It has been decided that the entrances to Naples' fascinating underground world will be opened to the public for the month-long "Monuments in May 2007" city-wide celebration.
Four underground sites have been selected, three of which are already known to those who are fascinated by the "Parallel City" beneath Naples.
The first tour, and certainly the most famous site, will be a guided visit to the mysterious underground Fontanelle Cemetery in the ancient Sanita' quater of Naples, which we have featured in numerous articles on this site.
The second is conveniently located beneath the Bovio school on via San Giovanni a Carbonara, and it is ideally interconnected with passageways to the other cavern beneath the Liceo Artistico art school which is the third quarried cavity the largo Santissima Apostoli. These two historic caverns were part of the 2005 underground tours and were conducted by school children from the schools above, acting as guides, and very informed ones at that, telling about Naples being invaded by armies sneaking under the city walls by using the aqueducts below!
The fourth cavern is new on the tour this year and is most unusual. It is a 5,000 sq. meter underground Piperno stone quarry located in Pianura, a suburb North of Naples. It was only recently discovered in 2005 by the Southern Speleological Society. Unlike the softer yellow tuff sandstone beneath Naples, Piperno is a harder volcanic stone used for surface building decoration and horizontal building elements like balconies, windows and doorway entrances because of its durable and easily worked composition.
Below are links and photos with more detail about this year's underground tour locations.
For a good article on the Fontanelle Cult Cemetery see:
For the two ancient aqueduct visits see last year's article:
And to see great photos of the Piperno Caverns go to the link below in Italian, which I have not yet translated, but the photos are great:
by Napoli Underground
Translated by Larry Ray