Castellammare di Stabia is a great place to do some sightseeing. After all, this town in southern Italy sits on the Bay of Naples against an attractive backdrop of scenic hills. Also adding to the allure of the overall setting is the volcanic Mt Vesuvius, which is best-known for wiping out such Roman-era settlements as Pompeii and Stabiae in 79 AD.
Castellammare di Stabia enjoys a prime location in the southwest part of Italy. To the near north are the ruins of Pompeii and the regional capital of Naples, while resort towns such as Vico Equense and Sorrento are found to the near west. This proximity to other destinations of interest makes for plenty of options in the things to do department, and therein lies much of the allure for many tourists. Of course, no visit to Castellammare di Stabia would be complete without some time spent enjoying the attractions that are found in the more immediate area. These attractions include ruins of an old Roman resort, some enticing spas, and a 3,600-foot mountain that provides some amazing views of the Gulf of Naples.
The ancient Roman settlement of Stabiae is found next to Castellammare di Stabia and provides history buffs with an excellent place to spend some time. Prior to the eruption of Mt Vesuvius, Stabiae was a popular resort for the Roman elite. Among the past visitors was the famous philosopher, Cicero, who like others sought refuge in a rather lavish villa while in town. Stabiae is also where another famous Roman philosopher lost his life—this philosopher was Pliny the Elder. He succumbed to what many believe to be natural causes the day after Vesuvius erupted. Other theories about his death relate to toxic fumes and pyroclastic surges. As for what you can expect to see when visiting modern-day Stabiae, there are a series of villa properties that have been unearthed, and the most interesting contain some wonderful artwork. Such an example is Villa di Arianna, which features lovely frescos.
Several natural springs can be found in and around Castellammare di Stabia, and they are believed to have therapeutic properties. This fact only lent to the popularity of Stabiae as a vacation destination, and it has also helped to make the more modern Castellammare di Stabia a popular place to escape to for quite some time. Various spas were built in more recent times to take advantage of the natural springs. The oldest of these spas dates back to the 1820s and was built for King Ferdinando IV.
When Castellammare di Stabia visitors aren't spending time at ancient Stabiae or soothing themselves at a local spa, they may make the trek to the top of Monte Faito. This mountain overlooks both Castellemmare and the Tyrrhenian Sea, and the all around views are among the best that you can enjoy anywhere in the region. It is possible to drive up to the top of Monte Faito, though the preferred transportation option is arguably the funicular. The funicular station is right in the heart of town at Piazza Stazione Circumvesuviana and runs every half hour. As for getting down, many people opt to hike instead of taking the funicular back to the bottom.
Many Castellammare di Stabia visitors only drop in for the day before returning back to other area towns and cities, such as Sorrento and Naples. For those who are thinking of staying overnight instead, and the Castellammare di Stabia Italy hotels are among the most affordable that you will find in the region. They are also quite plentiful, with top picks including the La Medusa Grand Hotel, the Hotel Stabia, and the Tetto Fiorito B&B.
The Castellammare di Stabia tourist office at Piazza Matteotti 34 can provide tourists with info on all kinds of things, including the local hotels. As such, visitors might keep it in mind when looking for things to do and places to stay. As for getting to town, many people take a ferry from Sorrento, Pozzuoli, Naples, or somewhere the like. Regional rains and busses also make stops at Castellammare.
As a side note, Castellammare di Stabia has gotten some attention in recent times for some proposed policies. In 2010, the town's mayor announced that things such as revealing clothes and pickup soccer games in public areas would be banned. Sunbathing and public blasphemy are just some of the other things that were targeted, as the mayor strives to "restore urban decorum." Tourists don't seem to be too affected by the proposed policies, though they should be aware of the issue and are encouraged to inquire about it at the tourist office.