The Green Side of Naples

April 20, 2010

On our first day in Naples, we were pleasantly surprised to discover a side of the city we hadn't expected or even heard/read about: the green side. With all of the focus on Naples' serious garbage issues and the crazy traffic conditions, we were prepared for some urban chaos and intense driving, but Naples' green spaces quickly charmed us and proved to be a very welcome antidote.

After spending the night on the ferry and having some down time in the hotel room, my mom and I knew we needed to find a spot for the kids to run around. We located the nearest green spot on the map, Bosco di Capodimonte (Capodimonte Woods/Park). What a wonderful, lush surprise....miles and miles of shaded trails, paved and unpaved. Wide open spaces for soccer games and picnics. Older people laughing and meandering. Pre-school children in school smocks wandering hand-in-hand. Runners speeding past. Signs of spring at every turn. Neon green leaves. Jack-in-the pulpits jumping up in clumps.

At first the kids were disappointed that we hadn't entered an area with a playground (I am sure there must be some playground equipment somewhere in that immense park), but after the first discovery of a fat worm, all was good and we spent the next hour playing in the woods. Turning over moss covered logs, admiring all of the different types of mushrooms, and even building a lovely little fairy house. It was a wonderful introduction to Naples and prompted us to explore other parks throughout the week. Also, a good reminder of why I love traveling with kids. Not only does it force me to see and do things at a different pace, it also pushes me to seek out spots that aren't necessarily on the list of must-see tourist destinations. With kids in tow, we have found that we have to carve out time for outdoor play and free time. To be honest, I have discovered that I need that time, too. And more often than not, those experiences turn out to be some of the more memorable and enjoyable ones during our trips.

**Capodimonte is also the site for a renowned museum and an observatory. We didn't get to visit them on this trip, but I am keeping it on our list for future visits.
Karen said...

Capodimonte was one of our fav. spots. The museum is AMAZING!

Manny said...

I second Karen's comment. It's one of the few green spaces left. Of course, it is right next to the airport... I'm so glad you made it there!

Nancy said...

Nothing quite like beauty in unexpected places!

Heather said...

I love the photo of the jack-in-the-pulpit. I love it. Very much.

The Solley Five said...

So much fun- we are using our days up by going on walks and sitting on the grass in parks more than ever recently. And...Happy Birthday to you!!

likeschocolate said...

I agree that carving out play time while traveling makes traveling with children so much more enjoyable. I also think it that going to a park or nature area really helps us to savor the experience of where we are at.

Latest Instagrams

© Dim Sum, Bagels, and Crawfish. Design by FCD.