Archeological Sites

POMPEI VIVA – The 2010 Events program at the excavations of Pompeii

A new way to visit the archaeological area
“Live” Discoveries, multimedia visits, the summer season at the Great Theatre, itineraries by bike and for children, the Archaeo-restaurant . All the news of the 2010 program

“Pompei Viva” is a claim, the 2010 program for the archaeological area, a slogan  meaning: knowledge, preservation, valorization of one of the most extraordinary sites of the world. Worksites where you can watch live the archaeological discoveries, multimedia visits, a  summer season of prestigious performances at the restored Great Theatre, walks by night, thematic itineraries, by bike and  for children, exhibitions, an archaeo-restaurant  where you can taste the finest traditional Campanian products. These are just some of the news of the Special Chief Manager of the emergency for the archaeological areas of Naples and Pompeii, Marcello Fiori  and of the Soprintendenza Speciale per i Beni Archeologici di Napoli e Pompei program that are making the Vesuvian excavations more and more accessible and enjoyable.

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The excavations of Pompeii are just 1.5 km from the Bed and Breakfast Il Fauno, easily reachable by car or by train Circumvesuviana (only 500 meters from the B & B).
“If Pompeii is an emotion…Pompei Viva is a joy exclamation – says Fiori illustrating the 2010 program of activities – Pompeii reminds of a tragedy but it is at the same time a living city, which is still telling about itself, its inhabitants, its life through objects, paintings, architectures. A city where the  wine is  produced by its own fertile vineyards and food by its own gardens. A city where the different kinds of artistic expressions of the Roman Age will return thanks to the theatres  restoration. The workshops will revive. The life palpitation will appear again along the streets and in the squares. Pompeii – underlines Fiori – is a city which speaks a universal language; a never-ending lesson of its history and an emotion for our hearts. These are the reasons of our work and our deep care. That’s why today we wish to exclaim :”Pompei viva – ViVa Pompeii”.

1. POMPEII’S FIRST WORK SITE EVENT: THE HOUSE OF THE CHASTE LOVERS
One of the most beautiful houses (Domus) of the ancient city has been opened to the public. The House of the Chaste Lovers, named after a decorative panel representing the innocent kiss of two lovers, was the house of a rich baker.  Since its discovery in 1987 it has never been accessible to the public. The perfectly preserved oven of the bakery, two stables with animals’ skeletons, a faithfully reconstructed garden and marvellous frescoes and mosaics, can now be viewed from of a suspended walkway. Visitors can view the work being carried out by the archaeologists and restorers in this transparent work site enabling them to share the magic of discovery together with the experts.
From February 2010

2. HISTORY AND TECHNOLOGICAL INNOVATION: A MULTI-MEDIAL VISIT OF THE HOUSE OF GIULIO POLIBIO
The House of Giulio Polibio, one of the best known and most studied houses of Pompeii, will re-open to the public in March 2010, with a new look, combining historical and scientific detail with innovative information technology. Visitors are welcomed into a virtual reconstruction by a very special guide, Giulio Polibio himself in the form of a hologram, creating a strong emotional impact. Casts of domestic tools unearthed during the dig, together with state-of-the-art multi-medial installations, bring to life the habits and customs handed down by this house. The voice of an extraordinary story teller accompanies visitors in a journey through time. The guided tour is organised for small groups.
From March 2010

3. POMPEII RETURNS TO THE STAGE: THE SUMMER SEASON AT THE GREAT THEATRE
Pompeii returns to the stage: after 15 months of work, the Great Theatre of Pompeii  will return to its original splendour, thanks to the availability of more than 2,000 seats and to a partnership with the main southern cultural institutions like the San Carlo Theatre of Naples and Napoli Teatro Festival Italia. In June, the Great Theatre, one of the oldest opera house in Europe, combining history, technology and culture, will inaugurate a wide range of performances that makes up a rich programme of events for the Pompeiian  summer.
From June to September 2010

4. POMPEII BY NIGHT
Pompeii’s  night season will be inaugurated in April with special itineraries and events.
The Moons of Pompeii
The splendid archaeological site hosts The Moons of Pompeii: guided tours in a mysterious and magical atmosphere. The ancient buried city is brought back to life through the telling of secrets never disclosed before.
From April 2010
The permanent illumination of the excavations
A permanent artistic light system will be the distinctive mark of Pompeii’s  night life. The streets of the city will be illuminated, the gardens of the houses will come to life, giving the visitor a novel experience of summer walks after sunset and enchanting adventures.
From June 2010
A night for Star Gazers
Pompeii under the stars: on 10th August – the night of San Lorenzo – everyone can dream and make wishes, gazing at the sky from the Pompeii Forum. A new venue, a unique occasion to observe the constellations all night long with a special guide.
10th August 2010

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5. POMPEII AS YOU’VE NEVER SEEN IT BEFORE
Pompeii by bike
From the Amphitheatre Square to the Villa of the Mysteries, a bike path of about 4 Km allows tourists to stop at specially equipped areas and places from which unforgettable views of Vesuvius and the excavations can be enjoyed. The experience is recommended for all, including non-professionals. Bikes may be hired on site.
Easy Pompeii
The excavations have now been made accessible to everyone. A two-hour itinerary has been created for visitors with reduced mobility, and for families with small children. Everyone can walk amongst the ancient apartments (insulae) of Pompeii and experience the archaeological heritage in an easy and practical way. The entrance is situated at the Amphitheatre Square.
Arts, crafts and professions
Walking through the streets, an in-depth view of commercial life in ancient Pompeii is offered by the workshops of the arts and old crafts such as the oil lamp maker’s workshop, the perfume maker’s house, the nursery and workshops brought back to their ancient activities, such as that of the straw-mat maker.
From March 2010

6. BABY POMPEII: ACTIVITIES FOR FAMILIES WITH CHILDREN OF PRE-SCHOOL AGE
Laboratories created by the experts of the Idis Foundaton – City of Science, offer children and their families a cultural learning experience through play. Activities take place at the Casa Pacifico near the ticket office in the Amphitheatre Square.
Laboratories include: Modelling in clay; Pompeiian Red; Simulated archaeological dig; Writing and calculating instruments of the past; Volcanology.
From May 2010

