San Gregorio Armeno’s Nativity scenes…Betlem or Naples?

San Gregorio Armeno – the Nativities alley in the heart of ancient Naples: always a visit worth! A whole landscape made of cork with a huge population of “pastori”, shepherds in terracotta seen in their activity while Jesus Christ was born. The Neapolitan crèches look very similar to the countryside around Naples, and the way of living of people too. So look at this for example:

pastori pescepescivendolo

Isn’t it the same way to show fish on a stall? Be sure you will see Nativity shepherds – supposed having lived 2012 years ago – eating the same bread, cheese and spaghetti than Neapolitans do today!

We are on Sunday in December. And do you know what most of the families with little children (and not only!) do on December Sundays here? They make a walk to a popular lane called San Gregorio Armeno in Naples. They all choose – children have the right to – the new terracotta shepherds to add to the old Nativity scene. Papa builts it every year bigger!

So the affluence to this narrow lane is so much that it gets to a “one way” street for pedestrians! And if you have the wonderful idea to visit it on Sunday in Christmas time, be sure you will walk crushed by the crowd, taking you in a flow. If you want to look at a shop and the stalls standing outside, you really have to assert yourself to come out of the flow!

So it may even be funny, but I’m not so sure you would be able to see much. I would recommend to choose a working day if you are visiting Naples during Xmas time. Or if you are still planning just another year’s spell, even in summer. Xmas atmosphere will be missing, of course…

 

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