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Travel tip, Italy, Pozzuoli

Updated: Oct 14, 2022

Discover Pozzuoli, one of Italy's hidden gems - with a fiery past. Yes, if I had known what I know today, this trip would probably be a little different, because here there is most to do, for most people.

Text and photo Ingar Næss. (c) (90% translated to English from Norwegian by Google)

NB! all my photos are taken with iPhone 11.

On our way from Sorrento and the Amalfi Coast, we landed quite by accident in an Italian gem. We will try to get to know this place in a day and of course, it is completely impossible, but with a little research and some personal experience, I can state that we must return here.

Pozzuoli We had considered several places on our way back to Rome but settled on a small town called Pozzuoli and an area with loads of history, but first, we had to find a place to stay. We chose a hotel with a somewhat strange name, Gli Dei, a modern 4-star hotel located right on the edge of town. This is a quiet area and has a great panoramic view of the sea and the islands on one side and neighboring towns and the east side of Naples on the other.

The history of Pozzuoli that very few have caught on to! Let's start with the story. Pozzuoli is a very popular town thanks to renowned restaurants, a fish market, and the port that offers ferry service around the Bay of Naples. But few people know that Pozzuoli is one of only four cities in the world that can boast two Roman amphitheaters (in the company of Budapest, Metz (France), and Petronell (Austria).

This may be a bit of information for those particularly interested. The town is located in a bay, 25 minutes from Naples, in a fantastic area known as a geological wonderland. Here you will find collapsed calderas, steaming emissions called fumaroles, and the dormant volcano Solfatara. Pozzuoli, along with neighboring towns in the Phlegrean Fields, is part of a UNESCO World Heritage Site due to the geological process called "bradyseism" found here, a special geo-seismic phenomenon from the gradual uplift and descent of the Earth's crust caused by filling and emptying from hydrothermal activity. It draws scientists and curiosity seekers from all over the world to see it for themselves.

Pozzuoli was founded in 529 BC but did not become a city until the Romans took over in 338 BC. and called it Puteoli. The city grew rapidly and became an important port and commercial center for the Roman Empire. The apostle Paul stopped here on his way to Rome to appeal his sentence to the emperor, as mentioned in the Acts of the Apostles. The city was so important that it was adorned with two amphitheaters, along with temples, residential blocks, a forum, and a necropolis. It seemed to be the jewel of the empire – until the port of Ostia Antica opened, much closer and more accessible to the capital. Thus began the decline of Roman Pozzuoli. It's just nice because now we as tourists can enjoy ourselves in these rich archaeological areas.

Pozzuoli has also had a series of seismic and coastal disasters that weakened its infrastructure, but today it has a vibrant life that draws Neapolitans and surrounding residents to eat in the restaurants and stroll around the area. There are ferries that take you to the islands of Ischia and Procida and you should plan to take these if you......., wrong when you get here! It is said that regular volcanic activity in the area has shaped everything from the landscape to the food, giving it a very distinct culture. "It's different living in or near a volcano and the whole culture is very different." It is further said that Pozzuoli is not a well-known destination outside of Italy, and the area still has authentic Italian hospitality.

This area is a place where you can come to enjoy the "slow life" and it can suit many tourists. It is further said that Pozzuoli is located within one of the largest and most volcanically active areas on the planet, the Phlegrean Fields, which changes the lifestyle and the general lifestyle of its inhabitants.

Takk til google som viser vei

On the way up to the hotel, we thought that this volcanic area was a "quarry", but it turned out that it was precisely a Phlegrean Fields. Then we got an answer to why so many people were here to take pictures.

This area has also created some unique experiences for visitors, including diving in an underwater archaeological park – the only one of its kind. Imagine that due to the volcanic activities, a part of the old Roman port has been "submerged" down about 3 meters, so here you can dive and see the statues and columns and mosaics on the floor. There is something that makes Pozzuoli unique in the world.

Anfiteatro Flavio Neroniano (c) IN

Other things you can see include Anfiteatro Flavio Neroniano, Macellum Temple of Serapis, Lake Avernus, Campi Flegrei Volcanic area with craters and ancient ruins, Cave of the Sibyl Archaeological site, lake and history, Aragonese Castle of Baia It is also said that the fertile volcanic soil found in the area means that Pozzuoli has a reputation for growing some of the tastiest food in Italy, but they are best known for their seafood. People from Naples know that fish from the Pozzuoli area is the best, so they come here to eat very good fish in the restaurants. (I read up on this after the visit, but then I have something to look forward to the next time I go here.)

When we first talk about food, we get to include a little story from our first evening here. We planned to visit one of the better restaurants, but it was supposed to be nearby. Unfortunately, they didn't pick up the phone so we couldn't order, so we just drove down the two minutes this took. Unfortunately full was the message we got!