7. POMPEII FOR SCHOOLS
Educational exhibition “Pompeii – 24th August 79 a.D.”
The exhibition set up near the Amphitheatre Square, reconstructs the eruption of 79 a.D. and the destruction of Pompeii. An educational itinerary aimed at the younger public, has been created by the seismologists and volcanologists of the Italian Department of Public Safety and the Vesuvius Observatory. A “vibrating seismic table” allows people to experience a simulation of an earthquake.
From March 2010

Concerts and Ballet from the San Carlo Theatre at the Auditorium
Pompeii opens its Auditorium to concerts and ballet from the San Carlo Theatre. A cycle of performances for all students proposes a re-evocation of music and dance at the time of Pompeii. The Children’s Choir sings Aesop’s Fables, the brass ensemble plays “Che magnifico fracasso” and the Ballet School performs well-known stories with “In the World of Fables”. The shows complete the visit to the excavations.
From February 2010

8. ARCHAEO-RESTAURANT
The relationship between history and civilisation science, preservation of biodiversity and agro-alimentary culture, is the key to understanding the cultural and territorial origins of a population.  Thanks to an agreement with the Campania Region for the promotion, catering and food and wine tasting, the flavours of the ancient world of Pompeii may be rediscovered at the Archaeo-restaurant situated in the splendid Casina dell’Aquila (Eagle’s Lodge), an important 18th century building with panoramic terraces with views of Vesuvius, the excavations and the sea.  Gourmet recipes from the Roman period made with the finest traditional Campanian products give the visitor an exciting journey through time.
From June 2010

Visiting Ancient Pompeii – A Visitors Guide to the Pompeii Excavations

Say what you will about natural disasters like the one that befell the little cities below Vesuvious in 79 AD, but one thing is for certain: Archaeologists and historians sifting through the ancient remains can tell far more about these cities than they can about ones that took their sweet time to collapse.

B&B Pompeii The Fauno is just 1 km from Pompeii Ruins, you can easily reach by car (5 minutes) or train of Circumvesuviana ( 500 mt . from the B&B) .

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Imagine, at dawn on August 25, 79 A.D., a violent explosion of toxic gases and burning cinders from an eruption that had started a day earlier caused time to come to a stop at Pompeii. People were covered in ash doing whatever they could to survive. Frescos were left undone, the paints still in their pots. The ash and cinders covered and preserved the scene exactly as it was at that moment. As tragic as it was, the information preserved beneath the rubble was as pristine as it gets for a 2000 year old site.

Excavations at Pompeii

 

Excavations were begun all the way back in 1748 by Carlo Borbone. Seeking fame, he dug at random for treasures, much like a “clandestino” might do today. (A clandestino is one who does the work clandestinely for his own gain, like a grave robber.)

It wasn’t until the appointment of Guiseppe Fiorelli in 1861 that a systematic excavation was undertaken. Fiorelli was responsible for pioneering the technique of making plaster casts of the victims of the eruption of the type you’ll see around the site if you go.

Excavations continue to this day.

Pompeii was a haven for many wealthy Romans, and so the rich remains hold a certain fascination for us today. Many of the frescos still seem fresh, and the restored mosaic floors are spectacular. It’s hard to believe, as we extrapolate backwards from the technology explosion we’ve experienced over the short period of our lifetimes, that over two millennia ago people were living in houses and apartments of a type that we wouldn’t mind living in today. (Well, as long as you don’t mind the lack of private flush toilets I mean.)

Tempio.di.Apollo-Pompei

The excavations at Pompeii are pretty extensive. You may not see everything in a day.

Getting to Pompeii

You can take the private line Circumvesuviana that runs between Naples and Sorrento. Get off at Pompei Scavi. If you take the Naples to Poggiomarino get off at Pompei Santuario.

The SITA bus that runs from Naples to Salerno stops at Pompei in the piazza Esedra.

By car take the Pompei exit from Autostrada A3.

Tickets

A single ticket at the time of writing costs €10. Also available is a three day pass to access five sites: Herculaneum, Pompeii, Oplontis, Stabiae, Boscoreale for €18.

Opening Times

November – March: every day from 8.30 a.m. to 5 p.m. (last admission 3.30 p.m.)
April – October: every day from 8.30 a.m. to 7.30 p.m. (last admission 6 p.m.)

Closed: 1st January, 1st May, 25th December

You can leave luggage and backpacks (you’ll be asked to store bulky objects) at the Left Luggage departments at Porta Marina and Piazza Anfiteatro. The service is currently free.

Pompeii.Ruins.and.Mt.Vesuvius


Sound and light return to Pompeii

Pompeii, May 5 – This year’s sound-and-light tours at Pompeii promise to be the most spectacular yet, organisers said Wednesday.

“There’ll be completely new content and effects,” said the head of the Naples Tourist Board, Dario Scalabrini.

“The show will be even more atmospheric, with a great potential for attracting all kinds of visitors,” he said.

Among the novelties of the night-time event, which has been dubbed Pompeii Moons, will be a visit to the so-called Fugitives Orchard where the most famous plaster casts of people vainly fleeing volcanic ash were made.

Visitors will also enjoy a new computer recreation of the ancient city and meet “a curious character, voiced by actor Luca Ward, who will accompany tourists on their special journey,” Scalabrini said. Pompeii Moons runs from the upcoming weekend, May 7-9, until the last weekend in October, he said.

The shows, Italy’s first-ever ‘son-et-lumiere’ tours, kicked off to immediate acclaim in 2002 and have proved a big hit ever since.

The one-hour tours in Italian, English and Japanese have a special soundtrack synchronised with the light show and mingling ambient noise with a narrative voice illustrating the various highlights.

B&B Pompeii The Fauno is just 1 km from Pompeii Ruins, you can easily reach by car (5 minutes) or train of Circumvesuviana ( 500 mt . from the B&B) .

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They climax in the Forum with a dramatic video re-enactment of the catastrophic eruption that buried the city in 79 AD.

Unlike other son-et-lumiere tours in Italy and abroad, the initiative offers visitors not just a simple show but a stroll through the digs that reveals an ”unusual, poetic side” of the ancient city, organisers say.

 

The tour kicks off at the Terme Suburbane, a once-neglected district that has become a big draw for its frescoes graphically depicting a variety of sex acts – presumed to be an illustration of the services on offer at the local brothel.

It then winds its way up the main road, pointing out the curious cart ruts, craftsmen’s shops and famous villas.

The grand finale comes in the heart of the old city, the forum, when four giant projectors beam a special- effects-laden video reconstruction of the wrath of the volcano Vesuvius, which smothered the city and its lesser-known but equally fascinating neighbour Herculaneum in ash and cinders.


