Napoli, Italy is world famous for its pizza. And yes, we traveled to Napoli just to sample what some people claim to be the best pizza in the world.
About Our Experience
Our around the world trip began in Rome, in 2014. On the day that we traveled from Rome to Sorrento, we made a brief pitstop in Napoli (Naples). Making the pilgrimage to Naples for some world class pizza seemed like a must do activity on this trip.
We arrived in Naples midday and stowed our bags in the train station for the somewhat expensive price of 6 euros per bag. There was no way we were going to lug our backpacks through the hot and crowded streets of Naples.
We loved walking through Naples. This city and its people have so much character and it felt much different from Rome. In some ways it felt like Rome meets Istanbul, with grittier streets, laundry hanging from balconies, and people hanging out on street corners.
We took Rick Steves’ recommendation on Napoli’s best pizza place and ate at L’Antica Pizzeria “da Michele.” It was a fifteen minute wait to get a table at 1:30 pm. We were given a ticket, we waited our fifteen minutes on a nearby street corner, and before we knew it, we were called inside.
We took our seats at a small table in the corner, surrounded by lots of other tourists but also some locals as well. Once seated, we learned that the Napoli pizza scene of the movie Eat Pray Love with Julia Roberts was filmed in this very same restaurant. Kara noticed this first (there was a photograph hanging on the wall) and clued me in by saying, “Mom, it’s that movie you watch all of the time!” I have to admit, I have watched Eat Pray Love many times while planning our around the world trip.
There are two choices for pizza: margherita and marinara. We ordered one of each along with two Coca-Colas. Five minutes later our lunch was served.
The pizza was fantastic! It was much different from pizza we normally eat in the US. The crust is simple and topped with tomato sauce and just a little bit of mozzarella cheese (on the margherita pizza only), with lots of olive oil, garlic, and seasonings. Its simplicity made it fabulous. We devoured the margherita pizza. The marinara pizza was the same, only there was no cheese. Even without the cheese it was very, very good. We all preferred the margherita pizza over the marinara pizza.
Our meal was quick, relatively cheap, and very tasty. We were all very glad we made this pitstop on the way to Sorrento for a taste of one of the best pizzas in the world.
How to Visit Naples in Transit Between Rome and Sorrento
Take the train from Rome to Napoli. This journey takes between 70 minutes and 2 hours, depending upon the train you book. In the Napoli train station (Napoli Centrale), you can store your luggage for a fee.
Exit the train station and walk to L’Antica Pizzeria da Michele, one of the best spots to get pizza in Naples. If there is a wait, the host will hand you a piece of paper with a number on it. Once your number is called, you go in and have a seat.
Don’t expect a quiet, leisurely experience. They expect you to place your order almost immediately. You have two choices: margherita pizza (with cheese) and marinara pizza (no cheese). Both are delicious but the margherita was our favorite.
To get to Sorrento, you can take the Campania Express or Circumvesuviana train (45 minutes to 1.5 hours, cheap but notorious for pickpockets…this is what we did without any issues other than being on a hot, overcrowded train in July) or take a ferry from Naples to Sorrento.
More Information for Your Trip Italy
ROME: For a list of the top experiences in Rome, read our article Best Things to Do in Rome. Learn how to put these together in our 2 Day Rome Itinerary, where to eat in our Rome Restaurant Guide, how to visit the Colosseum, and where to stay in our Rome Hotel Guide. And don’t miss our guide to the Best Rooftop Bars in Rome.
AMALFI COAST: Pick out which towns you want to visit in our article about the best towns to visit on the Amalfi Coast. If you are active and adventurous, one of the best things to do on the Amalfi Coast is hike the Path of the Gods. We also have a 3-day Sorrento Itinerary, best things to do in Capri, and where to stay on the Amalfi Coast.
PUGLIA: Read about 15 beautiful places to visit in Puglia and the best things to do in Alberobello. We also have a guide to the best things to do on the Gargano Peninsula and how to spend one day in Vieste.
BEST OF ITALY: In our guide to the Best Places to Visit in Italy, we list 20 beautiful destinations to consider for your next trip to Italy.
We have TONS more information about Italy in our Italy Travel Guide, including Rome, Florence, Venice, Tuscany, the Dolomites, the Amalfi Coast, the Cinque Terre, Basilicata, and Puglia.
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