Castel dell'Ovo

Castel dell'Ovo information

Location
Naples , Italy
Address
Borgo Marinaro
Telephone
+390 81 240 00 55
Getting there
Bus: 154 to Via Santa Lucia
Opening hours
9am-6pm Mon-Sat, to 2pm Sun
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Built by the Normans in the 12th century, Naples’ oldest castle owes its name (Castle of the Egg) to Virgil. The Roman scribe reputedly buried an egg on the site where the castle now stands, warning that when the egg breaks, the castle (and Naples) will fall. Thankfully, both are still standing, and walking up to the castle's ramparts will reward you with a breathtaking panorama.

Used by the Swabians, Angevins and Alfonso of Aragon, who modified it to suit his military needs, the castle sits on the rocky, restaurant-lined 'island' of Borgo Marinaro . According to legend, the heartbroken siren Partenope washed ashore after failing to seduce Ulysses with her song. It's also where the Greeks first settled the city in the 7th century BC, calling the island Megaris. Its commanding position wasn't wasted on the Roman general Lucullus, either, who had his villa here long before the castle hit the skyline. Views aside, the castle now also hosts regular art exhibitions.