Hotel La Tripergola, Pozzuoli ***
This attractively presented three-star hotel in Napoli province has a stunning setting right on the seafront overlooking the beautiful Gulf of Pozzuoli. This area, known locally as the Campi Flegrei or Phlegrean Fields, is a delightful part of Italy rich in history and an area of outstanding natural beauty. View hotel
Double rooms from €55
Hotel Santa Marta, Pozzuoli ***
This Italian hotel lies just west of Naples, in the historically and archaeologically fascinating town of Pozzuoli. The Hotel Santa Marta sits at the gateway of the Campi Flegri or 'fiery fields', the extraordinary volcanic area immortalised by Homer and Virgil respectively as the Elysian Fields... View hotel
Double rooms from €85
Hotel Gauro, Pozzuoli ***
This three-star Naples hotel is in Pozzuoli, west of the city, along the Bay of Naples. The Hotel Gauro has a selection of single, double, twin, triple and quadruple rooms. All have air conditioning and opening windows, en-suite bathroom, direct-dial phone and satellite television; each has a minibar and iron... View hotel
Double rooms from €60
On the Mediterranean coast of Italy's Campania region, Pozzuoli sits west of Naples (Napoli), a ring of volcanic hills behind, and the Campi Flegrei (the 'fiery fields') beyond. Famed for years as the childhood home of Sophia Loren, it has ferry connections on to the islands of Procida and Ischia. In antiquity, St Paul landed here before travelling on to Rome.
Its volcanic sand also has another claim to fame, being the stuff the Romans used to make the first concrete a couple of thousand years ago. The Colosseum and the cupola of the Pantheon were made from Pozzuoli sand. The distinctive land around here is created by volcanic activity, most notably in the volcanic crater of Solfatara, with its many active fumaroles (holes emitting volcanic steam and sulphurous fumes).
Other sights include the Flavian Amphitheatre, the third biggest in Rome after the Colosseum and the Capuan Amphitheatre, and which in its day could hold 20,000 baying spectators. Other Classical sights include the Macellum or Temple of Serapis and the Forum. Visit too the Sanctuary of San Gennaro (St Januarius). Along with Naples Cathedral, this is one of two places that the miracle of the reliquification of the saint's blood is supposed to occur. Visit Lake Averno, where Virgil sited the gates to Hell in the Aeneid (plenty of fire and brimstone around the Campi Flegrei of course). Nearby are the Grotto of Cocceiu, the Grotto of the Cumaean Sibyl and the Temple of Apollo. The similarly fiery Lake Lucrino is also worth a look: it is mentioned in Pliny's Natural History.