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6 of the best beaches in Naples


Located on the Gulf of Naples, on the west coast of southern Italy, Naples‘History, culture and cuisine are forever linked to the Mediterranean. Sailors from the Greek island of Rhodes were the first to establish a small commercial port here in the first millennium BC, establishing the city of Parthenope, which was renamed Neapolis in the sixth century BC.

Although the city stretches along the Mediterranean Sea, it is not typically considered a resort destination. However, there are a few places where you can enjoy a wonderful day at the beach, whether you are looking for a wonderful swim or somewhere that is perfect for families with young children to hang out. Here are our selections of the best beaches in Naples, Italy.

Spiaggia della Gaiola is part of a marine park and ideal for snorkeling

Spiaggia Della Gaiola, or Gaiola Beach, is one of the most beautiful beaches in Naples. Popular with locals during the summer months, admission is always free, and you will want to arrive early to beat the crowds. Located along the Posillipo coast, on the northwestern edge of the Bay of Naplesthe beach belongs to the Gaiola Submerged Parka protected national marine park.

The park is divided into two zones: Zone A is a protected nature reserve; Zone B is limited to 100 visitors per day. Thanks to a ban on motorboats and fishing, the Mediterranean Sea is wonderfully clear and calm here, making it an ideal beach for snorkelling. Swim out to the two tiny, rocky islands in the nearby distance or snorkel the underwater ruins of a Roman era villa. Bring a diving mask or goggles: many colorful fish call home this crystal blue corner of the Baby of Naples.


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The calm waters near Palazzo Donn’Anna are perfect for families with young swimmers © Westend61 / Getty Images

Bagno Elena is a top beach for families with young children

The private beach Bagno Elena boasts a wonderful location in the Bay of Naples, adjacent to the 17th-century palace Donn’Anna Palace in Posillipo. Bathers have been catching rays and swimming in the deep blue Mediterranean here since it opened in 1840. Legend has it that Oscar Wilde once enjoyed visiting the elegant Bagno Elena on summer days.

The beach is divided into three main areas: the central pier is littered with comfortable sunbeds to relax under the Mezzogiorno sunshine, while the two side beaches are ideal for families thanks to shallow, calm water, plus plenty of umbrellas and sunbeds. Enjoy an espresso at the Beach Bar or a lunch with local seafood specialties at Il Ristorante, located on the pier.

Dine at Bagno Sirena’s beach restaurant

Stairs away from Bagno Elena, on the other side of Palazzo Donn’Anna, Bagno Sirena is a smaller beach where you can relax on comfortable sunbeds and swim in the crystal clear sea minus the raging crowds. Both Bagno Elena and Bagno Sirena boast incredible views of Mount Vesuvius in the distance. The main attraction is the beachfront restaurant, where you can enjoy excellent Neapolitan cuisine: try the house specialty, peppered with musselsfresh mussels prepared with tomatoes and white wine.

People relaxing on a beach, with colorful umbrellas and a large fortress-like building in the background
La Rotonda Diaz, or Mappatella Beach, is popular with locals © mychadre77 / Getty Images

Centrally located La Rotonda Diaz is ideal for a quick dive

La Rotonda Diaz, also known as Mappatella Beach, in the city center lungomare (waterfront) is the most centrally located piece of sand in Naples. As it is so close to Naples’ bustling port, the sand is not always sparkling, and the sea is not so clear due to the many passing ships. That said, it’s the perfect beach if you’re looking for a few hours of sunshine, taking a quick swim to cool off from the summer heat, or enjoying a cold beer while dipping your toes into the sea.

Take a dip from the cliffs in saltwater pools at Rocce Verdi

When the sun shines on the underwater rocks at this beautiful beach along the Posillipo coast, on the northwestern edge of the Bay of Naples, they take on a green tint, hence the name of this beloved beach, Green Rocks. Although you will have to pay an entrance fee, Rocce Verdi has many benefits. Catch a few rays on a comfortable sunbed located on the rocky shore, or head to the top of the beach’s front cliff, where you can dive into one of the two large saltwater pools overlooking the bay. Enjoy a cocktail or lunch at the restaurant, also located on the top edge of the rocky beach. In the distance you can see the island of Capri and the entire Sorrento Peninsula. Kayaking is available for paddling in the tranquil bay, and the beach also offers wellness activities, including daily yoga and Pilates during the summer months.

A woman looks across a bay at a large volcano in the distance as the sun sets
Enjoy views of Mount Vesuvius from cliffs and bays around Naples © Antonio Busiello / Getty Images

Scoglione in Marechiaro is perfect for a leisurely swim

The Scaglione di Marechiaro (Marechiaro Cliffs) is not a full-service beach, but it is one of the best places to swim in the sea in Naples. The volcanic rocky beach, located just off the coast in the Posillipo neighborhood, can only be reached by boat, with boats departing from Marechiaro port 24 hours a day. It is significantly less crowded than other well-known beaches in the area, it is a beach for swimmers who crave crystal water. A stand rents sunbeds, which can be set up along the rocky cliff – enchanting views await.

Introduce Naples, Pompeii and the Amalfi Coast



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