Solfatara is a shallow volcanic crater at Pozzuoli, not far from Naples. Likely the most interesting of the 40 or more volcanoes that comprise the Campi Flegrei volcanic area, the Solfarata first formed about 4,000 years ago and last erupted in 1198. While dormant today, it still emits jets of steam with sulfurous fumes. Solfatara’s thermal waters were once believed to cure a variety of medical ailments and the crater was once home to a volcanological observatory, built in the year 900 by a German volcanologist. Ruins of the observatory can still be seen today.
Solfatara is now a popular tourist attraction with two unique phenomena to witness: the condensation of steam and the rumble of the ground when a rock is dropped just right. A walk around the crater floor takes you past the main fumarole known as Bocca Grande and the mud pit known as the Fangaia, as well as a variety of other fumaroles, mofettes and typical Mediterranean vegetation.
Solfatara is accessible by train from Naples, getting off at the Pozzuoil-Solfatara station. It can also be reached by bus taking line M1 B of the Public Transport Company from Naples to the main entrance of Solfatara.At the site, amenities include a coffee bar, bookshop, and a playground for the kids.