Castellammare di Stabia is one of the most important city of the Campania region both for its ancient history and for the healing properties of its thermal waters. Its name derives from an ancient medieval castle (castrum ad mare - the castle by the sea) and the Roman name of the city, Stabiae, destroyed with Herculaneum and Pompeii during the eruption of Vesuvius in 79 A.D.
In 1950 the ruins of two large Roman villas came to light: Villa Arianna and Villa Romana.
The Stabian Antiquarium has objects on show from the excavations in ancient Stabia. It has eleven halls that preserve numerous frescoes, including the "Mito di Edipo", "Dionisio", "Ercole bambino", "Fanciulla che dorme" and various other Hellenic style paintings.
There are lots of historic monuments, ancient churches and works of art to see, uniting the cultural and historic charm of the city with its natural attractions.
The Cathedral in Castellammare di Stabia, damaged in 1456 and then rebuilt in 1587, is dedicated to Madonna Assunta and St. Catello. Inside, you can admire works by Giuseppe Bonito, Jose de Ribera, Nunzio Rossi, sculptures by Jerace and a highly important, nineteenth-century crib with life-size shepherds. There is an important, wooden statue of the patron saint from an unknown Neapolitan workshop from the XVII century.