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Old 09-06-2009, 06:45 PM   #1
helenk
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For Viva Italia trips-has anyone done Pompeii on their own?

We are planning on arriving a day early to kind of relax and get aclimated. I would love to try and get to Pompeii the next day. I've read that it's about 3hours or so driving or a bit less by train. I am worried that we would be rushing to get back for the Welcome dinner...although I do not know what time dinner will be at this point.
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Old 09-07-2009, 02:30 PM   #2
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We did Pompeii on our own after the Viva Italia trip in June 2007. It took most of the day. We went by train and left Rome around 7:30 AM. It takes approximately 1:30 to get to Naples. The only tricky part is changing trains in Naples to a local commuter line to Pompeii. The tour books warn about pickpockets on this part of the train, and while we didn't have any problems, it was a little unsettling. However, a local man told us we were waiting for the wrong train and politely showed us which train to take. We arrived in Pompeii around 9:40 AM. The train cost approximately $69.00/pp each way.

We thouroughly enjoyed Pompeii and spent most of the day there. We purchased the audio headset tour. You do it on your own and it takes several hours, but so much more informative. Without the explaination, it all looks the same after a while. You can tailor your tour based on your interest. I was surprised how big Pompeii was. There's a cafeteria where you can get lunch. It's very dry and hot. Plan for a few water breaks.

We took the 4:40 PM train back to Naples and arrived in Rome around 7:30 PM. We were exhausted. Pack comfortable shoes. The cobblestone streets are more difficult to walk on than we expected.

All in all, it was one of the highlights of our trip after Viva Italia and glad we did it. If you can work it into your schedule, I would highly recommend a day trip to Pompeii.

A suggestion for a shorter side trip...we toured the Borghese Gallery on the day we arrived. After ABD checked us in, we unpacked and were off. To save time, we took a taxi and walked back to the hotel afterwards. On our Viva Italia trip, we stayed at the Hotel Excedra, which is about a 5-10 minute taxi ride from the Gallery. If interested, you have to make reservations in advance. We did it online and had no problems. Again it was one of the highlights of our time on our own. It's a small gallery, but some of the most amazing sculptures we saw.

Bookending the Borghese Gallery at the start of our trip and Pompeii at the end, we felt like it made for a memorable beginning and end to a perfect trip.
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Old 09-07-2009, 09:02 PM   #3
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Thanks for your reply. I am worried that going to Pompeii may take up too much of my first day. Funny you suggest the Borghese Gallery, I was just talking to my sister-in-law today, she went to Italy a few years ago and she recommended this as well. I'll have to do some research.
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Old 09-07-2009, 09:20 PM   #4
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I have done Pompeii and loved it, but it really would be a long day and you don't want to start the tour tired. My husband and I arrived a day early for our Viva Italia trip and we did go to the Borghese Gallery and it is wonderful. I went online and reserved our tickets for the gallery from home and picked them up at the will-call box. We did not do it on arrival day, but the next day when we were rested. Look at RedZinners trip report for another option. They went with another couple to some ruins and loved it. Also Disney had a pair of hop on hop off passes for us check in. It was really nice that first day when we were tired to just ride around Rome. We already knew where we were going to go with Disney, so we got off at the other stops.
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Old 09-08-2009, 01:43 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by CocosMeme View Post
I have done Pompeii and loved it, but it really would be a long day and you don't want to start the tour tired. My husband and I arrived a day early for our Viva Italia trip and we did go to the Borghese Gallery and it is wonderful. I went online and reserved our tickets for the gallery from home and picked them up at the will-call box. We did not do it on arrival day, but the next day when we were rested. Look at RedZinners trip report for another option. They went with another couple to some ruins and loved it. Also Disney had a pair of hop on hop off passes for us check in. It was really nice that first day when we were tired to just ride around Rome. We already knew where we were going to go with Disney, so we got off at the other stops.
Thanks for the tips, I'll check out RedZinners trip report as well. I want to do as much as possible without burning out. So much to do and so little time
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Old 09-10-2009, 08:43 PM   #6
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I would suggest visiting Ostia Antica which is very close to Rome (45 minutes). Transportation is fairly simple via the Rome Metro and a short ride on a surface train (~2 Euro roundtrip). It is a 5 minute walk from the train station to the entrance of the ruins.

Ostia Antica was the harbour town on the Tiber River for ancient Rome. It was founded in the 7th Century B.C. The ruins aren't as famous as Pompeii, but they are well worth the trip.

It was one of the highlights of our Italy vacation.



Rick Steves has lots of information.

http://www.ricksteves.com/plan/desti...taly/ostia.htm
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Old 09-10-2009, 10:50 PM   #7
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I would suggest visiting Ostia Antica which is very close to Rome (45 minutes). Transportation is fairly simple via the Rome Metro and a short ride on a surface train (~2 Euro roundtrip). It is a 5 minute walk from the train station to the entrance of the ruins.

Ostia Antica was the harbour town on the Tiber River for ancient Rome. It was founded in the 7th Century B.C. The ruins aren't as famous as Pompeii, but they are well worth the trip.

It was one of the highlights of our Italy vacation.



Rick Steves has lots of information.

http://www.ricksteves.com/plan/desti...taly/ostia.htm
Oh this really looks interesting too, I will keep this in mind for sure. Thank you
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Old 09-11-2009, 07:12 AM   #8
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helenk, Ostia Antica are the ruins we visited too while in Rome. Much more manageable than getting to Pompeii and back.

Rome and photos (Viva Italia '08)

Just click on the photos to slow the slideshow down.

There is a little cafeteria on site to get water or a snack while you are there. You will need the water!
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Old 09-11-2009, 04:10 PM   #9
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Quote:
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helenk, Ostia Antica are the ruins we visited too while in Rome. Much more manageable than getting to Pompeii and back.

Rome and photos (Viva Italia '08)

Just click on the photos to slow the slideshow down.

There is a little cafeteria on site to get water or a snack while you are there. You will need the water!
Well that clinches it, this looks really great and a nice alternative to Pompeii.
Thank you
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Old 09-17-2009, 11:22 PM   #10
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I second (or third) Ostia Antica. I LOVE Pompeii, but it requires a full day devoted to it from Rome and even then you miss out on a lot. I highly recommend the Context Travel tour at 75 Euro per person. You get a personalized, highly knowledgeable guide and very small groups (max of 6 people). http://www.contexttravel.com/rome/to...nked-tours=yes. If it fits into your schedule try the visit to the dig with an actual archeologist for only 45 Euro (and it includes lunch!) http://www.contexttravel.com/rome/to...a-dig/STR4504/. This is what we did and Luke allowed us on the active dig site, we got to hold old coins and stuff they had just dug up the day before and lunched with all of the archaelogists at the dig site on a tarp. We also got the full tour of the whole Ostia Antica from someone really in the know. One of the highlights of our trip.




(If you can't see the pictures because I sometimes have trouble posting them, go to http://michelleandbrad.shutterfly.co...?startIndex=50 . All except the 1st 2 pics on that page are from Ostia Antica.
Have a great trip!!!!!
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Old 09-19-2009, 03:22 PM   #11
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sasmmb-Thank you for the tour link, I have saved it in my favorites. I did go to your shutterfly site to view your pictures, very nice.
I appreciate your help.
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