ready For Your Trip
- Google Maps download on to your mobile phone
- Mobile phone SIM card
- Local SIM cards are available at the airport
- We use Three UK and enjoyed 15GB free gigabytes with our monthly allowance
- Most European companies now also have similar deals
- Currency cards are typically more internationally friendly for better currency conversion, so you only need to carry a little bit of cash
- Water bottle
You can find out more about the items we travel with on this page, Our Camera Equipment – Travel Photography