The Campi Flegrei (from the Greek "Flegraios" which means "ardent") is a vast area that encompasses the hills of Naples and extends to the ancient riverbed of the Sebeto River at the capo mise. A large caldera of volcanic nature with a diameter of 12-15 km with about 24 craters, small volcanic buildings and areas prone to a secondary volcanism: fumaroles, thermal springs and bradyseism. Some craters have become lakes, such as the Lake of Avere, and originating lakes for barrage such as the Molten Lake, Lake Lucrino and Lake Mises.
The first eruptions date back to the Pliocene and early Pleistocene. This area was settled by the Greeks who founded the city of Cuma that condizionò the political geography of the area also because the littoral Phlegraean has always been one of the main outlets to the sea and an important place of transmediterranean communication.
The myths handed down by Homer and Virgil and the Greek culture that spread from here throughout the peninsula, increase the fascination of a territory where natural beauties are confused with the work of man in an incomparable scenario.
It is the most important centre of the Campi Flegrei which preserves important traces of Roman times and has always been conditioned by the volcanic nature of the places. Geoseismic phenomenon typical of this city is the bradyseism, that is the lifting and lowering of the Earth's crust as a result of the increase of the underground pressure. The rapid rise of the sea level involved, at the end of the last century, the port, which was repositioned about 50 meters later than the previous location.
Founded in 520 B.C. By Greek colonists under the name of Dicearchia, it was in 194 B.C. Called "Puteoli" by the Romans, because of the abundance of hot springs, which soon became an important political, military and commercial center of Campania. The lively commercial activity of the area is testified by the presence of the temple of Seswifte, with the function of slaughterhouse, the food market. It is presented with an apsed room around which the shops were aligned, on whose walls it is possible to discern the remains of the presence of the molluscs as meters of the volcanic phenomenon of the bradyseism that filled with water this place.
The construction of the amphitheatre, the third largest in Italy, dates back to the Nero age, could contain about 30,000 spectators and presents the best preserved dungeons known. For many centuries it was buried by the materials erupted from the Solfatara and accumulated by the water and the excavation began in 1839. The exterior consists of three orders of arches, the arena measures 75×42 meters and is covered by a corridor that during the shows was cover with wooden planks. The dungeons consist of three brick corridors. In 1689 one of the rooms was transformed into a chapel of San Gennaro, where according to tradition the saint was exposed to the assault of the fairs and then decapitated where the church dedicated to him stands.
The Solfatara of Pozzuoli
It is an ancient volcanic crater (from Sulpha Terra, Land of sulphur) still active but in quiescent state, located about three kilometers from the center of the city of Pozzuoli. His formation took place 3,700-3.900 years ago, already indicated by Strabo in Imperial Roman times as the abode of the volcano God and as the entrance to the underworld. The mining activity of the minerals reached its apex in the Middle Ages, from here they were derived: the powder of Ischia, the red of Pozzuoli, the Yellow Earth, the Bianchetto and the sulphur. At the beginning of the 900 began the first guided tours inside the crater, while the thermal activity, despite being advertised by sheets and illustrative prints, as the medical science progressed, began a slow decline that led in a few tens of years The abandonment of activities, as well as the extraction of minerals.
The visit to the Solfatara is carried out following the perimeter of the crater, where most of the volcanic activities are concentrated. After passing an oak forest and the typical vegetation of the maquis, you arrive at a viewpoint from where you can observe the entire area of the crater. Then continue to the mineral water Well, the Fangaia, the Trachyte stone quarries, the large Fernie and the ancient stoves.
It is an important archaeological area situated in a picturesque location between the epitaph Point and a small promontory crowned by the imposing Aragonese castle.
According to tradition, the place name comes from bays, a friend of Ulysses buried in this area that has become famous for its thermal springs, used since the Roman period, when they built sumptuous villas that made Baia one of the favourite destinations of the Roman nobles.
Most of the buildings in the bay are submerged by the sea, visited by excursions with special boats. The area of the submerged archaeological park of Baia, is divided into three sectors: The Baths of Venus, a complex that belonged to the so-called Temple of Venus, a large circular classroom almost on the quay of the port; The thermal baths of Sosandra, scenographic terraces, a theatre-nymphaeum and porticoed gardens adorned with mosaics, statues and paintings; The thermal complex of Mercury, named after a large room where echo echoes.
Archaeological Museum of Campi Flegrei
The Archeological Museum of Campi Flegrei is housed within the Aragonese fortress, restored and adapted to the new exhibition destination, located on the promontory that closes the Bay of Baia South, and from which the entire Gulf of Pozzuoli and the islands of Capri, Ischia and Procida. The museum layout presents exhibits of Flegrea provenance, as well as those hitherto kept mainly in the depots of the National Archaeological Museum of Naples, and those coming from the recent excavations of the Federico II University, of the Oriental, of the Centre J. Bérard and of the Superintendence itself, according to a reasoned exposition for topographic and thematic contexts, under the scientific direction of Prof. Fausto Zevi. On the ground floor is the complex of the shrine of the Augustan of Mises, with the pediment the statues of Tito and Vespasian and the bronze equestrian statue of Domitian. On the upper floor is the nymphaeum of Punta Epitaph, submerged by the bradyseism and found during the excavations of the 1970s. Another section of the museum collects the decorations found by the excavations of the Rione Terra in Pozzuoli. Of great interest is the section of the Chalk of the bay, found in an environment probably dedicated to the production of sculptures.
It is the oldest part of the Flegrei fields. Founded around 730 BC, as the first Greek colony on the mainland, it soon became an important commercial centre. According to tradition, its inhabitants founded several towns on the coast, including Neapolis. The first finds date back to the seventeenth century, but systematic explorations were carried out only starting from 1852. The archaeological park includes the Acropolis, a spur overlooking the sea, and the lower part of the city, where you will find the forum, of Samnite age, the happy Arch, made to pass the Via Domitia through Mount Grillo, and the amphitheatre. For the Romans, Cuma was a sacred place and for this reason the Sibyl's cavern is considered the most famous monument of the Acropolis. A long tunnel that ends in a room with three niches, in which was identified the room where the Sibyl pronounced its predictions.