Campania (Naples) - Southern Regions

"Campania (Naples) - Southern Regions" submitted by RomeTour Editorial Team and last updated on Thursday 28th April 2011

Campania (Naples) - Southern Regions

The name Campania was given to this territory by Romans (campus = plain land) which indicated the plain zone of the region and later was spread on the whole of it.

Area: 13 595 (5248 sq.miles) (4.5%), population: 5 800 000 inhabitants (10.1%), density of population: 425 inhab./

The main interventions of the human beings in the territory of the region took place not so much long ago, but in their greater part were not very well planned and over-thought, thus the result is chaotic and not appropriate arrangement of the living infrastructure. Nevertheless the territory was always favourable for life because of its mild climate and rich agricultural resources, and for commerce with its open access to the sea and natural ports.

The first who built the new roads and developed agricultural activity were Romans; the following impulse to economical growth was received in XIII century when Naples became the capital of the south of Italy and of the Angevin kingdom; in times of Bourbons ruling in the region were made some attempts to reclaim numerous zones of marshes surrounding Naples and occupying a big part of the plain territory.

With the unification of Italy some industries specialized mostly in ship construction (built during the 19th century) lost the competition and place on market in favour of the strongly industrialized and rich northern regions. Quite well organized agriculture in the plain zones couldn't give the work places for the whole of the population of the region, moreover the same sector of activity in the mountain zones was several time less productive and profitable. This situation got worse because of the overpopulation which even in the years of very intensive emigration after the WWII didn't change a lot. The growing need of the new living blocks and speculation on the market of construction works caused creation of badly projected urbanistic parts with chaotic traffic and problems of hygiene, making the level of living conditions lower than it was before.



Man and Territory Economy and Resources

Archeology and Art


The various zones of the region were already populated in the Neolithic age. In the pre-Roman epoch (VII-III centuries b.C.) the territory is occupied by Greek  and Phoenician colonies, Etruscan peoples and Sunnits. Between V and IV centuries b.C. the Greeks founded Naples and Pozzuoli; the Etruscans founded Capua (Vulturnum). The temples of Paestum.

Roman Epoch
(from II century b.C.)

Roman colonization. Construction of the roads, introduction of the new agricultural plants; peace and welfare. In 79 a.C. took place the terrible eruption of the volcano Vesuvius which destroyed Pompeii, Herculaneum, and Stabiae. ...

Middle Ages
(V - XV centuries)

Invasion of Lombards who founded the duke-dome of Benevento. The sea coasts remained under the influence of the Eastern Roman empire. In XII century Campania was occupied by French Angevins. Lombards built the roads and castles. The Normans gave an impulse to agriculture and commerce. Naples became the capital of the South and Amalfi is a marine republic. Mixture of cultures: Benedictian abbeys (S.Angelo in Formis); Arabic-Norman cathedral in Amalfi; French castel Nuovo in Naples.

(XV - XVI centuries)

Domination of Aragons and later of the Spanish who governed for two centuries. Under the Spanish the region entered in the phase of a grave economic decline, with the exception of Naples, which continued on its development. Ample reconstruction of Naples: adjoining of the new territory, construction of the new roads and fortifications.

Modern Epoch (XVII-XVIII)

In 1734 the power came to the Bourbons who remained here till 1860. Improvements in agriculture and creation of industrial plants in Casertano. Reggia di Caserta (L.Vanvitelli).

XIX - XX centuries

Unification with the Italian state. Competed by the northern regions in industrial sector, the region conserved its original agricultural infrastructure. Deep urbanistic transformation of the city of Naples. Discovered the rest of the ancient cities Pompeii and Herculaneum buried under the ash of Vesuvius.

Campania (Naples) Map:

Campania (Naples) Map


The region is located between the Apennines and the Tyrrhenian sea; borders on Latium and Molise (north), Basilicata (south), Apulia (east) and the sea (west).


January: 5.3 C

July: 22.6 C


The climate in the sea zones and on islands is very mild and moderate; in the inland and mountain zones the climate is less favourable but still not rigid.


The mountain part of the region are not much populated and conserved their original look; but the plain  and the seaside zones were transformed a lot because of very dense population of this territory with great number of country-sides and towns. The main gulfs of Campania are the gulfs of Naples, Gaeta, Salerno and Policastro. The islands belonging to the territory of the region are Ischia, Procida and Capri where touristic industry changed a lot their natural look. The main rivers rich with the water are Garigliano, Volturno, Sele, Ofanto; lakes: Matese, Patria, Fusaro and Averno.


plain: 14%

hill: 51%

mountain: 35%


Total: 17 000 000




Naples with its port (the 1st in Italy by the passenger traffic and the 4th by the goods traffic) is an important junction of the southern Italy. This is the center of nearly all communication ways between south and north of Italy. There is big enough number of roads and railways connecting all of the south of Italy and central regions with Campania. Again in Naples there is an international/national airport.

Agriculture and breeding.

Agriculture is based on specialized cultures which products are very well sold especially on the markets of the big cities. The very fertile seaside  and plain zones give: vegetables (especially tomato), potato, fruits (water-melon, plum, apricot, etc.), grape and wine grape, olive, etc. The agricultural property is usually very little and poor of capital and technical means of cultivation.
In comparison with the agriculture, such activities as breeding, fishing and usage of forest are much less important.


agriculture: 11%

industry: 23%


commerce: 66%



44 000 000 kWh


800 000 kWh



128 000 000 kWh


2 200 000 kWh


Campania is the most industrialized region of the southern Italy, but it cannot offer enough places of work. The industries presented here are: iron metallurgy, heavy mechanics, petrol, cement, electrical, chemical, clothing productions, electronics and mechanics (FIAT). Among the artisan activities should be noticed: coral and cameo manufactures, leather goods and ceramics.
The other sectors giving work to the population are commerce, which is developed a lot especially in Naples and brings high incomes, and tourism especially on the coasts and islands where touristic management and hospitality are very well organized.


Campania is the most densely populated region of Italy with the center in Naples. The reason is a high level of birth-rate and low level of mortality. In the province of Naples is concentrated nearly 50% of entire regional population. There is also a tendency to concentration in relatively big centers with the population more than 50 000 inhabitants. The overpopulation is partly balanced by a big number of emigrants directed mostly to Rome and Northern regions.

Births (per 1000)

Italy: 9.9

Campania: 14.2

Deaths (per 1000)

Italy: 9.3

Campania: 7.6


Italy: 0.6

Campania: 6.6

Inhabitants per car

Italy: 2.0

Campania: 2.0

Expenses for sport/recreation

(liras per inhabitant)

Italy: 48 500

Campania: 27 000


According to the level of welfare Campania is on the 19th place in Italy. But the official statistics couldn't ever give the real picture of life especially in the region where administration and control are on a quite low level, so to count the real income earned by an average inhabitant of Campania is quite difficult. But what is certain - the level of public administration, education, medical and social assistance is very low.

Provinces and communes.

The territory of the region is divided into five provinces: Naples, Avellino, Benevento, Caserta, and Salerno with 551 communes.

Monthly income

per inhabitant

912 000 It.Liras 

(456 US Dollars)

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