Introduction

Constructed by Spanish viceroy Pedro Álvarez de Toledo y Zúñiga in the 16th century, Via Toledo (aka Via Roma) heaves with window-shopping teens, espresso-guzzling business folk and elegant palazzi that once housed worldly aristocrats. Skinny side streets lead west into the Quartieri Spagnoli, built for Don Pedro's Spanish troops and now an earthy, lived-in warren of dripping washing, renegade Vespas and old-school Neapolitan cooking. In sharp contrast, Via Toledo shoots south towards the gilded glories of Palazzo Reale and Teatro San Carlo, their own neighbour the one-time Angevin stronghold of Castel Nuovo (Maschio Angioino).