Porta Napoli (Naples Gate), Lecce

Porta Napoli (Naples Gate), Lecce

The Naples Gate (Porta Napoli) is known locally as the Arch of Triumph (Arco di Trionfo). It is the perfect spot to begin a tour of Lecce's Baroque Old Town of twisting lanes and grand squares. The monumental Arch of Triumph was erected in 1548 by architect Gian Giacomo dell'Acaya and dedicated to Holy Roman Emperor Charles V.

Emperor Charles of Hapsburg had achieved a telling victory over the Turks, and he thought of Lecce as a solid barrier against the East. He ordered a defense for Lecce consisting of walls and a castle to complement the coastal defenses of towers and fortified strong points. In 1539 the military architect Acaya was the man for the job.

The Porta Napoli is a 66-foot-tall gateway. The central arch is flanked by two Corinthian columns supporting an over-size triangular pediment. There are carvings on the pediment of armor, weapons, and the Habsburg/Spanish coat of arms. The Habsburg emblems were a nod to Emperor Charles V, who was on hand when the gate was opened.

At the opposite end of the Arch of Triumph square (Piazzetta Arco di Trionfo) is the Obelisk of the city. Erected in 1922, it is dedicated to Ferdinand I, King of the Two Sicilies. The sides of the Obelisk have bas-reliefs of exotic mythological creatures, including a dolphin taking a bite of the moon.

Want to visit this sight? Check out these Self-Guided Walking Tours in Lecce. Alternatively, you can download the mobile app "GPSmyCity: Walks in 1K+ Cities" from Apple App Store or Google Play Store. The app turns your mobile device to a personal tour guide and it works offline, so no data plan is needed when traveling abroad.

Download The GPSmyCity App

Porta Napoli (Naples Gate) on Map

Sight Name: Porta Napoli (Naples Gate)
Sight Location: Lecce, Italy (See walking tours in Lecce)
Sight Type: Attraction/Landmark
Guide(s) Containing This Sight:

Walking Tours in Lecce, Italy

Create Your Own Walk in Lecce

Create Your Own Walk in Lecce

Creating your own self-guided walk in Lecce is easy and fun. Choose the city attractions that you want to see and a walk route map will be created just for you. You can even set your hotel as the start point of the walk.
Lecce's Baroque Churches Walking Tour

Lecce's Baroque Churches Walking Tour

Often defined as the “Capital of Baroque” – an artistic trend born in Italy in the 17th century, the town of Lecce has this signature style present in most of the buildings throughout its historic center. Characterized by elaborate facades and the extensive use of local stone known as "pietra leccese", Lecce's Baroque architecture reached its pinnacle in the form of churches,...  view more

Tour Duration: 1 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 2.0 Km or 1.2 Miles
Lecce Introduction Walking Tour

Lecce Introduction Walking Tour

The beginning of Lecce is a legend. According to the story, a town existed close to the location of today's Lecce, dating from the Trojan Wars. The town was taken by Romans in the 3rd century BC. They called it "Lupiae." The Roman Emperor Hadrian didn't like the location, so he moved it 2 miles to the northeast. Lecce had a theatre and an amphitheater which can be partially...  view more

Tour Duration: 2 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 2.1 Km or 1.3 Miles