72 Hours in Naples: Pizza, Pasta & Peppe.
See Naples and die, the old saying goes, suggesting that life simply isn’t worth living without visiting this vibrant (and sometimes chaotic) city, the third-largest in Italy. Once the capital of the Kingdom of Two Sicilies, it’s achingly old – the Greeks founded this city before Rome even existed!
In this Mediterranean capital watched over by the still-kicking Vesuvius volcano, the gulf of Naples offers one of the most magical panoramas on earth. And the icing on the cake? It’s also the birthplace of pizza. Here at Paesano we’re obsessed with the traditional Neapolitan ways of making pizza, so it was a dream come true to introduce one lucky Paesan (and an even luckier +1) to the sights, sounds and tastes of Naples first hand. Our lucky Summer of Freedom competition winner was shown the hidden hotspots of Naples by our very own pizzaioli extraordinaire Peppe, who helped create this ultimate 72 hours in Naples itinerary. Check out our top things to see and do in Naples.
Day 1: Saturday
12pm. Paesano Miller Street.
The big day has finally arrived. Peppe, Mae & Connor are ready to jet off to the birthplace of our beloved Neapolitan pizza.
6pm. La Ciliegina Lifestyle Hotel.
Arrive in Naples – make sure to look both ways before crossing anything – and check into la Ciliegina Lifestyle Hotel. Just a short 5 minute walk from the picturesque Royal Palace of Naples.
7pm. Aperitivo Hour at la Fesseria.
Located slap bang in the centre of Naples, La Fesseria is a popular cocktail bar that always draws in lively local crowds – the perfect pit stop for a pre-dinner drink. The bartenders are passionate their drinks and service was excellent.
8:30pm. Pizzeria Di Matteo.
It’s time for cena (dinner) and there’s only one place Peppe wanted to take our competition winners for their first slice of pizza in Naples. Pizzeria Di Matteo is famous amongst locals for its authentic flavours and warm welcome. You can also watch the pizzaiolo at work.
Day 2: Sunday
9am. Espresso up High.
Our first full day in Napoli started on the hotel rooftop, where we enjoyed the first espresso of the day and discovered Peppe’s map reading skills.
10am. Breakfast Bliss.
Perhaps one of the least healthy but happiest ways to start your day in Naples is with a sfogliatella, a delicious pastry pocket filled with fresh ricotta and candied fruit. Pictured here is the riccia (ridged) shell, all made deliciously crumbly with lard. Wash it down with another espresso: Italians concede that the further south you go the better it gets, with Naples considered the bean queen.
12pm. The Streets of Napoli.
A trip to Naples wouldn’t be complete without getting lost down its winding cobblestone streets. You may even stumble across themed Neapolitan nativity scenes if you visit during December.
2pm. Trattoria Time.
10,000 steps in already and it’s time for a lunch break. Here we enjoyed some homey comfort food in Signora Bettalo Trattoria. We enjoyed a mix of classic pizza and pasta and that mozzarella di buffalo… simply *chef’s kiss*.
4pm. Naples’ Duomo and its Treasures
Standing shoulder to shoulder with its neighbouring buildings, the Duomo has a captivating beauty. Also known as the Naples Cathedral, the grand architecture of this centuries-old church with its beautifully detailed frescoes, intricate bronze railings and grand altars makes it a must-visit spot. Did we mention admission is also free?
6pm. Sunset at Castel Sant'Elmo.
According to Peppe, this castle on Vomero hill offers the best views of Naples at sunset and we don’t see how you could beat this!
8pm. Zi Terera.
One of the most renowned restaurants in Naples and right by the water. The food (and location) made this one of our favourite food spots.
Day 3: Monday
8:30am. More Sfogliatella.
Kickstarted the day like all true Neapolitans – with more sfogliatella and espresso.
9:30am. Piazza Garibaldi.
Peppe had a surprise up his sleeve – time to board a train to destinations unknown!
12pm. Sulphur Steam Vents.
A trip to Naples wouldn’t be complete without visiting Mount Vesuvius. The curious have been climbing the slopes of Mount Vesuvius since the 1600s, as the crater was considered one of the more "exotic" stops on the classic Grand Tour, attracting tourists from far and wide. We followed in their footsteps, following the trail up the highest reaches of the cone to the rim of the crater.
4pm. Espresso Stop.
After the short hour train journey back to Naples, it was time for a much-needed espresso stop. Gran Caffe Gambrinus is one of the most famous coffee houses in the city – and with good reason. Its mirrored walls and gilded ceilings, make this an essential stop. Another Sfogliatella may have sneaked onto the plate.
8pm. Antica Pizzeria Prigiobbo.
Next up on the pizza pilgrimage was Antica Pizzeria Progiobbo. Well-known amongst locals, this pizzeria was one of the most authentic we visited. Pillowy soft crusts, light in texture and oven-toasted to perfection.
Day 4: Tuesday
10am. Last Day Feels.
After a quick breakfast at the hotel and one final visit to the rooftop oasis, we headed out for a final day of exploring (and pizza tasting).
12pm. Piazza Del Plebistico
Piazza del Plebiscito, Naples' sprawling 19th-century square, is the largest in Naples and a hub of activity night and day. It's a great place to watch people and unwind after walking Via Toledo.
2pm. One Final Taste of Naples.
Walking down city streets, soaking up the culture and stumbled upon our final lunch destination.
5pm. Taxi Time.
Time to bid farewell to the city that has stolen our heart. Addio, Napoli!