The historic center of Naples tumbles so effortlessly downhill toward the sea that you might not know the seafront area actually has a name all its own: Mergellina. Tucked at the foot of Posillipo Hill, the marina here was once the home to the city’s fishing fleet but is now a bustling yacht harbor and ferry port.
If you're taking a ferry from Naples to Sorrento, the Amalfi Coast, or the islands in the Bay of Naples, your departure dock will likely be the Mergellina marina. It's not the main port for cruise ships but is where many small hydrofoils and other smaller boats depart. The waterfront is lined with gelato shops, bars, and hotels, all offering views of the Castel dell’Ovo and Mt. Vesuvius.
This is also a popular stretch of coastline for the evening passeggiata (stroll), either along the pedestrian Lungomare promenade or up Via Mergellina to Via Posillipo, where there are sweeping views of the city and the Bay of Naples. Otherwise, hop on the funicular from Mergellina to the top of the Posillipo Hill, a tony residential neighborhood with some of the best views in the city. To visit Mergellina, join a hop-on-hop-off bus tour or private driving tour of Naples’s city center, or take time to explore either before or after catching a ferry at the Mergellina marina.
Things to know before you go
- The gelaterie (gelato shops) along the seafront in Mergellina are particularly popular and a great stop for kids.
- Mergellina’s fish and seafood restaurants are known for their quality and affordability.
- Wear comfortable shoes to stroll the pedestrian-only waterfront promenade and explore the neighborhood streets.
- The waterfront promenade is wheelchair accessible; Via Mergellina and Via Posillipo are both uphill routes that may be hard to manage on wheels.
How to get there
Mergellina is located along the coastline in central Naples between the Chiaia and Posillipo neighborhoods. There is a train station in the neighborhood and a number of bus lines serve the marina.
When to get there
Mergellina is at its most vibrant in the later hours of the day, when the seafront is crowded with locals out for an evening stroll and the restaurants fill with diners enjoying fresh fish and seafood.
Mergellina is at the base of Posillipo, an elegant hillside neighborhood above the Bay of Naples with sweeping views over the city, swanky private villas, up-scale restaurants, and smart shops and boutiques. Take the funicular from the Mergellina stop to Piazza Manzoni, the final stop on the Posillipo Hill.
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- Castel dell'Ovo
- Saint Lucia Neighborhood (Quartiere Santa Lucia)
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- Piazza del Plebiscito
- Basilica of San Francesco di Paola (Basilica di San Francesco di Paola)
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- Galleria Umberto I
- Castel Nuovo (Maschio Angioino)
- Naples Cruise Port (Terminal Crociere di Napoli)
- Spanish Quarter (Quartieri Spagnoli)
- Saint Elmo’s Castle (Castel Sant'Elmo)
- Charterhouse and Museum of San Martino (Certosa e Museo di San Martino)
- Central Funicular (Funicolare Centrale)
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