Naples Underground Tour - Underground Naples - The Naples Sotterranea
Since we purchased a Eurail pass, we decided to make the most of our travel day from Rome to Pompeii by stopping in Naples for a few hours. We actually don't recommend getting a Eurail pass in Italy–click here to read our tips on how to save money in Italy. Naples is probably best known as the birthplace of pizza, but the area is also full of Greek and Roman history. Napoli Sotterranea is a great way to learn more about the city roots by touring the underground tunnels and ancient Roman waterways.
The tours are offered in English every two hours starting at 10AM. The last tour is at 6PM. We went for the 2pM tour and didn't purchase tickets in advance. We actually showed up about 20 minutes early so they told us to come back and get in line about 5 minutes before. There are a few other signs and stands stating "Naples Underground" or "Sotterranea tour" so make sure you look for the blue and white flags and the stone face above the entrance.
It cost 10€ each for tickets (as of May 2018), cash only, and paid just as you entered. Be aware that you will need to go up and down stairs and some passageways are very narrow. We enjoyed the history and information about Napoli given on the tour by our guide. He also made sure everyone was comfortable going through the hallways and gave fair warning before we headed into areas that were so narrow we had to turn sideways. Those areas were optional, but if you're not claustrophobic they are worth going to as the rooms they led to were beautiful.
After the tour of the underground, we went above to current day street level. Our guide led us to a family house where they discovered part of a Roman theatre in the wine cellar. Not much of the theatre is visible, but it was interesting to see how it has become part of the foundation of the modern-day buildings. Basically the newer buildings are now helping to hold up the ancient underground structures so they have to co-exist and can't be separated.
It took about an hour and fifteen minutes for the whole tour. If you're going to be in Naples even if just for a few hours, this is a great tour to take.
Things of note:
Tips for the guides are at your discretion. Not everyone gave a tip, but some did.
Toilets are available before the entrance (for free!).
It can feel a bit chilly underground and it is very humid. You may want to bring a jacket.
There is a popular pizza shop very close to the entrance of Napoli Sotterranea, but the line is long. Allow for extra time if you plan to go there.
Let us know in the comments if this has been helpful! Let us know what else you'd like to know about travels in Italy!