We checked TripAdvisorMaps and found a new address, put it on Google maps, and drove. , It didn't look that far, but the chosen restaurant was right on the other side of a small hill, but we had to drive around. It took about 10 minutes and when we arrived we started to wonder if it was correct, Well to make a long story short the address was correct, but the restaurant had moved. We were hungry, found another opportunity right nearby, and decided on a simple pizza! The premises were clean and newly renovated and the pizza oven was hot, people were queuing to collect their "takeaway", so this had to be good!

Ke Vuo Pizzeria (c) Ingar Naess

The waiter spoke a little English and wondered if we would like to try some of their specialties, from the "street food" menu. We are not difficult to ask and the order was a starter as she decided and a pizza as the main course. Again we were surprised by some delicious flavors, so if you ever come here ask for the street food menu. The pizza took a little longer, but when it arrived it was perfectly fine, but I missed the tomato sauce. by

Stedet heter Ke Vuo Pizzeria og vi sier bare takk for maten!

Amphitheater Flavio Neronian Today we were going out hiking at 34 degrees +, and for me, it's very hot, but here you just have to stand. Fortunately, we had to drive quite a bit, but the joy did not last long because after a few minutes we arrived at the first stop, - Anfiteatro Flavio Neroniano.

This Flavian amphitheater is the third-largest Roman amphitheater in Italy. Only the Roman Colosseum and the Capua amphitheater are larger. This was probably built by the same architects who previously built the Roman Colosseum.

Anfiteatro Flavio Neroniano,
amfiteateret (c) Ingar Naess

Parts of the building were closed, but regardless you get a good impression of the art of construction at this time. The fact that money is still being used for maintenance and excavation in this area is very important and shows us all that quality is important. Even if you have been to Rome and seen the Colosseum, this is a bit unique because here you also come under the amphitheater itself.

Here you can just enjoy the architecture and the way of thinking they have used to construct the wonderful buildings of the day. However, for them, it was probably just a matter of course, because it had to give way to the intention. Imagine what education they had at that point in history. Imagine if they had had the same digital opportunities as us, .......?

Then the trip went about twenty minutes southeast to a small town, Bacoli. Here the plan was to drive to Faro Capo Miseno, up through narrow roads, a deep tunnel, and on to the back road stop by the Aragonese Castle of Baia. That both were closed was not in our imagination, but there is no point in crying over lost opportunities when they are still in the queue. Regardless, we decided on a coffee and ice cream down in the town, which had its own charm, nice beaches, and cozy little restaurants.

After the break, we decided to drive to the center of Pozzuoli and have a look at a grand Pallas, but this was not our day. Here it was closed for a total renovation. So there was a small alternative to city walking, but there weren't many people out at this time as the temperature was well over thirty degrees.

After a pleasant street walk and some shopping, we went back to the hotel.

The hotel was actually a lovely place, with a magnificent view and not least a sunset that will be remembered. At the hotel Dei Gli, the most important guests were weddings and everything was arranged for magnificent parties. The rooms were nice and clean and with the same nice view. The main Whether you want to spend the day or a few hours in the pool, it is clean and great.

I can give an approved continental breakfast and that was the only thing we ate there. It is a reasonable and good hotel for tourists, with its good location. Recommended.

Good location, it´s a clean and quiet area, good choice!

The next restaurant is rated by TripAdvisor as number three, but how does the food taste at its best? Is there anything else other than the taste and the atmosphere that decides? We tried on a Sunday, then it was full, but today we were going to try and with much better luck this time!

N'copp 'a Terra WooW! This is an amazing restaurant!

N'copp 'a Terra, (c) Ingar Naess

WooW! This is a fantastic restaurant, with Italian flavors and dishes that you just want more of! Very pleasant service and atmosphere. If you only have to choose one restaurant in Italy, choose this one!

We shared mussels and a wonderfully good local appetizer, eggplant parmigiana! The main course was A new pasta in two varieties, one with mashed potatoes, surprisingly good, but my variety was fantastic! (couldn't find the name again) Lovely local wine recommended by the waiter!

The mood and atmosphere were absolutely lovely and suited us very well, but if you're looking for a slightly more "proper" environment, choose that, but then you'll miss out on the best flavors.

Thanks for the food - this was probably a strong one, 5, 6, or 10 depending on what the scale is at the top!

Now we will go up to the hotel and relax before we travel to Rome tomorrow.

(c) Ingar Naess

Otherwise, there is an island with hot springs that help with everything. - There is a ferry to Isola D´lschia both from Pozzuoli and Naples, but it is to Pozzuoli that the residents of Naples travel.

Here you will find some of Italy's very best Spa offers. Just to enjoy.

God natt, og vi ser frem til vårt neste besøk her i dette vakre området.

A new article from the trip will come tomorrow when we travel to Rome.

I've recommended this before, but don't drive the coastal roads unless you have a plan of your own. Take the fastest route, the A1, or other main roads.

Consider whether it pays to drive into Rome from the north, as you can often get away from the traffic chaos.

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