Saturday, February 26, 2011

I Can See Vesuvius from my Deck !!

I am in the little town of Acerra, 15 minutes outside of Naples, studio italiano.
The town was famous even in the time of Vergilius, who called it a 'jewel box'.  Vergil died about 50 years before Vesuvius erupted in 79AD.  That was also before this housing project was built about 10 years ago. It does have a few good things going for it, but 'jewel box' is not among them.  My immediate issue is with the yellow building blocking 90% of my view of Vesuvius.

We went in to town to check out Napoli, and first went to the Parco Vergiliano, a large treed park overlooking all of Naples and its surrounding bay and islands.

These are the islands of Procida and Ischia off  Bagnoli.  This large bay, a part of,  the greater bay of Naples was a runner up in the contest to host the America's Cup in 2007.
Valencia took the prize, but Naples has partlially cleaned up the old steel mills, built in 1900, and needs a plan to energize this beautiful site.

The close island is Nisida, the Patrician estate of Brutus (Et tu?), where he developed the plan to assassinate Julius Caesar.  Having one's own island may lead to delusions of grandeur...  Virgil describes the nearby area as the location for a new harbor built by Augustus safe inland via canal, named Portus Julius. This harbor was used for over 400 years and was rediscovered in 1956.
 It would be interesting to see America's Cup boats in this location, the highest point on Nisida is 105 m, about 3 times the height of the AC masts.

Nisida is now connected to the mainland by a short stone bridge.  The isola is the remnant of an old volcano, the flooded crater created a small circular harbor, hidden from land view.

Further along we see a cozzi farm, the grid of bouys off the park peninsula, just south of Nisida.

The coast here is fingered with accessable projections.  I notice an interesting building and take a closer look,

it seems abandoned.  The natural caves seem like lost aquaducts.

February in Naples is brisk, but usually sunny.  These roses are in bloom, by April and May this park should be on fire with blossoms of all sorts.

And through these gardens, can be seen the isola of Capri.  

Down at the waters edge Vesuvius seems a shadow in the mists.
Closer, from the top of the Castel del Ouvo,

the real presence of the historic volcano is manifest.
  Naples has boats, and harbors galore.

Here is one with a prime vantage.