After spending our last four days in Amalfi at the beach, we woke up super early (4:00 am) to catch our bus to Salerno and our train from there to Pompeii. It was all very tiring, but, even after walking with all our backpacks from Pompeii station to our B&B 15 minutes away, we made our 9:00 am appointment with Roberta, our guide from Italy Tours for Kids for our tour of the ruins of Pompeii.
Roberta was awesome. She made the site come alive for us, and especially Rowan, with pictures on her mini tablet, historical facts about Pompeii and its people, a bunch of little scavenger hunts and fact quizzes. She led us through the ruins for 2.5 hours, and then we made a quick trip to the other end of the site to view the Amphitheatre of Pompeii where Pink Floyd recorded Live at Pompeii, the documentary film highlighting some of their most famous early songs. David Gilmour, Pink Floyd‘s singer performed at the stadium just two weeks earlier (ack, we missed it!), so there was also a Pink Floyd photo exhibit, that showed some stills from the movie.
After a quick panini lunch near the Pompeii Scavi train station, we hopped on a bus to the Vesuvius National Park. There we boarded another bus that took us almost to the top of the very live Mount Vesuvius volcano. About 250 metres from the peak, we walked for about 20 minutes along zig-zagging paths up to the crest of the crater.
It was surreal because we were walking through clouds and could see the thunderstorm hovering over Pompeii in the distance. The clouds made the top of the mountain cold and windy, but we loved looking down into the crater and seeing the rim of it reach around the top. We spent about a 1/2 hour on the volcano and then took the bus down again to the rendezvous point, where we hopped on the second bus that took us back to the Pompeii ruins.
The day was long and exhausting, but we topped it off with a wonderful pizza dinner at I Matti, which had a fantastic garden in the back for us to enjoy our dinner by, and then a quick walk home, and straight to bed.
Our day in Pompeii was spectacular, a real highlight for our whole three weeks in Italy, which was quickly coming to an end.
When we asked him if he was looking forward to going home, Rowan said he’d prefer to continue travelling. That’s my little man!