San Gennaro and San Gaudioso catacombs of Naples
The Catacombs of Naples are underground sites which are the heart of cristianity and cemeteries, dating back to the 2nd century A.C. The catacombs are a mix of stories and legends reporting on mystical places to discover.
The San Gennaro catacomb is the biggest in southern Italy, infact its surface extends 5800 square metres on two levels. The catacomb was dug in Capodimonte’s hill, in “tufo rock” a vulcanic material. In this place there are a lot of underground tombs called hypogeums. The first graves belong to noble families, in fact frescoes were also discovered.
In the fifth century A.C. there were a lot of tombs because many loyals were buried near San Gennaro, patron of Naples. The bishop moved S. Gennaro’s corpse to this place. Now San Gennaro is in the Naples's Cathedral. The tombs in catacomb are 3000. The catacomb was not only a cemetery but also a place to pray. Infact called: “church of Bishops” and “Adjecta church”.
Even the catacomb of S. Gaudioso is the cemetery, under the Santa Maria della Sanità church, but these are smaller then S. Gennaro catacomb. There holds the corpse of San Gaudioso, a lot of ancient frescoes and a lot of byzantine mosaics.
How can you get to catacombs?
To arrive to catacombs is easy. The entrance for San Gennaro catacomb is in Capodimonte 13 street. From the historic centre, the catacombs, are easlily reachable by buses but even by foot if you want to. The buses are: 178, 168, R4. San Gaudioso catacomb is in Sanità Square 14, in the quarter called Sanità. The catacomb is under Santa Maria della Sanità Church. From the archeological museum the distance is short on foot.
Parth of catacomb
The catacombs can be visited by using one ticket that is valid for one month. All the tours are mandatorily guided. The association tour "Le Catacombe di Napoli” has provided a path for disabled people.