A Day in Pompeii

Imagine what Fremantle would be like without all the mod-cons; a seaside fishing town where people loved their sport, loved their wine and loved their possessions. If you can imagine that, you can imagine the ancient Roman city of Pompeii in 79 AD.

The Western Australian Museum is recreating the ill-fated town in A Day in Pompeii, an exhibition brings to life the people living there through artefacts recovered by archaeologists over the past 300 hundred years.

The bed and breakfast Pompei IL FAUNOis just 1 Km from the main entrance of the excavations of Pompeii and just 500 metres from the Circumvesuviana train, from which you can reach in few minutes the other archaeological sites: Ercolano, Oplonti, Stabia and the Antiquarium of Boscoreale! 

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Dr Moya Smith is the museum’s anthropologist overseeing the set up of the exhibit and she describes why were are so captivated by the volcanic eruption that brought Pompeii to its abrupt end.

“I think it’s actually the personal horror, the fact that you have a disaster.

“You’ve got 24 hours in which people either got out or didn’t get out.”

Of Pompeii’s 12 000 residents there were 2000 who didn’t make it out alive.

“Those 2000 – it’s a heartwrecking human story – why did they stay? What were they trying to hang onto? What were they trying to get away with?”

But beyond the heartache of Mt Vesuvius blanketing and preserving Pompeii in ash and pumice lies an insight into Roman life just waiting to be literally uncovered and rediscovered nearly 1700 years later.

“Each thing that people uncover transforms our knowledge of the ancient Romans and what it was like to live in an industrial town overlooking the beautiful Bay of Naples,” says Dr Smith.

“It’s the variety and that incredible human sense that underpins our interest.”

No idea, no escape

For Pompeii residents, the impending eruption of Mt Vesuvius would have come as a complete surprise.

“People had absolutely no idea what was going to happen; there had been a massive earthquake 17 years before in 62 AD,” says Dr Smith.

“In the preceding months before the volcano erupted there must have been toxic gases coming out because whole flocks of sheep had died.

“But no-one saw any connection between these things and the hill that overlooked them.”

When the volcano erupted, it sent ash high into the atmosphere, giving residents approximately 12 hours to escape.

“Even then people didn’t quite understand what was happening.

“And so you have people still in their houses, still trying to collect their objects, discussing whether or not they needed to go or not go.

“By the time people made these decisions it was probably too late.”

Dr Smith suggests that in the early stages of the eruption, people around Herculaneum were being cooked alive by the 500 degree Celsius lava flow.

Those who stayed in Pompeii have either suffocated from the toxic ash in the air, or been crushed by the volcanic debris.

You can use the links below to explore Pompeii in 79 AD

The fishing hub

Pompeii’s big industries were fish and wine; the town was famous for its garum sauce, which is similar to fish sauce.

Fishing methods haven’t changed much over the last 1700 years with fish hooks, octopus hooks and needles on display which look like they could have been discarded at a modern fishing spot.

Medical treatment
Coughs, colds and minor injuries and illnesses could all be treated at Julius Polybius’ house, a local doctors surgery.In A Day in Pompeii, you can see some of the medical instruments found there.

Getting dolled up

Women in Pompeii were just as occupied with looking good as their modern counterparts.

The exhibition shows mirrors, cosmetics scoops and a collection of jewellery that would be the envy of many.

It is the jewellery collection in particular that shows just how much of an influence items found in Pompeii have had on modern fashion.

The outdoor room as a painted haven

In Pompeiian homes, the rooms were built around to face a central garden.

These gardens were considered oases of calm for the residents with plants, statues of gods and water features.

If you couldn’t afford plants and statues to place in your garden, you could always paint them onto a fresco.

A Day in Pompeii exhibition runs from Friday the 21st of May 2010 through until Sunday the 5th of September 2010.

For further information, visit the Western Australian Museum website.

Excavation Oplontis

Excavation Oplontis was buried under a deep layer of ash by the eruption of Mount Vesuvius on August 24, AD 79.

Excavation Oplontis was buried under a deep layer of ash by the eruption of Mount Vesuvius on August 24, AD 79.

Excavation Oplontis was a Roman city that, like the nearby Pompeii, was buried under a deep layer of ash by the eruption of Mount Vesuvius on August 24, AD 79.

It is today the location of the under-visited Villa Poppaea, the villa of the wife of Emperor Nero, which was excavated in the mid-20th century. It’s a grandiose holiday villa from the 1st century B.C. that houses which are considered to be some of the finest examples of Pompeian wall paintings in the familiar bright vermilion and turquoise hues.

Excavation Oplontis

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Excavation Oplontis

Excavation Oplontis

Oplontis was a town near Pompeii, in the Roman Empire. On August 24, AD 79, the eruption of Mount Vesuvius buried it under a deep layer of ash. It is today the location of the Villa Poppaea, the villa possibly associated with the second wife of Emperor Nero,was excavated in the mid-20th century, wrapping up in 1984, and is currently open to the public.

A second villa, the Villa of L. Crassius Tertius, was discovered in 1974, 300 metres east of the Villa of Poppaea,during the construction of a school. It was named following the finding of a bronze seal bearing Crassius’ name.

The name “Oplontis” most likely refers to the baths in the area of Oncino, but today the name commonly covers the group of villas in the middle of the modern town of Torre Annunziata, also known as Torre Nunziata in the local Neapolitan dialect.

A large number of artifacts from Oplontis are preserved in the Naples National Archaeological Museum.

Don’t Miss

The pictorial decoration, with faux doors and columns, is correlated to actual architectural features, thereby creating tricks of perspective and correspondences between the real and the imaginary. The numerous details of the painted decorations, consisting of masks, baskets of fruit, torches, and birds, are of very high quality. The villa was originally adorned with numerous sculptures, most of which were Roman copies of originals of the Hellenistic sphere of the 3rd-2nd century B.C.

