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Famous for its iconic Neapolitan pizza made with just tomato and mozzarella, Naples is also known as a storehouse of ancient Greek and Roman heritage. The Naples Underground is one such fascinating ancient landmark that draws hundreds of thousands of visitors every year. It offers a different view of the city from 40m below. The Naples Underground is a mark of the exemplary craftsmanship and ingenuity of the ancient Greeks to create a ‘Neapolis’ or new city under the ground.
A history buff’s haven, Naples Underground, or Napoli Sotterranea as locals call it, is a series of tunnels dug underneath the city of Naples. Constructed around the 4th century BC, the underground tunnels and Roman waterways are crucial elements of the city’s 2500 years of history. Read on to know more about the Napoli Sotterranea, how to reach there, how to book Naples Underground tickets, timings, and other information that will help you plan your visit.
The Napoli Sotterranea is a perfect embodiment of the ingenious construction of the ancient Greeks to create a city under the ground. The later Greeks and Romans turned the tunnels into aqueducts that were used to safeguard citizens during the Second World War.
The Hypogeum Gardens is nothing short of a miracle. It is a vegetable garden growing in the depths of the Earth, in a seemingly less than ideal plant environment. Environmentalists presume it is the lack of pollution and smog that has enabled it to prosper.
The Naples Underground is a collection of tunnels and pathways that are reminiscent of the city’s ancient heritage. Some remaining bunker beds and foliage indicate its past history. The pathways expand and narrow in certain portions.
Enjoy a Super Flexible Cancellation Policy with your Naples Underground tour by booking your tickets online. You can cancel these tickets up to 24 hours before the experience begins and get a full refund. For more information, make sure to check your details before purchasing.
The winding tunnels that once housed entire cities are an unmissable experience. Since Napoli Sotterranea is an important historical site, it is crawling with tourists all year round. Make sure to book your tickets well in advance to avoid missing out on trudging through tunnels underneath the city. You can book your tickets online to reserve your spot and enjoy this unique experience.
During the 4th century BC, the Greeks built an underground city called ‘Neapolis’ with tunnels for pathways. The tunnels of Napoli Sotterranea are carved onto yellow, tuffaceous (volcanic rock) that forms the very essence of the city. The tunnels are winding- quite narrow and pretty wide in some sections.
The Graeco-Roman tunnels were used to store water in the past years. These aqueducts kept the citizens of ‘Neapolis’ hydrated for centuries. Sewer tunnels, rainwater harvesting cisterns, and water caverns are common sightings inside the tunnels. Experts speculate that it is because of such long water accumulations, foliage has grown in some of them.
The Graeco-Roman theater that connects to the Napoli Sotterranea tunnels was once used by Emperor Nero as his private dressing room. The marvelous architecture dating back to the 1st century BC gives a clear idea about the audience positions, stage location, and other elements in plays.
The underground tunnel networks were used as a bomb shelter during the Second World War. There are many bunk beds, forgotten weapons and war machineries inside these tunnel labyrinths. The most noteworthy highlight about the Napoli Sotterranea is how it evolved with time from being waterways and cisterns to housing bunker beds for citizens, and now an important exploration site for historians and tourists alike.
The warm temperatures and humidity inside the tunnels coupled with accumulated water from those cisterns have grown some interesting foliage down the depths of the ground. There is an entire vegetable garden down there, called the Hypogeum Gardens, that was established during Expo Milano, 2015, “Feeding the Planet, Energy for Life”, with the sole motive of checking if plants can grow in such inhospitable conditions.
Duration of Visit: The Guided Naples Underground tours last for one hour and 30 minutes.
Best Time to Visit: The month of May is one of the best times to visit Naples as the weather gets warmer and there is barely any rainfall.
Address: Piazza San Gaetano, 68.
Toilets: There are free public toilets right before the entrance.
Photography: Yes, you can take pictures inside the Naples Underground tunnels.
Bilingual Guides: The Naples Underground Guides Tours allow you to choose either an English or an Italian-speaking guide.
Accessibility: The long, winding tunnels are not suitable for wheelchair users.
The Naples Underground Tour lasts for about an hour and a half to two hours.
The Napoli Sotterranea is located on Piazza San Gaetano, 68.
The Naples Underground tunnels are open from 10 am to 6 pm every day.
A. The best way to travel to Napoli Sotterranea is to take the metro or train from Line 1 and get down at the nearest spot- Dante (metro) or Toledo (train).
The Napoli Sotterranea are a collection of tunnels that are the remains of an ancient Greek city called ‘Neapolis’, that later became safety chambers during World War II bombings.
Yes, photography is allowed inside Napoli Sotterranea.
No, the tunnels inside Naples Underground are not wheelchair accessible.
The month of May with warm temperatures and no rainfall is the best time to visit Naples Underground.
A. The Royal Palace of Naples is only a few minutes from the tunnels. The Royal Palace of Caserta, Herculaneum, and Pompeii is an hour or so away.
A. The tunnels are quite congested in some areas, but you can always come up mid-way if you feel uncomfortable.