|Castel Sant'Elmo, as seen from Piazza del Plebiscito|
Instead, we wandered into a couple of random churches (which proved to be a wonderful choice) before making our way down to the bay.
First was Chiesa del Gesu Nuovo, which has a very unusual stone facade dating to the 14th century. This is how overwhelmed we were by the sheer number of beautiful and/or interesting things we saw: I totally don't even remember noticing the front of this church; I didn't really *see* it until I was searching Google Maps and Flickr trying to figure out what church I'd taken interior pictures of.
How in the world did I miss this, right?!
The inside: yet another breathtaking Italian cathedral...
|With my very limited knowledge of Italian, I was able to read this sign: "He was born for us."|
We walked down near Castel Nuovo, which had restorations/excavations going on all around it.
Then, docked in the harbor, we saw "our" cruise ship--the one we'd booked a cruise on in the first place, before our plans fell through. We found this endlessly amusing, that our would-be cruise mates were enjoying excursions in Naples the same day we were exploring the city. We had to take a selfie in front of it :)
We wandered around by the water a bit and admired Vesuvius:
Then we walked back up to Piazza del Plebiscito, Naples' largest public square. It reminded me a bit of St. Peter's Square in the Vatican:
The church in the center is Basilica Reale San Francesco di Paola. It's very similar to the Pantheon in Rome, with an impressive dome; photography wasn't allowed inside, but I found these Creative Commons photos on Flickr:
As it happened, we stumbled upon another wedding! While we were looking around, a small ceremony began with an old couple--I don't know if it was a vow renewal or a couple getting married late in life, but it was adorable :) We ducked back out and took a rest on the steps, watching a group of boys play soccer in the piazza before setting out to find dinner.