Naples is a city in Italy; it is the capital of the region of Campania and of the province of Naples. Known for its rich history, art, culture, architecture, music, and gastronomy, Naples has played an important role in the Italian peninsula and beyond for much of its existence, which began more than 2,800 years ago. Situated on the west coast of Italy by the Gulf of Naples, the city is located halfway between two volcanic areas, Mount Vesuvius and the Phlegraean Fields.
Naples has the fourth-largest urban economy in Italy, after Milan, Rome and Turin. It is the world's 103rd-richest city by purchasing power, with an estimated 2011 GDP of US$83.6 billion. The port of Naples is one of the most important in Europe, and has the world's second-highest level of passenger flow, after the port of Hong Kong. The city has long been a major cultural centre with a global sphere of influence, particularly during the Renaissance and Enlightenment eras. In the immediate vicinity of Naples are numerous culturally and historically significant sites, including the Palace of Caserta and the Roman ruins ofPompeii and Herculaneum. Culinarily, it is synonymous with pizza, which originated in the city.