The Bourbon Tunnel Gallery of Naples is a hidden treasure beneath the bustling streets of the vibrant Neapolitan city.

This network of underground tunnels, built in the 19th century during the Bourbon reign, offers visitors the opportunity to delve into Naples’ secret history and uncover its fascinating and mysterious past. A visit to the Bourbon Tunnel Gallery is an unforgettable journey into the heart of the city, where ancient passages, water cisterns, tuff quarries, and more can be admired.

Explore Naples’ Underground History at the Galleria Borbonica

The Bourbon Tunnel Gallery offers visitors the unique opportunity to explore the underground history of Naples. During the guided tour, visitors will be escorted along the labyrinthine underground tunnels, where they can uncover the secrets of the ancient passages used during World War II as air raid shelters.

Through testimonials and reconstructions of historical events, visitors will have the chance to fully immerse themselves in Naples’ underground life and understand the strategic importance of the tunnels throughout the centuries.

History and Origins of the Galleria Borbonica

The Bourbon Tunnel Gallery, one of Naples’ most fascinating historical sites, has a rich and intriguing history that dates back to the 19th century, during the reign of the Bourbons. Its creation dates back to 1853 when King Ferdinand II decided to build a network of underground tunnels connecting the Royal Palace to the military area of the port of Naples. The main objective was to create a safe escape route for the royal family in case of emergency, but the project soon turned into a strategic resource for the city.

The construction of the gallery required the employment of thousands of workers and the use of cutting-edge excavation techniques for the time. The tunnels, dug into the tuff beneath the city, stretched for kilometers beneath the historic center of Naples, creating an intricate and labyrinthine network that wound its way beneath the streets and squares of the city.

During World War II, the Bourbon Tunnel Gallery took on a new strategic importance, being transformed into an air raid shelter to protect the civilian population from aerial attacks. Its large halls and corridors were adapted to accommodate thousands of people, offering them a safe refuge during the bombings that struck the city.

After the war, the gallery fell into disuse and was forgotten for decades until it was brought to light and opened to the public in the 1990s. Today, the Bourbon Tunnel Gallery has become one of Naples’ most popular tourist attractions, attracting visitors from around the world eager to explore its mysterious tunnels and discover its fascinating underground history.

Main attractions along the underground path

The Bourbon Tunnel Gallery is rich in attractions and points of interest along its underground path. During the guided tour, visitors will have the opportunity to explore a series of fascinating environments, including ancient water cisterns, natural caves, and tuff quarries. One of the highlights of the route is certainly the visit to the rooms used as air raid shelters during World War II, where visitors can admire the graffiti and testimonies left by the people who took refuge there during the bombings.

In addition to the historical testimonies, the gallery also offers spaces dedicated to contemporary art, with temporary exhibitions and artistic installations that harmoniously integrate with the suggestive environment of the underground tunnels. Among the works on display are sculptures, paintings, and multimedia installations, offering visitors a unique perspective on contemporary art and culture.

During the tour, visitors will also have the opportunity to discover the history of the various phases of construction and use of the gallery, from its origin as an escape route for the royal family to its role as an air raid shelter during the war. Through testimonials, vintage photographs, and reconstructions of the highlights of the gallery’s history, visitors can deepen their understanding of the history of Naples and its underground life.

Where to stay in Naples to visit the Bourbon Tunnel Gallery

If you’re planning a visit to the Bourbon Tunnel Gallery and are looking for cozy and convenient accommodation nearby, we highly recommend considering Sky House in Chiatamone. Located in the heart of Naples’ historic center, this bed and breakfast offers comfortable and well-appointed rooms, equipped with all the necessary amenities for a pleasant stay.

In addition to the convenience of its location, Sky House also provides a welcoming and family-friendly atmosphere, with helpful and friendly staff who will be happy to assist you during your stay. To book your stay at Sky House, follow the link and plan an unforgettable stay in Naples.