The Villa Comunale is Naples‘ most famous park. This elongated park is close to the coast, between the Riviera di Chiaia and Via Francesco Caracciolo. This former “Royal Promenade” has only been a public park since the end of the 19th century. It is full of statues, fountains, small temples and other buildings. The park starts at Piazza della Repubblica and ends at Piazza Vittoria.
Villa Comunale Naples
Address, hours and tariffs
The Villa Comunale (also called Villa Reale or Real Passeggio di Chiaia) is open from 07:00 to 24:00. Admission is free. The entrance is in the Piazza Vittoria (bus C25, stop Riviera di Chiaia).
Although there was a garden decorated with 13 fountains as early as 1697, the park as it looks today was only created between 1778 and 1780. The architect was Carlo Vanvitelli (son of the more famous Luigi), who designed it at the behest of Ferdinand IV of Bourbon.
Vanvitelli used the Paris Garden of the Tuileries as inspiration for his design.
At the time, it was still called the Passeggio Reale (“Royal Walkway”) and ordinary people were allowed to use it only on 8 September, the date of the Festa di Piedigrotta.
In 1869, it was renamed Villa Comunale and has been a public park ever since. Within the grounds of the park one can still find a number of fountains, as well as a tennis club and an aquarium. The latter is part of the “Stazione Zoologica Anton Dohrn”.
The most famous fountain is the “Fountain of the Ducks” (Fontana delle Pappardelle), which is also called the Fontana della Tazza di Porfido or the Fontana delle Quattro Stagioni.
The Santa Lucia fountain was placed in the park in 1898. Decorated with dolphins and caryatids, it is topped by the coat of arms of the viceroy who had it constructed for the Borgo Santa Lucia neighborhood in the early y17th century.
Other attractions in the garden include the Temple of Torquato Tasso and the Temple of Virgilius, plus a number of statues and busts depicting famous Neapolitans or characters associated with the city.
The Palazzo del Circolo della Stampa is among Naples’ better-known post-war buildings.
The Villa Comunale has several entrances and is free to enter. Opening hours: From 07:00 to 24:00.