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Old 03-10-2010, 03:18 PM
 
501 posts, read 1,110,931 times
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I never got to Naples for more than a day, and was with dh, so can't help. Quick impression was that it was dirty and not particularly pleasant, but if that is where you are to be for a few days, I am betting that you can find something really cool about Naples to focus on and enjoy. Have heard very good things about their food, so that is a plus!

I did go solo in some good/iffy areas in France, and the advice about acting like you live there is good. Just seriously keep your your eyes open, and if anything gives your gut instinct even a twinge, change your direction and move out of the area. Immediately. I had a scare in Avignon (decades ago) when I was almost mugged by some Algerians in a fast food place. My fault - I went to the most remote section to sit in, upstairs no less (the perps were the only people up there, and really, they looked normal enough to me), and made myself a dumb target.

The thing that saved me was that when the hair stood on the back of my neck, I looked up, caught the look in someone's eye, their quick movement up from their table and I flew down the stairs (they had small knives and by then were running after me, I guess to rob me before I made it downstairs). I don't know when either they stopped running or when I lost them, because I was so freaked out I ran all the way to my hotel without slowing one bit (much younger, very fast and used to do track. Do not be as casual about your environment as you would be back at home. That was the only incident and I spent almost 2 months on my own in various cities, with no itinerary or hotels in advance (just a rail pass!).

Italy is simply one of the best places to visit on earth - my favorite. I loved Pompeii & Herculaneum, just couldn't believe what I saw. Sorrento, Amalfi coastline, Capri - wonderful. Loved Rome. We were probably just naive, but felt safe despite the fact that our first trip to Rome was when all the airliners were getting hijacked. First thing we saw, both at the airport and on the street outside our hotel were uniformed men, complete with uzzis and german shepherds. And we still had a wonderful time, and people were very nice.

I didn't like Florence - only there once, people were not that friendly, probably just the luck of the draw. However, we did have the best pizza of our lives there!

You are going to have such a great time - such great food - such an adventure. Enjoy!
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Old 03-10-2010, 03:23 PM
 
Location: Colorado
4,023 posts, read 4,730,944 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lilamx View Post
Hi everyone. I'll be travelling to Italy from Late March to early April (1 week). Since it's only one week I decided to visit only 2 cities because there's just too much to see and I don't want to spend less than 3 days in each city. So besides the obvious choice of Rome, I decided to go for Naples (I wanted a city in the South and I heard there's a great gastronomy there). I'll be staying in Rome for 3 nights and 4 nights in Naples. Now, I'm not really worried about my safety in Rome, but I'm getting mixed reviews about Naples. As a solo female traveller (I'm 22), I'm a little worried- I heard it's a dirty city and pickpockets are everywhere. I want to be able to walk freely within the tiny streets with my purse and everything without having to worry about whether I'm in a bad part of town or not. To those who have been to Naples, can you offer some advice? Also, some must sees and dos. Do the locals speak at least a little English, or Spanish? For Rome also, I know the obvious sites such as the Spanish steps, the Colosseum, and Trevi Fountain, but besides that I really don't know what else I must see. Any advice for a solo female traveller would be great also, for example restaurants I can go to on my own without it looking weird, lol. Thanks in advance.
Before I read what everybody else has written, are you sure that you want to go to Naples? I think you might like Florence mo betta.
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Old 03-10-2010, 03:46 PM
 
Location: Colorado
4,023 posts, read 4,730,944 times
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After glancing through the posts, you've gotten some good advice....get a money belt and keep most of your money and your passport in it.....(the kind you wear on the inside of your clothes)....keep enough money, travelers checks, etc., for a day in your purse/wallet. Wear your purse as if it were a banjo...and keep the purse right at your tummy....do not take your hands off of it for very long....and yes, thieves work in pairs, so be leary...it's very easy to cut a purse strap with a razor and run away with it before you know what has happened...it's very easy to open up a car door and take off with a camera while you are driving in heavy traffic...(I am not kidding). You may be required to render your passport at your hotel, so don't be alarmed.....they give it back to you when you leave. Italy has good food everywhere and the gelato is out of this world......very smooth.

Pompeii is a must if you can......the Amalfi Coast is beautiful..... There is a ton to do in Rome......there is a lot to see in Florence..... Naples is kind of like Frankfurt in a way......not really a destination to write home about.....

If you speak Spanish, you will survive in Italy because they languages are similar..... If you speak nothing close to Italian, take a tiny dictionary and use a lot of body language..... If you are really stumped, grab a kid walking by....they are more apt to speak English than older people....

