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Purgatorio ad Arco

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Address: Via dei Tribunali, 39, 80138 Naples, Italy
Phone Number: 081 298791
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TripAdvisor Reviewer Highlights

Read all 152 reviews
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  • 99
  • 41
    Very good
  • 6
  • 3
  • 3
Morbid hidden gem

One of the many churches in Naples you would think. Until you see the skulls on the metal fence and enter the church. It was the centre of a morbid cult in which followers adopted... read more

4 of 5 starsReviewed January 2, 2016
London, United Kingdom
via mobile

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152 Reviews from our TripAdvisor Community

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London, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
203 reviews
83 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 91 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed January 2, 2016 via mobile

One of the many churches in Naples you would think. Until you see the skulls on the metal fence and enter the church. It was the centre of a morbid cult in which followers adopted skulls and prayed for their souls. A guided tour (only in Italian, there is an English leaflet available) brings you underground to the lower church... More 

Thank ZombieFungus2014
Bexhill-on-Sea, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
237 reviews
51 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 133 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed November 21, 2015

Standard Italian church like so many, but an odd twist. The sect that worship there have a peculiar practice of "looking after" skulls of the dead, forging a link between this life and the afterlife. Bit like Marmite - you like it or you don't.

Thank sleepybexhill
San Diego, California
Level Contributor
56 reviews
31 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed November 7, 2015

Ya gotta see it to believe it...truly fits in with all the fantasy, myth and ghost culture theta surrounds Napoli!

Thank Marlene Z
SF, California
Level Contributor
1,357 reviews
975 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 558 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed October 21, 2015

The guided tour was available in English and was well worth the small fee, to see the basement below the church and what's behind the alter. Look for the brass skulls as you walk through old town.

Thank seafare74
Barcelona, España
Level Contributor
76 reviews
9 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 28 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed August 30, 2015

We found this small church by coincidence, when we were just visiting the key sites at historic centre. It does not appear in standard touristic guides of Napoli but for us it was really a surprise. We took the guided tour in Italian with another Italian couple and we really enjoyed the explanation of our guide, an Art specialist. For... More 

Thank paquita373
Level Contributor
12 reviews
6 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed July 20, 2015

I was recommended this church by a hostel buddy. It was good, very different to other churches (as you can read in the other comments). I was a little let down. The tour (which cost €3 so it's not that big of a problem) was only given in Italian and seemed a bit rushed. English speakers were given an A3... More 

Thank Benji A
Level Contributor
7 reviews
6 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed July 1, 2015 via mobile

Very interesting. 2 floors to the church. Have to pay for the tour to see the lower and more interesting purgatory level. Was 4 euros each, but well worth it. Very interesting and something i haven't seen before!

Thank Nick G
Lancaster, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
56 reviews
23 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 18 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 13, 2015

The upper church is beautiful in a Baroque way but it's down in the hypogeum that the real character of this place lies. The hypogeum was supposed to represent Purgatory and the skulls, along with the various offerings left with them, make this a fascinating insight into local views about death, the afterlife and their influence on daily life. The... More 

Thank KNM2012
Level Contributor
158 reviews
37 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 86 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed April 27, 2015

The skulls outside the church are clues to what's inside. Naples' obsession with death thrives here. The church itself is beautiful enough but the subterraean Hypogeum is dark, morbid and sends shivers down your spines. There are shrines to adopted anonymous dead containing their skulls and bones, lovingly placed on embroidered cushions and surrounded by trinkets and gifts. This place... More 

1 Thank Mealpup
Level Contributor
17 reviews
13 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed February 21, 2015 via mobile

I read a lot of positive reviews about this place and it did seem quite interesting. It was a lovely testament to the practices and history of the local neopolitan people. I'm saddened to give such a low score but my experience with this place was completely ruined by the tour provided. Only a brief sheet of information was supplied... More 

1 Thank Richy236

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