Before our 1st ever Mediterranean Cruise a few years ago (where we visited places like Rome, Ephesus Turkey, the Lost City of Pompeii, etc.) we didn’t really know too much about ancient ruins or their dramatic locations.
But like many things in life, “you don’t know what you don’t know”, and now that we’ve visited several amazing archaeological ruins and sites, we can tell you that we look forward to seeing those age old treasures and found that digging in, and learning all about them “before” we visit helps us get the most out of our quests and sight seeing of the remains.
And visiting the Lost City of Pompeii (about 30 mins by train from Naples) was definitely one of the places that fueled our learning curve!
Now, we could tell you some things about Pompeii (a UNESCO World Heritage Site that attracts around 2.5 million visitors per year) but we figured we’d let the expert speak, Rick Steves, who knows more about Europe then just about anyone and who we get lots of our Europe learning through.
“Pompeii, stopped in its tracks by the eruption of Mount Vesuvius in A.D. 79, offers the best look anywhere at what life in Rome must have been like 2,000 years ago. An entire city of well-preserved ruins is yours to explore. Once a thriving commercial port of 20,000, Pompeii grew from Greek and Etruscan roots to become an important Roman city. Then Pompeii was buried under 30 feet of hot mud and volcanic ash. For archaeologists this was a shake-and-bake windfall, teaching them volumes about daily Roman life.
When touring Pompeii, remember this was a booming trading city. Most streets would have been lined with stalls and jammed with customers from sunup to sundown. Chariots vied for street space with shoppers, and many streets were off-limits to chariots during shopping hours (you’ll still see street signs with pictures of men carrying vases — this meant pedestrians only). Pompeii’s best art is in the Naples Archaeological Museum.”
We couldn’t have said it better ourselves.
So as Rick says…
…Pompeii is a very well-preserved ruins that gives you a great taste of what life was like back all those years ago.
Here’s Nancy crossing the stepping stones in Pompeii that the citizens used back in the day to avoid getting their sandals wet as the streets were filled with water each day to wash everything down.
By the way, a few tips… the streets are pretty much (like a lot of Europe) all cobblestone so wear sneakers or sport sandals to make the walking easier… high heels are a definite no, no.
And in the summertime it is very hot there so bring lots of sunscreen and water.
Have you ever been to Pompeii or plan to go there soon? Either way, we’d love to hear about your experience below.
To see our other Pompeii pics, visit our Pompeii & Mediterranean Cruise photo & video gallery.
We appreciate You!
Nancy & Shawn
Your Trusted Cruise Experts!
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