The waterfront in Naples: from Santa Lucia pier to Mergellina

The waterfront in Naples: from Santa Lucia pier to Mergellina

Among the most relaxing and suggestive activities to do in Naples, you can not miss a walk along the promenade of the city. Walking close to the sea, you can see at a glance the majority of the beauties that characterize the capital of Campania: Vesuvius, the island of Capri, Castel dell’Ovo and the promontory of Posillipo.

The waterfront in Naples includes mainly four streets. It starts from Via Nazario Sauro that runs along Santa Lucia pier: in this stretch you can admire the Statue of Cesario Console, in a green area that borders the coast, and the Monument dedicated to King Umberto I, located in the center of a square close to the sea. At the end of this stretch, the street leads to a widening where the majestic Fontana del Gigante is located; this monumental is composed of three round arches: in the central one there is a fountain decorated by two sea animals, while in the lateral ones two river statues hold sea monsters in their hands, while on the top arches there are the coats of arms that symbolize the King of Naples, the viceroy and the whole city.


Fontana del Gigante [photo credits arnout.jeanpierre]

From this monument Via Partenope begins, where the promenade leads to Castel dell’Ovo, the oldest castle in Naples; its name comes from an ancient legend according to which the Latin poet Virgilio hid an egg that kept the entire fortress standing in the dungeons of the building. Its break would have caused not only the collapse of the castle, but also a series of dangerous catastrophes to the city of Naples. The castle stands on the islet of Megaride, a natural offshoot of Mount Echia, which is joined to the mainland by a thin rock isthmus. Near the Castle there is Borgo Marinari, a lively maritime district: originally intended to host the families of fishermen and sailors of Santa Lucia, today it has become a tourist place, but maintaining the picturesque scenery, where small fishermen’s boats still traffic in the marina. The route continues in Via Caracciolo where, at its half, there is Round Diaz with the equestrian monument dedicated to General Armando Diaz. All this stretch of promenade is flanked by the Municipal Villa surrounded by its park for a walk in the woods. Inside the Villa there is a zoology station that contains an aquarium where many different marine species are exposed.


Castel dell’Ovo

From Via Caracciolo you can admire, from a distance, the hill of Posillipo and Vomero. Via Mergellina is the road that extends from here to Piedigrotta, at the foot of Posillipo. In this place you can pleasantly walk along the Sannazzaro pier until you reach the Church of Santa Maria del Parto, and then the route ends with the monument that marks the beginning of the district of Posillipo, which means Fontana del Sebeto that is in front of the sea in Sermoneta Square. The monument consists of three marble basins: on the central one there are two sea monsters whose mouths gushes out of the water. The monument is built around the figure of an elderly male figure, lying on the right side, symbol of the river Sebeto that once flowed into the heart of ancient Neapolis.

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