Jingle bells, Jingle bells…. There is a nip in the air, but it is wet winter, typically Mediterranean. Amidst the chiming of church bells, the choirs, mistletoes and xmas trees, what stands out are the plethora of cribs. What is sparkling in these cribs is that they don’t have just characters plucked from the Christmas story, but also have figures of ‘everyday people and objects’ – from house to waterfall to food to animals …. You name it. You can buy as well for keepsakes or souvenirs. Come Christmas and Naples in Italy is the place to visit. It has the largest crib scene in world housing over 600 objects on it. Even, the first crib in Naples is thought to go back to 1025! At the St Mary of the Crib.
Whoever knows Naples by its thin-crust Pizza, take a dekko. My Naples is quite distinct from the bustling Rome or the cosmopolitan Milan. Its geography is dotted with little terra cotta villages and impossible to reach green mountains. It has an almost three thousand years of history seeped in its buildings and monuments, medieval castles, stately villas, lavish palaces et al. It is an architectural splendour nestled against a blue blue sea in the bay. The historic centre of Naples is listed by UNESCO as a World heritage Site.
Interestingly, the most bombed Italian city in World War II, Naples is also the birthplace of romantic guitar and mandolin. It has several lovely parks and gardens where I often frequent. Yes, even a lonesome soul becomes wholesome here. Then there are museums, which I feel are the heirlooms for its country. The Naples National Archaeological Museum is one of the city's main museums, with one of the most extensive collections of artifacts of the Roman Empire in the world.
Not surprising, if Rome is Italy’s heart, Naples is its soul.
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