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The ruins are Pompeii are like none of the other ancient ruins scattered across Europe. The ruins at Pompeii Pompeii is centrally located between Naples, Sorrento, and the Amalfi Coast so if you’re touring either of these areas you can easily take a day trip to Pompeii! Here is your guide to spending the day at ancient Pompeii.
Exploring the Ruins of Pompeii
Getting to Pompeii and Practical Information
Hours: From April 1st to October 31st: 9.00am – 7.30pm ( last admission 6.00pm )
From November 1st to March 31st: 9.00am – 5.00pm (last admission 15.30am )
Boscoreale: from November 1st to March 31st: 8.30am – 6.30pm (last admission 5.00pm )
Admission: € 15.00
History of Pompeii
Prior to the eruption, small earthquakes shook the Bay of Naples, setting the stage for the eruption. In 79AD, the nearby volcano Mount Vesuvius erupted, covering the entire city with 25 meters of ash. Much of what is known about the two-day eruption comes from the eyewitness account from Pliny the Younger, a Roman administrator, and poet who watched the eruption unfold from across the Bay of Naples.
The irony of the eruption is that the Romans were extremely interested in predicting the future, and for the case of Mount Vesuvius, the signs were there; however, Romans didn’t have the scientific knowledge we have today.
Upon studying the volcanological and bio-anthropological history of the 79AD eruption Mount Vesuvius revealed that the main cause of death was from the heat, not the clouds of ash.
The ruins of Pompeii were rediscovered in 1599 by accident and proper excavation began in the 1700s. Interestingly, you will see at Pompeii many references in art and mosaics to sexuality and fertility. When these images were first found in early excavations, and because of the clash of culture at the time, these discoveries were hidden away. Many of the artifacts found at Pompeii currently reside in the Naples Archeological Museum. The ruins of Pompeii were declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1997.
Objects buried beneath Pompeii were well-preserved for almost 2,000 years because of the lack of air and moisture underground. Thanks to this excellent preservation, researchers had a wealth of artifacts to help them understand live in Pompeii. Two-thirds of the city has been excavated, but the remnants of the city are rapidly deteriorating. Unfortunately, weathering, erosion, light exposure, poor methods of excavation and reconstruction, tourism, and vandalism and theft have damaged the site in some way.
To combat conversation problems associated with tourism, the agencies governing Pompeii have begun issuing tickets for tourists to visit other nearby ancient cities such as Herculaneum and Stabiae as well as the Villa Poppaea, to help reduce pressure on Pompeii.
Climbing Mount Vesuvius
If you’re an adventurous type, you can hike and climb Mount Vesuvius!