N A P O L I

For a long while, I’ve been posting about California travel destinations and will continue to be that way. Today, however, is the start of Flashback Friday. From here on out, I’ll be recalling some of my non-Californian travels and experiences from previous pasts. I decided to go with Naples, the city I resided for 2 years.

There’s plenty of complains and negative feedback about Naples. They have a never-ending issue on garbage disposal. Scams, pick-pockets and thefts, house and car break-ins is a matter of course. Traffic is horrible. Parking is tight. Italians drive like they always have pizza in the oven to attend to. The whole Neapolitan social behavior and attitude and way of living are just not the most pleasant and are distasteful according to some other cities and Italian folks who despise it.

 

Filthy? Dangerous? Crowded? Loud? Careless? I love Naples! Not that I contribute to the violations.

It didn’t take a long time for me to adjust to the city’s culture. First of all, I was the sojourner to the foreign country. I always embrace any city I visit whatever kind of culture they operate or live with. Secondly I lived in the main capital city of Philippines that I’m already acquainted to crazy driving, pandemonium and bumper-to-bumper traffic.  Manila/Makati, Philippines is much like Napoli’s urbanity.

Naples is not just “breath-taking” because of it’s trash situation, narrow roads and people crossing the streets without warning. Napoli has things to boast about as well.

There’s so much to list so I won’t bore you with all the places to go to and see. I keep the focus on Downtown Naples. There’s Piazza Plebiscito (pic#5), Galleria Umberto (pic 6 & 7), Castle Nuovo (above), Teatro di San Carlo (#8), Bay of Naples (slideshow) and Castel dell’Ovo (Egg Castle).

You can also sight in a good view of my beloved Mt. Vesuvius from Downtown Naples.

Mount Vesuvius is an active volcano that led to the destruction to the popular Pompeii and the lesser-known Herculaneum. I’ve went around Mt. Vesuvius from a drive to Sorrento and back to Napoli while listening to its fascinating stories narrated  by an Italian co-worker. It’s magnificent, visible view welcomed me every time I drive to work. And, my best encounter is when I hiked the very heart of it.

Last Call …

Pizza Margherita is the original pizza and is home to Naples. There’s that and Marinara. Sfogliatella, baba and pastiera are some of popular pastry dishes. Neapolitan My favorite Italian kind of bread is amply named panino Neapolitano. Check out my entry on Italian Food.

Movie: A-lister Gomorrha depicts the most sound, feared and powerful mafia. Sofia Loren was born here.
Music: You know that song Tu Vuo Fa L’Americano. It is actually a remix of an old popular song by Renato Carosone. The song talks about when Naples was once flourished because of the American military settlement to the city. Tu Vuo Fa L’Americano translates into “You want to be an American”. It even candidly sings about drinking whisky and soda, watching baseball and buying Camel cigarette with money stolen from grandma’s pocketbook.

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Dreading Naples because of this post?

FEATURED BLOG

This girl have seen it all! Tali Goes Travelling, a travel addict she truly is. Get to her blog and whoa to the number of places she’s been. I love those random spontaneous images she picks to characterize the hearts of his destinations. Check her entry about discovering Naples and how she turned her irk into wow.

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Listen here peeps. Whoever visits another country or enters a certain place of strange culture and complains about how different it is from what they’re used to shouldn’t be there from the first place. The locals shouldn’t be rolling out red carpet for you, it’s the tourists who should be the one adapting to the location. And if you really are a true traveler, you should come prepared to any place you go to

Next Time on Flashback Friday: San Marino, Verona and The Leaning Tower of Pisa

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64 thoughts on “N A P O L I

  1. I was in Napoli late last year and I loved it! Nothing prepares you for the sheer exuberance of Spaccanapoli. I wandered there for days and never felt anything but excited by the city.
    I don’t think it should be the first place people should go to in Italy, because it could be a bit overwhelming, but everyone should visit Napoli at least once.
    I did a few posts on it and photographed many of the same things you did.

    • Spaccanapoli is the No. 1 Naples destination, not to include Pompeii. You’re so right. Naples can be so different that it may come as a big surprise if you come here first than the rest of Italy.

  2. With an attitude such as this – “I always embrace any city I visit whatever kind of culture they operate or live with.” – you will definitely survive wherever you will go… Great attitude.

    This place is beautiful to me and who wouldn’t love that last call! haha

    Cheers to positivity and keep up that spirit!

  3. Gr8 Rommel!
    Thought you will be better able to clarify the old saying, “Vedi Napoli e poi muori!” translated into:
    1. “See Naples and Die!” – said to mean “See Naples and then die!” / “See Naples before you die!”
    2. “See Naples and (another smaller city) Mori / Morire!” referring to
    a. Mori In Trentino (mentioned by Evening Post (Volume LXXXIX, Issue 134, 8 June 1915, Page 8) , North Italy Later got transformed to “muori” meaning “die” OR
    / b. Morire on the shore of the Gulf of Naples, 8 kilometers (twenty minutes) from Vesuvius mentioned by http://www.udenap.org/groupe_de_pages_01/vesuve.htm of University of Napierville 101 Esplanade Grand Marshall, Napierville, Quebec, Canada J0J 1L0. Later got transformed to “muori” meaning “die”
    The latter reference is trashed by http://forum.wordreference.com/showthread.php?t=1927081 – “I begin to suspect there is a mistake mane by the Quebecian university. Shame on them then.. ” etc.,
    Where does the truth lie?

