In the heart of the city of Naples walking through Piazza Municipio you can see one of the architectural symbols of the Neapolitan city: the Castel Nuovo, better known as Maschio Angioino. The Renaissance and medieval castle is the seat of the Neapolitan society of history and the Committee of Naples of the institute for the history of the Italian Risorgimento. The fortress, built at the behest of Charles I of Anjou, immediately assumed the role of guardian, in fact, its strategic position near the port helped the Neapolitan rulers to sleep peacefully and avoid enemy incursions.

What to visit at Maschio Angioino?

The Palatine Chapel or "Santa Barbara": the only surviving element of the Angevin family, was damaged by an earthquake that struck the city in 1456 and subsequently it has been restored. The Palatine Chapel overlooks the sea and is accessible through an extraordinary Renaissance portal, which will take you inside a single and long nave with Gothic characters. The chapel, according to a collection of sonnets by an anonymous author, was entirely frescoed by Giotto with scenes from the Old and New Testaments, of which few fragments remain today in the glances of the windows that recall those of the Bardi Chapel in Santa Croce in Florence. In addition, there are also many statues that remain wonderful examples of the Neapolitan Renaissance, for example the Tabernacle with the Madonna and Child by Domenico Gagini, a pupil of Donatello and Brunelleschi.

The Armory Room: this space was initially used for weapons, but finds in archaeology its most interesting aspect because they were found remains of the Roman era visible thanks to the glass floor.

Since 2015 it’s possible to visit the Sala Carlo V and Novecento that are part of the project “Mast” (Maschio Angioino Smart Tour), thanks to which it will be possible to listen the history with technology and innovation. Your smartphone will give voice to the works and make them speak.

The Baroni Room: the Sala Maior of the Angevin castle, commissioned by Roberto d’Angiò and frescoed by Giotto in 1330. The name “Sala dei Baroni” comes from the arrest in 1485 of some barons who had partecipated in the cospiracy aganist Ferrante I of Aragon. The king, astute, decided to lure them to the castle and threw them into prisons under the Palatine Chapel, the environment took the name of the "prison of the conspiracy of the Barons". 

In Naples every legend is history, so it will be good to mention you, before visiting the Maschio Angioino, the Fossa del coccodrillo. It is rumoured that the prisoners disappeared mysteriously, and after an increase in vigilance it was discovered that a crocodile entered through an opening and chewed the legs of the prisoners to drag them to the sea.

Nowadays there are no more kings and queens or crocodiles justiciars, but the Maschio Angioino still remains a place of strong interest and becomes a promoter of art exhibitions, impeccable location for carnival masquerade, scenic setting for theatrical events. What’s better than sitting down and going back in time to the grand season of court theater?

Information about Castel Nuovo (Maschio Angioino)

Opening hours
  • Open Monday to Saturday from 9:00 to 19:00; the ticket office closes one hour before
  • Possible opening on Sunday within 2 pm to visit: the courtyard, the Palatine Chapel, the Barons Room, the Armory Room. Check on the website of the City of Naples any notices about
Ticket price
  • Whole. EUR 6
  • Reduced with Artecard: 3 euro
  • Free for youngs under 18 in the EU