First full day in Naples and the highlight of my trip to Italy was the 30 minute trek up Mt. Vesuvius and frolicking through the ruins of Pompeii.
Traveling from Naples, Italy to Mt. Vesuvius
From Napoli Centrale Station, I purchased a couple of Circumvesuviana train tickets to Pompeii station for £2.60 (£5.20 round trip). The Circumvesuviana train makes several stops before arriving to Pompeii station and several daily commuters use this train, so it does get a bit crowded. If you’re lucky, you’ll be able to snag a seat. Once we reached Pompeii station, taxis and buses are lined up outside the entrance to take visitors to Mt. Vesuvius.
I made the tourist mistake of taking a taxi up to Mt. Vesuvius and boy was it an expensive mistake. Midway through the taxi trip, our taxi driver decided to change the rate and the taxi ended up costing £70. I tried to negotiate prior to the ride, but the taxi driver kept stating it was not a fixed price and was based on a meter. It was an unfortunate situation and wholeheartedly recommend taking a bus to Mt. Vesuvius.
Trekking up Mt. Vesuvius
Vehicles that escort visitors up to Mt. Vesuvius park about 1000 meters from the peak of the volcano. Once we arrived, we purchased a couple of entrance tickets (£10/person, £1/map) and then started our journey up the volcano. It is a steep incline uphill, but the average person will have no trouble making their way up to the top.
The weather was not on my side the day I chose to venture to Mt. Vesuvius, so it was rainy and cloudy. Halfway up the volcano, there was a small shop where we purchased ponchos to trek the remainder of the way.
Due to the cloudy, rainy weather, I was not able to get a good look at the volcanic crater, but it was still quite the experience. The summit of Mt. Vesuvius is a great vantage point that overlooks Naples & the Amalfi Coast. The pictures I was able to snap on my phone do not do the scenery justice, but trust me, it was beautiful.
Traveling from Mt. Vesuvius to Pompeii
We took a bus back down to Pompeii station. Within a few hundred feet from the entrance of Pompeii Station is the entrance to the ruins of Pompeii. Entering Pompeii costs about £13/person. One could literally spend a full day here exploring the ruins. These well-preserved ruins are spread across about 170 acres of land. The architecture, people, and artifacts that were preserved by the volcanic ash of Mt. Vesuvius offers a unique view of ancient Roman life.
Because we decided to travel to Italy during March, we were able to enjoy a quiet, self-guided stroll through the ruins with the paper map we picked up from the ticket office. We toured the ruins for about 2-3 hours and were still not able to see everything that the ruins had to offer. We touched base at the main highlights including the great Amphitheater.