Last weekend, I took a trip to Napoli (Naples) with my roommates. I was very excited to go because everybody I talked to about my weekend plans got very excited for me as well! And, because Napoli is the birthplace of pizza, we received plenty of pizzeria recommendations. It was also my first time to the ocean!
What I first noticed about Naples is the vibrant and youthful atmosphere. We arrived during the evening and were shocked to see the amount of people out in the streets and plazas, just hanging out. The nightlife consisted of mostly young Italians compared to the vast majority of tourists in downtown Florence.
There were too many things to do in Napoli, but my favorite activity was hands down, Pompeii. The best decision we made our entire weekend was getting a private tour in the ancient city. Our guide Francesco was fun, friendly and explained the culture of Pompeii in detail.
Most people are familiar with Pompeii as the city that was covered in volcanic ash, where archeologists pumped plaster into the holes created by the decomposed bodies of Pompeii’s inhabitants and produced accurate casts of the people of Pompeii. However, Francesco explained to us the function of every building we walked into as well as what kind of people would be found inside.
For example, there were many private and public spas/gymnasiums. The Pompeiians created saunas by running steam layers underground and in between walls to contrast the effect of cold water spilling from cold pools. They had their own version of a locker room and of course, it was also beautifully decorated with colorful frescos, statues and imprints.
We could have spent an entire day touring Pompeii and learning about its amazing culture!
Luz is a SAI Florence student in spring 2017 from Western Michigan University.