 

Access: Via Dei Sepolcri, 12 – Torre Annunziata (NA)

Tickets
full price
€ 5.50

2 sites: OplontisBoscoreale (valid for 1 day)*
Full: € 5.50**; Reduced: € 2.75**

3 sites: Pompeii, Oplontis, Boscoreale (valid for 3 consecutive days and for one entrance/visit per site)*.
Full: € 14.00**; Reduced: € 8.00**

Opening Hours

November to March
8:30 – 17:00 (last entrance at 15:30)

April to October
8:30 – 19:30 (last entrance at 18:00)

last admission one hour and a half before closing

closed

1 January, 1 May, 25 December

 Info: +39 081 8575347

The Villa Poppaea is an ancient Roman seaside villa (villa maritima) situated between Naples and Sorrento, in southern Italy. It is also referred to as the Villa Oplontis, or more precisely as Villa A by modern archaeologists. The villa itself is a large structure situated in the ancient Roman town of Oplontis (the modern Torre Annunziata), about ten meters below the modern ground level. Evidence suggests that it was owned by the Emperor Nero, and believed to have been used by his second and rather notorious wife, Poppaea Sabina, as her main residence when she was not in Rome.
Oplontis-Peristil-5711

Frescoes

Like many of the frescoes that were preserved due to the eruption of Mount Vesuvius, those decorating the walls of the Villa Poppaea are striking both in form and in color. Many of the frescoes are in the “Second Style” (also called the Architectural Style) of ancient Roman painting, dating to ca. 90-25 BCE as classified in 1899 by August Mau in the book Pompeii: Its Life and Art(Berry, 171). Details include feigned architectural features such as trompe-l’œil windows, doors, and painted columns.

Frescoes in the caldarium depicting Hercules in the Garden of the Hesperides are painted in the “Third Style” (also called the Ornate Style) dating to ca. 25 BCE-40 CE according to Mau (Berry, 170). Attention to realistic perspective is abandoned in favor of flatness and elongated architectural forms which “form a kind of shrine” around a central scene, which is often mythological (Berry, 170).

Immediately to the west of the triclinium is a large oecus, which was the main living room of a Roman house. Like the caldariumfrescoes, the room is also painted in the Second Style. The east wall includes some wonderful details such as a theatre mask and peacock (Wallace-Hadrill, 27).

Much attention has been paid to the allusions to stage painting (scenae frons) in the Villa Poppaea frescoes, particularly those in Room 23 (Wallace-Hadrill, 27; Coarelli, et al., 372; Clarke, 117).

Rediscovery & Excavation History

The Villa of Poppaea was first discovered in the eighteenth century during the construction of the Sarno Canal which cut through the central hall of the villa (Clarke, 22). Between 1839 and 1840 explorations of the site were undertaken by Bourbon excavators who removed several paintings from the villa .The excavators used a tunneling technique that was also employed at Herculaneum, and uncovered part of the peristyle and garden area (Dumbarton Oaks Colloquium, 79).

Excavations continued again from 1964 until the mid-1980s, at which point the site was excavated to its current level. It was during this final round of excavations that the massive swimming pool, measuring 60 by 17 meters, was unearthed. The villa’s southernmost portions have been left unexcavated because of the physical limitations of the complex, which has been compromised by its position beneath the modern city of Torre Annunziata and the construction of the Sarno Canal .

Gardens

Historian and archeologist Wilhelmina Feemster Jashemski began excavations on the gardens at the Villa Poppaea in 1974, and by 1993, 13 gardens had been discovered. Among these was a peristyle garden in the original portion of the villa. There, Jashemski and her team found evidence of a large shade tree next to a fountain; they also found a sundial, and the remains of a rake, a hoe, and a hook.

Another garden in the grounds, this one enclosed, featured wall paintings of plants and birds, and evidence of fruit trees growing in the garden’s corners. Two courtyard gardens also featured wall paintings. A large garden that Jashemski describes as “parklike” extends from the back of the villa (The Gardens of Pompeii, Herculaneum, and the Villas Destroyed by Vesuvius, vol. 2, 295). There her team discovered cavities that had once housed the roots of large trees, believed by specialists at the Ministero dell’Agricultura to be plane trees.

Also found were what seemed to be the remains of tree stumps. These were analyzed in the lab, but as the wood had changed to calcium carbonate, the exact species of the trees could not be identified from the remains of the stumps. However, one large branch still retained some of its original cellular structure intact, and examination of this material under a microscope proved that the branch came from an olive tree.

Other trees at the Villa Poppaea were also identified, including lemon and oleander; a carbonized apple found on the site indicates the former presence of apple trees. According to Patrick Bowe in Gardens of the Roman World (Los Angeles: Getty Publications, 2004), modern-day replanting of the Villa’s gardens was undertaken only after the gardens’ original plant types and location were known.

The site of Villa B lies approximately 300 meters to the east of Villa A, and like Villa A, it is a building of the Roman era that was destroyed by the 79 C.E. eruption of Mount Vesuvius. Though located very near the luxurious and sprawling Villa A, Villa B is strikingly different in what it preserves, and from its remains we can also surmise that it had a very different function from its opulent neighbor.  Whereas Villa A is clearly a luxury villa designed for otium, or leisure, Villa B may not even be a villa in the traditional sense, but rather some type of emporium or distribution center.  Its spaces are meant not for leisure but for negotium, or industry.  Moreover, the presence of two nearby roads, and what may be a row of townhouses to the north, suggests that Villa B occupies a position in a small settlement or town, perhaps even the town of Oplontis itself.

The structure’s plan reveals a central courtyard surrounded by a two-story peristyle of Nocera tufa columns.  Excavators uncovered and restored more than seventy rooms, on both ground- and second-story levels. On the ground level, barrel-vaulted rooms, each with a single large doorway, line all four sides of the courtyard.  These ground-floor rooms preserve little or no decoration and reveal masonry predominantly in opus incertum and opus reticulatum. Excavators found remnants of a wooden stairway to the upper floor at the northeast corner of the peristyle; its impression is still visible in the wall plaster.  At the south corner, a low structure comprised of thin rubble walls may have been a latrine.  The eastern side preserves what seems to be the primary entrance into the courtyard.  On the south side of the building, and facing south, eight storerooms open onto a what may have been a large portico.  To the west stand the partially-excavated remains of two rooms that belong to another building.  To the north, a small street separates Villa B from what appears to be a row of two-storied houses (also only partially excavated) that faced the north side of the villa.  During coring operations sponsored by the Oplontis Project in 2009 and 2010, geologist Giovanni di Maio found evidence of a road to the east of the villa, in an area that is still unexcavated. This road is likely to be a north-south road running along the eastern facade of the complex; it was probably from this road that one entered the courtyard.

