Spanish Quarter (Quartieri Spagnoli)
Built to house troops during the Spanish occupation, the historic Quartiere Spagnoli buzzes with life, with colorful laundry flapping from the balconies, residents sipping espresso on their doorsteps, and motorbikes zipping by at all hours of the day and night. Because of its rather impenetrable maze of lanes, it’s best to tour this characteristic area as part of a guided walking tour of the historic center. Naples is famous for its cuisine, and many sightseeing tours combine a neighborhood walk with pizza tastings and samples of other local street food.
Things to know before you go
- Walking tours of the Quartiere Spagnoli are mostly outdoors, so sunscreen and a hat in summer are recommended.
- You’ll be doing a considerable amount of walking to explore this neighborhood, so choose comfortable footwear.
- Wear modest attire that covers knees and shoulders to enter the Church of Santa Maria degli Angeli.
- Some churches and monuments aren’t wheelchair accessible, and much of the Quartiere Spagnoli is paved with cobblestones that may be difficult to navigate on wheels.
How to get there
The Quartiere Spagnoli is located west of Via Toledo in the historic center of Naples, an easy walk from both the city’s port and main train station. Naples is a major transportation and cruise ship hub, with rains from major Italian cities and ferries from Sorrento and Salerno.
When to get there
Naples can be uncomfortably hot in summer, so try to visit in spring or fall. In summer, schedule your tour for the early morning before the temperatures soar.
The Historic Center of Naples
The historic center of Naples encompasses more than 10 neighborhoods covering the hillsides around the Bay of Naples to the water’s edge. A tour of this area is a journey back in time, beginning with the Roman roads of the Spaccanapoli, including the medieval Castel Nuovo and elegant 19th-century Piazza Plebiscito.
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- Charterhouse and Museum of San Martino (Certosa e Museo di San Martino)
- Via Toledo
- Saint Elmo’s Castle (Castel Sant'Elmo)
- Church of Sant'Anna dei Lombardi (Chiesa di Sant'Anna dei Lombardi)
- Galleria Umberto I
- Piazza Trieste e Trento
- Royal Palace of Naples (Palazzo Reale)
- Piazza del Plebiscito
- San Carlo Opera House (Teatro di San Carlo)
- Basilica of San Francesco di Paola (Basilica di San Francesco di Paola)
- Castel Nuovo (Maschio Angioino)
- Gesú Nuovo Church (Chiesa del Gesù Nuovo)
- Piazza del Gesù Nuovo
- Church and Monastery of Santa Chiara (Chiesa e Monastero di Santa Chiara)
- Naples Historic Center (Napoli Centro Storico)