Sunday, February 23, 2014

I'm an almost local - Around Naples

For someone with barely enough sense of direction to find my own kitchen, I'd like to think that I navigate the streets of Naples pretty well.  It sure isn't the prettiest city and most definitely is not the cleanest, but it's my little pirate city and I love it.  

 Some fun facts and tips about Naples: 

1) There are no rules.   Cars will not stop for you. 
2) Do not expect to find ethnic food like you would in any other big city.  You are limited to pizza, paninis and kebabs.  
3) When buying knock off things, walk away like you aren't going to buy it and I guarantee they will lower the price five euro.  
4) DO NOT MAKE EYE CONTACT WITH THE PEOPLE SELLING FLOWERS. They will recognize that as a sign of weakness and bother you relentlessly.  
5) Cobblestone.  Wear comfortable shoes. 

Two days ago I went to downtown Naples with my boyfriend. It's a very fun and easy day trip to do when you're bored and it's a nice day out. We took the Ali bus from the Capodichino airport down to Piazza Garibaldi. When you take the Alibus you can either get off at the Piazza or down by the port. I usually try to get off at the piazza and hop on to go home at the end of the day by the port because the port seems safer.   Buying your ticket on the bus is one euro more expensive than buying it in the airport or in a cafe.  

A lot of people are so scared of downtown Naples. I guess I know a few people that have been robbed. But I also know people that have been robbed in Rome, Paris and Budapest. I have never been pickpocketted. I understand that there are some circumstances that you cannot control. For example, my friend had her Coach wristlet snatched by a guy riding past on a moped. But other than that if you keep your bag closed and hand on your wallet, you should be fine. 

A really beautiful arch near the train station and piazza.

We started our day out looking for this pet shop that I wanted to show Peter because in addition to cool pets like squirrels and hedgehogs, they also sell knives and guns. Unfortunately my very tiny sense of direction failed me and after about thirty mins of looking we decided to cut our losses and move on. 
Sorry about the low quality.  I had to use an old photo because I forgot to take a pic this time around!

Next we went to Da Michele's, which if you are not familiar is a pizzeria featured in the book Eat, Pray, Love and Julia Roberts came down to the restaurant to film the movie.  It was founded in 1870. I consider myself lucky to have eaten at this pizzeria more times than I can count. Sometimes you have to wait an hour to be seated but it's worth it. The dough is perfect, the sauce is perfect and dare I say it, the cheese is perfect. I ate cheese.

 There are three choices at Da Michele's.
Margherita - dough and sauce and cheese with a basil leaf or two. 
Doppio Margherita - dough and sauce and EXTRA cheese with a basil leaf or two. 
Marinara - dough and sauce with oregano and basil and garlic. 
They are all doused in olive oil and the dough is just on point. Comparing it to anything would not do it justice. 

Sometimes you have to sit next to randos like we did, but I guarantee you it is worth it.  

Super duper excited to begin eating.
First Da Michele experience was a success!
Then we walked down to the Castle Nuovo and made a loop to the Galleria Umberto and did some shopping. Also I watched a puppy play with another dog for like an hour and seriously considered picking him up and just running.  At this point it got dark and I stopped taking pictures because I got lazy.  We saw a lot of cool things, like a band playing where the man made his own drum set out of empty containers and a bunch of Africans playing the bongos.  There were so many dogs.  Anyone who knows me knows how I feel about dogs.  Spoiler alert: I'M OBSESSED WITH THEM.  

Basically every pic of the Castel Nuovo has been ruined by construction FOR YEARS.

All in all it was a super fun, perfect, Naples day.

xo Katelyn

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