Marcus Travel Journal

2024 - Napoli, Nola and area

Compania Region includes Napoli, Nola and other exceptional sights


We start our trip arriving in Rome and driving to Nola which is located just outside of Naples.



Nola, is 28 km north easte of Naples. It was established by the Romans and is where Emperor Augustus died. After the Roman Empire fell there were some rough times. The town was sacked a couple of times. In the 1200s the town was passed by inheritance to the Orsini family who dominated it until 1528. In this period it regained its ancient splendor. In the 13th Century Sicily captured the town. Aside from being conquered, earthquakes damaged Nola in the 15th and 16th Centuries.

The Cathedral of Nola

Church rebuilt in 1900 after a fire and contains the crypt of the patron Saint Felice. Recently, a domus ecclesiae was found under the Cathedral, so far the only testimony in Campania.

Church of San Biagio

Late-Renaissance religious building, built by reusing an ancient spa dating back to the Roman Empire. Below the church there is a crypt where the remains of a Roman domus of the 3rd century AD are visible. The church of Saint Biagio is embellished with polychrome marbles and paintings by the greatest painters of the Neapolitan seventeenth century.

The Convent of Sant'Angelo in Palco

Franciscan convent dedicated to the Archangel Saint Michele, most likely founded by Raimondo Orsini, feudal lord of Nola around 1440. The religious building is called "del Palco", as it overlooks, almost as if from a natural stage, among the olive groves and green trees of the fertile Nola countryside.

Basilica of San Felice

One of the main landmarks in Nola. It is dedicated to the town's patron saint. The basilica features an impressive Baroque façade and houses the relics of Saint Felix of Nola, a revered Christian martyr.

Archaeological Museum

Houses a collection of artifacts dating back to Roman times, including pottery, sculptures, and inscriptions.

San Gennaro Martyrdom Sanctuary

This sanctuary is dedicated to Saint Januarius (San Gennaro), a beloved saint in the region. The sanctuary features a chapel containing relics and a statue of the saint.

The former convent of the Capuchins

Located just outside of the centre of the city and has the remains of a church built by St. Pauilinus in the 4th century.

The Roman amphitheater

Monument is known with the name of "Laterizio Amphitheater". It is one of the oldest and largest amphitheaters in Campania and dates back to the 1st century AD. It measures 138x108 meters and has been brought to light only in part. The amphitheater can be visited by reservation only.

The Basilicas - Complex of Cimitile

About 10 minutes by car from our hotel is the Complesso Basilicale Paleocristiano. It is also written up as basilical complex of Cimitile. The most important is the Basilica of Saint Felice, born after the deposition of Saint Felice. The grave was very simple and goes back to the III century a.C. When during the Empire it was allowed to profess the Christianity, the sacre place became the target of a lot of pilgrims and gradually it got bigger. At the entrance of the grave of Saint Felice, in fact, it is possible to see sentences engraved on red plaster, left by visitors. When Paolino arrived in Cimitile he put down the apse of the old building and, in its place, he eracted a “Triforium”; this opening allowed the access to the hall where there where fountains and it conducted pilgrims to the Basilica “Nova” that, after a few centuries, was titled to Saint Giovanni. Every thing we have now about this Basilica in the apse and the marble floors. With the entrance turned to Saint Felice’s Grave, we’ll find the Basilica of Saint Stefano built before VI century a.C.

Complesso Basilicale Paleocristiano

Via Madonnelle, 80030 Cimitile (NA)
+39 081 19143141

Mon - Sat 9am to 1 pm, 3 to 6 in the summer. Sundays open from 9 am to 1 pm.

Vulcano Buono

A shopping centre. If you like capturing the hustle and bustle of local life, this could be an interesting spot.

We will be quite busy. Visitng Leonardo Pen and also taking a trip int Naples. There are frequent trains from Nola to Napoli, tickets are as little as 5 Euros for the one hour ride.


photo: G Marcus

Naples is an exciting city and I am looking forward to being in Naples again. The city has b eautiful architecture and gives an authentic feel. Some fnd the city hard to take. But, say, don't expect manicured streets. This is a city where people live, the streets are an extension of their living rooms. The street show the wear and tear of life.

 More information and photos of Naplesd are included on summary of our 2023 visit to Naples.

Pen Stores in Napoli

Casa Della Penna di Bava Vincenzo Umberto I°, 88, 80138 Napoli Italy 

Stilo & Stile
Via Bernini, 12, 80129 Napoli NA, Italy

Stilo Store
Via Toledo, 170, 80132 Napoli NA, Italy

Piazza Vanvitelli, 7, 80129 Napoli NA, Italy

La Penna d'Oro
Vico Vetriera, 9, 80132 Napoli NA, Italy

La Stilografica
Via Monteoliveto, 66, 80134 Napoli NA, Italy


Nuceroa Alfaterna

Nuceroa Alfaterna

The Bapistery is the building where baptism took place, separated from a church.

Nocera Amphitheatre


Noceera, 37 km south of Nola, is about a half hour drive. Located just a few kilometers southwest of our place in Nola is Nuceria Alfaterna which was an important Roman settlement founded in the 6th century BC and a settlement that flourished during the Roman Empire. Today two municipalities stand: Nocera Inferiore and Nocera Superiore. Some of the Roman ruins it holds includes:

  • The ancient theater is one of its most impressive remains. Built during the 1st century BC, it could accommodate thousands of spectators and was used for theatrical performances and other public events. There is an area of the amphietheatre that is buried,k called the "Grotti".

  • The forum was the center of political, social, and economic life in ancient Roman cities. While much of the forum at Nuceria Alfaterna has been excavated, some structures, such as the basilica and temples, still stand partially preserved.

  • There are remnants of the Roman aqueduct that supplied water to the city.

  • Portions of the old city walls are still visible.

  • The circular baptistery, with a double ring, was built by the Byzantines in the second half of the 6th century on the remains of a thermal building from the 2nd and 3rd centuries, reusing the oldest materials, both in the thick external cylinder and for the fifteen pairs of columns that delimit the central space and support the dome. The columns, in Pentelic marble, are elements of spoils taken from different structures, but above all from Roman baths, so these columns are different from each other sometimes even in height, and even the capitals are absolutely different, especially those taken from the temple of Neptune, decorated with dolphins.


Agriturismo Relais Castelcicala

Agriturismo Relais Castelcicala

via Cappuccini, 1
80035 Nola

The agriturismo is located in the "outbuildings" of Villa Castelcicala, a charming historic residence in Nola, not far from Naples. The six suites are all located on the ground floor each with an independent entrance overlooking the courtyard or private gardens around the swimming pool.