A preliminary examination of the remains suggests that Villa B was originally constructed at the end of the second century B.C.E., as evidenced by the use of Nocera tufa columns typical of that period.  Brick repairs to that peristyle and the extensive use of opus reticulatum—both typical of post-62 C.E. earthquake construction at Pompeii—may suggest a renovation of the structure in the years before the eruption of 79 C.E.

Villa B preserves very little evidence of decoration.  Only simple white plaster of a type common to utilitarian spaces in Roman buildings survives on the ground floor.  The upper-floor rooms preserve some simple painting schemes, most datable to the Fourth Style (C.E. 45-79). These include simple designs of color fields with carpet borders. There is a fragmentary Nilotic painting, later covered by Fourth-Style painting, as well as a painted lararium.  Preserved in another room  is a fragment of schematic Second-Style decoration (ca. 50 B.C.E.), a carry-over from an earlier decorative phase.

Beyond the unique physical structure of Villa B, perhaps the most significant aspect of this site is the fact that it preserves unparalleled material for new study in several underrepresented areas, including human remains, foodstuffs, coins, jewelry, and transport vessels.  In the courtyard and ground-level rooms, excavations uncovered over 400 amphorae.  Perhaps the most significant of these are the stacked amphorae still in place at the northwest corner of the courtyard.  That these amphorae had been cleaned and stacked upside down to dry tells us that they were meant to be re-used at the site (fig. 3. Amphorae in northwest corner of courtyard).  Supporting this assumption is the discovery of a small stone oven nearby containing a small pot with pine resin, suggesting that—among other things—in this courtyard workers prepared storage amphorae, certainly for wine, and possibly for oil and garum (the famous fermented fish condiment of ancient Rome). Extensive paleobotanical remains found in some amphorae and piles of carbonized pomegranates, hay, and walnuts found in the south rooms indicate that Villa B probably functioned as a site for the storage and distribution of foodstuffs.

Of equal interest as evidence of commerce and accumulation of wealth are several items: a strongbox, over 200 coins, jewelry, and a seal ring.  The strongbox, found in the peristyle, may have fallen from the upper floor.  It had a wooden framework plated with iron leaves and inscribed “Pythonymos, Pytheas, and Nikokrates, the workers of Herakleides, made [this].” Its exquisite decoration consists of inlay designs and figural bosses in silver, copper, and gilded bronze typical of late Hellenistic decorative design.  Furthermore, its intricate locking system was so advanced that similar mechanisms continued in use until the nineteenth century.

The coins, ranging in date from the late Republic to the time of Vespasian, hold the potential to shed light on questions of monetary circulation, inflation, and commerce in the region.  As for the jewelry, further study is needed to understand the different points of manufacture, as well as the techniques employed.   The seal ring bears the inscription L.CRAS.TERT.  Such rings created seals for business dealings.  It is on the basis of this seal that one scholar determined that the owner of Villa B was L. Crassius Tertius, a hypothesis, however, that requires further investigation; alternatively, he could have been the administrator (procurator) rather than owner.

The most important find, and one that—properly studied—can shed light on pressing questions, is the discovery of the skeletons of 54 individuals in room 10, one of the large ground-floor rooms that opened onto the southern portico).  These were people who had gathered in this room to escape the eruption, and presumably to await rescue from the sea, overcome by the hot gas and poisonous fumes of the first pyroclastic flow that hit Villa B.  They are a gruesome reminder of the human toll taken by Vesuvius.  Because they were found in two distinct groups, some scholars attempt to distinguish the skeletons in terms of social status.  Those at the rear of the space, bearing no money or jewelry, would be servants and slaves, whereas the group near the entrance to the space would be elites—this because some of them were found with considerable wealth in the form of coins and jewelry

Archaeological sites Pompeii

Archaeological sites Pompeii, useful info and tips for visiting

Archaeological sites pompeii is the ruined ancient Roman city , which was engulfed by Mt. Vesuvius in AD 79.

Archaeological sites Pompeii..with its excavated area, extending for approximately 44 ha, and the preservation state of its buildings, due to the particular burial (under a blanket of 6 meter of ash and rock) caused by the eruption of the Vesuvius in 79 AD, Pompeii can be considered the only archaelogical site which gives the real image of roman city. And the image is similar to cities, not preserved, of the same period.

The city of Pompeii was an ancient Roman town-city near modern Naples in the Italian region of Campania, in the territory of thecomune of Pompei. Pompeii, along with Herculaneum and many villas in the surrounding area, was mostly destroyed and buried under 4 to 6 m (13 to 20 ft) of ash and pumice in the eruption of Mount Vesuvius in 79 AD.

Archaeological sites Pompeii

The excavated city offers a snapshot of Roman life in the 1st century, frozen at the moment it was buried on 24 August AD 79.The forum, the baths, many houses, and some out-of-town villas like the Villa of the Mysteries remain well preserved.

 B&B Pompeii The Fauno is just 1 km from the Pompeii Ruins, you can easily reach by walk, car (5 minutes) or with train of Circumvesuviana ( 500 mt . from the B&B) .

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ARCHAELOGical sites Pompeii – useful info

Tips for Visiting Pompeii

This is a walking site only. Note that walking the old Roman stone roads can be quite exhausting, especially in the heat of summer with loads of fellow tourists about. Everyone will be walking on cobblestones and uneven ground. The temperature is between 32 and 35c in the summer. Make sure to take plenty of water and watch your step as the old roads have grooves in them where the carts ran. It is advisable to wear good footwear, sunscreen and hats. There is a lot to look at and it could take all day to see everything.

Access Archaeological sites Pompeii

Single ticket – valid for 1 day
Full price: € 13.00
Half price: € 7.50 (*)
access to 3 sites: Pompeii, Oplontis, Boscoreale) – valid for 3 days
Full price: € 14.00
Half price : € 8.00 (*)
Free of charge: for EU citizens under 18 or over 65 years old.
(*) Reductions: for EU citizens aged 18-24 and EU permanent school teachers.
Reductions and free tickets can be issued only by showing a valid document (passport, identity card, driving license).

Archaeological sites Pompeii

Access

Schools
School parties from E.U. countries must show a list of students and teachers at the ticket office on the day of the visit.
Entrance for schools is only from Piazza Anfiteatro.
For information:
Sezione Didattica – tel: +39 081 8575331
School parties’ admission and reservations

Opening Times Archaeological sites Pompeii

November – March, every day from 8.30 a.m. to 5 p.m. (last admission 3.30 p.m.)
April – October, every day from 8.30 a.m. to 7.30 p.m. (last admission 6 p.m.)

