Day 4 - Thursday, June 14 - Rome - Pompeii - Naples.
After breakfast, we will leave Rome and travel south to the region of Campania. A local guide will take us into Pompeii, the Roman city both destroyed and preserved by an eruption of Mount Vesuvius in 79 AD. See patrician homes, public baths, and commercial districts strikingly recalling day-to-day life when Rome was at the apex of her power. We continue to nearby Naples and then into the city center for an Orientation Tour of the Triumphal Arch of the New Castle, St. Charles Theatre and the Royal Palace. Dinner at the hotel. Overnight Naples.
Today we departed Rome for Pompeii. After breakfast, we boarded our coach around 8:00 am. As we traveled to Pompeii we saw the Bay of Naples and the Isle of Capri. It was very hazy so the Isle was hard to spot. As we came closer to Pompeii, we got a great view of Mt. Vesuvius. It is quite impressive, equally impressive as what we were about to see. When we arrived at Pompeii the actual city was not visible, only the area around the most elevated part of the city. I personally had no idea how large a city it was. We walked up many winding streets paved with large stones. Stepping stones were placed across the streets for the pedestrians. There were ruts worn in the road from the many cart wheels that had traveled up and down the roads. There were bakeries, pharmacies, hospitals, bordellos, bath houses, and several other businesses. There were many small homes and as we made our way up the highest part of the city, we were able to walk through the homes of the Patricians. It was fascinating to hear all of the stories from our guide Pepe. After some refreshment in the new Pompeii, we left for Naples. It was not what I would have expected. The city lacked charm, but did have many beautiful buildings. This was the first opportunity I had to upload information to the website. Hopefully I will be able to update daily from now on for those of you following along. Tomorrow we head for southern Italy.