    Is there a village / town named Morire on the shore of the Gulf of Naples, 8 kilometers (twenty minutes) from Vesuvius as claimed by University of Napierville?

    Eith your vast KB, you can surely find out and let me know! Will U plsss.sss.ss!

    TIA!

    Prof.Dr.K.Loga muthu krishnan, MBBS.,MS(Gen).,MCh(Neuro).,PhD(Neuro).,FRCS(Edinburgh).,FRSM(London).,
    Senior Consultant Neurosurgeon,

    • Thought you will be better able to clarify the old saying, “Vedi Napoli e poi muori!” translated into:
      1. “See Naples and Die!” – said to mean “See Naples and then die!” / “See Naples before you die!”
      2. “See Naples and (another smaller city) Mori / Morire!” referring to
      a. Mori In Trentino (mentioned by Evening Post (Volume LXXXIX, Issue 134, 8 June 1915, Page 8) , North Italy Later got transformed to “muori” meaning “die” OR
      / b. Morire on the shore of the Gulf of Naples, 8 kilometers (twenty minutes) from Vesuvius mentioned by http://www.udenap.org/groupe_de_pages_01/vesuve.htm of University of Napierville 101 Esplanade Grand Marshall, Napierville, Quebec, Canada J0J 1L0. Later got transformed to “muori” meaning “die”
      The latter reference is trashed by http://forum.wordreference.com/showthread.php?t=1927081– “I begin to suspect there is a mistake mane by the Quebecian university. Shame on them then.. ” etc.,
      Where does the truth lie?

      Is there a village / town named Morire on the shore of the Gulf of Naples, 8 kilometers (twenty minutes) from Vesuvius as claimed by University of Napierville?

      With your vast KB, you can surely find out and let me know! Will U plsss.sss.ss!

      TIA!

      Prof.Dr.K.Loga muthu krishnan, MBBS.,MS(Gen).,MCh(Neuro).,PhD(Neuro).,FRCS(Edinburgh).,FRSM(London).,
      Senior Consultant Neurosurgeon,

  4. Since I have never been to Naples, it was wonderful to see it through your eyes. Wonderful photos and commentary. I particularly love your sentiment in your paragraph about traveling to other countries. When we spent a year in the heart of Mexico we saw it time and time again, foreigners who lived there who were desperately trying to change the culture to that from which they came instead of learning to adapt. Great post Rommel!

    • I wonder if people in the Philippines are also contemplating making a change, i highly and strongly doubt it though. I see that other nations does it too. Cause they do have some underground group that are trying to straighhten Napoli as well. To others, including their own residences, consider it a bad apple to Italy. I do adore Naples so so much but I can’t deny that the negative perceptions of Napoli are justifiable given it’s all evident as soon as you arrive there.

    • But why would I? I can forget about traveling. I’ll make adjustment. I’ll write random non-sense and whatever’s. But when it comes to blogging, I won’t forget precious bloggers like you. :D Cheers Gilly!

  5. Great photos, Rommel! Before seeing your pictures I only knew of gondolas and somebody singing old famous love songs to the tourists! I love Italian arias! You’re probably too young to know about Mario Lanza, the great Caruso and all that. . . Did you hear any good Italian music while there?

  6. Wow, thank you for featuring my blog on this post and giving it such a rave recommendation. I love Naples and this post shows more amazing parts of it too. Now I’m going to have to return so that I can climb right into the heart of Mt Vesuvius! :)

    • I apologize for the mistake I made. I went through a number of your posts but couldn’t really tell. I’m very sorry. I’m glad I remember your post on Napoli, it is an unforgettable read anyway. And I’m amazed by all your travels.
      To me, Climbing Mount Vesuvius have the same sense of accomplishment as something like climbing Mount Fuji. Mt. Vesuvius is highly representative of Naples that I didn’t let climbing it pass.

      • No problem, with a name like Tali it’s not easy to guess either! I’ve been enjoying reading through your blog too, it’s a great inspiration for my next trip back to Europe and where I should go once I finish my contract in Korea. The Philippines are definitely also on my list thanks to you and when I make it back to Naples, I’ll also be climbing Mt Vesuvius :)

  7. We went to Naples a looong time ago! !985 to be precise – where you even born then? Thanks for bringing back fond memories. And i agree with everything in that last para. Well said. Detest chronic complainers.

    • :D I was so little. :D They better off crying over spilled milk in the Cry Department.
      Actually, I have my friends who were dining in a restaurant. After they’re done, their window was smashed broken stealing a jacket. While the other, I guess what gained the interests of robbers, had their GPS stolen.
      I guess the recommendation here is to park your car closer to the window. Or if they have a patio, it better to choose outside dining. As long as possible, park to where you can still see your car from your table.

