Pompei and Caiazzo

Many of the fictions that stirred my childhood were populated by characters of Ancient Greece and Ancient Rome. I grew up reading about the feats of mythological heroes, the prophecies of the oracle of Delphi, and of course, the tragic burial of Pompei under the ashes of the Vesuvius. A visit of the ruins of this city was therefore inevitable when travelling to Naples. We spent a morning in the sun, exploring houses, the forum, and all other iconic spots of this ancient city (except the overcrowded brothel…), guided through its streets by Rick Steves (whose Audio Tours you should definitely check out!) — I definitely recommend arriving first thing in the morning to avoid the crowds, and most importantly finding a parking spot.

We then took the car and drove through the rocky region of Caserta to a small village, perched on a mountain: Caiazzo. Why this lost village you ask? Only to eat the best pizza in all of Italy… We had made sure to book a table at Pepe in Grani, to try their twisted take on traditional Neapolitan pizza and we were not disappointed. We even saw the man himself, Franco Pepe, the genius behind one of the most delicious pizzas we’ve ever had.

Although pizza was the only reason we headed up to Caiazzo, the quaintness of the village, and the views of the surrounding landscapes, will give you more reasons to pay it a visit.