Known for its faded grandeur and charismatic vibe, Naples is a mecca for visitors wanting to discover Italy at its most authentic. Lying in the shadow of Mount Vesuvius, this gloriously gritty seaside city should be next on your agenda after Rome and Venice.
Free walking tours in Naples are the best way to peel back the layers of this energetic place, with iconic landmarks and hidden gems in abundance.
How do free walking tours in Naples work?
Exploring Naples with a local insider takes all the stress out of navigating your way around this often-confusing city. Just one reason why a walking tour is the way forward.
There are no set prices for free tours in Naples, and you don’t have to pay anything upfront. Instead, just tip the guide after your excursion, giving as much as you like.
Take some cash with you on the day and pay what you feel the tour was worth.
How much should you tip for a free walking tour in Naples?
Most people on free walking tours in Naples like to tip the guide between €10 and €15 per person. Some visitors offer €5 while others have paid up to €50 if they thought the excursion was particularly impressive.
To help you arrive at a fair amount, consider the length of the tour, and how much you learned. Then just tip accordingly.
What are the best free walking tours in Naples?
You have a lot of choice when it comes to free walking tours in Naples. Most excursions are themed, with something suitable for everyone from history buffs to foodies.
Old Town and Via dei Tribunali free walking tours
Discover Naples at its most atmospheric as you stroll around the historic center. You’ll venture along the famous Vicoli – narrow alleyways – where the true heart of the city reveals itself. This is one of the most popular destinations on free walking tours in Naples.
Next up is the famous Via dei Tribunali which slices through the Old Town. Lined with quaint shops, cafés, and ancient churches, it’s among the oldest streets in Naples.
Other highlights include the city’s original pizzeria, the ancient Greek walls, and the Gothic Santa Chiara Church. Stop in Piazza Bellina to see Roman ruins. Then admire the Royal Palace and Basilica of San Francesco di Paola at Piazza del Plebiscito.
Hillside viewpoints free walking tours
One of the best ways to appreciate Naples is from up high. So anyone with a penchant for panoramic vistas will love these walking tours. You’ll be taking in some of the most iconic views over the city from the surrounding hills.
The funicular railway is a fun way to ascend the peaks around Naples. On the ride up Vomero hill, you will be treated to superb views over the Gulf of Naples and the Mediterranean. On a clear day, you can even see Vesuvius on the horizon!
Gaze up at the old monastery of Certosa di San Martino and the fortress of Castel Sant'Elmo on the mountainside behind you. Then see if you can spot the historic center of Naples down below. After having your fill of photos, it’s time to walk back down and explore the palaces and churches in the leafy hilltop district of Vomero.
Sanità district free walking tours
These free walking tours in Naples take you deep into the Sanità neighborhood to the north of the historical center. The great actor Totò was born here, and you can visit his house for a glimpse into the complex life of this famous comic artist.
Other highlights include the Vico Montesilvano, known as the “alley of culture”, and the Baroque architecture at both the Palazzos dello Spagnuolo and San Felice. Keep an eye out for the vibrant urban murals that spruce up some of the city streets too.
Continue to the unusual Fontanelle Cemetery - an ossuary in the Materdei area of Naples. Steeped in folklore and mystery, the eerie cave is piled high with skulls that are centuries old.
Spanish Quarter and street art free walking tours
The 16th-century Quartieri Spagnoli lies in the center of historical Naples. It’s gritty, vibrant, and colorful, with all the narrow streets and food stalls you could wish for. This district has a strong Neapolitan identity, so it's a great place to get to know the real Naples.
Street art has become very popular here, and you’ll see graffiti, murals, and posters by some of the world’s most renowned urban artists. Full of meaning and symbolism, these works tell their own stories of life here in the city. See if you can find the giant murals of Maradona and Totò!
After wandering through the atmospheric streets you’ll finish the tour in Piazza Plebiscito.
Food tasting free walking tours
Discover the taste of Naples on these food-themed walking tours. You’ll explore beautiful squares and pass famous historical monuments before visiting the ancient Montesanto market.
Stop at different stalls to sample some Neapolitan specialties, with everything from tomato pizza and seafood to sweets and local coffee on offer. This is street food at its most authentic, with influences from all over the Mediterranean.
Some tours also swing by the artisan limoncello factory where you’ll learn how this classic Italian liqueur is made. Don't leave without having a taste!
The cost of food is not included in the tour and usually comes to around €10 per person.
In which languages are free walking tours in Naples operated?
Free tours in Naples are available in several different languages. Most are run in either English or Italian, so it should be easy to find a suitable tour.
There are also some excursions conducted in Spanish and French.
Where do free walking tours in Naples start?
Old Town tours begin in Piazza Plebiscito or Piazza Dante. Meanwhile, the hilltop viewpoint excursions start at Piazza Municipio or outside the Via Toledo cable car station.
Excursions around the Sanità district kick off from the Piazza Dante station. For the Spanish Quarter and street art excursions, you will need to make your way to Piazza Municipio.
The meeting points for food tours tend to be in Piazza Dante, at the Dante Metro station, or in Piazza Municipio.
How long do free walking tours in Naples last?
Free walking tours in Naples vary in length, from 1 hour 45 minutes to 6 hours. However, the majority last around 2.5 hours, which is ample time to take in the major sights.
Think about how long you want to be on your feet to help decide which Naples excursion to book.
When is the best time to join a free walking tour in Naples?
Most of the free walking tours in Naples take place during the morning or early evening. This is when temperatures are cooler and the popular areas are a bit quieter. There are a handful of afternoon tours available too.
Reap the full benefits of your free tour by booking it for your first day in Naples. You’ll enjoy an insider introduction to the city and come away with top tips about great places to eat or visit during your stay.
Should Naples free walking tours be booked online?
Since free tours in Naples are very popular with visitors, it’s a good idea to book your place well in advance. Places are limited to ensure the group can move easily through the narrow streets, so don’t miss out by leaving it too late.
You can rest easy knowing you have a reserved spot on the excursion. It will save you having to research the sights when you arrive in the city too.
Bookings are completely free of charge, with no credit card details required. You can also cancel without penalty should your schedule change nearer the time.