Main Routes  Archaeological sites Pompeii

by train:
entrance at Porta Marina or Piazza Esedra
Circumvesuviana Napoli-Sorrento (stop Pompei Scavi – Villa dei Misteri)
entrance at Piazza Anfiteatro
Circumvesuviana Napoli-Poggiomarino (stop Pompei Santuario)
FS Napoli – Salerno (stop Pompei)
by bus:
entrance from Porta Marinaor Piazza Esedra
SITA: from Napoli or from Salerno: stop Pompei ( piazza Esedra).
CSTP n.4 from Salerno
CSTP n.50 from Salerno (by motorway)
by car:
Motorway A3 Napoli-Salerno (exit Pompei ovest )
Motorway A3 Salerno – Napoli (exit Pompei est )

Archaeological sites Pompeii Information

 

Archaeological sites Pompeii

  • The amphitheatre. This is in the most easterly corner of the excavated area, near the Sarno Gate entrance. It was completed in 80BC, measures 135 x 104 metres and could hold about 20,000 people. It is the earliest surviving permanent amphitheatre in Italy and one of the best preserved anywhere. It was used for gladiator battles, other sports and spectacles involving wild animals.
  • The Great Palaestra (Gymnasium). This occupies a large area opposite the Amphitheatre. The central area was used for sporting activities and there was a pool in the middle. On three sides are lengthy internal porticos or colonnades.
  • House of the Vettii. This is believed to have been the home of two brothers who were freed slaves and became very affluent. It contains many frescoes. In the vestibule there is a striking fresco of a well-endowed Priapus, God of Fertility and among the frescos in other parts of the building are illustrations of couples making love, of cupids and of mythological characters.
  • House of the Faun. This is named after a statue of a dancing faun found on the site. It is considered to be an excellent example of the fusion of Italian and Greek architectural styles, and occupies an entire block.

  • Forum. This was the center of public life, although it is now to the southwest of the excavated area. It was surrounded by many of the important governmment, religious and business buildings.
  • Temple of Apollo. This is to the north of the Basilica on the western side of the Forum. It has the oldest remains discovered, with some, including Etruscan items, dating back to 575BC, although the layout we see now was later than that.
  • Theatre. Theatre built in the hollow of a hill for acoustic advantage; it seated 5,000
  • Via dei Sepolcri (street of tombs) A long street with worn ruts from carts.
  • Lupanar An ancient brothel with pornographic frescoes over the entrance to each room, presumably indicating the services on offer. Even allowing for the smaller size of ancient Romans the beds seem rather small.
  • House of the Ancient Hunt. Attractive, open-style house with many frescoes of hunting scenes.
  • The Basilica This is to the west of the Forum. It was the most important public building of the city where both justice was administered and trade was carried on.
  • Forum Granary Artifacts like amphorae (storage jars) and plaster casts of people who did not escape the eruption are stored in this building, which was designed to be the public market but may not have been finished before the eruption.
  • Baths. There are several baths to be inspected. The Forum Baths are just north of the forum and close to the restaurant. They are well-preserved and roofed. Be careful not to miss them as the entranceway is a long passage with no indication of the delights inside. The Central Baths occupy a much larger area but are less well-preserved. Close to these are the Stabian baths which have some interesting decorations and give a good idea of how baths used to function in Roman times.
  • House of the Tragic Poet. This small atrium house is best known for the mosaic at the entrance depicting a chained dog, with the words Cave Canem or “Beware of the Dog”.

  • The Ground surface You will see in the ground there are small tiles called cat’s eyes. The moon’s light or candle light reflects off these tiles and gave light, so people could see where they were walking at night.
  • Bars and Bakeries You will walk past where their bars and bakeries once existed. The bars had counters with three to four holes in them. They have water or other beverages available in the holes. The bakeries’ ovens look similar to the old brick stone oven. The House of the Baker has a garden area with millstones of lava used for grinding the wheat.
  • Street There are tracks for the carriages in the street for a smoother ride. There are also stone blocks in the street for pedestrians to step onto to cross the street. The sidewalks are higher than the modern sidewalk because the streets had water and waste flowing through them. The stone blocks in the street were also as high as the sidewalk, so people did not walk in the waste and water. The stone blocks were also used for what we now call speed bumps. When the carriages were going through the city, they were going fast. To avoid people from getting splashed by the water and waste they had stone blocks in the street. This would make the driver slow down when they were speeding, so they could get through the blocks.

Archaelogical sites Pompeii .. Outside of the city walls:

  • Villa dei Misteri (Villa of the Mysteries) A house with curious frescoes, perhaps of women being initiated into the Cult of Dionysus. Contains one of the finest fresco cycles in Italy, as well as humorous ancient graffiti.

Excavations of Herculaneum

Excavations Herculaneum, really gives you an idea of how ancient Romans lived

Excavations Herculaneum , really gives you an idea of how ancient Romans lived

Excavations Herculaneum .. really gives you an idea of how ancient Romans lived. For the independent traveller there is an additional advantage over Pompei. There are far fewer visitors to Herculaneum than Pompei and you can explore the ruins at leisure without being overwhelmed by tour groups.

These excavations also cover a much smaller site than do those of Pompei and thus seeing the whole site is much less exhausting.

Excavations Herculaneum

Herculaneum was destroyed by an eruption of Mt. Vesuvius in AD 79, the same eruption that destroyed Pompei.

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 B&B The Fauno is just 16 km from the Excavations Herculaneum, you can easily reach by car (15 minutes) or with train of Circumvesuviana ( 500 mt . from the B&B).

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Excavations of Herculaneum

Excavations Herculaneum

In many ways Herculaneum is arguably a more interesting place to visit than Pompeii. Surrounded by volcanic rock, its location gives you a far clearer idea of the magnitude of the volcanic eruption. While roofs in Pompei collapsed under the weight of falling ash, only a few centimetres of ash fell on Herculaneum, causing little damage.

Subsequently, there was a succession of six flows of boiling mud (a mixture of ash and gases) which then solidified. These gradually buried the city’s buildings from the bottom up, causing relatively little damage. The good state of preservation of the site is due to its rapid filling by these flows, which prevented the buildings from collapsing. The high temperature of the first flow carbonized wood in the buildings and extracted water from it.

