The blue light on the roof is a well that goes all the way to the church above

By day four in Naples I felt that I had ‘done’ the place, id walked around enough of the city and seen the main tourist areas, done the two top day trips. So I went to Jenny who runs the hostel and asked for a few ideas, things that are slightly different and dont attract hordes of tourists. Her answer was the underground aquaduct system and the catacomb style cemetery. The aquaducts were easy to find, id actually walked past the entrance multiple times but never knew what it was. The cemetery however wasn’t even on the map so that could prove interesting, especially when she said ‘id put that in your bag when walking there’ pointing at my camera.

Off I went to the aquaducts and I found out the English tour isn’t till 11am and its about 10am by this stage. I went off just down the road to the main cathedral of the city, it was always closed when id gone past previously. This time it was thankfully open. Like most cathedrals in Italy this one didn’t disappoint. Everything just seems crazy over the top, but looks really good. Having now been to about 8396 cathedrals on this trip though im beginning to struggle to see differences between them all and when I look back at photos I have no idea which one it is.

Ok so back to the aqueducts, tour starts and we walk off to a house down the street. Wow a house, how amazing, Then the guide reveals a secret trapdoor with stairs going somewhere. It was all very Anne Frank. The stairs went down quite deep and eventually opened up to a huge sequence of caverns and tunnels. It was actually used for scooter storage at one point, very strange. The guide leads us through some more tunnels and we come to quite a large room. Directly above the room is an apartment block with people living there. She explained that because Naples was a walled in city, the only way to expand was to go up. So underneath nearly every apartment building is ruins and a tunnel system under it. There is some 400km of tunnels spiderwebbed all over the city. That part of the tour exited a door out to a normal street of the city.

The second half of the tour was the far more interesting part. It started off by leading us down 220 stairs from memory. Like most tours there were some fatty annoying people, and like most times they were American. Not taking the piss out of this guy, but, for whatever reason (fatness or bad hips) he had walking sticks. Did they seriously think there was going to be an elevator or some shit down to the bottom? What is wrong with these people. They pretty much complained for the entire walk down. Ohh my gawwwwdddd its so dark why don’t they put more lights in. These stairs are too steep. @*(&#$#($%. How about piss off and don’t do something that involves hundreds of stairs. Yea, it annoys me. The normal people got down there and a bit later the fatties followed. The first room we got to was huge, about 20m square with a ceiling of at least 10m. Coming off it was multiple tunnels to more huge rooms. In all of the rooms there was brick columns in the middle, she explained that these were previously wells that had to be filled in to stop bombs being dropped down. We walked down one of the tunnels and there was a small garden bed with a variety of different plants with lamps shining on them. It was a science experiment to test whether or not the amount of humidity in the air was enough to keep the plants alive and growing without supplemental watering. And yep, it was, cause them were some healthy plants.

The tour basically just goes on with more of the same stuff, tunnels to cavity openings. The huge areas underground were also used for mining the stone used to build the buildings above. So what they would do is just cut the stone out of the walls, then lift it up an access hole to the surface and build right there. Genius. Now we came to what was supposed to be the best part. A one way out and back tunnel that was only 55cm wide, which turns out is pretty much the exact width of my shoulders if I squish myself. So needless to say the Americans weren’t able to do it. Theres no lights in the tunnel, so you are given a candle. Being the smart cat that I am I managed to blow my candle out after about 5 meters. It goes on for maybe 100 meters or so and leads to a massive room with a huge pool of water in the middle. Reaaally cool. After that it was back the same way we came and then walk back to the top.

Next up was the cemetery. Even though the directions were really vague, and mostly not even on the map, the place sounded well worth the effort. Went as far as I could using the map and then it was time go OFF THE GRID. OH NO. I can understand why not a lot of tourists go this place, walking around on the surface it seems pretty dodgy. It probably isn’t and everyone is probably really nice, but I wasn’t waiting around to find out. I took many a wrong turn, walking all over the place trying to find where it was. Then I found the street named Via Fontanella, which is the name of the cemetery, and street names like that usually mean they will end up at that place. And voila, there it is. What greeted me was a huuuuuge set of caves dug out of the side of a cliff face. To go in and walk around on your own was free, so that was even better.

And what was even better than that, was the fact I was the only person there, and was the only person there the entire time. The place is relatively small, and compared to the entire Paris catacombs its miniscule. There was skulls and bones lining all the walls, and quite a few on the ground in little boxes with the dates on them. Being that the place is technically not really underground, it is quite well lit, so it made taking photos really good, far better than Paris. Only took me about 30 minutes of quite slow walking to cover the entire place. After that it was a very quick walk out of there and back to the main streets of Naples.