Try to book some tours before you leave......lots of the time, you don't have to wait in the sun amongst the hoards, you can just walk right in with the guide...... Also, buy some euros here before you leave......take a hat.

Don't be neurotic about it, but you should worry about your safety everywhere....you will be safe if you go with tour groups.......

Rome is not really clean either, but it's cleaner than Naples.....LOL You have to remember that these cities are zillions of years old......many streets are cobble stones.....plumbing is ancient....

Be safe and have a great time!
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Old 03-10-2010, 05:34 PM
 
501 posts, read 1,110,931 times
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Maybe we can call Rome's cleanliness issue a "charming patina"

I wanted to second the use of a hidden money pouch or belt under your clothes for large amounts of money/traveler's checks and passports. That is what I always use, everywhere I go. If I carry a purse, I do carry it across my chest, but it is only what I am okay with losing if I encounter a pickpocket/thief.
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Old 03-15-2010, 08:10 AM
 
946 posts, read 2,525,292 times
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Originally Posted by Wurzig View Post
Before I read what everybody else has written, are you sure that you want to go to Naples? I think you might like Florence mo betta.
I'll have the opportunity to go to other cities in Italy afterwards, for now I just want to focus on those two .

Again, thanks for all the tips/advice!

So I should carry my passport around with me? Shouldn't I just leave it at the safe in the hotel?

In Naples the only thing that kind of worries me is my arrival...my hotel is located very near the central station and they say that area is not safe at all...when I arrive I'll have my suitcase and 2 other bags with me (not to mention my map in hand) and I'll have to walk to my hotel...I just hope nobody decides to rob me there! Other than that, I feel pretty safe. I'm not a paranoid person, I tend to be trusting of everyone, sometimes I'll be a little too careless. Right now I'm in Spain and I've had no problems even while looking like a very obvious tourist (map in hand, confused face), I'll even carry my wallet in my hand, walk into small alleys at night, and I haven't had any issues so far (other than some small harrassment issues). But Naples is another story, I'll probably have to be a bit more careful there.
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Old 03-15-2010, 10:11 AM
 
12,293 posts, read 18,417,176 times
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Skip Naples, it's not the best use of your valuable vacation time when there are so many other great things to do nearby - and either spend a few days up in Florence and Tuscany, or down the Amalfi coast. It's almost a crime not to see Florence, to pick Naples over Florence is unthinkable.

Edit: OK I see you are saying you will go to Florence later. I must ask why Naples at all? If it is to see Pompeii and Capri then stay in nearby Sorrento. Seriously there is nothing worth seeing in Naples.
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Old 03-15-2010, 02:19 PM
 
Location: Colorado
4,023 posts, read 4,730,944 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lilamx View Post
I'll have the opportunity to go to other cities in Italy afterwards, for now I just want to focus on those two .

Again, thanks for all the tips/advice!

So I should carry my passport around with me? Shouldn't I just leave it at the safe in the hotel?

In Naples the only thing that kind of worries me is my arrival...my hotel is located very near the central station and they say that area is not safe at all...when I arrive I'll have my suitcase and 2 other bags with me (not to mention my map in hand) and I'll have to walk to my hotel...I just hope nobody decides to rob me there! Other than that, I feel pretty safe. I'm not a paranoid person, I tend to be trusting of everyone, sometimes I'll be a little too careless. Right now I'm in Spain and I've had no problems even while looking like a very obvious tourist (map in hand, confused face), I'll even carry my wallet in my hand, walk into small alleys at night, and I haven't had any issues so far (other than some small harrassment issues). But Naples is another story, I'll probably have to be a bit more careful there.
Surrender your passport if required........otherwise, carry it around in your money belt.....

There is an area in Barcelona that is not safe.......I can't think of the street and area.....it's a long street that leads down to the water...the hotels are noisy at night.....lots of fun mimes along the street, etc...touristy...lots of pick pockets, lots of gypsys, etc..... Like I said, be on your guard everywhere......everywhere!
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Old 03-15-2010, 02:22 PM
 
Location: Colorado
4,023 posts, read 4,730,944 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dd714 View Post
Skip Naples, it's not the best use of your valuable vacation time when there are so many other great things to do nearby - and either spend a few days up in Florence and Tuscany, or down the Amalfi coast. It's almost a crime not to see Florence, to pick Naples over Florence is unthinkable.

Edit: OK I see you are saying you will go to Florence later. I must ask why Naples at all? If it is to see Pompeii and Capri then stay in nearby Sorrento. Seriously there is nothing worth seeing in Naples.
As you can see from my previous post, I agree with you 100%, Dd!
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