For someone who loves walking the streets of a city to get to know it Naples was a real treat. Wending one's way through maze like streets and through archways that fulfill the seeming promise of some buildings with their balconies to join overhead, dodging the occasional kamikaze motorcyclist in lanes or alleys, glimpses of daily life in the courtyards. The numerous street shrines, random coin operated machines for anything from cigarettes to condoms, small shops, bars and cafes - some little more than kiosks, artisan workshops and other business thriving in the heart of the tumbledown city, streets that open into piazzas with restaurants and bars, churches seemingly on every corner, neon clad bars on the corner of a decaying derelict building... Then the tiny streets with their crumbling buildings open out into a main shopping thoroughfare like Via Toledo where as you walk past the modern shops you can look up ancient side streets stretching up to the hill above the city, bustling and full of life. Down past the harbour where ferries and large ships dock, the vista opens out to the bay of Naples, to Castel dell'Ovo with its harbour moorings for fishing boats and yachts and sea with fringed with restaurants, hotels and cafes, where you can sit and watch the world go by or Vesuvius sleeping across the bay. One of my favourite streets was the Rampo Privato Pizzofalcone which switchbacked its way from sea level to hill top and had little houses built under the slope of the actual road.
© Julia Claxton Photography