Restoration work is ongoing, and while a lot of the timbers have been replaced, there is still much of the original timberwork present, albeit, badly charred. Finally, the volcanic rock, ortufo, that covered the site for 1700 years formed an airtight seal. As a consequence there are many well-preserved buildings, many with the upper stories still intact, and some excellent frescoes and mosaics on both walls and floors to be seen.

Additional Excavations Herculaneum Tips

Walking shoes, or those with low heels, are highly recommended. In addition, in warmer weather you may want to bring your own bottle of water. For those with much younger children I advise a backpack style carrier if your stroller is not heavy duty and up to the ancient Roman roads. Allow 2-3 hours to tour the site.

Access

Corso Resina, Ercolano (NA)

School parties must book in advance
For all information:
Sezione Didattica – tel: +39 081 8575331

School parties’ admission and reservations

Opening Times

November – March, every day from 8.30 a.m. to 5 p.m. (last admission 3.30 p.m.)
April – October, every day from 8.30 a.m. to 7.30 p.m. (last admission 6 p.m.)

Closed: 1 January, 1 May, 25 December

Main Routes

by train:
Circumvesuviana Napoli-Sorrento or Napoli-Poggiomarino or Napoli -Torre Annunziata (stop Ercolano)

by car:
Autostrada A3 Napoli-Salerno (exit Ercolano)

Admission

Single ticket – valid for 1 day
Full price: € 11.00
Half price: € 5.50 (*)

Free of charge: for EU citizens under 18 or over 65 years old.

(*) Reductions: for EU citizens aged 18-24 and EU permanent school teachers.
Reductions and free tickets can be issued only by showing a valid document (passport, identity card, driving license).

  • Baths. Both the male and female baths, which are next to each other, are well preserved. They were fed by a large well, which brought water from a depth of 8.25m, heated by a large furnace and distributed around the baths by a network of pipes that also served to provide central heating.

  • House of Neptune and Amphitrite. Worth the visit alone for its stunning mosaics, particularly that of Neptune and Amphitrite (a sea goddess and wife of Poseidon), after which the house is named.
  • Gymnasium. This large complex extends over much of the southeast side of the excavations and is on your right as you walk down to the ticket office.
  • Villa of the Papyri. The coastline was significantly altered by the eruption but this large and luxurious villa originally stretched down to the sea in four terraces. Its sea front was about 250m long. It is below you on your right as you leave the ticket office and head towards the audio guide kiosk. The villa contained a fine library of scrolls and, although these were badly carbonized, there is hope that modern technology will soon make it possible to read them without destroying them by opening them.
  • House of the Deer, :-). This was another luxurious waterfront dwelling.And very popular.
  • Samnite House. This is one of the oldest properties so far discovered on the site. Excavations suggest that, at various times, the upper floor was rented out and the courtyard was sold off. What remains now is a large roofed and elegantly decorated atrium with a few small rooms around it.
  • House of the Beautiful Courtyard. . The attractive courtyard is said to resemble an Italian medieval courtyard more than a Roman building. In a display case there are two skeletons fused with volcanic rock.
  • College of the Augustales. The Augustales were an order of Roman priests responsible for attending to the maintenance of the cult of Augustus, who was considered the first emperor of the Roman Empire. The building consists of one large, well-decorated roofed room.

  • Herculaneum is the Latin name of the site – the Italian name is Ercolano, and like Pompei (with one I, the new town next to the excavations) there’s a modern city of Ercolano around (and above) the Ercolano excavations.
  • Allow roughly 2 hours on site at Herculaneum; it’s quite small, especially in comparison to Pompeii, and even if you stroll you won’t need much more time than that.
  • When you walk down the steps from the train station, you’re greeted by a small parking lot full of taxis and their eager drivers. Walk through this phalanx of cars, ignoring the drivers offers of rides to Ercolano and Vesuvius, because the walk from the station to the Ercolano entrance is short and all downhill. (Yes, the walk back is uphill, but it’s not bad. Really.)
  • The same note from the Pompeii tips above about parents toting kids in backpacks or expecting them to walk (rather than using strollers) goes for Herculaneum, too – even more so because Herculaneum is more hilly than Pompeii in addition to being cobblestoned.
  • You’ll be able to refill that water bottle I suggested you bring to Pompeii at the many similar water fountains of Herculaneum, too, so hang onto the bottle.
  • Bring a guide of some kind – a podcast audio guide or walking tour – with you.  If you stay at the B & B Pompei Il Fauno, upon your arrival you will receive free loan with a detailed guide map for your visit to the archaeological site of Herculaneum. You get a map and booklet for free with your ticket, just like you do at Pompeii, but the information in the booklet isn’t as interesting as what you’d get from a real walking tour.

Address:
Via IV Novembre n.44 80056 – Ercolano (NA)
E-mail: info@museomav.it
Telephone:+39 081-19806511
Fax: +39 081-19806599
http://www.museomav.it

MAV (Museo Archeologico Virtuale), Via 4 Novembre 44 (200m up the hill from the entrance to the excavations: on the left.), (info@museomav.it). 09.00-17.30 Tues-Sun.  An enjoyable interactive museum that recreates life as it was in Herculaneum and Pompei before the eruption. Great fun for kids, although some parents may not appreciate the virtual visit to one of Pompei’s brothels! Buildings are reconstructed before your eyes at a wave of your hand; you can brush ash off a fresco; make a virtual pool of water over a mosaic ripple; see 3-D images of jewelry found at the sites; walk next to marching legionaries; learn of the lifestyle of the Roman times at an interactive table, and visit public baths and the brothel! €7.50 (reduced €6.00)

The Museum

A dip into the past through a multisensory experience, to learn and discover in detail, a dive into the past through a multisensory experience, to learn and discover in detail the historical realities of Herculaneum and Pompeii before the eruption of the Vesuvius 79 AD. This is the mission of the MAV structure that was created in the heart of Herculaneum and provides new ways of using cultural.

The visitor will be transported in a virtual context faithfully reconstructed by the use of modern technologies.

The journey begins after passing a sort of ancestral door dematerialized bodies in streams and connective intelligence leading to the discovery of names and faces of the ancient Herculaneum, with which it is aware of the history of the community and their way living.

Pompeii Ruins

Pompeii is a ruined and partially buried Roman town-city near modern Naples in the Italian region of Campania, in the territory of the comune of Pompeii.

Along with Herculaneum, its sister city, Pompeii was destroyed and completely buried during a long catastrophic eruption of the volcano Mount Vesuvius spanning two days in 79 AD.

