Pompeii Travel Guide

by our Italy expert Paul Baderman
Paul BadermanPompeii was an important port on the Bay of Naples for thousands of years BC, eventually as a Roman colony. Nearby Herculaneum was smaller, a dormitory town for the wealthier merchants and traders. Both owe their fame to having disappeared for some 1,700 years. The two-day eruption of the volcano Vesuvius in AD79 simply smothered both towns and they remained hidden and effectively unknown until 1738 when workmen excavating for a new Royal Palace for the King of Naples disturbed the remains of Herculaneum. Ten years later, the excavation of Pompeii itself began. Now substantial portions of the town are uncovered and attract many visitors – the amount of excavation has slowed almost to a halt because of the damage risk following exposure. The speed of the entombment meant that life in all forms stopped abruptly and some discoveries verge on the macabre. Ash, rather than lava, also meant that preservation of all kinds of fragile artifacts occurred, including the famous frescoes - often risqué to 18th century eyes, leading to restrictions on their viewing.

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National Flag: Italian Flag
Language(s): Italian
Currency: Euro
Dialling Code: +39
Time Zone: GMT + 1
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