    • Finally someone mentioned the kissing. Actually, it does made the picture, and Napoli, an appealing place to look at. Thanks. Again, great job on your drawing and your photoblog.

  8. I consider Napoli a great metaphor for human and social complexity. I’m also convinced there are so many other “Napoli” in Italy and in the rest of the world! Let’s say that Napoli, perhaps, is not a place or a society, but an endless story full of everything you can think. The spirit of Napoli is everywhere, actually, and the differences (nature, phisical objects, language, history, habits…), are details that don’t really matter, I think. Take “Gomorra”, for instance, it’s not just a movie on the local mafia but also a universal story on misery, meaness and nobility of human beings. I consider it a masterpeace, actually, but I suppose it’s not easy to completely appreciate. Of course details are very interesting and meaningful. You can see them if you are patient, pay enough attention and have enough time (that’s what you did so well!), but it’s a hard and endless job. Such a job takes longer than a human lifetime to be accomplished.
    Ciao e a presto!

    • It is universal, it’s just that it’s more upfront and visible in Napoli. I honestly admire their nothingness and their liberating attitude as it greatly reflect the way I am.
      I have seen Gomorra, and sad to say I’m part of those who didn’t quite fully get it. It does take the open and curious mind to actually see its glory. I know how much Gomorra is considered as one of the best movies last decade. When I was there, I didn’t feel nor had physically witnessed anything Mafia-related, but I was well aware that it’s there.
      Thank you so so much for the thought provoking, insightful comment.

  9. Pingback: A Guest Post and a Thank You « Tali Goes Travelling

  10. Every time I read your posts and marvel at the amazing images, It’s like I went to this places myself. Just fun and exciting. May be one day, I get to see them in person. Thanks for sharing your travels. Truly awesome Bro…

  11. Nice post, and the last comment is spot-on, about needing to adapt to the culture you visit, not the other way around.

  12. I visited Napoli in 2010 & only stayed there for 2 nights (as it was easy to get to Positano & Pompeii from there). Napoli did first give me a not so good impression but I love the genuine Italian life there. If I had a chance to stay there for a few more days or ever longer, then I will have a chance to see her beauty!

    And pizza there was the best in world!!!

  13. Napoli looks amazing from your point of view, I really wish I was there right now! Thanks so much for supporting Paradise City, its scary/hard being a fresh blogger. :)

    • …I do like Spain’s pizza. American aint bad at all. But the fact that it’s hard to match Italian pizza anywhere else in the world makes it so hard not to miss it.

  14. I read “Eat, Pray, Love” a few months ago and have been totally fascinated with the idea of visiting Italy and eating too much pizza and gelato for my own good. In one part of the book, Gilbert goes down to Naples and talks about eating “the best pizza of her life” so that’s definitely on my to-do list in Italy as well, but you’re right in saying that there’s a lot of negative things about it out there. So it was a pleasure to read this post. I’m excited to make my way to Naples at some point!

    • I only saw the movie. It did an outstanding job in capturing Italy, esp. the essence of Napoli. They ate the real Napolitan pizzas. Do feel like a local when you get there. :D

  15. Nice post, I loved Napoli when I visited there from Bologna with a girl who grew up in the area. The chaos and the element of potential danger are part of its charm I would say. Definitely the best Pizza I have ever eaten came from there, it was from a little over the counter joint called “presidente” or something, there was a mural of Bill Clinton eating a pizza there on the wall. I remember eating it in a tiny piazza with the pigeons and trying to perfect that fold technique so I wouldn’t drip it all over me, wonderful!

    • Oh no! You don’t want that. Spilling seems like violating a pizza eating eitquette in Napoli. You might get some nasty looks doing that from Neapolitans. Hehehe. You gotta squeeze all that olive oil. Hehehe. Love the comment, domtakis. Thanks!

  16. Ciao Rommel! I took my family to Naples just for pizza, the same day we did a day trip to Pompeii from Rome. And OMG, that was THE BEST PIZZA I HAVE EVER EATEN!!! I have been to Italy 3 times in the past year, and let met tell you that I have had a lot of pizza on those trips, so there was a lot to compare to. So, Naples to me is Pizza, pizza, pizza. Thanks for your perspective of Naples. I agree, that when we are in another country, that we should conform to them, not them to us. My solution was to quickly visit wearing minimal jewelery, then leave. BUT, I will be back for Pizza!!!

  17. Fascinating post. Yes, italians and their ways :D I like how you say that they drive as they have pizza to attend,haha, it’s true :)) But the language is such a melody :)

    • They didn’t have the movie Italian Job for no reason.
      Napolitan language is as fascinating as Italy, until they scream at each other even on a regular conversation. Hehe. Love Italian hand gestures. :D

  18. Pingback: Flashback Friday: Columbus Day Weekend in San Marino, Verona, Venice and Pisa « The Sophomore Slump

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