Naples is also known as “the 500 hundreds domes city” because it’s the city with the highest number of churches in Europe! The majority of them can be considered open museums because free to enter and you can find masterpieces from the gothic and baroque period. The most beautiful are in the old town so you can visit them during a dedicated tour! Here a list of the most famous churches of Naples:
Located in the street with the same name, the “Duomo” of Naples is the main Cathedral of the city. It has be dedicated to Maria Assunta and after consecrated to San Gennaro, the protector of Naples. The church has a style that goes from the gothic of the fourteenth century to the neogothic of the nineteenth century and from the right nave you can enter the Royal Chapel of the Treasure of San Gennaro in which there is the blood of the Saint: many times every year it liquefies making the so called “Miracle of San Gennaro”.
The Church of Santa Chiara is the most beautiful gothic cathedral of Naples with an important cloister tiled with majolica which has changed over the centuries. During the Second World War the cathedral has been destroyed by a fire after the Allied bombings and many frescos realized by Giotto too; their rests are in the Museum, at the ground floor of the cloister
In front of the Church of Santa Chiara there is the Church of Gesù Nuovo, as the name of the square and it has the famous and unusual façade with rustic ashlars diamond projections; on its faces there are musical notes and together they form a symphony 45 minutes long. The Church (one of the biggest of Naples) is a classical example of Neapolitan baroque and the only example of Neapolitan private palace after converted into a holy place. One of the peculiarities of the church is a bomb undetonated from the Second World War and today exposed to the public.
The Church symbol of the most famous square of Naples, Piazza del Plebiscito, is the most important Italian neoclassic church. It is located to the curve side of the square and it reminds the Pantheon in Rome, both for the external façade and for the inner spaces.
In the old town of the city, in Via dei Tribunali, there is the Church of Santa Maria delle Anime del Purgatorio ad Arco, which is characterized by the presence of skulls outside the church. From the Church (of 1600) you can go down to the hypogeum where people pray towards unknown relics who represent the mediator for prayers and request of intercessions.
The Church of San Domenico Maggiore (in the homonymous square) is the biggest religious complex of Naples (if you consider the Church and the Convent). The style respects the gothic criteria with three naves, lateral chapels, polygonal apse and big transept and the peculiarities is that it is oriented to the opposite side of the square: the main entry is from Vicoletto San Domenico, and not from the square. This was the Church where originally Caravaggio’s Flagellation of Christ was exposed, instead today it is at Capodimonte Museum.
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