The excavations of Pompeii are located only 1 km from our B & B !!!

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The volcano collapsed higher roof-lines and buried Pompeii under 20 m (66 ft) of ash and pumice, and it was lost for nearly 1,600 years before its accidental rediscovery in 1592. Since then, its excavation has provided an extraordinarily detailed insight into the life of a city at the height of the Roman Empire. Today, this UNESCO World Heritage Site is one of the most popular tourist attractions of Italy, with approximately 2,500,000 visitors every year. 

Early history

The archaeological digs at the site extend to the street level of the 79 AD volcanic event; deeper digs in older parts of Pompeii and core samples of nearby drillings have exposed layers of jumbled sediment that suggest that the city had suffered from the volcano and other seismic events before then. Three sheets of sediment have been found on top of the lava that lies below the city and, mixed in with the sediment, archaeologists have found bits of animal bone, pottery shards and plants. Using carbon dating, the oldest layer has been dated to the 8th-6th centuries BC, about the time that the city was founded. The other two layers are separated from the other layers by well-developed soil layers or Roman pavement and were laid in the 4th century BC and 2nd century BC. It is theorized that the layers of jumbled sediment were created by large landslides, perhaps triggered by extended rainfall.

The town was founded around the 7th-6th century BC by the Osci or Oscans, a people of central Italy, on what was an important crossroad between Cumae, Nola and Stabiae. It had already been used as a safe port by Greek and Phoenician sailors. According to Strabo, Pompeii was also captured by the Etruscans, and in fact recent excavations have shown the presence of Etruscan inscriptions and a 6th century BC necropolis. Pompeii was captured for the first time by the Greek colony of Cumae, allied with Syracuse, between 525 and 474 BC.

In the 5th century BC, the Samnites conquered it (and all the other towns of Campania); the new rulers imposed their architecture and enlarged the town. After the Samnite Wars (4th century BC), Pompeii was forced to accept the status of socium of Rome, maintaining however linguistic and administrative autonomy. In the 4th century BC it was fortified. Pompeii remained faithful to Rome during the Second Punic War.

Pompeii took part in the war that the towns of Campania initiated against Rome, but in 89 BC it was besieged by Sulla. Although the troops of the Social League, headed by Lucius Cluentius, helped in resisting the Romans, in 80 BC Pompeii was forced to surrender after the conquest of Nola, culminating in many of Sulla’s veterans being given land and property, while many of those who went against Rome were ousted from their homes. It became a Roman colony with the name of Colonia Cornelia Veneria Pompeianorum. The town became an important passage for goods that arrived by sea and had to be sent toward Rome or Southern Italy along the nearby Appian Way. Agriculture, oil and wine production were also important.

It was fed with water by a spur from Aqua Augusta (Naples) built circa 20 BC by Agrippa, the main line supplying several other large towns, and finally the naval base at Misenum. The castellum in Pompeii is well preserved, and includes many interesting details of the distribution network and its controls.

History of the excavations of Herculaneum

History of the excavations of Herculaneum

The digs began at Herculaneum in 1738, and continued using the technique of underground tunnels and exploratory and ventilation shafts until 1828, when the “open-air” digs were authorized, and carried out until 1875. After a very long interruption, in 1927 Amedeo Maiuri began again the work , and continued to lead the digs until 1958, but already in 1942 about all the area, constituting the current archaeological park, was brought to light and contemporary restored and covered.

Additional work was done between 1960 and 1969, in the northern sector of Insula VI and along the main street or “Decumanus Maximus”, while the last twenty years have concentrated on exploring the ancient shoreline, corresponding to the southern most strip of the archeological area.

The Excavation of Erculaneum is far from our bed and breakfast only 18 Km.

No advance payment required

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In this area 12 rooms were brought to light. These were rooms (fornici) with arched entrances, shelters for boats and warehouse, where many people took refuge escaping from the eruption. In this area it was found the wooden boat, now placed in a pavilion adjacent to the modern offices of the Soprintendenza and the Antiquarium, waiting for a complex work of restoration.
In 1991 a program of excavation for bringing to light Villa of Papyri started.
Carlo Weber discovered Villa of Papyri in 1750 by chance. He excavated the Villa through underground tunnels and accurately surveyed it.
The intervention was possible thanks to extraordinary funds allocated on the basis of the 64/1-3-1986 Law. In 1991 following an agreement between the “Ministero per I Beni Culturali e Ambientali” and the “Agenzia per la promozione e lo sviluppo del Mezzogiorno”, the project was given in concession to a Temporary Association (A.T.I.).
The New Excavation was concentrated at the western side of the modern Vico Mare and is connected to the archaeological park through a narrow and deep trench, starting from the House of Aristide and continuing through a gallery beneath Vico Mare.

In reality, only the atrium of the Villa was brought to light, as the remains of the luxurious residence are under some properties not expropriated yet. In the eastern section of the excavations a great building and the southwestern extremity of the city, were brought to light. This part of the city included some houses and a thermal complex with an apsed nympheum.
Because of the collapse of the ancient coastline, after the eruption of 79 A.D., a system of water pump takes continuously control of the water layer.

Information Herculaneum

Information

Access

Corso Resina, Ercolano (NA)
School parties must book in advance
For all information:
Sezione Didattica – tel: +39 081 8575331School parties’ admission and reservations

Opening Times

November – March, every day from 8.30 a.m. to 5 p.m. (last admission 3.30 p.m.)
April – October, every day from 8.30 a.m. to 7.30 p.m. (last admission 6 p.m.)
Closed:  1st May

Main Routes

by train:
CircumvesuvianaNapoli-Sorrento or Napoli-Poggiomarino or Napoli -Torre Annunziata (stop Ercolano)by car:
Autostrada A3 Napoli-Salerno (exit Ercolano)

Admission

Single ticket – valid for 1 day
Full price: € 11.00
Half price: € 5.50 (*)
Access to 5 sites: (Herculaneum, Pompeii, Oplontis, Stabiae, Boscoreale) – valid for 3 days
Full price: € 20.00
Half price : € 10.00 (*)
Free of charge: for EU citizens under 18 or over 65 years old.
(*) Reductions: for EU citizens aged 18-24 and EU permanent school teachers.
Reductions and free tickets can be issued only by showing a valid document (passport, identity card, driving license).

The Excavation of Erculaneum is far from our bed and breakfast only 18 Km.

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