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NAPLES - SANITA' DISTRICT - IDEAS FOR VISITING (food, drink, sights?)

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Hello Helpful Fodor Forum People,

We have organized a trip to the Naples region in June, including Paestum, Salerno, and Ravello. A few months ago this trip was going to focus on Umbria but The Force pulled us southward to Campania.

Here is my question: Has anyone explored the district ("rione") of Sanita' in Naples? It seems a fascinating district, although very poor and possibly Camorra-infested. It apparently is full of some splendid Baroque architecture. I am especially interested in visiting the basilica of Santa Maria della Sanita' and the catacombs of San Gaudioso. There is a neighborhood civic organization which employs young students to give tours. There are also several palaces with wonderful courtyards and staircases. But is it worth going into this district when the Naples centro has so much to offer? We will only have two days in Naples, and we have two other places to visit, the Capodimonte museum and Sant'Elmo. Part of my interest in the Sanita' is to see how the neighborhood is trying to use its artistic treasures as an avenue for advancement.

If the Sanita' district is worth two or three hours, does anyone know of good places to eat there? We would like to find a simple trattoria, but after internet surfing and spending time doing virtual walks through the neighborhood streets using Google Map, nothing jumps out.

Us: in our 60s, like to walk, drink coffee and wine, eat. Art and architecture are strong interests, but we also enjoy slowly walking through neighborhoods, chatting (using our broken Italian) with people in stores or cafes or wherever.

Thanks in advance for any suggestions!

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