The evocative Italian site of Pompeii is known the world over, and for good reason. Buried and preserved after the cataclysmic eruption of Vesuvius in AD 79, this staggering site simply has to be seen to be believed. What’s more, it is ever-changing, meaning it’s likely that no two visits will be the same. New houses are constantly being opened up to the public and new discoveries are sporadically being made, so even if you’ve visited Pompeii before, there’s always a reason to return.
Pompeii 2020: A Changing Destination
One of our longest-running and most popular tours, Pompeii is both an entry-level archaeological experience as well as one for the seasoned historians among us. Guests from all walks of life and with all grades knowledge take something away from a visit to Pompeii, whether it’s a story shared by one of our expert guides who know the site inside and out, or a deeper understanding of mortality and the human experience – it truly is a life-changing place to visit, and we can’t recommend it enough.
So, why Andante? Well, we have many reasons why you should visit with us. The most important – aside from the fact that we’ve been running this tour for over three decades now so it’s as finely-tuned as possible – is that each departure is led by an expert guide lecturer, many of whom have personally excavated at the site itself or have focused on it in their extensive studies. Among our roster of experts leading the Pompeii tours, you’ll find best-selling authors (Ben Kane and Dr. Simon Elliott), a Wanderlust award-winner (Dr. Eireann Marshall), specialists in the study of ancient glass (John Shepherd), and even a former Archaeologist of the Year winner (Tony Wilmott).
What’s more, 2020 is a particularly exciting time to explore Pompeii with Andante as we’ve revamped and updated our itinerary to include a few extra highlights. The first is private access to the store rooms at Paestum, where you’ll stand before brightly-painted Lucanian painted tombs that are otherwise off-limits to members of the public. Next, we’ll grant you private access to the Theatre of Herculaneum, which was discovered in 1709 during the digging of a well. The theatre itself held around 2,500 people and survived Vesuvius’ eruption well as a result of the strength of its structure, but it was filled by the volcanic flow and had to be excavated upon rediscovery. This tour also includes private access to the Cave of Sejanus, which is an impressive tunnel that dates back to the age of Augustus and gives access to the seaside villa of Pausilypon, once owned by Publius Vedius Pollio. And, if that wasn’t enough, there will now be visits to some of the amazing houses that have been newly reopened to guests for the first time in decades, such as the captivating House of the Bicentenary, which is now open for visitors in Herculaneum.
Speaking about this house in particular, Dr. Eireann Marshall explains: "It is one of the most sumptuous houses in Herculaneum, which includes a unique, intact wooden trellis that separates a bedroom from the atrium. The Getty Conservation Institute is still working on the wonderful frescoes in the tablinum – some of the finest in all of Herculaneum.”
Another of our favourite things about this all-inclusive and long-running tour is the fact that it will see you spend seven nights at the charming Hotel Scapolatiello (shown below), nestled among the gorgeous hills around three miles from the Amalfi Coast.
Outside of exploring the all-important site of Pompeii itself, this tour also offers chances to climb the great volcanic crater of Vesuvius (pictured below), discover the remains of the neighbouring town of Herculaneum, wander around the impressive villa of Oplontis, explore the incredible amphitheatre at Pozzuoli, and pore over artefacts at both the Paestum Museum and the National Archaeological Museum of Naples.
For a glimpse of what you can expect from one of our Pompeii, Herculaneum & Classical Campania tours, just watch the video to the right.