Naples & Rome: I came for the food

Naples; come for the pizza, stay for Pompeii, then get back to Rome.



none (for US citizens under 90 days)




walking is easy, the metro is good for basic inner city exploration, trains in Italy are widely used, be careful with taxis – make sure the meter is on.


Be VERY careful of pickpocket and mugging.

To get to Pompeii take the local train line from Napoli Campi to Pompeii station (3 euro), go left out of the station. DO NOT get lured in by the tourist trap waiting to take people to the entrance of the Archaeological site on a bus. Use and follow the route to one of Pompeii’s three entrances.


  • Cafe Gege at Caffe Gambrinus
  • Pizza at Antica Pizzeria Port’Alba or L’Antica Pizzeria da Michele
    • I chose da Michele, though I had to wait 1 hour to get in.
    • Be sure to grab a ticket at the door and listen for when they call you.
  • Sfogliatelle
  • Friarielli
  • Zeppole

Cafe Gege at Cafe Gambrinus next to Piazza del Plebiscito

L’Antica Pizzeria de Michele


  • Visit Pompeii
  • Sunset stroll on the bay (passing Giardini del Molosiglio)


  • San Severo Chapel Museum
  • The view from National Museum of San Martino
  • Nativity Markets
  • Galola Bridge
  • Piazza del Plebiscito
  • Via Toledo (street)
  • Teatro Augusteo
  • Fontana del Sebeto
  • Cattedrale di San Gennaro
  • Napoli Sotterranea (underground tour — Piazza San Gaetano, 68 and English tours run every two hours from 10 am)
  • Church del Gesu Nuovo
  • Palazzo real di Capodimonte
  • Catacombe di San Gennaro
  • Piazza Bellini

Rome, or as the Romans say, ‘Roma’:


walking is easy, metro, buses, trains


During the holidays and busy season, museum tickets sell out and are only available in advance. The lines for the Vatican city can take 2 hour+, longer on weekends. If you want to snatch a ticket online, keep in mind you’ll have to apply months in advance.


  • Pasta carbonara — I’ve got the Roma recipe for this from my CS host, anyone interested?
  • Pizza Romana — I actually preferred this to Napolitan
  • Carciofo alla Romana (artichokes)
  • Maritozzo (sweet bread roll filled with whipped cream)
  • Tartufo at Piazza Navona
  • Gelato from Giolitti’s


  • Make a wish at the trevi fountain — I know it’s cliche, but it has to be done.
  • Sunset at Giardino Degli Aranci (take a book to sit and read too)
  • Picnic on Janiculum Hill (Gianicolo)


  • Colosseum (save your money and only view it from the outside)
  • Museo e Galleria Borghese & park (check for tickets in advance)
  • Pantheon
  • Vatican–If you want to wait and see less of Roma
    • St Peter’s Basilica
    • Sistine Chapel
  • Via Appia Antica (street)
  • the view from the Capitoline Museum
  • Roman forum ruins –you can see them from the Capitoline viewpoint for FREE
  • Trevi fountain
  • Palatine Hill
  • Piazza Navona
  • Spanish steps
  • Trastevere (eat here),
  • Jewish Ghetto
  • Capuchin Crypt — the MOST underrated spot in Rome!
  • Basilica of San Clemente — free to sit and watch a service. Unfortunately, no photos are strictly enforced
  • Biblioteca Angelica (not open on Saturday or Sunday)
  • Aventine Keyhole
  • Quartiere Coppede (corner of Via Dora and Via Tagliamento)

BONUS: Spontaneous travel meeting of high school classmates story

For all of its negatives, social media comes through with a win sometimes. An old classmate from high school saw on Instagram that I was in Roma and sent me a message asking how long I would be there. He replied that he would arrive in 12 hours! Naturally, we met up for a night of wine, pizza, jumping on carousels, and galavanting around Piazza Navona. Ahhh, the random spontaneity of traveling.


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