Naples, the largest city in Southern Italy, sits on the coast on the northern edge of the Bay of Naples, one of the most beautiful bays in Italy. It’s a popular port of call on a Western Mediterranean cruise because there is so much to see and do in and around the city.
Naples is a lively city, full of historical and artistic treasures. Spaccanapoli, the straight and narrow main street that traverses the old, historic center of the city, is the main providing access to a number of important sights of the city. Pizza, one of Italy's most famous foods, originated in Naples and you can’t visit without trying it! After you feed your body, feed your mind at the National Archaeological Museum of Naples. Many of the objects come from the excavations of the nearby archaeological sites at Pompeii, and Herculaneum.
Pompeii is a short drive from Naples and all cruise ships offer excursions here. Stopped in its tracks by the eruption of Mount Vesuvius in A.D. 79, Pompeii offers the best look anywhere at what life in Rome must have been like 2,000 years ago. Once a thriving commercial port, Pompeii grew to become an important Roman city. The well-preserved ruins are quite interesting to tour.
The Amalfi Coast is the stretch of breathtaking coastline south of Naples. The drive, however, is not for the faint of heart and hiring a driver or taking a tour is the safest way to make the trip. With steep rock on one side and a dramatic drop to the Mediterranean on the other, the narrow road clings to the mountain and follows the twisting shoreline, resulting in winding roads and sharp curves. A UNESCO World Heritage Site, the area is known for its quaint coastal towns of Amalfi, Ravello and Positano.
Hydrofoils and ferries depart from Naples if you’d like to spend the day in Capri. The island's top attraction is the famous Blue Grotto where refraction of sunlight into the cave makes an iridescent blue light in the water. Be sure to take the 12-minute chairlift ride to the highest point of the island, Ana Capri, for incredible views.
With so much to do around the port of Naples, it’s no wonder people choose to cruise the Western Mediterranean again and again!