Visiting Pompeii, Herculaneum & Mount Vesuvius

A Practical Guide For Those Planning On Visiting These Sites Clustered South Of Naples from Rome

Typical Street Scene At Pompeii

Street Scene Pompeii


If you are visiting Rome, having a sun holiday in the Sorrento/Amalfi area or perhaps visiting Naples a visit to Pompeii is within easy reach either by tour or under your own steam using the train services in the area. Pompeii is just within range of a long day tour from Rome either by tour bus or independently by rail.

Visiting Pompeii - What To Expect

If you are already in the Naples, Sorrento area we have a similar dedicated page visiting Pompeii, Herculaneum & Mount Vesuvius from Naples.

Geographical Location & Logistics Visiting Pompeii From Rome Independently

Pompeii By Train From Rome

Pompeii is about 15 miles south of Naples, mid-way by road and rail between Naples and Sorrento. There is a frequent but crowded private local train service called Circumvesuviana) between Naples and Sorrento that stops at Pompeii Station just a few yards from the main entrance to the Pompeii site.

From Rome to Naples there are very frequent trains with broadly 3 classes of trains that take between one and three hours depending on class of train and a corresponding wide range in fares. Advance purchase on-line fares are available on the fastest trains and can be astoundingly good value.

The national railways also run a train service between Naples and Salerno that stops at a separate station in Pompeii to the Circumvesuviana train and is within walking distance of the Pompeii site.

Trains from Rome terminate at Naples Centrale Station.

Both trains to Pompeii operate from Centrale station. The Circumvesuviana trains have independent ticketing with no-online facility, so you cannot buy a through ticket from Rome to Pompeii. You buy a ticket on the day in cash at Naples.

The national railways service you can buy on-line or on the day.

Confusingly the Pompeii platforms at Naples Central Station are called Naples Garibaldi Station even though they are in the same building as Central Station. Crudely both the Pompeii trains run about every 30 minutes and take 30-40 minutes to Pompeii.

Herculaneum By Train

About half way between Pompeii and Naples on the Circumvesuviana train is Herculaneum, a more compact version of Pompeii. Many people find this less marketed site more enjoyable than Pompeii. Locally its referred to as Ercolano after the modern town of the same name.

Ercolano Scavi is the train station that serves Herculaneum, about a 10 minute walk.

Ercolano Scavi station is crudely about mid-way between Pompeii Station and Naples Garibaldi Station on the Circumvesuviana trains. The Herculaneum site is about 10 minutes walk from the train station.

Visiting Herculaneum - What To Expect

Mount Vesuvius By Train

Mount Vesuvius is the villain that of course erupted and buried both Pompeii and Herculaneum.

Its a natural tourist attraction and is very popular twinned with Pompeii in a full day trip. Whilst Pompeii and Herculaneum are simple by train, Mount Vesuvius is more problematic. The main access points independently are from Pompeii and Ercolano train stations.

Ercolano is the shortest distance from Mount Vesuvius but its a mixed bag of taxi's and minibus operators where its all rather informal with language barriers and room for misunderstandings.

At Pompeii its more mainstream tourist operations with printed schedules, advance purchase ticketing and clear documentation with purpose built vehicles. There is also a reliable scheduled bus service run by the local public bus operator that shuttles between the main gates of Pompeii and Mount Vesuvius.

Visiting Mount Vesuvius- What To Expect

TrenItalia Timetables & Ticketing

Circumvesuviana Trains

Full details of the Circumvesuviana Trains that enable an independent visit to Pompeii, Herculaneum & Mount Vesuvius From Naples are on our dedicated page linked below.

The Circumvesuviana is a small independent network of lines out of of Naples that cover the region to the east of the city. The line is not part of the national railways so you cannot buy a ticket to Pompeii using the national rail network and Circumvesuviana journeys combined in one ticket. There are no seat reservations, you pay cash for tickets in advance at the stations or local newsstands and bars.

Circumvesuviana Trains - Full Details

Tour Bus From Rome or Train To Naples Then Tour Bus From Naples Station Options

Independent or Tour?

You probably know yourself whether tour buses are your thing or not.

From Rome a tour coach can take best part of three hours to make the journey to Naples. The fast trains are much speedier to Naples than any vehicle and you can take the train to Naples Station and choose a tour that departs from Central Station Naples, though you will require a very early train from Rome.

At Pompeii and Herculaneum there is very little in the way of information provided to explain what you are seeing. If you go on a tour you will normally get a qualified guide that will take you on a walking tour of about 2 hours around Pompeii or Herculaneum. If you visit independently then an audio guide is your best hope of making sense of what you are witnessing..

Pompeii in particular is a vast site. The guides will cover all the main must see sights within Pompeii in a very time efficient manner. There is a danger for the independent visitor that you spend a lot of time walking the less interesting part of the site and miss some of the highlights unless they are pointed out.

Tours To Pompeii From Rome

From Rome tour buses run daily on two popular day tours that include Pompeii. Each tour is a very long day (around 12-13 hours) so its an early start.

Naples & Pompeii Day Tour From Rome - Full Details

Mount Vesuvius & Pompeii Day Tour From Rome - Full Details

Tours To Pompeii, Herculaneum & Mount Vesuvius From Naples Train Station

By taking the train from Rome to Naples Central Station you have a much wider choice of tours. Note this is not Switzerland, trains in Italy do not go to clockwork all the time, far from it. The fastest high speed trains tend to be the most reliable and punctual.

Popular Tours From Naples

Including Pompeii

Morning Half Day Tour To Pompeii    €58.00

Includes admission and 2 hr walking tour

Pompeii & Mount Vesuvius Tour    €90.00

Includes lunch, walking tours and admissions

Pompeii & Herculaneum Tour    €90.00

Includes lunch and visit to coral factory

Pompeii & Sorrento Tour    €85.00

Includes lunch, walking tours and admissions

Pompeii & Amalfi Tour    €85.00

Includes lunch

Pompeii Independently

Return Train Tickets From Naples + Pompeii Admission    €27.20

Not Including Pompeii

Half Day Afternoon Tour To Mount Vesuvius    €60.00

Includes admission

Capri Day Tour With Lunch    €115.37

Hydrofoil, island plus lunch

Capri Day Tour With Boat Trip To Blue Grottol    €150.00

Hydrofoil, island tour plus boat trip

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